Alopecia areata, or why last spring sucked

I just had my annual work-sponsored free skin cancer screening. I made sure to have the dermatologist check my scalp, and not just because I’ve gotten some of my worst sunburns along my part. A little over a year ago, I discovered a couple bald spots on my head, and I wanted the dermatologist to reassure me that all my hair was still in its rightful place. (It is! Knock wood.)

Most of my closest friends already know about this saga, but now that the hair is on its way back, I feel like I should blog about it. There are a lot of terrifying stories about alopecia areata – the official name for this condition – on the internet. Since mine is (thus far) less terrifying, I hope it shows up in the Google results for someone who is panicking the way I was when I first searched for it.

Some weekend last April, I was sitting on my couch watching an episode of Mad Men. I was idly playing with my hair, or scratching my head, or something, and I felt skin where there should not have been so much skin. I paused Don Draper and headed to my bathroom. This situation was on the back of my head, so I pulled out a pocket mirror and used it to view my larger mirror.

A CIRCLE OF PALE WHITE SKIN ON THE BACK OF MY HEAD. INSTANT PANIC. INSTANT BAWLING.

I immediately called my mom, who could barely understand what I was saying because I was so upset. She told me to calm down and to send her a picture and it probably wasn’t as noticeable or bad as I was making it out to be. This is the picture I emailed her:

This still makes me cringe.

She then realized that yes, it was as bad as I was making it out to be.

My roommate came home sometime during this mess, and I had her look at it. “This happened to my friend when she was younger,” she said. “It’s not really a big deal. She had a few bald spots, and they grew right back. It hasn’t happened to her since.”

Still, I made an appointment with my doctor (who kind of sucks – I need to find a new one). Instead of immediately referring me to a dermatologist like she should have, she prescribed me pills to treat a fungal infection (gross!). Despite the fact that I had no other symptoms of such an illness, head fungus can also cause bald spots. She told me to call back if I found more spots or if it got bigger.

The next day, I was feeling my scalp frantically in search of further developments, and I noticed the hairline behind my right ear felt a little strange. Sure enough – another spot, about the same size. MORE PANIC. MORE BAWLING. I called my doctor and demanded a referral. I got one, and because I was so panicked, I was able to get an appointment relatively quickly.

In the meantime, my mom sent me a link to this Runner’s World forum, and that’s where I found the link to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation’s website.

MORE PANIC. MORE BAWLING. So many pictures of completely bald people! The dermatologist I spoke with during my screening is not a fan of this website. He said something like, “I’m all for patient support groups, but only about two to five percent of people with alopecia areata go on to lose all their hair. You wouldn’t know that from their website.” The information on the website did not encourage me either. I didn’t find any statistics, just vague statements like, “Some people develop only a few bare patches that regrow hair within a year. In others, extensive patchy loss occurs, and in a few, all scalp hair is lost (referred to as alopecia totalis) or, hair is lost from the entire scalp and body (referred to as alopecia universalis).”

“Some people”? “Others”? I need numbers! I had visions of my hair falling out in clumps, chemo-style. I had visions of myself as a bald woman with no eyebrows or eyelashes. Every hairdresser I had ever seen in my life had complimented me on my lovely, thick head of hair. I cried over the irony.

By the time I finally saw the dermatologist, I was a wreck. She was completely pleasant and cheerful. “Looks like alopecia areata,” she said. “The good news is, you only have these two spots, and they’re both already growing back.” (I hadn’t been able to see that. Fun fact: When hair grows back after alopecia areata, it initally grows back completely white.)

It has come in another few inches since then, and I haven’t discovered any new patches. That’s not to say I never will. The unsettling thing about this condition is that it’s poorly understood and largely unpredictable. It’s hereditary, but doctors don’t really know what starts the process that causes hair loss. It might be physical or emotional stress, so last year I was quick to blame the marathon I had run a few months prior. I’ve run two more (faster!) since without any issues. Some people have one episode and that’s it, while some people struggle with it for life.

I know I’m lucky that this is just a cosmetic thing, that my health isn’t actually affected. It’s true! However, you don’t realize what a blessing a full head of hair is until some of it is missing, especially as a lady in today’s society.

I hope I haven’t jinxed myself by posting this, but I am just trying to help. And if you happen to be reading this because you’re a panicked new diagnosee, please leave a comment and let me know I reached someone in my intended audience.

Advertisements

About Meghan Loftus

http://meghanloftus.com/
This entry was posted in Not About Running and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

178 Responses to Alopecia areata, or why last spring sucked

  1. Maria says:

    Love this! Three months after I had my daughter, my hair starting falling out. I have thin hair and my bald spots were noticeable. It was really depressing. I sort of hid from the works for a while. Now that it’s growing back I can laugh about it more, but I found that people couldn’t really understand why I was so upset. Reading this makes me feel like my reaction was normal.

    • Charlotte says:

      I’ve always had thick hair and received all of the compliments as well! Two months ago, my hairdresser noticed a bald spot that was never there before. She asked me if I was dealing with stress. And that her husband gets the same thing. That it’s alopecia. I had never heard of it until that day. The spot then was about the size of three coins (quarters). I was saddened. At the time I was dealing with a lot of stress at work as well as I took the flu shot and unfortunately had an allergic reaction to it. I had shortness in breath, muscle/ joint pain as well as hives. It’s been over three months since I took the flu shot and I’m still dealing with the hives until this day. I take an allergy pill once every few days and that seems to help with reliving the itching. It was just surprising to me that I now have alopecia. It’s been about nine weeks since I saw my hairdresser. The spot has definitely grown in size since. I’d say it’s one and a half times the size it was. Prior (and still), my hair was shedding like crazy but I thought it was because of the blonde bleaching I was doing to my hair. I’ve also recently noticed that my hair is thinning in the front. But it’s basically on the same side of my head that I have the bald spot. The other side of my hair/ head seems normal. I changed my hairbrush to help not pull so much hair out. It’s called tangle teaser. I’m also taking biotin extra strength (10,000) as well as folic acid pills. This week I changed my shampoo and conditioner to an all natural product. SheaMoisture. It has great reviews and I seem to be loving it as well. I went to the doctor shortly after hearing the news about the bald spot and he said it was alopecia. I have yet to go to a dermatologist. I won’t have medical coverage until April. I have the exclamation hairs that they talk about as well as the spot is a circle shape. At first it seemed like my hair was growing back. It had stubble. But now it’s completely silky bald with the exclamation hairs around the outer edges of it. There’s no sign of hair growth at the moment. I try not to stress but it’s not that easy. I feel like I’ve been in more stressful situations in life than this so for this to appear now puzzles me. I want to believe its because of the allergic reaction from the flu shot. I’ve read other blogs about people having immunization and then later having alopecia. There’s only a few post of people thinking it’s because of the flu shot. I took the flu shot once before and only had a cold after. No issues like this. I was on prednisone for over a month as well as Allegra (because of the flu shot allergic reaction) and got to the point where I had enough with taking medicine that I stopped. I’m being or trying to be patient….but this truly is scary. I have yet to go back to the hairdresser. My roots are growing in (at least the rest of my hair is growing) and I’m going to color it back to my natural color. I’m just kind of giving my hair a break right now. I wish everyone else luck. If you have a similar story or have questions for me you can email me here withbravewingssheflies@gmail.com πŸ™‚

      • Balding says:

        Can anyone tell me if fuzz grows out from totally bald patches? Or if they grow out as normal hairs? If fuzz grows, will they turn to normal hairs?

      • Meghan Loftus says:

        It started as completely white fuzz for me (and the rest of my hair is brown). And yes, they quickly turned to normal hairs, but there was a period where I had white spiky fuzz sticking out through my brown hair.

      • Meghan Loftus says:

        I ultimately bought this to turn my hairs/skin brown so it would blend in better, and I used it every day for months. It helped a lot, mostly because there was a big contrast between my dark brown hair and my bright white patch. http://www.dermmatch.com/

      • Laura says:

        It grows out fuzz just like when guys get a buzz cut and the hair grows out, you know. Sometimes you won’t be able to see it but others may. I used Toppik hair fiber purchased from Sally’s $28. I matched the powder with my hair color and fiber helps the little hairs expand making it look fuller. It took about 6 months for my hair to finally fill.

  2. Pingback: “Greatness comes at a price, it always has” « Remember the H

  3. hereinla says:

    hello, thank you. this has really helped me. i was just recently diagnosed and been having an extremely difficult time. been scouring the internet for others with the exact same symptoms as mine! still have not found anything but its just SO INCREDIBLY relieving to hear some, “I am OK, the spots are growing in” stories! the NAAF website freaked me out too!! “proud to be bald” shirts??? ah! so much crying. today i found a FOURTH spot, tiny but sent me into a whirl of depression and sobbing. my biggest spot is in the same place as yours and is about the same size, would love to hear your about your progress and has it really taken a year for it to grown in?

    • mgloftus says:

      I’m so glad my post was helpful to you! The scariest part about alopecia is how unpredictable it all is, and honestly, I am still very nervous that I will lose more hair, well over a year after I found the first two spots. Hang in there.

      The hair from my spots was already growing back a little bit when I found them. (I think I had been walking around for two or three weeks, almost completely oblivious.) My dermatologist said that was a very good sign and therefore opted not to give me cortizone shots to help speed the growth. Now, over a year later, the hair in both spots is maybe…six inches long? The rest of my hair is down past my shoulders, so you can still tell sometimes if I don’t straighten the one in the back properly or if I have my hair half-up, but I’m super glad it’s on its way back.

      Good luck to you, and thanks for commenting!

  4. Jen says:

    Thank you!!!! You have eased my mind so much. My situation is similar and I too have been envisioning myself completely bald. I just pray that it doesnt happen. My hairdresser noticed a small bald spot in may this year. I panicked and practically went into a depression. Everything I read online was worse case scenarios. I still only have the one spot and it doesn’t seem to be getting bigger. I see a dermatologist on July 22 so I’m hoping for good news. I can feel slight stuble but can’t see it looking in the mirror. My son is 9 months old and was probably 6 months old when this happened. So I wasn’t sure if it was from child birth or not. Anyway thank you again for this amazing post. You truly made me feel better.

    • mgloftus says:

      I’m glad you liked my post, Jen! I have heard that this often happens to people after childbirth, as your hormones are all out of whack and it’s obviously a very physically stressful experience. I suspected my first marathon was to blame for my spots, but I’ve run three since without problems (knock wood). Good luck to you!

  5. Jen says:

    Thank you for writing. If you don’t mind I wanted to ask a couple questions. How are your spots now? Has it been since April that you noticed them? And you haven’t had any shots or anything right? I’m just not sure what my derm will do or say when I go in Friday. My husband says he sees tiny hairs but I cannot see them when I look in the mirror. I feel like this has consumed me and it’s just so nice to hear that someone else has a similar sutuation. Thank you again. :). I’m glad you haven’t noticed any more spots!

  6. Jen says:

    So sorry! I asked some questions to things you already answered. So has it been over a year now and you have only had those 2 spots? That’s good odds!!! Thanks again and sorry for the repeat questions.

    • mgloftus says:

      No worries! So far, I’ve not noticed any others (knock wood), though I have felt like I’ve been losing an unusual amount of hair in the shower recently. (I always do in the summer, I think, but I’m really noticing it now.)

      Since this post, two people I know personally have come forward to share their own experiences. One of them has developed a new spot or two every five years or so. The other one had a spot every year or two, and then all her hair fell out. (Read her story here: http://thehairpin.com/2011/06/i-lost-all-my-hair-at-21)

      As I’m sure you know, the worst part of all this is never knowing whether you’ll get another one, or if you do, where it will be, or whether maybe all your hair will fall out. (I cannot imagine.) My derm seemed to think I’d be fine since the hair started growing back right away, and it sounds like yours is too, so that’s a good sign. Hope your appointment went well!

  7. Steph says:

    THANK you for writing this. My hair has always been on the thin side (I’m 28), so when my boyfriend joked a few days ago that I had a bald spot on the back of my head I assumed it was just the way my hair was styled. But after a close friend at work mentioned it to me today I decided to look for myself when I got home. And after seeing the half-dollar sized bare patch for the first time, like yourself, it was INSTANT PANIC with INSTANT BAWLING. I called my poor boyfriend in a blubbering sniffling panic, and I’m normally not the crying type. God bless him, I know he thought I was nuts… but he was/is supportive. I have yet to go to the doctor, but I will be making an appointment first thing tomorrow. Once again, thanks for writing this post. It’s easy to find all the “I went completely bald!!!” horror stories out there. So it’s nice to read a reassuring post every once in a while πŸ™‚

  8. Pingback: “You look fit” « Remember the H

  9. Pingback: Feeling uninspired | Remember the H

  10. sade says:

    i am an african american female and i have a head full of hair to the middle of my back. a couple days ago i noticed the back of my head is more itchy then usual. this morning putting my hair in a pony tail i noticed i have a bald spot in the lower back of my head. since i have been freaking out and doing tons of research. i was hoping it was stress but everything comes up with alopecia. now i think my whole head is itchy and keep thinking im going to wake up with a new patch everyday. its driving me crazy!

