Are there any members who have alopecia areata? A lot of members seem to have universalis. I have alopecia areata. I started losing my hair in patches last December. In February, I had it all shaved off because it looked bad. Since then it has started to grow occasionally, but falls out again quickly. I woke up today and it looks like snakes on my head. There are weird patchy spots missing. Has anyone else ever had this experience?

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Hi Ariel-

I have had AA since I was a kid. In the past 4-5 weeks, my tiny patches have spread, and my curls are literally falling out of my head when I shower. The patches have always been symmetrical - usually near my temples and extend back. This time, a spot appeared on the crown, and I have more on the sides of my head

I know I have so much to be grateful for in my life, but this experience has left me heartbroken. At what point did you decide to shave your head? I feel like I'm almost there. The horror of watching my hair pile up on the shower floor is getting to be too much!

Maggie

I shaved my hair after a month. It fell out so quickly that I was only left with a small amount of hair and I was embarassed. I felt the need to wear hats almost all the time because I thought it looked like I had a strange disease. I work in a doctor's office and at one point in time the doctor requested that I wear a hat so that the patient's did not think I had a disease they could catch. It was a tough decision, but I do not regret it. I feel more comfortable with a shaved head than having patches gone.

Yes, I have had that experience as well. I first deveoped alopecia around 2003. It started with my noticing a quarter-sized bald spot while blow-drying my hair. The first general practitioner I saw shrugged and said "it's just hair. It'll go back." I thought if there's anything I can do about it, I should. So I saw a dermatologist and began steriod injections in my scalp every 3 weeks along with using men's Rogaine. It definately got alot worse before it got better. At one point, I had very little hair on the crown of my head and even bought a hairpiece to cover it, but it looked like a dead squirrel on my head! I did find a product that I used with success that was like a pancake makeup you apply with a sponge. It was the color of my hair and covered the white bald spots and helped enormously. Eventually my hair has grown back and I haven't had an outbreak that severe since. I have had spots on occassion, maybe once a year. It's ironic; doctors will tell you alopecia aerata is brought on by stress, yet it's really hard not to be stressed when your hair is falling out! But it is true - during stressfull periods in my life, my spots will occassionally reappear. Good luck and hang in there.

I shaved my head after a month. My hair was long and everyday I would wake up in a big mess of fallen out hair. My husband would have it on his face like spiderwebs. And my little boy would try to vaccuum up the hair. It got to be too much so shaving it off was just easier.

I have had 3 spots that have grown back and now just diffuse alopecia. My first spot was round and typical of AA, my second two spots were diagonal racing stripes in the middle of the top of my head. Very strange! I don't think there is really a rhyme or reason to it.

Isn't it so bizarre how mysterious alopecia is? No one seems to know anything about it and most doctors do not care to know. I've seen specialists who have been so unhelpful. It was a waste of money.

Ariel,

While I'm lucky at the moment to have a good amount of my hair intact after all of the money I spent and time I put in to trying to get my hair to grow back I think it's pretty obvious it has a mind of it's own and will come and go as it pleases. When It started shedding again I decided to forgo treatment for these reasons.

I have had alopecia areata for over 30 years. Started when I was 13 with just patches of bald spots. Now I have a few patches of hair, vs patches of bald spots. The hair looks like a killer whale on the back of my head when I don't shave it every other day. Grass is always greener, but at this point I almost wish it would all fall out so I can stop shaving the few remaining patches. And, no way would I grow it out the way it is now....It would look crazy!

I was just telling my husband today that I wish it would all fall out. Right now mine looks bad. Hasn't been shaved in a week due to folliculitis. And it burns like crazy as it falls out so even showering makes my head hurt..

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