RHRLI is the place to go if you’re looking for a permanent solution to hair loss or thinning hair, but we know that the journey to that decision can be filled with emotion. When you discover that you are losing your hair, it’s not uncommon to have intense feelings about it. Researchers have studied the psychological impact of hair loss, therapists see its effect on their patients and those patients have their own story to tell. RHRLI wants to urge you to seek help if you are overwhelmed by feelings related to your hair loss. You’re not alone and we want to share information about the psychology of hair loss.
How Hair Affects Your Psychological Outlook
Therapist F. Diane Barth says that her patients are surprised when she asks them about their hairstyle. Writing in Psychology Today, Barth, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, says she does it because she feels hair has “tremendous psychological and emotional meaning.”
“Understanding some of those meanings can lead to understanding many different aspects of a person’s psyche,” she says. “How we view our curls, for example, can reveal something about how we view ourselves.”
Barth believes that hair loss can be traumatic for both men and women given our culture’s emphasis on physical appearance and youth. She says, “it is crucial to remember that the thickness of your hair has nothing to do with your value in the world.” Barth insists that those who choose medical treatment and those who don’t should not be ashamed of their decisions.
Research on Thinning Hair
Unfortunately, studies have shown that hair loss can have effects in all areas of life. According to the British Psychological Society, researchers have found that 40 percent of women with thinning hair have had marital problems, and around 63 percent claimed to have career-related problems. Some other conditions related to hair loss includes depression, anxiety, and social phobia. The Society’s researchers found that “hair loss may be seen as a failure to conform to the norms of physical appearance within society, a situation which has the potential to set people apart in their own estimation and in the estimation of others.”
A Hair Loss Patient’s Story
Because hairstyle and color can often be tied to self-identity for women, hair loss can be particularly painful. “I love who I am, but at the same time, for me to walk out bald, it’s so hard because there’s so much trauma growing up,” Vanessa McWilliams of Calgary told CNN.
McWilliams said she was traumatized by her diagnosis of alopecia totalis, an autoimmune disease that results in the total loss of scalp hair. She also dealt with the cruelty she heard from her peers. She eventually came to terms with her diagnosis and operates a wig boutique geared for women coping with hair loss. “I wish at 9 years old I had known that it was OK,” she told CNN. “It’s so simple. … Everyone is dealt something they have to struggle with.”
RHRLI Can Help Ease the Burden of Hair Loss
Thinning hair and hair loss can be a struggle and RHRLI can assist you in making things easier. We’re the only hair loss treatment center on Long Island that has the ARTAS® system, a state of the art procedure which employs robotic technology to give you a healthy head of hair. Your thinning hair doesn’t have to be a burden. Contact RHRLI today.
Please note that the author of this piece is not a doctor and the information in this material is not intended as medical advice. Please consult your doctor or medical professional for specific information regarding your individual situation.