  11. Eddie says:

    I;m a guy, but I thought I’d share my story. Last year, when I was 27 I had a bad case of food poisoning. When I recovered I noticed a small bald spot, the size of a pencil head eraser, on my beard. This spot grew to about the size of a dime in 6 months, and then I got another spot on the other side of my beard. As the second spot got bigger, the first spot grew back. Within a year the first spot was completely filled in, and the second spot was about 75% grown back as well. But a couple of months ago I noticed a spot on the top of my head, again about the size of a pencil eraser. Now 2-3 months later the spot is about the size of a dime. Its a really hard thing to deal with, I’ve read some people get new spots as the old ones grow back. This seems to be the case with me. I;m hoping this 3rd spot grows back and this thing ends. People say its easier for a man, but the truth is its still hard. MGLOFT, great to hear it grew back for you. Actually another quick story, a girl I went to school with told me when she was 12 she had 2 spots on the top of her head about the size of quarters, they injected steroids and they grew back and since then she’s had none. She’s also 28 now. Me personally, I’m not a big fan of steroids, I think its just as likely to grow back on its own, so I let it be, I don’t like messing with all that stuff and the side effects.

    • Steph says:

      Just wanted to give an update. I went to a dermatologist the week after I posted and he diagnosed me with stress-triggered alopecia areata… and BOY was I going through some stress at that time in my life. I had just gotten custody of my sweet, but very needy, 14-year old sister, and was trying to buy a house at the same time. Plus I was working 50 – 60+ hours at my very stressful job. The dr prescribed me some steroid spray (can’t remember the name, sorry) and shortly thereafter (less than 2 or 3 weeks) I noticed little sprigs of hair growing in. It took 3 – 4 months, but the hair in that spot finally grew in enough to the point where I could wear my hair down again and it blended in… and now, I can’t find the bald spot at all. Before the hair grew back in, I was wearing nothing but headbands and it was getting old, quick. On a happy note, I’m pregnant now and my hair is thicker than it’s ever been… however, I’ve read over and over again that a lot of it will fall out once I give birth and I’m not looking forward to that LOL. I really hope the stress of having a newborn doesn’t trigger another episode of bald spots… but for now, all is good :). Good luck to all those out there suffering from this horrible affliction.

      • DM says:

        Hi there! I have a very similar experience. I was wondering if you can please update me. What has happened after you gave birth? Thank you

  12. stacey borden says:

    Very good to hear a positive scenerio. My daughter is 4 and developed 1 spot the size of a dime and 1 the size of a pencil eraser. I did steroid injections but she got a dent from so I stopped and I have been doing indian herbal oils for almost 2 months now a few days ago in the dime sized spot i see fine hairs growing in hopefully it continues. I think the NAAF site is great for people who have the worse case scenerio but here I have the derm. saying it is rare to lose it all but when you go on that website you feel like everyone loses it all.

  13. Kim says:

    All I can say is Thank You!!!! Really, from the bottom of my heart. Everything I have looked up on AA has convinced me I am going to go bald. Believe me, I have looked up over 100 websites and blogs. All I read was people who started out as AA then progressed to AU.

    I found my patch April 26, of this year. The following day, I was in my dermatologist office getting a steroid shot and having a breakdown. I actually had to get a px of Xanax to deal with it.

    Your blog has given me more hope and help than ANYTHING. Just found it and HAD to thank you. If I could hug you, I would.

    Bless you,

    Kim

  14. Krista says:

    Thanks so much for your story! I am in the same boat…. I noticed my spot almost 3 months ago and had the same reaction. I assumed I was dying. I asked everyone I knew and googled a hundred different things . A close friend of mine had a co-worker that went through this when her son left on military deployment so we just chalked it up to stress. I have 3 little boys and do home daycare about 60 hours a week. I think that qualifies as stress πŸ™‚ My spot is growing back in completely white and is about A 1/2 inch long now. It’s so comforting reading your story and everyone else’s replys! Thanks again!

  15. Wendy says:

    Hi I’ve been dealing with alopecia areata for the past two years last year i got one bald spot got cortisone shots and hair grew back this year i have two got same shot and hair is starting to grow back…. i understand how you feel Im only 24 and have thick long hair and its really sad to see yourself with bald spots i feel very limited to what i can do to my hair while the bald spots grow out but thank god its not something serious! πŸ™‚

    • Marie says:

      Seeing that you were 24 comforted me in knowing that someone my age has gone through the bald patches with long hair also. How long did it take to see the hair growing back? It has been a month now and I have not noticed much or any follicles growing. Should I resort to the cortisone shots also, or wait it out a little longer?

  16. Allie says:

    Are you still monitoring your blog? My 7 year old and I are seeing a dermatologist today as I found one spot on the back of her scalp. I am panic stricken, but your blog has helped me. You are absolutely right, googling this condition is extremely scary! How are you doing now?

    • mgloftus says:

      I am! I am still (knock wood) spot-free. Since I’ve published this post, I’ve had two women I know come forward to share their experiences: One has had intermittent spots appear every five to ten years; one lost all her hair and eyebrows (which, I understand, is extremely rare). Good luck! If you’re concerned about covering the spots, I had good luck with this: http://www.dermmatch.com/?source=naaf (Mine were pretty prominent, as I have dark brown hair.)

    • nessa says:

      I lost a spot of hair towards the front of my head in the middle of my part . that was 2 months ago . Now my daughter has a larger spot in the very middle of her scalp … is alopecia contageous? Im so scared . Im in beteeen providers right now so I went to the emergency room for myself and they thaught it was alopecia and said I could see a dermatologist but there was nothing they could do for me I believe I see growth in my own case but my daughter popping up with a larger spot after mine is freaking me out.

      • Meghan Loftus says:

        It’s an autoimmune condition, so it’s not contagious. It could be hereditary, though. I’d see a dermatologist to rule out any kind of fungal infection (what my regular doc originally treated me for).

  17. Ellie says:

    Reached your intended audience, yes! I wish it wasn’t so hard to find success stories like this online because I too ended up on the “bald and proud!” type of sites instead, triggering absolute panic and research into wigs and scarves when all I had was two bald spots. Mine grew back and since, I have had two more (this is all in the last year) so the unpredictable nature is certainly true. But like you, my hair did grow back so I’m sticking with cautious optimism that I just need to stay on top of a maintenance program when/if more spots pop up and NOT assume that I’m going to walk around bald and proud some day. πŸ™‚

  18. tyler says:

    Just have a few questions on you guys. I have this two alopecia bald spots for like 2 mos which got wide. At first month the spot was like a size of pencil eraser then the next month it got bigger like a quarter dime. But i’ve seen some thin hairs growing back on the bald spot. Is this a sign of new hairs regrowing? It’s not really covering the bald spots since it is thin and small. So the bald spots spots are still visible..

  19. Barb says:

    I am glad I have found your website. I have also panicked – 3 weeks ago a hairdresser found a spot on my head. What you google is just soooo scary. I actually believe lots of people get it just once and it never happens again – they just do not write about it because they want to forget the experience. I had lots of factors that contributed (stress, stopping contraception, brinchittis, vaccination…). I believe it is my body telling me to look after myself, which I started. Have you done any special diet?

    • mgloftus says:

      No, I didn’t do anything special. In fact, I intensified what I blamed the problem on to begin with (training for a marathon–I’ve since trained for/run 8 more, and haven’t seen another problem, knock wood). It’s mysterious!

  20. Jas says:

    I am so incredibly glad to read your story regarding your experience with alopecia. I noticed a bald spot about the exact size and same location as yours pictured above. I was, like you, horrified and quickly attempted to google as much as i could regarding alopecia. Unfortunately, I tumbled across the “bald and proud” sites as well, which tampered any hope I had about this condition…until I read your blog. It’s been roughly over a month now and hair is growing back in. Although, it’s a slow sloooow process, I’m very thankful that it’s nothing more than just a cosmetic condition. I can only pray that I’m one of those lucky few that this just happens once too..but only time will tell. If you don’t mind me asking, how much has your hair grown back since? And you’re not taking any medications for it correct? Hope all is well πŸ™‚

  21. Chester says:

    Thank you very much I went to the hairdressers today and he asked me how long this had been happening- I had no idea what he was referring to. He then showed me a patch just like you and a second behind my ear on the hairline. I too have very thick hair and lots of it so had not noticed. This happened today so have since come home very emotional. Thank you for you story my hairdresser told me to see my GP and I will do this tomorrow. Take care. X

  22. Andrea says:

    I found a bald spot on the top of my 12 yr old sons head yesterday, it’s about the size of a small cherry tomato (we don’t have nickels and quarters here in the uk!). His hair grows forward on top so i’ve been able to cover it over with his other hair. I googled and I googled and was terrified to see that the majority of people mentioned that the spots grew in size until they were mostly bald 😦

    I’m taking him to the doctors tomorrow to see what they think. He’s had asthma from birth, and I think there’s a link between that and areata. We’ve always been puzzled by a small patch of white hair on his head, which we first noticed when he was about four. Apparently, new hair can grow in white, so I wondered if he’s previously had a bald spot which we never noticed (he has lovely thick hair) and that it grew back without pigment.

    I’m trying not to let him see that i’m concerned but as a mum of an almost teen boy, I know that it could easily affect his self esteem and kids can be very cruel. So far, i’ve upped his vitamins, banned all junk food (maybe dietary links?), changed all the bedding, washed and dried his hair and tried to help him with any stress he may have..phew! We moved to a different county 8 weeks ago, so he had to start a new school and now we have to move back home due to my eldest, autistic son not settling in at all. I’ve managed to get him back into his old school and he is so looking forward to it. I’m hoping that if this hair loss was caused by stress, the worst is over.

    Can I ask if everything is still going ok with you? Have you encountered any other people with just one small patch? I’m keeping my fingers crossed πŸ™‚

    • mgloftus says:

      Everything is still OK with me! (Knock on wood.) I had the two small patches in spring of 2010, and haven’t noticed any since. (Though I did notice some very short hair in one of the areas where I lost hair before–wondering if it fell out and I didn’t notice until it grew back.)

      Of the two people I know personally who’ve had this condition, one lost all her hair (very rare, from what I understand) and one has had a patch or two fall out every five years or so.

      Good luck!

  23. Chuck says:

    Meghan,

    Thank you for this blog! I, like you was terrified by what I read on the web. Also, I work with somebody who has lived with AT for many years, so it really freaked me out when this spot showed up on my head!

    After just finishing working for a very difficult boss for 18 mos. my wife noticed the spot behind and above my left ear last May. I went to my doctor and he calmly studied my head with a scope and said, “It’s alopecia areata. Not to worry, you already have signs of regrowth . I also see “exclamation point hairs. You should have a full head of hair by Christmas”.

    Well, here it is, almost Christmas and I still have the same spot. My mop of hair around it conceals it pretty well, but I think what is growing back is white and lets my scalp show right through. I am waiting for a referral to a dermatologist but I believe I just need to be patient and RELAX.

  24. laura says:

    thank you for your posting meghan. i had a spot my hairdresser found, she said a quarter size, and it was probably stress related and would grow back. after the initial shock, i sort of laughed it off and thought it was related to my permanent hair straightening… until it got bigger. to the dermo i went diagnosis aa. i also have tons of hair and my scalp was itchy a lot. my fingernails dont grow much and i have one lone white eyelash. i am taking my vitamins daily effective since the diagnosis, multivitamin and minerals and biotin. i did get cortizone shots and a topical solution fluocunide. the awareness lately is increasing itching and i am nor sure if it us real or imagined.

  25. dorisaurus says:

    I found my first spot (quarter sized) about 5 weeks ago, I did the same panic thing everyone else did. I did calm down after my mom said she had the same thing happen to her, and I went to the doctor, and got the alopecia areata diagnosis. I was fine for a few weeks and then really started having panic attacks that it would get worse after seeing the other sites- did anyone else’s spot seem to change shape?

    I just found a second and much more visible spot right at the top of my head! It is much smaller for now…how fast did other people’s spots grow? I dabbed on the steroid ointment as soon as I found it…I hope it will keep it from getting bigger. Anyone know if one can “catch it early”?

    This blog really makes me feel a teeny bit better though. My mom said she saw some baby hairs (though it is really hard for me to believe it, I can’t see them at all.)

  26. Kieran says:

    Good to hear I’m not alone. My hair started like yours 2 years ago. It’s grown back(not as thick) and fell out in other places. I have days where I just get on, other days it gets me down. My ex cheated on me twice, broke my heart. We split and she’s in the house. I trained and trained to help with the pain, took fat burning tablets and few other tablets….so these events would be the emotional and physical stress….if its actually down to this? I don’t feel stressed now( I don’t think) by the way it was around 3 years ago they happened…..roll in hair growth! PMA πŸ˜€

  27. Amirah g says:

    Thank you very much for your post. My fiancΓ© just found the same spot and the same size. She is 25 wife a very thick head of hair. Her friends also commented on her hair non stop. Wierd. But any ways thanks

  28. Kevin says:

    wow thank oh so much for the info. I got my hair cut right before Halloween and of course noticed bald spots, two on the back of my head top and bottom and one big one above my right ear/top sideburn. it was all white and still kind of is idk how long for it to grow back by need it to asap. I feel everyday I’m losing hair and it will all fall out and I will be bald before I know it. whyyy! help.

