It's Hair Loss Support At Its Best
I wanted to share my story with those struggling with their alopecia. I am currently a 16 year-old high school sophomore and I want to tell you that there is in fact hope. In 6th grade and again in the beginning of this year, I had alopecia areata, which resulted in all of my hair being lost. I know the anguish, feelings of being ostracized, endless shame and lack of self-confidence. However, through the dermatology center at the University of California Irvine, I now have a full head of hair and am trying my best to balance my stress in my life.
Allow me to start at the beginning. My entire experience started when I was in 6th grade and I started to notice my hair coming out in clumps near the back end of my head. My mother soon noticed and my family became quite concerned about me. We started to go to a dermatologist and reverse the process through shots.
All seemed well until the beginning of around June of 2013. Family issues, extracurricular obligations, and constant school pressures all factored into my second wave of alopecia areata. My hair rapidly fell out and soon I had only had a few random strands. I was infinitely ashamed and my self-confidence collapsed. I became very depressed and would only go outside wearing a hat. Often, I would avoid social contact with friends and family as much as possible. I felt that at that time that there was no chance of things getting better and I would have to accept my new self somehow. In anguish, I would stare back at the image in the mirror and think, "Who is that?" I hated my body and wanted to strike back at life for being so unfair.
My mother and brothers understood my pain and decided to take me to the UCI Dermatology Center. The medical doctors there also felt for me and said they would do as much as possible to try to get my hair back. Over the next 4-6 months, I underwent this treatment known as "DPCP." This involved arousing an allergic reaction to my body, first through my arm and then applied to my bald head. The concept behind this was to draw away the virus cells in my body from mistakingly attacking my growing hair follicles and instead focus on the introduced allergic reaction. This process slowly started to produce results, and before I knew it, I'm back to my normal self.
Keep in mind I do not want to spread any false hope for a "magic cure." This process has had extreme success with some patients such as myself, but not for everyone. What I'm trying to get across is that I've been there at the lowest point in life where I wondered what the point of even living was. I had constant pits of depression and even contemplated ending my own life. So know that you are not alone in your suffering and there is hope at the end of the tunnel, whether it be accepting yourself for who you are, outreaching to your family and friends, and whatever your own method is for showing life that you are beautiful.