Trichotillomania Habit Reversal Training

People suffering from trichotillomania pull their own hair. They have an urge to pull their hair whenever they are stressed at work or in certain situations such as talking on the phone and being late for an appointment. Sometimes they don’t even know that they are pulling their hair. After completing the action the sufferer will have a feeling of satisfaction. This results in loss of hair and bald patches in the areas where the hair has been pulled out. But there is nothing to worry about. This disorder can be cured. It can be treated with habit reversal training.

Habit Reversal Training

Habit reversal training is a form of psychotherapy. It has been proven to be a very effective treatment when compared to other options like medications. There are several phases that are included in the habit reversal training. These are awareness training, development of competing, responses to hair pulling, and building and sustaining motivation and compliance.

In the phase of awareness training the person is assisted to realize their behavior and its causes and consequences and to adopt the self – control method. The basic goal of this phase is to make the patient understand the nature of hair pulling and also the preceding sensations.

The main phase in the habit reversal training is the competing response development. In this phase the patient will select a particular competing response and according to that the doctor or the therapist will teach them about the competing response and how to implement it. Later the patient will be allowed to practice it and then will receive the therapist’s feedback about the response.

One of the things which are very important in this treatment is the support of the family members and also the friends of the affected person. This will make the patient feel comfortable during the treatment process. In this case the therapist will also teach the support person about the trichotillomania and about its symptoms. They will also train the support person. This will make the support person help the patient during the ongoing treatment. This makes the phases of the treatment quicker to complete.

The third phase in the habit reversal training is the building of motivation. In this phase the patient will be asked to note the problems which cause their trichotillomania disorder. Then the patient will be motivated to indulge in some other work when those problems seem to occur. Also friends and family members can motivate the person and can praise them if they use the process of eliminating the behavior.

The fourth phase is the generalization of new skills. In this phase the patient will be asked to indulge in some other activities like listening to music or cleaning the house at the time of pulling their hair. By doing so, the patient will be able to come out from the habit and will be free from it.

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