  29. Rachel says:

    Hi,
    my question is about you suspecting your first marathon was a trigger. This is the only website I can find that mentions a marathon and subsequent alopecia. I am 43 and ran my first marathon in October. Mid December I found 2 bald spots on the back of my head. In the last 2 months they have grown slightly and I still feel like I’m losing a lot of hair when I wash it, but so far no new patches have developed and there is definitely some hair growing back in places. I’m seeing a dermatologist next week, but what I really want to know is how much you think the marathon was responsible. I’m supposed to be running another in April, and I’m terrified I’m going to make it worse!

    • mgloftus says:

      I really don’t think it had anything to do with it, in retrospect. I’ve since run nine more marathons, at least half of which felt considerably harder/more stressful to my body than my first, and I haven’t had any further problems. (Knock on wood.) I would keep running, if I were you, especially if running helps you burn off some of your alopecia-related worries!

    • Jenny says:

      Hi Rachel,
      Did you run the second marathon you were talking about? I also wonder if a marathon could have been a trigger for my alopecia areata. I wonder if I should run another one…

  30. Rachel says:

    Thanks for that. You’ve helped immensely. It’s so hard to find anyone who can give sensible advice about whether I should run. The fact that you say you’ve run more strenuous marathons with no ill effects helps too. Will keep you posted with how my hair goes!! (or grows!! :))

  31. Jen says:

    Hi,
    Wow my story is exactly same i have been in tears after the diagnosis today! I love my thick long blonde hair and noticed a bald patch 2 weeks ago underneath all my hair at the nape of my neck, I went straight to the GP who said it was due to me pulling it out! Thankfully went back to see the dermatology GP who said yes it’s alopecia! Was devastated and of course read all th worst case scenarios! But your posts are giving me hope and I already have thick dark stubbly hairs growing back already. Hope it’s just a one off and think stress was a trigger for me due to mum been diagnosed with advanced cancer.

  32. Karen says:

    Hey there…i too have a really similar story! I just noticed 2 patches 2 weeks ago…omg i have been crying since too. Its true, you dont realise what a full head of hair is until something like this happens…i cant believe it, it feels like a bad dream that i keep hoping im going to wake up from. I have been referred to a dermatologist so fingers crossed. I have had eczema all my life and thats fine, give me skin problems, just please not my hair! Im glad you are better now and thanks for ur post – i found it through google! Will let you know how it goes x

    • Kieran says:

      My first circle started 2years ago( i was 32) i noticed my beard started to go white first, then this patch. I was terrified! I have patches on my beard, chest and head. My hair started small, and it’s spread, slowly growing back. I thought it had finished! Then a new patch arrived about 4months ago……ongoing pain in the ass! I’m so frustrated as there is absolutely nothing I can do, but hope. There’s no record of it being hereditary. The only thing I can put it down to is stress! 3years before the alopecia areata, my ex cheated, which devistated me, we tried to carry on….she did it again, obviously I was distressed and severely depressed. It ended and I chose the gym as my comfort zone. I trained and trained, lost lots of body fat( I wasn’t fat by any means), I took fat burners and a few other supplements to rip up…one year later it started! I’ve tried elcon and currently using minoxidil…although these may make you feel better( little hope it’s gona grow) I feel you have got to be happy within before it starts to grow back….this I’m working on…peace

      kie1978uk@yahoo.co.uk if u want pics

  33. Tracey says:

    You’re the first person I’ve stumbled across who has vocalized my same great frustration on the lack of alopecia statistics. I’m a data nerd at work, and am programmed to find answers through statistics. When I asked my derm about stats on AA, she just shrugged and agreed that they don’t exist. Frustrating! Also frusting that the “treatments” seem to only focus on symptoms. Thank you for sharing your doc’s opinion on the NAAF… I was slow to learn it is better to only visit their sight when I am looking for reseach and clinical trial updates. In the last 1.5 years I’ve lost ~2/3 of my hair, am in a wig at present (ugh), but also have good, mostly thick regrowth. I’m still shedding some, but the overall trend is showing more regrowth than loss, and the few patches I have right now can be hidden. I am now waiting for the regrowth to get long enough to get my hair STYLED so I can ditch the wig. I’ve got some odd textures going on (due to inflammation, I’m told), but it’s hair. Hope my hair dresser’s up for a good challenge. But more importantly, I, like you, really hope things don’t turn back in the wrong direction. BTW, I’m not a runner, but do high-intensity interval training, and have continued to do so (forced myself to do so when first diagnosted and quite depressed), and I don’t find the exercise impacts my condition. Stress and poor diet choices, however, do seem to…Thanks for sharing.

  34. Haley says:

    Thank you for this. I had a quarter sized bald spot on my head about a year so and it grew back in after about 2 months but now I have found another one on the hairline behind my ear and I’m hoping it grows back in just like the last one. By looking online made me freak out more and have no hope. Thank you for this!

  35. kimberly says:

    I wanted you to know that you have reached someone. I have been through one thing after another for the past year starting from the sudden loss of my father to losing my job. My boyfriend just noticed a patch of hair missing from the back of my head and since then i have discovered a small one above it. My dr has not sent me to a dermatologist he just automatically started giving me shots in my head to see if the hair will grow back. im still not sure if its working but i think i need a new dr. im so depressed and frustrated. im sure that isnt helping me any. i just dont understand why its happening now.

    • Meghan Loftus says:

      Yeesh–I’d see a dermatologist if I were you. Mine told me that the shots are really painful, and sometimes they don’t do much to help. Good luck, and hang in there!

  36. Harris says:

    Currently suffering from Alopecia areata Have one big bald spot like yours and other 2 very small which is not growing into larger.
    its been 3 months i have very thick hairs. No one in my family had such problem.
    i went to Doctor She said its Fungal But when i went to a dermatologist He told me is trauma effect i was suffering from stress.
    I started sleeping more and organized my routine and also some ointments Hair is growing but very think and white πŸ˜₯ I wish it gets ok soon. I dont know what to do πŸ˜₯

  37. Jackie says:

    Ok-I am really happy to find your site. I think that I may be able to help people with my story, and maybe I can get support from others when I need it. I am a 40 year old woman. My first bald spot was at age 11. Yes, I have been dealing with alopecia areata for almost thirty years. It has been emotionally draining at times. I have done numerous research, went to conferences and dermatologists whom specialize in this.
    First, let me start out with, I have never lost all of my hair. At the most, it’s been about 5 %.
    As I said age 11 is when I got my first spot and only one. Then thereafter, I would get one every other year until I was 18. Then from 18-21, I started getting two at a time. From 22-28, I was getting patches back to back When one was growing back, another would come in or when one starting growing in, the other side of the patch started falling out. This is called snaking. From 28-36, were the worse times. 5 patches at a time, like I said not all at once, but one would come one would fall out. They would take longer and longer to grow back. 37-39, the patches started going down to two at any given time. I have maybe went 6 months total without any alopecia areata since I was 22. My last 6 month remission was last year and a week after my 40th, Alopecia Areata gave me a present of a small bald patch. Then today, I got another one. Right in front of hairline. The worst spot, because all I do is focus on it.
    I have a thick head of hair. No one has ever told me they see one. I never tell anyone but my husband. I was give anti depressants in my 20’s because I would look at my hair 2-4 hours a day, obsessing, crying, scanning the internet. I’m off of them now, still get upset but since I was just in a remission, all was good anyway. This is what works for me and doesn’t: I go to a dermatologist every four weeks for shots. Yes, they sting a little, nothing like childbirth, so no biggie. Yes, my skin gets dented, but it always pops back out. It can take up to 9 months for a spot of mine to recover. Like I said, mine do the snaking thing. But, what helps boost it the most was actually Rogaine foam 5% for men (no, I didn’t grow any extra body hair like the bottle says I could because I am a woman.) Plain and simple: this condition sucks. It makes you feel real ugly. It can consume you if you let it.
    There is no full proof reason why a person gets this I have learned. I do know a gene for Alopecia Areata is in your body if you this, but it needs something to activate it, like a virus, stress, or something. I can relate my conditions to stress definitely. But I can also say I got some when I wasn’t stressed. I tried acupuncture as well to reduce stress thinking it would then in turn reduce Alopecia. Can’t tell you it worked for sure, because my hair always grows back. It did not make it grow faster. Alopecia Areata is an auto immune disorder. While auto immune disorders are hereditary, Alopecia Areata is not directly handed down to you. Think about it, do your parents have it? Most do not, but if there is eczema, vitilago or other auto immune skin conditions in your family, then there is a bigger chance you will get one of these or alopecia areata. Auto Immune diseases are all lumped together. I hated hearing that Alopecia Areata was hereditary. I didn’t want children thinking, what if they get it worse? Well my one son has eczema and Asthma and the other has some vitilago, but no alopecia. My dad had severe eczema, no alopecia. My children are the best things that happened to me.
    Other things I have learned on this long journey through the NAAF and doctors, If Alopecia Areata happens after 10, a majority of those cases never go on to full blown Alopecia Universalis. True gray hair will not fall out due to Alopecia Areata. I can tell you this in my case. I only wish I had a full head of gray hair.
    If I could tell my 11 year old self that my hair would never all fall out, I would have. The pain esp. during my 20’s was brutal as the condition became worse. The patches always filled in. My dermatologist wanted me to go in to clinical trial because I am longest known patient to him in his office, with Alopecia Areata that grows in like this. My Dr. has seen me for 30 years! I’ll cry when he retires.
    For now, I’m going to try to keep busy and distracted until I see stubble. Thanks for listening and I hope I shed some light on what I know about this disorder.
    Thanks!

  38. Great entry!!! I have been strugling with Alopecia Areata for the past two months… it was amazing to find your blog and see how I went exactly through the same thing … panic, bawling…. My hair is still not growing back, but hopeful it will. I am also writing about it… check it out. http://www.mydearhair.com

  39. Mel says:

    Thank you so much! I was just diagnosed today. A few days ago the day before my 28th bday my hair stylist told me I had a large bald spot on the back of my head by my ear. Several inches missing right by the hair line and a smaller spot another inch away. I got into a dermatologist right away and was diagnosed with aa. I also read many sites and was wondering if there is anyone who hasn’t lost all their hair so thank you! I actually realized that I had a small bald spot on my front hairline 5 years ago and didnt think anything of it at the time. I haven’t been stressed so I don’t think that’s the cause. But I did have a nasty nasty cold a few months ago which was apparently about the time my hair fell out. It’s already starting to grow back. I chose to start clobetasol foam instead of injections. And I’m going to start taking a multivitamin again. I also have a 14 month old daughter. I pray that I don’t lose all my hair. I too have always been told how beautiful my hair is.

  40. Louise says:

    Thank you for this. I’ve recently been diagnosed and have been in absolute panic about it too. Find it hard having to deal with the loss when brushing or washing. It’s comforting to read others stories.

  41. herv says:

    we have two nephews one 12 and 7, the older boy was diagnosed with alopecia totalis (total body hair loss ) at age of 4 and the little one was just found to have small patches of hair loss on his scalp. It’s been really devastating for the family and we are trying to help. In US they say there is no cure, basically since it an autoimmune disease, only treatment option is topical or injectable steroids , which I don’t like because they are very young.thanks for sharing your story πŸ™‚ it gives us some hope….

    • Chuck says:

      I posted on here about 6 mos ago… I saw no change (good or bad)… hair was growing in towards the bottom but dropping out from the center. Just weird. Went to a Dermatologist back in early spring. He has given me injections twice. About 6 weeks after the first “poking” my stylist said, “there is a LOT of hair growing back”… mind you it is still a very apparent spot, it is sloooooowly filling in. There is always hope. Keep the faith and don’t let stuff that you have no control over stress you out. I think that was my fateful trigger (horrible boss). I can’t even ask for help from karma because he has severe male pattern baldness anyway!

  42. taunja rummer says:

    Wow I can’t tell you how relieved I am to read these entries. My 14 year old son was just diagnosed. He has one spot on his crown the size of a quarter. He is at an age where kids are really harsh with each other. When the dermatologist gave us the alopecia brochure with horrible pictures in it, it was all I could do not to cry. I hope everyone keeps posting positive stories. I found his spot 6 days ago, he was at the dermatologist 5 days ago and so far the spot is no bigger. He was given a couple injections to slow hair loss and a cream.

  43. Hey! Loved what you wrote about the alopecia areata… I am also a runner and I am also a patient of alopecia areata… just discovered the first two spots (and hopefully the only ones) two months ago… it has really sucked. I have a blog dedicated to it, hope you can take a look at it and passed to who ever is going through the same … cheers. http://www.mydearhair.com

  44. Sovanna says:

    Thank you so much for your post! I was a wreck before I read this. I currently see small patches if white hair coming through so I hope my hair is growing back because the bald spot had gotten way bigger.

  45. jamie says:

    I’m so glad to have read this. Admittedly, I’m still a bit terrified, but I do feel some relief. I just have no idea how to feel and what to expect. My spot got bigger, and everyone says there are little hairs growing back, but I can’t tell, and I’m just freaking out by myself while everyone else doesn’t seem to think it’s a big deal.

