I got Alopecia Areata 20 years ago when my son was born. I thought it was hormonal due to pregnancy.
It started out as one small patch about the size of a euro coin on the top of my head. Through the next 18 years this patch moved around my head, sometimes larger. My
brilliant hair-dresser Dee, was great at developing ways to disguise it, by changing the parting on my hair. In March 2012 I developed Alopecia Universalis which started with my
hair getting thinner and eventually falling out completely.
My daughter suggested that I get a wig to take the focus away from my hair falling out and that was when I met Miriam for the first time. She was very professional, discreet and
sympathetic to my plight. I went away from her clinic with a new dark brown bobbed wig almost identical to my own hair.
Alopecia Universalis is an uncommon form of Alopecia Areata. Normally, the immune system protects the body against infection and disease. In an auto-immune disease, the body's immune system mistakenly attacks some part of our own body in this case the hair follicles. The cause is unknown: a person's genes, a virus or a stress may set off the attack on the hair follicles.
In my case I feel it was a stress and much of that stress came from the loss of my hair. It's a vicious circle. I did all the medical tests and nothing came up as causing it. I was told not to worry about it but it's very hard not to. A woman's hair is very important to their image and identity. I will admit that it was the most traumatic and despairing time of my life. My confidence hit rock bottom. It took me weeks to come to terms with the condition. When I met Miriam, she took over where Dee left off and made me feel comfortable. Her professional approach to her job and her knowledge is amazing. Miriam gave me great advice on how to cope with the condition, getting to like my new hair and maintaining it. I must get a new wig every 3-4 months depending on the amount of wear. You will know. ltâ€™s like having a bad hair day.
Alopecia is something that I will have for the rest of my life. As soon as I realised that, I think I came to terms with it. You donâ€™t need hair to live; it's a cosmetic thing, but society these days like a person to have hair. Although I will always hope that my hair will come back, Alopecia is not a sickness or an illness and there's that to be thankful for. Just because you have Alopecia doesn't make you less than anyone else.