Chaetophobia is a rare phobia that causes an irrational, abnormal, and persistent fear of hair. The word is derived from Greek khaite which means ‘loose flowing hair‘ and Phobos meaning aversion or fear.
Quick Fact: Fear of Hair is also called trichophobia.
Are you stressed whenever you find loose hair on your dresser or on your shirt? Do you feel anxious about things that affect hair, like haircuts? If yes, you could have trichophobia(Chaetophobia). It is an overt and persistent fear of hairphobia. For example, brushing with hair that is loose could trigger feelings of fear and anxiety.
Although it’s possible to be unpleasant initially, it could eventually hamper your daily life and ability to succeed in social settings and at the workplace. If you’re suffering from trichophobia symptoms, it’s likely that fear has been a significant factor in your life. Most common signs include sweating, dizziness, or rapid breathing. The fear of infection or illness can trigger this condition, particularly when the fear is based on the sensation of sight of hair that is loose on the skin. The idea that hair is a source of contamination can cause people to be scared of hair on their bodies. Some people may even develop the habit of cleaning their homes to remove hair that has fallen off surfaces.
There are a variety of treatments available which can help you overcome your fears. Be aware that treatment results will differ according to the person and the severity of the anxiety, and the treatment. A mild fear may react to changes in lifestyle to reduce stress and anxiety levels, for example, breathing deeply.
For people who suffer from severe fear, therapy or, in some cases adding particular medication could be beneficial. Without treatment, some fears can lead to substance use disorder or isolation. It could also lead to grave complications, such as self-harm.
Keep in mind that there is support available, and you’re not the only one. Talk to your healthcare professional to get advice on support groups and other sources. Many find that the first step to addressing this anxiety is to identify the root cause.
What is Trichophobia(Chaetophobia)?
The word refers to the abnormal and bizarre fear of hair, in particular loss of hair. People who suffer from this fear become highly uncomfortable, anxious, and afraid of clumps or clumps hair or hair that is loose. The fear stems from the belief that hair is dirty and it is a source of infection or harmful germs.
This intense fear makes you look at hair with disgust. Sometimes, the anxiety is so overwhelming, and it can hinder your daily life. In many cases, the irrational fear of hair won’t happen in a single day. Instead, the disorder is a gradual process for its manifestation to occur.
Sometimes, the fear is merely a negative manifestation of a particular aspect of the individual’s life or health. For instance, a person with severe hair phobia may also suffer from OCD or obsessive-compulsive disorder, which is characterized by excessive organization and cleaning.
People who have this phobia often realize the absurdity of their behavior, but they don’t seem to control themselves. This fear has been the subject of much debate as people wonder what causes trichophobia or what contributes to the disorder. In some cases, people are more prone to phobias when they have a relative with an obsession with unfounded fear or they’ve had contact with people who have phobias.
Symptoms The Fear of Hair -Trichophobia/ Chaetophobia
As with any phobia, the symptoms vary by person depending on their level of fear. The symptoms typically include extreme anxiety, dread, and anything associated with panic such as shortness of breath, rapid breathing, irregular heartbeat, sweating, excessive sweating, nausea, dry mouth, nausea, inability to articulate words or sentences, dry mouth, and shaking.
Physical Signs and symptoms
- Rapid breathing
- Breathing difficulties
- Hot flashes or cold.
- An eerie feeling of doom looming
- The feeling of imminent death
- Extreme anxiety or panic
- A sense of fear or nausea at the hair
- Feelings of powerlessness
Avoidance can also be a typical characteristic of specific fears. For example, people with trichophobia may avoid encountering clumps of hair or lose hair with excessive cleaning. In some instances, they may experience an attack of panic when confronted with the trigger of anxiety. A panic attack is an abrupt increase in axienty. The sufferer may feel like they’re unable to breathe, feel that they’re in a coma, and may even be afraid they’ll die or lose their minds.
How to deal with the fear of hair
Chaetophobia can be a problematic and challenging phobia to deal with. However, effective coping techniques and support will allow you to get control of the fear to let you live your life to the fullest.
For starters, it’s the best you can to be accepting that there’s hair everywhere. If you’re living with family or roommates, there’s a good chance you’ve seen a few strands, especially in the bathroom.
Don’t forget that loose hair isn’t a source of enough germs or bacteria to trigger the disease. So it’s not necessary to rush through or avoid getting in contact with the hair. It’s not advisable if you want to overcome this fear.
The process of overcoming this fear is a gradual and slow process that requires a healthy approach. But, while it may take time, you’ll eventually realize that it’s worth it, so it’s something you’re willing. Other self-help strategies include:
Learn techniques to relax your body, such as deep breathing, visualization, or progressive muscular relaxation. If you are experiencing anxiety-related symptoms due to the glimpse of hair, use the methods you’ve been using to calm your body and mind.
Maintain a healthy lifestyle like getting enough sleep, engaging in physical exercise frequently, and eating a balanced diet. Then, when you’re feeling well and relaxed, you’ll be in a better position to manage your anxiety efficiently.
If you or someone close to you suffers from this fear, Don’t be concerned. It’s treatable. Most of the time, therapy and a mixture of specific medications can be beneficial. Speaking about your fears is an excellent method to overcome the fear. Treatment methods that are professional include:
CBT is a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
This type of therapy involves opening up to someone the root of their fear , and then using other strategies for coping. The main goal on this type of therapy is building confidence in your thoughts and feelings. It’s about controlling your emotions instead of thoughts and feelings taking over your life.
It allows you to be constantly exposed to a feared event or object, in this instance hair. Being exposed to different thoughts and feelings connected to fear could assist you in finding the root of your fear and find ways to manage it.
Yoga or meditation
The practice of meditation or yoga is excellent to treat this fear. Both methods aim to stabilize and soothe the mind. Like all techniques of self-help, it’s gradual. People afflicted by this fear shouldn’t think that their hair-phobia will go away after some practice or meditation. Making the first step is the most important thing.
Prescriptions from a doctor
This method is only available when other options fail. It’s essential to talk to an expert before taking any medications to ensure you are aware of the risks and possible side consequences. Implementation of this type of treatment should be carried out cautiously. Medication will likely treat the physiological effects of various fears rather than tackle the fears themselves.
How to Stay clear of Trichophobia
As such, people suffering from this condition aren’t able to stop it since the fear is already present. However, they can take certain steps to improve their quality of life and stop the future offspring or their current ones from developing the same fear. Be aware that one is more susceptible to phobias, phobias, and other fears if family members show the same symptoms or interact with areas populated by people who constantly have fears. If you are a parent, you must seek medical attention to reduce the likelihood of your children experiencing fears.
What are the causes?
It is generally accepted that phobias arise from a combination of external events (i.e. traumatic events) and internal predispositions (i.e. heredity or genetics). Many specific phobias can be traced back to a specific triggering event, usually a traumatic experience at an early age. Social phobias and agoraphobia have more complex causes that are not entirely known at this time. It is believed that heredity, genetics, and brain chemistry combine with life experiences to play a major role in the development of phobias. (Wikipedia – phobia).
Final Thoughts about Hair and Fear of Hair
One of the most essential steps to overcome the fear is to establish a solid network. It will be apparent that overcoming anxiety becomes less daunting if you’re surrounded by help. It would help if you took the time to comprehend your fear to get a sense of control.