    • Kieran says:

      Hi all

      I’ve had mine around 2.5yrs. It’s grown back at the original part (not as thick) and is now growing back pretty much everywhere. Although I do have a fresh one at the bottom of my neck hair( I don’t actually care anymore). I used 3 different creams from docs/dermatologist. Elcon, dermotive scalp lotion and isotrex. Isotrex is an irritant, which is used in evening, then lotion in morning. Friend( women) used it with really good results, however I didn’t use a great deal, had hair coming back. Me personally, I use minoxidil mouse, which seems to help. Now I’m not sure if this is coincidence or not but, I read about taking Nat mur..so I bought some(eBay) and my barber commented on how much better its looking. I have no more snaking, chest hair and my beard has come back. Keep you chins up people and stay positive πŸ˜€

  46. Shari says:

    Thanks for making me smile!! I had a similar experience with the panic and bawling and was lucky enough to have my hair grow back. Only to lose more a year later. It started out the same, one small patch which then turned into two and now 5 months later I’m up to 10 patches and praying it stops and grows back like the first time. My dr is great and treatment works but its a slow process and more spots keep popping up. Your story made me smile and it’s not always easy to do with this disease so thank you for that.

  47. sangeetha says:

    thanks for posting this, thee other websites really did scare me
    i was just wondering about your friend who was diagnosed with loss all over the body-did it grow back? and if it did, did it ever begin to happen again or just in small doses?

    • Meghan Loftus says:

      As far as I know, hers hasn’t grown back yet. She’s trying some dietary changes to see if those might make a difference.

  48. Barb says:

    I posted here my story in November 2012 and would like to give you a little update to give hope to others that struggle. I had one spot on the side of my head at the end of October 2012 and it grew to a size of small lemon. I went to the doctor at the beginning of December because I was worried since the spot was growing and no hair was growing back. The doctor did some blood tests and it came back OK – my iron levels, thyroid etc. He also told me to calm down that it might be from stress or combination of stress and other things (like really strong combined vaccination I got in September and discontinuation of my birth control pills in August) and actually also that he had one spot himself some 20 years ago while he was studying for A levels and it grew back and so far never happened again. My hair started growing back at the beginning of January (some 11 weeks from discovering the spot) first fine hair, some white … the spot is now fully covered with my normal hair and it’s growing longer normal speed. You would not be able to find the spot anymore. I do not have it in my family. But I found out that also my mother-in-law had it only once in her life when her father passed away – 18 years ago. She recommended me to use placenta hair ampoules on the spot. My hair grew back on its own though. My sister-in-law who had cancer had one spot after long operation (breast reconstruction); it also grew back and never returned so far. I just wanted to give some people hope that the hair does grow back. I was also searching for success stories when I had it. I am not saying I will never have another spot. I hope I will not. The prognosis is better if you have it as an adult though. – I am 30 in case you are wondering. I take hair vitamins, do yoga and try not to stress too much.

  49. Hayley says:

    I am a 28 y/o female. I developed AA last September and within 6 weeks had lost about 80% of my hair. Was quite shocking of course, and depressing that it might never grow back or might regrow and then recur, but I have a very supportive partner and workplace, and had lots of fun with wigs. I shaved it all off down to nothing and I thought it looked ok, but the worst part was the reactions of strangers when I went out bald. I didn’t cry about it, but it made me sad and angry at society. People were surprised I was so matter-of-fact, I think. Then a few months ago it started growing back and now looks almost normal again, with just a few small bare patches, some areas that are lighter and finer/thinner. Very strange disease. I find myself idly wishing it on very vain looks-orientated people, I’m a bit ashamed to say. I wish they could get some perspective. Our society is so shallow. I hope you are feeling better about it now. πŸ™‚

  50. jasmine says:

    Well I have thinning mostly in the front and small bald spots kinda around where I use to part and make bangs. Anyway not sure I have alopecia or the loss is due to the fact that I have an autoimmune disease called sarcoidosis.But the dermatologist prescribed me hydrocortisone lotion (which I only used like a few times). However my 5yr old child had bald spots around one of her ears, the back at the hairline, in the middle of her head towards the front, and 2 other spots in the front. She was prescribed hydrocortisone cream2%. Though most of the spots grew back, I really dont like the idea of continuing with this cream. It thins out skin amongst other things. Steroids whether topical or oral(which I used to take for my sarcoid) is a strong drug. And she is young, and I have been using this on her for maybe a total all together (between following up with the dermatology every 6 weeks) maybe close to 3 months. I hope whatever grew back doesn’t fall again, and I hope nothing else falls. I was looking into ginger for hair because this stimulates blood circulation, and I have an oil which i bought for cooking but could be used on hair and skin called Ziggy Marleys lemon ginger coconut oil (hexane free). So Im thinking of using this once or twice a week on her scalp and tips of her hair and mine as well.Doctors are always ready to write a prescription and who knows the long term effects that arent mentioned.My daughter is a good sport and even has an alopecia song lol. But Im not concerned about my hair I just hope all works well with hers, as her hair is long I just want it to be thick and for the the few bald spots which is like 2 left to fill in. Just a tip for those who use a topical lotion/cream. If you apply at night wash it out in the morning.If theres sun outside. Something that I completely didnt think about when I started using it on her hair for the majority of her use.

  51. Jo says:

    Hi all, thanks for sharing your experiences, i am a 44 year old male, from australia, i had full thick hair all my life until this year March, 2 bald patches on the beard and over 4 weeks several patches on the head and shedding rapidly. I thought someone had poisoned me or i was radioactively contaminated, it just happened so fast. what i did was changing my diet using the rlt immune therapy, just google ” healing alopecia areata” and order the monitored trial material, the problem sits in our gut, we have to act by cutting out food that causes this autoimmune reaction and use high quality antiinflammatory substances , minerals, vitamins and certain quality food instead. Cortisone treats the symptoms, but not the root cause, now after 5 months i have an almost full head of hair again, and a nice byproduct is i lost over 10 kg after changing my diet, all the best to all of you, never give up the fight!

    Cheers

    • James says:

      Joe, I am very interested in the RLT therapy and I’d like to ask you, someone who has tried it, a few questions, like what sort of supplements one has to take (sounds like some magic blend) and how hard is it to stick to the diet? What kind of foods have to be cut? You can email me @ dishalev AT gmail.com. Please get in touch.

  52. Aurelia says:

    I’ve dealt with AA three times in my life, including currently.

    I had a small spot at the top of my head when I was 19. After panicking for months I went to the dermatologist, got some cream, and it grew back. I’m not sure if it was the cream or the amount of time I waited.

    When I was 31-32 and pregnant I got another spot at the back of my head. It was easy to hide and it grew back without me missing it within a few months. I had beautiful hair during my pregnancy until the post-partum shedding hit…

    Now at 33 I have at least 3 spots, the largest is the size of an old half-dollar. I’ve had one for 6 months, one for 3 months and the other I found last week. I’m able to style my hair to hide the spots. The most recent spot is starting to grow fine, white hair (I have coarse, almost black hair). The other spots aren’t getting bigger, but I’m not sure if there’s any regrowth.

    I saw one derma earlier this year who didn’t want to treat it. I’m seeing a different derma next week. I pray that my hair grows back soon and stops falling out. I’m quite self-conscious and I admit that I feel depressed at times. The National AA Foundation website made me want to cry. It’s one thing to wear a wig because you want to, it’s another to feel like you have to. I just started a new job and I don’t want to lose my hair. Hopefully this will be the end of my hair loss… or at least I’ll get another 13 year stretch with no patches like last time.

    Thanks for sharing your story. These comments made me feel a little better.

  53. Jo says:

    Hi Aurelia, this sounds to me as if your body has the ability to heal itself but there is something that triggers the alopecia over and over again. The question is, what could that be, it can be stress, lifestyle, poor diet, hormones, vitamin deficiency etc. in my case i am pretty sure it is gluten. Even though i am not considered coeliac, the standard bakery products in australia are full of toxic processed wheat, most people show no reaction to it, but those like me and others who have a genetic predisposition to autoimmune disorders react to it. An autoimmune disorder is like a storm raging through every cell in your body, we must calm that storm and avoid anything that causes stress or inflammation. More and more evidence suggests that it is all about diet, the problem sits in our digestive system. Thats where we need to act, all the best jo

  54. Kristen says:

    This was one of the most helpful things Ive read about AA. I call this the summer that sucked. Our stories are almost identical. And this really helped…but I do have a question: my hair falls out A LOT when Im showering. Did that happen to you? It makes me not want to shower! Its been about 1 1/2 months since I discovered I have AA. Thanks for sharing!

  55. Jackie says:

    Thank you so much. I had a very stressful second pregnancy where I became extremely anemic and actually struggled to put on weight. Around the 8th month, I notice a small bald patch on the top of my head (about the size of a dime). No biggie I thought. Fast forward to 3 months post-partum and that small patch had developed to a 4 by 2 inch loss of hair. I felt like Friar Tuck! My hair is growing back but very slowly… since the major loss (about 4 months, I’ve regained about 50% of the hair and perhaps more if I could see the white hairs more clearly.) It’s been really devastating and I’ve had some extreme anxiety. It’s good to hear that others experienced this post partum as well and that they also recovered. Thanks for sharing!

  56. Mel says:

    I wanted to post an update for me too. I was diagnosed not quite 4 months ago. I had a really large spot on my bottom left hairline behind my ear and another spot that ended up being fairly large too in the middle back of my head. The first spot was growing back already by the time I discovered it. The second spot kept growing and my entire scalp itched for a really long time. My Derm wanted to do injections but I refused. I used clobetasol on it for several months. Both spots are almost entirely grown back now, and you can’t tell at all. My scalp stopped itching after I switched to a free and clear shampoo (called Free and Clear) that my Derm recommended.

  57. I have a Meghan. She is 10. Your blog reached its targeted audience when I got to sleep FINALLY after discovering a dime sized spot Friday night on her head. I haven’t told her yet. It doesn’t seem to be progressing. Tomorrow is my day for frantic – see us now- phone calls. Thank you for your reassurances. I have told very few people, especially not my blog readers yet. Hoping this is just another bump in our road. Thank you!

  58. Jo says:

    Guys, fellow sufferers, please do consider “healing alopecia areata” just google it and get in touch with the directors there, best to do the monitored diet trial for 6 weeks, Rob and Lana can relate to all our stories as they have been there themselves! You wont regret it, the problem has to be tackled by chnging your diet and lifestyle.
    Best wishes
    Jo

  59. patti says:

    Thank you for this. My daughter noticed a bald spot in June of this year. My doctor treated her also for a fungal infection. I decided myself to take her to a dermatologist. By this time, She had a spot in the back and two on top. Still not very noticeable to anyone but us. My daughter is 17 and just started her senior year in high school and this has been extremely hard on her. The dermatologist gave her steroid injections 3 weeks ago. We go again in another three weeks for these injections. I pray every night that this will not get worse. I hate for her to have to go through this. It is nice to read some positive remarks for a change. Thanks you again. I think it has been me and my daughter some encouragement.

  60. Katrina says:

    i noticed mine on 28th July this year… went to a dermatologist and had my first steroid shot on 30th July, second shot on 27th Aug and third shot scheduled on 24th Sept… had two spots, the larger one (7 x 3 inch) seems to be ‘expanding’… though fine hairs have started to grow on the larger spot, but i noticed the hairs surrounding the spot seem to be thinning… it is indeed a stressful experience… although i tried not to look at it, but every time i check on the spots, i always find them growing bigger… sigh 😦
    Oh, i read that the new hair that grow from the spot are normally white… but mine’s all black!
    Thank you for all these, the information and the encouragement do help! I just hope i can stop worrying too much on this…

    • Laura says:

      Hello I was wondering how your Alopecia is treating you? Did all your hair fall out? I was diagnosed April 7 with 3 patches and I now have 8. My first patch being the biggest at 1in. I still have all my hair but it is thinning a lot. I am also doing the shots every month. I go next week for my 3rd round. Also using Rogaine on my patches. My Dermatologist recommended to use that on top of a prescribed foam but that cost $362 with insurance!!! Opt out of that. However I am seeing growth and hair around my patches look fragile.

  61. Ab says:

    Thank you so much for this! I am feeling just as you first described: panicky and probably doing myself no good looking through google. I don’t think it helps that this anxiety from the alopecia is coupled with the homesickness and stress of the first term of university (plus, I haven’t developed really close friends here with whom I feel I can share it). I first noticed one bald spot on the back-left of my head a couple of weeks ago and then another one behind my right ear a few days ago – pretty much exactly the same as you! I think there might be another one developing at the nape of my neck, but it’s really hard to tell. I went to the doctor and she basically told me ‘it’s alopecia areata, sorry, we don’t treat it except in extreme cases, just keep an eye on it, yeah?’ and sent me for a blood test to make sure there was nothing else behind it. No solutions and very little reassurance, which I think it one of the things that makes it so worry-inducing. I have no idea how this is going to progress, but of course, online, you read all the horror-stories an worst-case scenarios so it’s lovely to finally come across someone (representative of probably about 95+% of alopecia areata sufferers, but there’s nowhere near that level of representation on the websites and forums) for whom it seems to be getting better. I hope my hair stops coming out when I brush my hair and in the shower soon; I get that racing-heart-panicky feeling every time I clear out my hairbrush and I just want it to go away 😦 My hair has always one of the few things I have going for me, I don’t want to say goodbye to it!

