The Lucinda Ellery Trichotillomania Management Programme
While it is a fairly common condition, the management of Trichotillomania has not been clearly identified and is still being researched. The team at Lucinda Ellery maintain that the Intralace System™ can be used as an important step in 'breaking the cycle' of hair-pulling, while also being used in conjunction with psychological and medicinal treatment to help patients with Trichotillomania.
It is hoped that Lucinda’s techniques will soon be formally recognised as vital tools in the overall management of this debilitating condition.
The Intralace System™
As the Intralace System™ is attached over the area of the hair loss, it serves as a useful barrier and reminder not to pull your hair. The Intralace System™ is attached to the scalp in rows from front to back and from side to side. Perimeter connections are called locks and the interior connections are known as tracks. Such terminology helps us to have a clear understanding when we are liaising with you and helps us to track your progress.
If the hair is too long or there is too much volume to use the Intralace System™ we may use single strand Medi Connections™, which gives some protection to the hair strands and also serves as a reminder not to pull your hair. Hair growth can then resume if successfully implemented.
But while many find that Medi Connections™ are no longer necessary when the hair reaches the desired density and length, relapses with this condition can be common so we always urge you to contact us for support when it is needed.
Since Trichotillomania is sometimes associated with anxiety and depression, patients often find that medication helps. Please consult your GP to discuss this.
Habit reversal techniques
It has probably already been suggested to you that you find something small to carry around with you to keep your fingers busy when you feel an urge to pull. Some patients find little bean bags helpful, but other activities to distract you can include crotchet, knitting, playing computer games, tapestry and making jewellery.
We will ask you to take note of when and where you pull your hair, and if you can possibly move away from those environments whenever you feel the urge. Self-monitoring is important and a positive action against the need to pull.
Deep breathing is well known to help relieve anxiety and tension, but it does require some practice. Place one hand flat over your tummy button. Breathe in and concentrate on pushing the air into that part of your stomach to make your hand move outwards. Count to four as you breathe in through your mouth. Repeat until you feel back in control and more calm.
Where possible, you will be given the opportunity to have a ‘buddy’, who is either using our services or has previously used them. They will be available to talk to you and offer support and encouragement.
We hold regular social meetings at our consultancies where you can share views and ideas.
There is a reading list available on request that lists books which some clients find helpful.
Access to an Out-of-Hours Crisis Line
If you need urgent advice outside of working hours, a helpline is available for you to leave a message, and a senior member of the team will return your call within 24 hours.
As part of our programme, you will be encouraged to have regular follow-up appointments with us, in which we can answer any concerns you may have about your progress.
If you wish to speak to us about any aspect of hair-pulling please call us or use our Trichotillomania Contact form