Hi!

My daughter is 9 and was loosely diagnosed with alopecia about 6 months ago. I say loosely because there have been conflicting opinions by 3 doctors.

After a horrible reaction to sunscreen, my little girls hair seemed to develop bald spots, including half an eyebrow, within weeks and though most have grown back or are starting to, just recently, some new little patches have appeared and she seems to be shedding an awful lot all of a sudden! Thankfully her hair is super thick and nobody has really noticed yet! I do feel that it won't be long though and we'll have to start dealing with some confronting questions by school mates etc!

Anyway - I'm wondering if anyone else has had a similar experience with an allergic reaction? Her skin seems to be horribly eczema ridden at the moment too which is making me wonder if there's a connection.

I'm taking my daughter to a naturopath to be tested for allergies soon as I'm not keen to start steroid treatment just yet.

Any feedback would be wonderful!

:)

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Hi, 

As a child I had severe eczema, psoriasis, asthma and hayfever (the latter is the only one the troubles me any more). I didn't develop Alopecia till I was 30+ but there is no doubt that both allergies and alopecia are related to immune system responses and that if you suffer from one of these conditions there is a higher chance of developing one of the others. 

Until we know what causes it nothing can reasonably be ruled out. It is not uncommon for sufferers to analyse everything that they did or that happened precedent to the condition developing. I have a number of theories about myself but there is still insufficient evidence on any count. Was it that nasty bump on the head, the coolant I accidentally splashed on my skin while working on the car, the new local police antennae or that mobile phone mast they put up on the shops. Was it my dad dying or because I lost my job? Did I catch it from my brother's dog who had a skin condition? Was it the medication I was taking for migraines or maybe related to when they dug up and replaced the local water pipes and we found sediment coming through the taps? Was it that really nasty bout of flu that left me fatigued for month? Was it just in my genes to come out at some point. Was it some combination of any or all these factors? I doubt I'll ever know. 

I do think that modern 'civilisation' has created conditions that are novel and both physically and traumatic to our species considering we evolved for hundreds of thousands of years under very different conditions. 

Air pollution, electro-magnetic radiation, cumulative chemical pollution in our water supplies (often chlorinated which doesn't help skin conditions) and food chain, cosmetics, processed food, stress, physical and psychological trauma etc, spending most of our lives indoors in classrooms and offices and not getting enough fresh air and sunlight? All potential factors Coupled with a genetic disposition it makes for a very complex area to understand. Science is slow progress and there is much we still don't understand about complex microbiological interactions.

I think it is unlikely you will be able to identify a definite cause.

The main problem with alopecia is that you become a living challenge to the subconscious group mind of what should be normal and the fear it invokes in people when their blinkered view of reality is challenged. In reality nobody is 'normal'. At least nobody I've met yet. 

The best treatment for alopecia is love and encouraging self-love and self-acceptance. Geting involved with groups of parents/kids with similar conditions will help greatly if you aren't already.

By contrast two definite causes of eczema were identified when I was a kid - the predominant one was biological washing powder on my clothes. The other was the use of 'harsh' soaps, shower gels etc. I did use a lot of steroid cream - I couldn't have lived without it. There are more avenues to explore in treatment for this now but I believe topical steroids are still the fastest acting and most effective treatment know to the conventional medicine. The suffering of the seemingly endless itching and pain of eczema were hell and made me very ill-tempered. Something the adults in my life didn't really seem to understand or know how to deal with.

My thoughts are with you and your daughter, I wish you both well.

Hi there! Thank you for your super detailed reply! All very new to us and I'm looking forward to an upcoming appointment with a tricholigist. So far lots of my daughters spots have grown back and though new ones have appeared too, it's nice to know that they grow back so quickly.

I agree with your advice re encouraging self-love and self-acceptance and we're naturally a very positive family anyway, so shouldn't be a problem there!

Thanks again and all the best to you.

:) 

i feel your pain my son started when he was 2 yrs old having patches after going through tons of different dr s everyone had a different opinion but nothing was fixing it finally at 3 he was diagnosed with Alopecia Arreata by that time he had nothing but one last patch on his head. Many say that it is correlated with allergies. All i know that it took from 3 to when he was 4 1/2 yrs old to get his hair back so he was ready for kindergarden but now at 13 we are having so many allergy issues all of a sudden . he has always had a sensitive skin so we have a chemical removal and water conditioner to protect his skin the water he uses for bathing and drinking for cooking.  He had been ok till now . He is now constantly breaking up in hives they go and come as they want  cant figure out whats causing them he cant sleep at night its a nightmare. my pediatrcian wwhen i ask if it can be something autoimmune because of the fact that AA is now considered autoimmune looks at me like im crazy and says no but in my gut i know that the hives have to do with kids that have or have has Alopecia from what i have read.

Hello Mom of Israel - thank you for your reply! It's lovely to hear from people going through the same things! Autoimmunes are tricky and feel like we're constantly looking for answers!

We've started cutting out gluten (not completely) and waiting to see if that improves her skin but its only early days.

Looking forward to an appointment with a renowned tricholigist in the coming weeks to actually get some decent information as the GP's were very unhelpful and unsympathetic! Anyway, onwards and upwards and positive energy to you and your son.

Thanks again!

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