  62. Alex says:

    thanks a lot for your article. i just found a bold spot on my head last weekend during a trip to paris (could have ruined it for me, but it didn’t!). now i made an appointment and have to wait for two weeks.
    been calling my mom every evening and examining my head over and over again since then.
    i know it’s far less of a concern for a guy to go bold, but still it’s no fun either. your article gave me hope!

  63. bob says:

    I had the same opinion that Alex does above when it first start happening – that it’s less of a concern if you’re a guy? But I have to say that it’s actually worse (particularly over time) because men’s hair isn’t as long and so hiding it in public is more difficult. Initially it doesn’t bother you but after months of hoping it will clear up, it’s just sad, whether you’re male or female to see that there is no re-growth. The feeling gets worse over time…

    I noticed a few people had mentioned they were runners and you mentioned running a marathon – when this started to me it was just after I had joined the gym and jumped on the treadmill, literally a within a few weeks. I’ve also done a lot of reading about what weakens the protein when the hair is synthesised – and there are various conditions and theories, each one applicable to a different scenario unfortunately. There is possibly a connection to testosterone which is produced as a result of exercise which damages and weakens hair. But to be honest, there are various connections to this and that if you search long enough. I’ve read so much about nutrients, vitamin deficiencies, medical conditions in the past 4 months to try and work out what might have caused it. It seems too lazy to just assume it’s simply a hereditary condition, It’s actually a known unknown, where medical professionals cannot adequately say what causes it so the assumption by these guys is that it’s hereditary. The basis of it as a condition is that it is an auto-immune response where the hair follicle is considered to be foreign and therefore growth is cut off. Knowledge on the subject is so poor that it cannot be explained at all why it affects one patch of the head and not another. As a lay person, that would indicate to me that it’s more likely to be a combination of diet and environment, rather than genetic pre-disposed condition.

    I can only wish fellow sufferers well and tell them not to get their hopes up that the hair will re-appear within 3 months because it doesn’t. 80% of cases report that their hair is back after 12 months, and 90% after 2 years. And that generally you have less than 10% chance of proper re-growth if your hair is mostly gone. Re-growth also is less likely on the hairline.

    Alopecia Areata is also not that uncommon, it affects approximately 7% of people, which seems a bit low to me. I work in a small team and 2 out of 7 have admitted having the same condition. A friend of mine also knows someone.

  64. Sharon says:

    Thank you! My 12yr old daughter was recently diagnosed with AA. She has a patch bigger than a 50 cent coin on the back of her head, near the base of her neck. I have been extremely stressed for the last month. We have been applying the steroid cream for about a month. It hasn’t grown much, but can’t tell..sometimes it seems like less hair around the spot…it very well could be my imagination. I don’t see hair regrowth, but it does feel a little fuzzy. Im praying and trying to think positive. We have a follow up visit next week. I have been neurotic trying to find positive stories, but all are a nightmare and my worst fears….thank you for posting this…I hope you are well….

  65. Morgan Clark says:

    Hi im 16 and have never met anyone who has this same problem. its one of the hardest things ive gone through ive had it for 7 months now just got some fake hair but the fake hair is falling out with my real hair. i might go totally bald soon and im scared to death. every girl wants to feel beautiful and i use to be. I wish no one had to go through this because it might not hurt your health but its emotionally draining. reading this is helpful but like you wrote i need answers. still no one has the magic medicine to fix this. but thank u for writting this i might start my own story too.

  66. Michael says:

    I cant thank you enough for this post/blog. at least, now from reading all the post I know what i’m facing! Again Thank you!

  67. oneworriedmama says:

    Thank you so much for your story. We discovered a big spot (a size of a golf ball on our 5 y/o daughter a few weeks ago. The pediatric did some blood test (iron/thyroid) and all negative, so off we go to the dermatologist. Our appointment is a week from Monday, and the spot seems to get a tad bigger. Right now it is hidden under her hair, and we can only pray that it doesn’t get bigger to the point that we can’t conceal it, or worse, a new spot. The stories on the internet are terrifying, this is the first story I came across that gives me some hope. Thank you so much and please pray for our little girl to have the same success as you did. thank you!!!

    • Andy says:

      Hi
      Our daughter has similar which we have been monitoring. What has your progress been?
      Andy

      • oneworriedmama says:

        hi Andy, fast forward a few (long) months, I’m happy to report that all but a tiny spot (a pea size) has now covered with dark black hair. We first discovered the big spot mid December. We saw the dermatologist in mid January. She prescribed some topical, which I was concerned, but give it’s topical, we decided to go for it after much debate and discussion with the doctor. By the time we went back to the dermatologist for a follow up (8 weeks), her hair sprouted, some peach fur (hard to see) and some were darker. It’s been over 3 months since she started the topical (over 4 months since we discovered the patch), her hair has now grew as long as an inch or so and as dark as her original (black) hair. She is taking (1000) biotic (which is a water soluble supplement). So far there is no sign of more hair falling out. we are aware that it could come back, but so far so good (knock on wood).

        Hope your daughter hair will come back soon. It was hard for us as a parent for sure! Please keep me posted or if you have further question.

  68. clare says:

    Thankyou for this! I was diagnosed with AA in April last year. Fist started with me playing with my hair and noticing i could feel a smooth patch at the back of my ear about the size of a 10p, didn’t think anything of it until after a month or 2 later i noticed it was gradually moving forwards which was when i went to the doctors. By the end of it i had lost alot of hair, probably about 3 or 4 50p shapes put together. Since then it has fully regrown but the emotional mess it has left me in is unbearable. I am now worried that my hair is thinning in the same place but on the opposite side, hopefuly like my boyfriend says in just being paranoid. Searching online just makes things worse when you see all the horror stories so its nice to read stories with a happy outcome.

  69. Ali says:

    Hello All,

    I’m a guy who was diagnosed with AA Universalis at age 16. Mostly due to stress and environmental factors I believe, I lost every hair on my body for about a year and a half. It came back when I was almost 18, slowly but surely and then went away a few months later, never became completely bald since then. My hair grew back at almost 19 and stayed for almost 6-7 months! It was pretty much 90%+ back. And now I have less than 50% on scalp again 😦

    Trying to stay strong and use natural remedies such as garlic and honey to get this better.

    Maybe it’s an environmental thing? Maybe it’s a stress thing? I don’t know. Been to doctors, tried every cream and pill. Tried cortisone shots, didn’t do much other than swell up my head. The condition has a mind of it’s own.

    Peace and love,

    Ali

  70. Kris says:

    I have diagnosed with AA last year around may 2013. My hair dresser found a small patch on my head. i though it was ok, then it started grew in size and it went to tennis ball size. I live in india, finally i got two steroid shots and my hair started growing slowly. i am really happy now to see new hari coming. But i see lot of hair falling in the front side, however i am not seeing any new bald spot anywhere. Is this is common loosing hair in the front side once diagnosed with AA?. Also, I ran a marathon last year, from the above stories I believe running more is also a cause for AA.

  71. Diane says:

    Yes I am newly diagnosed with a quarter sized patch above my forehead. One and a half months and it’s grown from a nickel to a quarter size. Very much panicking but your post makes me feel these is hope. I’m 38 years old and they say the older you are the less likely for all hair loss? Who knows but I related to everything you wrote about, thank you!

  72. Ann says:

    thank you for this as I have just discovered 2 bald patches one on each side of my head exactly the same ringing doctor first thing but ive been reading some scary stuff and like you I have a beautiful thick head of dark shiny hair the one part of me that I love

  73. Jennifer says:

    Thank you so much for all the positive comments and posts on this. I like everyone have been recently diagnosed and trying to deal with them emotional fall out of the hair loss. I think reading all that stuff online has made me panic and have more paranoia. My sweet boyfriend says it is coming back – mostly white – I have blonde highlights so it is hard to tell. I am 36 and never had any issues so as you can imagine – I am freaking out. I hope for great results like the ones is read here. I have started to take biotin and have been to the dermatologist. She has assured me that it will grow back. I noticed that I have another smaller one that has developed since I went to the dermatologist – I am hoping it is just “fall out” from me freaking about about the first three.
    I am hoping that my hair will grow back – I don’t care what the color is. I will say – it has been a stressful year personally and professionally and I think my body is telling me to take a break.
    I just want to say – ThAnk goodness for seeing this – I was starting to think it was hopeless!

    • I recently posted on here a few months ago; withbravewingssheflies. I had a bald spot about the size of a baseball. Now, my hair is growing back and is fuzzy in that area. The spot is much smaller now. Probably about the size of 2-quarters now. Initially, the hair was growing in white. Now it has natural coloring to it. The new hairs that are growing in are white. I’m vey pleased. It took a few months before the spot stopped expanding and the hair started growing it. Roughly, four months to start seeing growth. My hair still sheds daily. Wish is saddening. But. It is what it is. I still have stress in my life. But am trying to destress. I take biotin and folic acid daily and really think it has helped. My advice to everyone dealing with this, is there is hope. Eventually the hair DOES grow back. It’s so hard not to stress about it when we’re reminded about it daily. But remember. God gives his toughest battles to his strongest soldiers. Stay strong. Stay positive. πŸ™‚

      • Chuck Kovac says:

        Hey BLΒ³…. Did you notice it growing back in the center first?

        My spot started as the size of a half dollar, then over 6 mos spread to be more like 3+ inches in diameter. Then I started seeing white hairs grow but not really significantly. After about a year from the start I decided to see a dermatologist and have been getting injections every 2 months (ouch) and also rarely think about it — except to see posts on here pop on in my e-mail.

        Now I have significant normal hair color, but fine, hair filling in center outward slowly filling in. It has been about 20 months… I see huge improvement and wonder if this would happen with or without dermo-shots (again ouch)?!?

        Definitely improving day by day. Trying to relax and not get stressed even though I am a Type A personality LOL.

        Keep the faith!!!

        Chuck

      • Krista says:

        I lost my first silver dollar sized patch two years ago this May. I never received treatments of any kind for it. I noticed hair starting to grow back about 2-3 weeks later (first very white and thin). It slowly started to thicken and return to my natural color. I lost another small dime-size spot about 3 months later, but it returned in its original color very soon after. Just wanted to give anyone “new” a little hope. Although, I have noticed losing really tiny spots sporadically along my hairline in the front and back…Has anyone else struggled with this?

      • Chuck Kovac says:

        This is so weird as my issue started in May 2012 also. I only have the one area. AA is so bizarre but seems to go away if you calm down and de-stress.

      • Jennifer says:

        thank you for your encouraging words – I just thankful that I found something/some people who were positive and reassuring that it will grow back. My dermatologist said the same thing but I can sometimes be a skeptic about those things.

  74. Hi all! An update…. I posted here a few months ago (January 2014; withbravewingssheflies). Since then, my hair is starting to grow back! *happy dance* It took about four months for the bald spot to stop growing in size and for my hair to start growing back. Initially the hair grew in white—very faint, but has now darkened to my natural hair color. I have more hair growth on the outside area of the bald spot that was once the size of a baseball and is now about the size of two coins/ two quarters. The hair in the middle of the spot is very thin and has yet to fill in, but each week it’s getting better. Daily, I take biotin as well as folic acid. My hair still sheds a lot; daily. It’s bothersome, but….no new spots besides the one that I had have appeared. I actually colored my hair twice in the last few months (it was scary) but I had bleached blonde hair and knew I couldn’t bleach it anymore with all of this going on. I have to say, my hair is looking much better these days. I find myself constantly running my fingers up and down feeling the hair fuzz grow in. I too, thought my hair would never grow back in, but it is! Be patient. Have faith. It takes time; more time than we’d like….but the more we stress about it, the worse it’ll get. It’s so hard not to stress about it when we’re reminded about it daily. God gives his toughest battles to his strongest soldiers. Hang in there πŸ™‚

  75. Kati says:

    Thanks for sharing your experience. I just noticed that I have a bald spot on the top, right side of my head last night, and went to a walk-in clinic today to get a referral to a dermatologist. It is upsetting, but I’ve only told one person so far as just talking about it makes it seem more real and fills me with panic. (And triggers this weird cycle where I feel guilty for caring so deeply about something that is superficial!) I also just spent an hour research “hair essentials”.. I might be getting ahead of myself though. I think I’ll hold off buying any products and see if time and a change in diet help at all. I’m already a healthy eater, but I think I’m going to try a gluten and dairy free diet for a while and see if that helps.

