I am 22 years old. I found out I had alopecia areata when I was 20. I had long hair, and when it started getting really bad I chopped my hair off, and just waited for it to get better and grow back. Shortly after my 21st birthday the alopecia seemed to stop acting up, and all the spots started to grow, and fill in. I am 22 now, and my hair is past my shoulders again, but in the last couple of months I started seeing new spots. It is frustrating, but I know the only thing I can do about it is deal with it. Its going to take its course, and probably get a lot worse before it gets better. I go to a dermatologist to get the injections about once a month. I just had my second round of shots.

Also I feel I have anxiety, and sometimes have panic attacks. And anyone who has alopecia knows that stress makes it worse. I stress a ton. I made an appointment to see a doctor and I was asked if I would like counseling, or go straight to meds. I didn't know which option to go for so I said that I guess I would like the meds. However I have been doing a lot of surfing on the web and found out that the meds don't cure anxiety and can be addictive and hard to come off of. I don't want that, at all. I want to cure my anxiety. I feel that this has anxiety has a huge impact on my alopecia. Also its getting much worse lately. I feel its effecting my everyday. The only place I feel safe and comfortable is at home with my boyfriend. I get really bad panic attacks at work, and feel like I get hot flashes and shortness in breath, and also feel like I have a lump in my throat. Its getting worse and worse and its to the point where I can't take it. I know its noticeable to other people, and its really effecting me. I can't seem to get a hold of it.

I don't have insurance and make minimum wage. Most of my income goes to bills, and living. So I don't really have the money to go to a counsler. I already shell out $100 a month on my injections, plus rogain.

I feel I need to overcome this anxiety because I stress soo much I know it effects my alopecia. So I have been doing a lot of reading and web surfing. So I am going to try and beat anxiety naturally. I have found a few vitamins, and supplements that I am going to try. I saw a few things about meditation, and yoga. Which I am going to try atleast once a week. I also am going to start excercising, and trying to eat healthier, cut down on sodas. I drink atleast a 2 liter a day. I know its bad, and I am going to try and cut down.

If you have any tips or advice feel free to comment me. Help is appreciated! : )

Views: 887

Comment by Dominique Cleopatra on June 13, 2010 at 12:53pm
What type of meds do they want to put you on? I take half a valium when feeling anxiety, but refuse to take any kind of anti-depressant. I would also like to see a good therapist but they are expensive and the one I went to basically said she couldn't help me because I didn't seem to want to change (this was after only 2 sessions.)

I do think stress can trigger alopecia in those genetically susceptible.

Generally eating healthier, exercising, meditating, yoga and just relaxing in a hot bubble bath filled with epsom and other soothing salts while reading a good book are all things that help me to relax, naturally. I don't know if meds are the answer but sometimes it does help to take the edge off, but do your research before deciding to take whatever the doctor prescribes. I am most comfortable at home too, at least you have a loving boyfriend, I wish I had that.
Comment by Tallgirl on June 13, 2010 at 5:32pm
If you could share rent and utilities expenses with women you trust about the alopecia, then you could have extra cash for the doctor bills. Check the pregnancy warnings on the Rogaine box...you may save by eliminating this, too. Definately cut out any caffeine or colas if anxious...pomegranite and cranberry juices are better for you. I get calm myself by talking to friends who are easy to talk to for a long time...my heartbeat and breathing are restored to normal, and the lighter perspective of my friends' stories takes me away from my own worries. Oh yeah: medical insurance doesn't always cover alopecia treatments, because they consider it "cosmetic," not life-threatening. Find a free college counseling center that comes with the college health plan, or a sliding-scale community counselor. You may not have to pay anything. This morning I heard a great sermon about beauty being in the eye of the beholder...later I may start a blog on that, once I get home from a meeting. Hang in there...you are doing right by asking us here. We have been there, done that.
Comment by Tallgirl on June 13, 2010 at 9:47pm
P.S. I, too, feel like something is caught in my throat when anxious. Once I swore I had swallowed a lemon seed (probably didn't) before a sales presentation, and another time thought I was choking on a Midol, so I called to ask for symptoms and they sent over a fire truck. Boy, was I embarrassed in the neighborhood! The fast breathing thing also happened a few times to me. Like I said: talking/listening over 30 minutes with someone calm helps.
Comment by Shereka Moore on June 14, 2010 at 9:06am
I find exercising to be a great stess reliever. I'm also on depression/anxiety medication. I hope your problem doesn't get to that point. I felt so alone before and that's why I ended up becoming anxious and the anxiety eventually led to depression. I started using something called nioxin a few months ago. I did some research and it could take up to year before I see results. My sister, my beautician, said that she can already see some of my hair coming back including 'one gray strand', lol, i'm only 26. I stress a lot, but i have always handled stress in a negative way. I freak out over little things. Like, the light has been on for 2 minutes, why don't you turn it off if your not going to use it! Instead of finding out how to tame the anxiety, your first step may need to be how to control the stress. What triggers you to stress out. Remember stress doesn't only affect your alopecia, it affects your organs.
Comment by emmettbrown on November 13, 2011 at 9:26pm

Have you ever tried a gluten-free diet? Wheat is a common autoimmune trigger that can cause both anxiety and alopecia areata. Dairy, too. I used to get terrible anxiety when I was eating gluten and dairy products. For instance, when I would have pizza I would get slightly hyper and feel anxious. Add beer to that, and it was even worse. I'm *much* better now that I'm off gluten and dairy. Another alt. treatment for anxiety that could help is hypnosis, believe it or not.

Best of luck!

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