Skip to content

Skin Problems & Treatments Health Center

Image Collection:

Childhood Skin Problems

Picture of Trichotillomania


back button next button

Trichotillomania. This is a form of alopecia (hair loss) that is caused by the child’s twisting or pulling of his or her own hair. This cause of hair loss is usually easy to recognize. There is often, but not always, a parental awareness of hair-pulling behavior sometimes while the child is studying or watching television or at bedtime. The area of hair loss is usually asymmetric and follows an irregular pattern. Examination of the involved area reveals hair that is broken off at different lengths. There is never the total hair loss of alopecia areata or the scaling and erythema of tinea capitis. In most cases, trichotillomania is evidence of an innocent and benign habit that is best compared to nail biting. However, trichotillomania may sometimes be evidence of more severe emotional distress or a manifestation of obsessive compulsive disorder. In addition, children who swallow their plucked hair may develop a gastric trichobezoar.

Color Atlas of Pediatric Dermatology
Samuel Weinberg, Neil S. Prose, Leonard Kristal
Copyright 2008, 1998, 1990, 1975, by the McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.

WebMD Image Collection

Reviewed by Amita Shroff, MD on February 26, 2014

Today on WebMD

Pictures and symptoms of the red, scaly rash.
woman with dyed dark hair
What it says about your health.
woman with cleaning products
Top causes of the itch that rashes.
atopic dermatitus
Identify and treat common skin problems.
itchy skin
shingles rash on skin
woman with skin tag
Woman washing face
woman washing her hair in sink
close up of womans bare neck
woman with face cream