    • Sara says:

      Hi, I am going through the same thing right now and am also trying to change my diet. Did it help you? Thanks

  76. Devilyn Disguise says:

    Thanks for your positive story. It’s so difficult reading about alopecia areata online. I first noticed mine in January of this year. It was a quarter sized spot on the back left side of my head. I freaked about and called my sister. She had a hard time understanding what I was walking about so I sent her a picture…. She had no words. It has no progressed slowly to the size of maybe three quarters and I have also noticed a new spot in the soft baby hair at the nape of my neck, still on the left side. Assuming this began in December, it’s been tiring constantly noticing my hair falling out. I sometimes obsessively run my fingers through to see how many strands come out. I got extensions finally which takes my paranoia off the spot possibly showing… And prevents me from obsessing over the loose strands. I have had two rounds of corticosteroid shots from my MD and going for another round this coming week. I do have fine fuzzy regrowth in the original areas but I can feel the new places are completely hairless. I hope my AA is similar to yours and I want the relief of no more strands coming out… It’s stressful. Thanks again for this blog and thread of stories. It’s a much better tone than most of the other sites I’ve read.

    • Laura says:

      Hello, I was wondering how your hair and scalp looks now? I guess I’m determining how much longer I’ll have my hair or if the shedding stops after a couple of months. I got my first patch April 7 and diagnosed with AA April 9 and now I have 8 patches. The biggest one was my first patch at an inch both ways. Luckily they haven’t widen (if that makes sense). I am however losing a lot of hair and I don’t know if that is caused from the steroid shots. And luckily, I am able to cover them with my hair. I do see regrowth and I understand it takes a long time for it to fully come out. I go next week for 3rd round of shots.

  77. Brenna says:

    I discovered my first spot when I was 24 just a couple months before my wedding. Luckily, it was in the back by my ear so I could cover it but it grew fairly large, probably about the size of a plum. I never went to a doctor bc I read there was no treatment that was guaranteed results. About a 6 months later it grew back. I had another patch about 2 years later that never got that big, also on the back of my head. I got pregnant and it went away. I felt like dealt with it better than most but no matter what, seeing that smooth, bald spot always brought me to tears. My husband always acted like it was no big deal but that kind of bugged me more bc what does he know about having a random bald spot! My mother was adopted from Korea so I have no idea if it is hereditary since no one I know of on my dad’s side has it but I wish there was more concrete statistics on that. I feel like I can deal with it but the thought of my daughter or son having it brings me to tears.

  78. Adele says:

    Thank you so much for this, I have trawled the net looking for answers and some were terrifying, I have sobbed and have been terrified I would wake up bald, thankfully I seem to have regroeth in the area and your blog has made me feel better about the situation, it might only be cosmetic but it’s traumatic, it’s good to know I’m not alone. Really hope your doing well! Thank you again x

  79. Laura says:

    Thank you so much for your website. It felt as if I wrote it myself. I have researched so much online about Alopecia Areata and everytime I read, tears just flow down! I noticed my first patch on top left on April 7, simply overnight! The next day I saw a second one top right and I thought it was a ringworm because it was red, no itching. Saw a GP April 8, and she said it was not but could be Traction Alopecia and referred me to a Dermatologist. After research online (yikes), I was able to see one the next day April 9, and she confirmed, with the same pleasant and cheerful attitude, “It’s Alopecia Areata”. At that time I had 3 (she found a small one in the back). I received Corticosteriod shots on my patches and said she’ll see me in a month, May 7. I now have 6 patches. My first one being the biggest one at 2inches and others are tiny being half a centimeter to an inch. Photos look bigger than they really are. Hair is growing back (little stubbles) but I feel one of the patches that did not get a shot is spreading. So I simply cannot wait for next week!! I am also losing a lot of hair after a shower. Some are breakage. Since my first visit to Derm, I started taking 10,000MCG of Biotin with 100MG Keratin and I also taking 1200MG Fish Oil with 2000IU D3. I am hoping it is stress that has caused my patches and I pray every night that it stops spreading. I have faith in God that it will get better. I have never been sick, I eat right, and a runner as well. I ran my first marathon in February so I hope the stress from training and holding a 2nd job is what “caused” it.

  80. Ruby says:

    I had the exact same thing happen to me 10 months ago. My patch started in the same place yours did, about the same size. I was prescribed anti fungal cream (obviously didn’t work). Kept trying to get advice from my GP but struggled to get an appointment because it wasn’t urgent (apparently). So was told to make an appointment after New Years. By this point I’d had Alopecia Areata for 5 months and the patch had taken up a fifth of my scalp but I had fine white fluff in the centre. In January, my doctor made me a dermatologist appointment in February who eventually diagnosed me with Alopecia Areata but by that point the white fluff had gained colour and my doctor confirmed it was growing back. Now, 10 months since first discovering my bald patch, it has nearly all grown back! Yey. But then, yesterday, I found another bald patch at the back of my head. I’m hoping this one doesn’t get as big. It’s really upsetting especially as the condition is so unpredictable. I just try and stay positive. At least it’s only hair, not our health x

  81. alwaysbelieve says:

    Thanks for this story and the other stories of hope below. I discovered a bald spot at the back of my head about six weeks ago and I am hoping that it will regrow hair soon. The best of luck to all of us.

  82. Ronan says:

    How long did it take to grow back??

    • Meghan Loftus says:

      I have pretty long hair, so, it probably took almost a year to match the length of the hair around it. It was decently long and back to its normal color after probably about three months? Three or four?

      • Laura says:

        Did you lose a lot of hair while showering or brushing? I feel like I’m losing a lot more since I have been told about my Alopecia in April.

  83. Jay says:

    Thanks for this blog. I had a small hole in the back of my head appear once when my barber was cutting my hair. He told me to get it fixed quickly which I did as I set an appointment with a dermatologist. my barber said it was alopecia but my dermotologist said it wasn’t but he still prescribed a lotion for my dry scalp. Spot disappears after months of application all over my scalp.

    Fast forward to now and the same barber is cutting my hair and finds a new bald spot. This time a lot bigger (quarter-sized) and completely bare. He didn’t notice it before he started cutting because I had. a lot of hair but he thankfully stopped cutting it and tried his best to cut around it. I called my dermotologist then and there to get an appointment which is in two weeks. I couldn’t wait for the dermotologist so I went to a walk in clinic to tell a doctor for help. He immediately called it alopecia and seemed so nonchalant about it saying it’s not a big deal and that in most cases the hair grows back.

    I demanded a blood test just in case there was another underlying cause as well as steroid injections. I researched all ‘cures’ before I got there. Today I got my first injections which were generally painless. but strands of hair keep falling off. I know I shouldn’t expect an immediate change but it’s stressing me out even more as I’m almost sure that the spot is more visible now than it was a couple days ago. I’m still waiting on my blood test results and I’m going to update my dermatologist on everything. I hate that mine has such spaced out reservations or else I would have gone straight to him.

    I know it’s very superficial of me to care so much, but I really do care about my appearance nd my self esteem has dipped. Seeing the pictures you posted however has really given me hope that my spot will disappear eventually.

  84. Jennifer says:

    You have reached me! I googled “can you have alopecia once and never again.” I have recently begun treatment for Alopecia Areata. My girlfriend discovered the first spot as she was walking behind me. My hair was, admittedly, dirty and it was parted weird. So, she noticed the biggest spot on the back of my head. We both panicked as she searched the rest of my head and found two more smaller spots! Then, of course, extensive internet research ensued along with phone calls to our moms. Within the week, I was at the dermatologist’s office who took a look and confirmed. I wasn’t expecting it that day but he did give me several cortisone shots on my spot that same visit! I’ve had some success and went in the following month for more shots. Luckily, no new spots have emerged! I have a stressful event I suspect caused the initial incident, but as you said, it’s unpredictable and one can only speculate, not confirm. That is the scariest thing, I would say. Not getting clear answers as to if it will happen again or how long until it happens next. Going to the national sites are bittersweet. You see people living life and smiling. You can get good information and find support groups. However, for me anyway..I also started to panic! Will I go bald? How can I celebrate no new spots when I could lose all of my hair at any given moment? I tend to stay off of the sites now! It’s nice to know they are there if I need them. Thank you for sharing your experience! It is a bit more calming to know I’m not alone with my thoughts on this whole process. Oh and my doc has put me on vitamin d as he has read recent studies linking auto immune diseases and low vitamin d levels. Of course, this is a newer theory but hey..why not try? I hope you are all healing well. πŸ™‚

    • Chuck Kovac says:

      Hi Jennifer! After a perios of working for a overly demanding boss (super high stress) I discovered my AA when my wife pointed out a spot behind my ear just over two years ago. Initially the spot was about the size of a half dollar. In 6 mos it grew to be 4 times as big if an area. Luckily it has not gotten larger and “knock on wood” I have no new spots. I have been seeing a dermo and getting shots. My hair is filling from the center of the spot outward… slooooooowly, but it is coming back. We all need to minimize stress and stay positive! I am going to try adding more D… maybe so R&R on the beach will serve double duty since sunshine gives us vitamin D too πŸ™‚ .

  85. Stephanie says:

    I once read on a hairloss website that the internet is full of folks who are newly diagnosed with AA and in a panic (as I was the first time I was diagnosed 25 years ago!) but they tend to post only then and not again when their hair grows back. So that’s why it seems to be nothing but doom and gloom. Thank you, Meghan, for sharing your positive story! I’m someone who has AA bouts on and off. It’s normal for me to have one or two small spots sprout up every 1-2 years that start to grow hair within about 3 months without any treatment. But I have had several more serious bouts that I visit my (wonderful) dermatologist for. After having my son 11 years ago, I had about ten spots. I got the cortisone injections just once and the grew back quickly. After my daughter 7 years ago, I ended up losing about 50% of my hair to AA. I had the injections before it got to that extent, but they didn’t work that time. My derm. gave me a “pulse therapy” of oral prednisone and that worked beautifully, all my hair grew back in. Three years later I had another bad bout, again did the prednisone and it stopped falling out and grew back. Three years later (today) I’m in the midst of another more serious bout, I’ve had the injections and about half grew back, so I’m seeing my derm again in a few weeks for repeat injections for the half that are proving tougher. I’m 47 years old and 25 years in this battle and I’m *still* prowling the internet whenever I have a bad AA experience. Love to everyone dealing with this, and know that in the vast majority of cases, your hair does grow back…treatment or not.

  86. Lisa says:

    Has anyone had a full thyroid test? Not just the one test. I think Ive read that there are 3 tests. I have pretty much all the hypothyroid symptoms, but my doctor says I don’t fall within the range to treat it as so (I need to find a new doctor). So in May she prescribed me a 10,000 a day vitamin D because vitamin d level was at 6. I took that for a month and noticed I had this bald spot the size of a silver dollar on the back top of my head. Not even a small tiny hair in the spot, shiny and bald. Only there, nowhere else since. Nothing else in my diet changed and my stress level hasnt been high at all. Im 34 years old and a stay at home mom to a 3 year old. I’ve definitely gone through much crazier stressful times in my life. I wouldnt consider now one of them, even by far. I have had excessive hair tangling since I gave birth. My hair has always been thick induvidual strands, and very long and wavy, but not necessarily thick due to abundance of strands, and Id lose hair about the same as I always have. But now with the instant tangling Ive been more careful, but more does come out when I have crazy tangling. Through some googling I found a page where someone else went through the same thing and believed the excessive vitamin d was the culprit. I cant find that page again, but I continue to look. I stopped the vitamin d and now it’s 2 months later. I see growth again in the spot. Some of the hairs are about 1/4 inch long. It’s not fully covered with little hairs yet though. Also within those 2 months, I removed all the plastic dishware from our home. Anything that would have warm food or drink on it. Even our coffee machine, I’ve since used a percolator. I was reading about chemicals in plastic slowing down your metabolism when warmed and ingested. And if this is thyroid related, I didn’t want to mess any further with it. I was wondering if anyone else had similar experiences. Whether it be with the thyroid, excessive tangling hair, excessive vitamin d supplementation, or BPAs/BPSs in plastics effecting their hair loss. Thank you. It was nice reading a positive outcome to all this.

    • Kieran says:

      That’s very interesting about drinking out of plastic cups etc. I’m a abit of a health freak at times, I was using my protein shaker to have boiling hot red bush tea! I was perhaps having a litre of this every night, for quite some time. Makes you wonder doesn’t it?! My hair has grown back, and fell out..and grown back( talking spots, not the whole lot) I currently have a couple now..been going on around 3 years and it’s crap!

      • Lisa says:

        I’ve also come across that tea bags are now made with plastic so they have a longer shelf life. So you might want to try a stainless steel infuser in a clear glass cup with loose leaf tea. πŸ™‚

      • Lisa says:

        I wanted to come back and write that Im now seeing growth over the whole spot now. It’s going to take some time to get it back to the length of the rest of my hair though. My hair is still tangling in a nano second though, I’d love for that to stop. I haven’t seeked any help from a doctor, because I never seem to get a solution for anything when I see them about other issues. I do believe it is thyroid related because I have tons of other hypo symptoms. But I’m not registering enough on whatever tests a doctor does to get treatment. So maybe some people are just more sensitive to thyroid disruptors than other people. I’m still plastic dishware free (Including my coffee machine. I now use a percolator on the stove.) and Im not taking any supplements, because I still also believe it was my doctor’s prescription of vitamin D at 10,000 a day is what triggered the bald spot. I did eliminate most gluten and soy as well, as per a thyroid friendly diet. Well see how it goes. Ill definitely write back if another spot shows up. I hope we all can figure this out through each other’s experiences. Good luck everyone! πŸ™‚

  87. Jennifer says:

    I’m so glad I found this blog…made me feel better. I found a bald spot a week ago and panicked. I knew exactly what it was. My sister has Alopecia and in 1997 she lost all of her hair all over her body. Her hair eventually grew back but that is all I knew about the disease. So like you I have been envisioning myself bald with no eyebrows or lashes. It is nice to know that not everyone loses all of their hair. I’m crossing my fingers and knocking on wood that mine will be kept to a half dollar size patch. I think I may have hair growth all ready since I have white hairs and I didn’t realize that when the hair grows back it is white. So thank you for writing this. It definitely made me feel better.

