Living with Alopecia Areata

April 8, 2019

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease that is characterized by patchy hair loss that can affect the scalp and body. According to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, approximately 6.8 million people in the United States and 147 million worldwide have or will develop alopecia areata at some point in their lives. Alopecia is much more than just hair loss; it can cause severe emotional distress and have a huge impact on the quality of life of those affected. Let’s take a look at what it’s really like to live with alopecia.

Panic, Distress, Denial

When you first feel a bald spot on the back of your head, panic ensues. Grabbing a mirror and seeing a completely bare patch of white scalp can really mess with your head. You immediately begin looking for more bald spots. When you have alopecia, you will inevitably find them. This leads to emotional distress. You may call family members in for a second opinion and to seek comfort. You want to deny that anything could be wrong. You never want to admit that you could have a condition that is causing you to lose your hair.

Reality sets in: Getting to the root of cause

 Receiving an alopecia diagnosis can be hard to cope with, but there is a bright side to the situation. People with alopecia areata who have only a few patches of hair loss often experience a spontaneous, full recovery, without the need for treatment. [1] Alopecia is also not contagious and is not due to nerves.

Making Lifestyle Changes Along The Way

Sometimes alopecia is more severe. You may consider wearing a wig to help camouflage the bald spots. While this may bring on feelings of anxiety and self-consciousness, it’s important to remember that most people will never notice. Having confidence and a positive attitude can also help.


Clinical trials offer an opportunity to try and help find a cure for conditions like alopecia areata. Physicians at ActivMed Practices & Research, Inc. are working diligently to help find potential new alopecia areata treatment options. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with alopecia, you may qualify to participate in a currently enrolling research study. Qualified candidates who participate will receive study-related care at no cost and receive compensation for travel. To learn more and see if you may qualify for a study enrolling in Portsmouth, NH CLICK HERE . To learn about our Beverly, MA study CLICK HERE



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