  88. Michelle says:

    Hello, I went from having very long blonde hair, ( past my poochie butt ) I used no lightners, no heating insturments strong, shiny, bouncy, wavy, to crispy, dried, breakage, fuzzy hair in a matter of months. It looked like one big dredlock! I tried every type of shampoo, conditioner, home remedies, etc…. Then I felt a bald patch….I felt I was dreaming…..how could I go from having great hair to this rats nest. I thought I was being punished. I was going through soooooo much stress…four people I loved passed away in three years, I had to committ my oldest son, I had to take my boards test, just bought my house, my boyfriend had bowel cancer, my dog died, and my two sons and myself got scabbies, and I was worried about my son’s family in Syria. Sounded like country song. I should of been pulling my hair out! I noticed when I went to school, many women of all ages were having hairloss. So I thought ok, I wasn’t being punished. Too many women were losing their hair! I blamed it on my Nana, who had Aloepicia, hormones, eating habits, gallbladder,IBS, the sauna at the gym, the water, the mailman….no just teasing about the mailman. I noticed the spot ( size of a quarter….but some days it feels bigger..) last Oct. 2013…I have stubble and longer in parts of it…maybe half an inch. I hope that is a good sign. I try not to let stress eat me up.

  89. Ace says:

    Hi,

    Around 3 months ago I found a bald spot which was pretty small at the time but now has become quite large. I’m still losing a lot of hairs, its a truly depressing condition. I had lovely thick hair too. But over the past weeks I’ve had diffuse hair loss too and my hairs become mangled and thin. Has anyone else experienced this too? I’m only 20 so the thought of losing my hair this young is terrifying!

  90. Angela says:

    Thank you sooooo much for posting this!! I noticed when my oldest son was 4 a small bald spot on his head. Doctors had no idea why. It went away and the hair grew back blonde (he has brown hair). It eventually turned brown and hasnt had any more fall out since until yesterday (hes almost 16 now). Naturally, I am in a crying panic!!! I love both my babies so much! I will go this evening to see a doctor with him to get a diagnosis. Please keep him in your thoughts, as its very emotional for him to lose his hair at 15 😦

  91. Michelle says:

    Hi again….I wrote in here August 14 th….since then I started using head and shoulders shampoo…I thought why not, I have tried everything else….even the NO POO in shampoo bars. I thought maybe since I couldn’t feel my scalp tingle when I washed my hair….maybe there was a thick build up causing my bald spot and my hair being crispy…and it would get gooey when I used moisterizing shampoos. I haven’t felt that nice clean, tingling, scalp sensation until now. I use a scalp massager with the shampoo …..I can actually feel the suds sliding around on my scalp…aahhhh and a tenderness. I also cut out gluten and dairy…and been taking zinc, iron, and vitamin D3. I drink coconut and almond milk. I got grass fed meat and free range. My youngest son…who has never been afraid of given his honest opinion…has noticed the change in my hair…he said it was looking so much better.
    I have noticed it has really filled in the bald spot..and is almost an inch in parts. It had stayed the same since November with stubble. I have had trouble with my hair for eight years…I would just turn my head and my hair would tangle ……FUZZY! I was someone who has always been shy, and insecure…..then my best buddy, Uncle Doug died last year …one year older then me…we had such a connection…so he was gone, my rock…and I had a bald spot and my hair was so fuzzy. So I couldn’t, wouldn’t, step outside…only once a month to the store…and sit outside out on the porch when it gets dark. Finally it is looking better…and growing!

  92. lea says:

    hello. im really glad I found this.
    about 4months ago I discovered a bold patch in my hair just a little one that got bigger a month later there was another one right next to it but with a few strands of hair inbetween. the colour of my scalp where the bald patches are have now gone peach. so I made an appointment with my gp. he also gave me cream and said it might be a fungal infection and to use the cream 3 times a day for 7days which didnt work. I thought it may be down to stress considering my dad died in january and i had a baby a year ago not long after I noticed my bold patches. could this be the same as yours? im really unsure what it could be and doctors are useless

  93. Michelle says:

    Hi….my hair is still filling in, my hair is alot softer…and not as crispy lol . When I would go to sleep my hair would brush up against my back feeling like boars hair or a brillo pad. I’m still using Head & Shoulders ( not the 2 in 1 ) my hair is not near as frizzy. I can feel my scalp now…it even gets tender when I use the plastic rounded scalp massager…I got at Walgreens. I remember when this all started….over eight years ago.. I had used a conditioner …and when I got out of the shower..my scalp felt it was on fire…I hurried to rinse it off. Then my scalp kept breaking out…my hair was breaking off…went from past my butt, to my shoulders…very dry. Then last October is when my bald spot showed up…and hair breaking off around hairline. I was afraid I had alopecia…like my Nana…who had it since she was 14… I wonder why there is such an increase in hairloss…with in the last 10 years. I have watched movies from the 1980’s 1990’s and noticed how much thicker women’s hair was… Now women’s and young girls hair is thin and limp or fuzzy with split ends. 30 years ago there was lots of shampoo for oily hair…now there is alot for dry…and breakage. Have they added something to the water…pesticides….perscription drugs going into the water….food additives etc…

  94. bexoxox says:

    Thanks! This has calmed me down a fair bit x

  95. Lynn says:

    I have alopecia areata…but somehow the hairs growing back are black and rough and they never seem to grow longer than 4 cm. I have had the condition for 5 years already, and the sparse hairs never did grow back….

  96. Erica says:

    Thank you! When I read your article I couldn’t help but notice all the similar things we both endured. Like running to the restroom to look at the back of my scalp. I have 4 bald spots in my scalp (not visible). I’ve had corticoid steroids shots for 3 months and very little progress. I wonder if my hair will ever grow back the way it was? After reading your article it gave me HOPE. Thank you.

    • Marie says:

      I’m same as you. No need to worry as I did. I got 3 bald spots in beginning of April and by end of May I had 10. All about less than an inch in diameter. I saw my dermatologist and received kenolog shots for 4months. Hair is growing back natural color except my first bald spot is taking awhile and growing white hair, which I dye. Once you dye your hair, you will see a lot of hair that you have growing and you can’t see. It takes time for hair to grow, that I figured out. Just breathe and love life to the fullest and I promise you’ll have hair in no time. Took me 3months to realize that. If you or anybody have any questions or just want to talk, please email me at pinkprincess0219@yahoo.com

  97. anice says:

    I know this is an old post but I am laying here crying because my hair loss is just getting worse. I am 25. I go to the doc on the 28th but I cringe even time I look in the mirror. I think of how my fiancee would feel it got worse and if my children would be embarrassed. I know I being negative I tried not to worry because I thought it might be stress but its just keeps thinning. I don’t mean to be a Debbie downer but like u said…you don’t realize what a blessing a full head of hair is until some of it is missing, especially as a lady in today’s society.
    I texted my doctor he thinks I have alopecia areta and to give me steroid injection
    I am just soo terrified

  98. Laura says:

    I last wrote on here May 2, 2014….Wanna give an update, I had my first bald patch April 7 and by end of May, I had 9 bald patches. Biggest one getting to be 2 and half inches in diameter. By October they were already getting filled in with hair. Hardly noticeable when I used my Toppik powder on patches. My biggest patch was growing out white and dyed that part. It is now its natural brown color. As of now, all bald patches are fully covered!! Have not had a new patch since. I still take vitamins, fish oil, and biotin, when I remember but it’s also good for skin and health so I won’t ever stop. Hope this helps you readers. Hang on tight and remember when hair falls off it has a growing processing just like a flower πŸ™‚

    • Tina says:

      Thank you for posting this. I am 41 and my hair dresser found a bald spot last week. I went to doc and dermotogist and was diagnosed with alapecia areata found another bald spot I am horrified and can’t help obsessing and bawling 😞 I am having trouble sleeping because I am obsessing about losing my hair. I start d accupuncture and am seein naturpath for supplements . It’s so frustrating g because it feels like doctors know nothing … I just want my hair back but grateful for your post gave me hope..

      • Laura says:

        It will grow back. Sometimes it is hard to see yourself but others are able to see. I used Toppik hair fibers, purchased from Sally’s and that helped so much to cover the bald spots. My first bald patch was April and by December they were already filled with tiny hairs. One patch grew out white hairs and I would dye it my hair color. It’s now my normal color.

  99. Alessa says:

    Thank you for this post it helped me and relaxes me since I get those visions of going bald too! Google can be quite scary!

  100. Natasha says:

    Hi i have just finished reading your story.
    When i looked at that picture i thought ot was me for a split second because same colour hair and exact same size and spot its in. Although i only have the one.
    Its been no more then 6 months and it started off like a 5c coin then grew rappidly to a 50c piece. Ive only ever had this one patch nothing else so far. Im currently getting the steroid injections and doctor says its working great.
    But at the start it got the better of me..
    Reading everything and seeing all those horrible photos one night i chopped my hair (past my breasts) off. COMPLETELY BALD. i instantly regretted it. In the mean i have purchased a wig but my hairs growing to the bum fluff stage πŸ™‚
    I agree with you.. NOW ILL JUST BE HAPPY WITH MY LONG HAIR even if that patch was still there. Because having hair up in a clip or pony or praided you couldnt see. But now i have nothing to show.
    I hate the part where it can happen again at any time. No lady wants to walk around with hair loss patches or bald from this (or cancer or anything)
    Unless they like short hair.
    I hope it works out for you and everyone out there who is dealing with it.

  101. Eric says:

    I had my hair cut about a month ago and noticed a small dime sized spot on the back of my head. I assumed it was the Clippers that may have gotten a little to close but when nothing is growing back, I am now in full panic mode. I am as we speak on hold with my Dr. Trying to get an appointment.

  102. Karen says:

    Thank you! Totally relate to the panic and bawling, always having had a full head of luxurious hair!

  103. Natasha says:

    I had such long hair – mid tummy i would say. My partner then realised one night a bald patch near my crown. I said its normal but then after having a feel and look i went immediately to the doctors and there they told me i have alopecia areata. Yes i have had quite abit of events where im continuosly stressing. I went home crying after googling what i had.. thinking i would end up for what i seen on google but now i know wasnt my case. While dealing with the alopecia i had no one to talk to and no one who understood why i felt the way i did. Mind you im only 20 yr old female with 2 beautiful children. No parents or family to open up to besides partner, his mum and sister. But i just kept it to myself. In the process went to other doctors for ither opinions and help as the first one i went to did not give me all the info i needed. I found a realiable doctor who has since given me 3 or 4 sets of steroid injections in the area. About 30 pricks each time. I was suprised with the results but before results starting coming through. I was quite emotional i shaved my head bald. I regretted it immediately and stil do. I have always had loooong hair. I had to go purchase a synthetic wig to get me by as my head looked ridiculous but now my hairs grown out i can spike it or leave it flat and i cannot believe my alopecia is gone. All my hair is growing at the same length. I feel alot better now because that patch size was quite large and im yet so lucky i didnt have 2 or 3 patches. Now my hair has been 3 months in growing from nothing and i just cant wait till i gets longer and longer. I was also using a cortesone steroid cream (tropical cream) on the area daily. It takes time and i know everyone says “dont stress” but you go at your own pace because its harder said then done. Although the less stress the better. I have also changed my diet into more healthier eating and i try to do excercise. It helps the blood flow more or something im not so sure in how to explain it.
    Any questions or if you are also going through it im happy to listen but not give advise as im not a doc! nat.khosrownejad@gmail.com

    • Kieran says:

      Don’t worry so much…it will grow back, always does. I can look back and I was stressed. Mind was stressed, body was stressed….keep your chin up πŸ™‚

  104. Cam says:

    Thank you for calming my worries πŸ™‚

  105. Danielle says:

    I was just diagnosed last week. Only 1 spot that I know, and it’d already growing back in. I absolutely understand!!!!! It’s terrifying but also something I can laugh about. My friends and I are picking out funny wigs. Always good to know you’re not alone. ❀

  106. Monica says:

    Hello i am 22 years old and i just noticed i had this problem this month (april) i too get compliments on my full head of hair, this is something i never thought would happen, i went to the dermatologist and she injected a steriod actuall right about the spot where you developed your hair loss, she also suggested i do some blood work, i recieve the results on Monday (May 2nd) sadly the next day i saw the dermatologist i noticed 3 more spots 2 in which are small, the other is medium size. how long did it take for ur hair to grow to the point it didnt show any bald spots?

    • natasha says:

      Hi i have had the same problem but i have only had one patch so far. I had been to my local doctor who injected the hair loss area with steroid.. done this about 1 time a month for about 3 months. It amazes me how well it has worked. My hair loss area where had been injected has grown about 2.5 inches in 5-6 months. Im way happy with the results. I was also rubbing a topical ointment on the area daily for few months i think. Now apply few times a month. I have also switched over from local super market shampoo and conditioner to a hair dressers one and im in the process of researching best organic shampoo and conditioner to switch over to that. 21 years old and right now im patch free! I had waiste long thick hair and shaved it conpletely off a few months after i was diagnosed with alopecia. Now its growing thick and healthy. Goodluck monica.

  107. Lana says:

    I’m 13 now and last year I had one bald spot in the back of my head like yours. And I panicked once my mom saw it and told me. But it wasn’t that bad at the time I just pulled my hair back into a cute ponytail. I was very stressed at the time. I was in a lot of drama and being bullied at the time. I stressed s much that I got 2 more spots which followed my scalp! Then I had to wear a side ponytail for the rest of the school year! (which was so out of style) One morning my mom took me to a dermatologist and he gave me bald spot makeup and some cream. He highly suggested getting injections but I was scared and uncomfortable with doing that so I just stuck with the cream. (Castor oil works really good with the hair also!) Thrn summer break came I was glad because I could just sit on the beach and get away from all of that drama and destress :). Slowly my bald spots went away and I was so relived. I was all better when I when to school and I wasn’t so self conscious. But it’s may now towards the end of 7th grade and my I just formed a bald spot on the back of my head…so hopefully it doesn’t get worse and I’ve been doing a better job of being not so stressed which is good πŸ™‚

  108. Lucy says:

    Can’t tell you how much this has helped. I found out I have alopecia areata four days ago. As you can imagine I’ve been googling like crazy searching for answers, tips or anything. As you explain most information you find is scary and you can convince yourself you will lose everything. This is the first story I have read that has reassured me that it may stick to the one patch and may be ok. Thank you. Now just waiting to find out if it illness caused!

    • natasha says:

      Hi lucy. The worse thing i did when i had alopecia was sit on google and Look at all thr “worse case cenarios.” It made me stress more about what am i suppose to do if i loose all my hair. In the end i shaved all my hair off. ( i mean ALL) AND i only had the one patch which is now gone. So dont think youll have 5 or 3 or more.. its very likely to have the 1…. but then it may even come back 5 yrs down the track. Hope you find what you are looking for and hope works out well

  109. Sanda says:

    Hello All
    I also have been diagnosed with AA. Summer of 2015 was pretty much a nightmare, at first I discovered 3 spots and then more and more kept developing. I first went to the dermatologist and revived some shots because I was so terrified that I was going to loose everything since it was coming on so aggressive. During this time I did a lot of research of my own on nutrition and supplements and soon after started going to a natural path. She has put me on a diet to reduce inflammation in my body. This includes no gluten, no dairy, no sugar, no red meat. Mostly raw foods, lots of hemp protein shakes with coconut oil and greens. For supplement I take fish oil, biotin, vitamin D,C,B zinc,selenium, probiotics, curcuma and rahdiola. I am happy to report that now I have only two spots and one of those seems like it’s growin hair slowly. I also go to yoga to try to reduce stress and connect with my self focusing on positive thinking even though difficult times. Good luck everyone I wish you all lots of health and happiness.

  110. Chuck says:

    I just wanted to follow up. My issue started May of 2012. I tried the dermatologist and injectionss for about a year with no improvement. In May 2014 my braces came off and I changed my diet but nothing helped. Late 2015 my wife suggested I try using her Paul Mitchell Shampoo One and my hair started to really return! I also began diet and exercise in April 2016 which I am sure is helping out too. I just wanted to say it can take a while and may only be one spot so stay positive!!! Best wishes to all of my fellow AA web-friends.

  111. Rosalie says:

    I have this and I’m crying when will I get my hair back almost two months nothing

  112. foodblague says:

    Thank you! Panicked new diagnosee here. This was very uplifting compared to the horror stories I’ve been reading!

  113. DM says:

    Thank you so much for posting this. Everytime I feel bad about myself I search for your post and read it all over again.

    It makes me feel better that some people dont have severe alopecia. All I see and read on the internet is stories of people who lost all their hair. This post reminds me that things might just be OK for me.

    • Chuck says:

      I have posted on here before. My one area started out the size of a half dollar. It grew in 6 months to be more like 3 inches in diameter. My “mop” hid it pretty well. I tried steroids with no results. After 4 years I switched shampoos and suddenly it all came back. I am not sure if it was a coincidence or the Shampoo One but I don’t get hung up on the small stuff as much anymore – actually keeping stress managed is probably the biggest help to aid recovery. Good luck and I know it’s hard, but try to relax and don’t put your life on hold. When friends noticed I just said it was this stupid condition and it would likely clear up.

  114. April says:

    I just want to say thank you so much for this post. I found my bald patch on my right hand temple on Monday morning. After what was probably one of the best weekends of my life, stayed in a rainforest chalet I had wanted to visit for years. Couldn’t have brought me down from that high any harder. Just the sheer terror induced by googling AA. I had a fullblown panic attack at work and had to get my poor Mum to pick me up, and as soon as I got in the car I was bawling.
    This is the first time since that I have felt okay. So thank you, really. I haven’t been eating or sleeping because of the intense anxiety, and I feel stupid having such a potent reaction. All the other posts have been people wit AT or AU and I was actually trying different scarves on my head while sobbing, trying to see how I would look bald. So so so stressed.

    ANYWAY! I have calmed down a little now. Please grow back little hairs. 😦

  115. Morgan Formicola says:

    Hi, im an 18 year old girl going through her second semester of college. 2 weeks ago my hair started falling out, I got my blood tested and when the doctor told me that everything came out normally i started freaking out. How could everything be normal, untill a couple days ago i had bueatiful long brown hair and now i am afraid to brush my hair. 4 days ago I went to a dermotologist and he told me i had alopecia areata. I wasnt sure if i should be relieved that i finally knew what was going on with me or devestated that there was not much i could do about it. I will be seeing my dermo again in a week or 2 to see if i need any extensive treatment. But the idea of getting steroids shot into my head terrifies me. Do you have any other suggestions? I have heard good things about Hair Essential, do you have any imput on that or other things like it?

  116. Sue says:

    Thank you so much about blogging your experience. It is absolutely positive and uplifting. I discovered a small, less than a dime sized patch on my daughter’s scalp two days ago. Luckily we got an appointment yesterday and sure enough it is alopecia aerata. Googling it despressed the hell out of me, I couldn’t stop imagining my dear daughter going bald and having to go through high school at the same time. I have been crying non stop about it till I read your blog. As others have mentioned, most stories on the web are the worst case scenario types, even the doctors or websites don’t really give absolute information. They are always on the “may or may not ” speech. That really doesn’t help or comfort people who are newly diagnosed. We did get the steroid shot hoping that there are no more spots and quick recovery. Thank you again.

  117. Marie says:

    Hey there ☺️ I also suffered a patch of hair loss in the summer of 2015. I ran to the internet and googled after having a breakdown in my mothers bathroom. I was a wreck after reading about alopecia online. I was wig shopping convinced I was going to lose all my hair. Hair that I had finally grown out to my waist and was complimented on all the time. I was wrong and it grew back. However I have discovered a very small patch of hair missing. Again. In the same spot. I’m not as hysterical this time, but still check it daily. I wish there were more info available on this autoimmune disease. Thank you for your experience. Here’s to hoping this very small patch doesn’t get any bigger and you never find another!

  118. Michelle says:

    Hi, everyone! I am so glad I was able to find this website as it have given me hope. This is probably one of the only blog where I didn’t get panic after reading the stories from people that have experience with AA. My toddler son was diagnosed with AA and it all started in mid January of this year after he had a fever. It was one patch then 2 and now 3 and I feel as if his hair is thinning around the patches. I noticed the last week there were many little hairs sprouting in the bald areas and I was estatic! At the same time I’ve been googling about AA and all these websites and horror stories one after another started popping up and I started getting panic attacts which never happened to me and I was so scared about my son’s future and literally trying to prepare myself for the worst because the websites are saying there’s a lesser chance of hair growth when it starts at a young age. All these statistics are freaking me out! But at the same time I know a couple people including my sister in law that have suffered from AA and they all have full regrowth! Have anyone have experience with a young child with AA and the outcomes? Please share because I read that a lot of time AA starts in early childhood. I need to really control how I’m handle this situation because I’ve had too many sleepless nights and waking up with panic attacks knowing that this situation is out of my control…

  119. Alexandria Livsey says:

    I just got diganoised with it and I’m ready to cry I’m hoping my hair grows back , does it always grow back white ?

    • Michael says:

      don’t panic it will grow back. it will take some time it took mine over nine months to grow back full. happened to me three years ago and not again. 22patches where missing and they all slowly grew back. do not Google it. please

    • Chuck says:

      I agree. After 4 years I switched shampoos and suddenly it all came back. I am not sure if it was a coincidence or not but all I can say is don’t internalize stress and RELAX. It’s gonna be ok.

  120. Denise says:

    Hi, I’m so glad I found this blog last night, it has given me hope and I can relate to the feelings of panic and despair and know that I’m not alone feeling this way. I had googled and read about AA which only made me get more upset and frightened, I even started looking to see where I could get a wig.
    My hairdresser found a bald area about the size of a 10p towards the back of my head close to my centre parting on 20th March. My doctor confirmed it was AA and prescribed a topical steroid cream to rub on twice a day. I have looked at ways of reducing ny stress and have decided that I won’t look at the AA sites again.
    Although it is 7 weeks since I started the cream the bald area is only a little bigger I noticed that I had very fine translucent white hair which has now become thicker and white. So hoping this is a sign of regrowth. I have tried to colour the white hair but it won’t take the dye.
    I have never found when I wash or brush my hair that it shreds, has anyone else found this?
    I found a product called wow which you brush on the scalp it helps disguise the scalp from showing as much.
    Hoping I don’t get anymore spots, trying to keep positive. Thank you

    I

  121. Diane says:

    Hi I’m struggling with this too now. How long was your hair falling, if you noticed before it stopped? Because my hair is still falling although on the bald spots I do see like hair growing

  122. Kelli says:

    Hi! I’m reading because my 8 year old daughter was recently diagnosed with alopecia areata. Like you, I freaked out and panicked and cried my eyes out looking into this condition. She’s only had one really tiny patch missing right in the part of her hair, which is easy to cover with different hair styles, I’m just still freaking out when and if it will ever come back, and praying this was a one time thing. I’m sorry you have to go through this, but I’m also happy to hear your hair has started growing back and no other patches found!

  123. Victoria says:

    Im a 22 year old female and on May 28th I found 1 bald spot, went to the doctor and she diagnosed me with alopecia areata. It has been a week since I found the bald spot and only 4 days since I got injected with steroids from the doctor. I feel like my hair is thinner but can’t tell if its noticeable. How fast does the bald spots progress? If I haven’t seen a new one in over a week is it safe to say that they wont spread?

    • Chuck says:

      I had one spot appear in May several years ago. It started off the size of a quarter (approximately an inch in diameter) just above/behind my left ear. In 6 mos it was double that. At that point I started steroid injections which did nothing. I didn’t get any new spots but I felt like overall my hair thinned somewhat? I gave up on the injections after 12 mos of them… so I was approaching 2 years with AA. On a more positive note, after 4 long years my wife convinced me to use her shampoo (Shampoo One) and the hair grew back! It came in white first, then brown but super curly, LOL. Happy to have it back!!!

      Stay positive. I masked it pretty well with the rest of my mop. Most of us get it all back. Mine took longer than most!

  124. Patrick says:

    This definitely helps a bit. I have a spot on the side of my head and flipped when I saw it! (More so because I am a HAIRSTYLIST!) I thought to myself, who wants to get their hair done by a stylist who has no hair! Haha anyway, I just left it alone and it got slightly bigger. Its been about two months since I have discovered my little patch of horror and I haven’t seen any growth yet. Its really nothing to stress more about, just a little irritating when it doesn’t grow back as fast as you want.

    • Kieran says:

      I’ve had it for 6-7 years. Fell out, grown back. Mostly at the sides and back of my head. Recently my dam eyebrow fell out. I’ve cut coffee and any other stimulant. I wash in water, try not use too much soap( I do not smell either before you think it!) I’ve been taking turmeric tablets. My eyebrow has comeback massively. All the hair on my head has regrown and no signs of other spots? Whether this is coincidence or not, I don’t know? But may help others. Keep your chins up, you’re not alone. Kieran

  125. Sara says:

    I found my first spot last June and I have religiously read most of the blogs on the web about AA. In January, I found my second spot. I just wanted to leave a comment to give hope to anyone experiencing this. It is unpredictable but there is hope. My two spots are growing in! Just try to be as positive as possible and try to treat your body better (eating healthier, exercising). It took 8 months for any regrowth on my first spot but my second spot is growing in pretty quickly. Also see a dermatologist and your doctor to rule out anything else!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s