After Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars, there is some hope that it can lead to one positive: education about Alopecia Areata.
Alopecia areata is a disease that happens when the immune system attacks hair follicles and causes hair loss. Gloria Simon, a Lynchburg resident, was diagnosed with this about 30 years ago when she started to lose her hair.
“It wasn’t an option that I was ever going to be bald, so we have to find a way to fix this,” Simon said of how she felt when she got her alopecia areata diagnosis. “I went to dermatologists. I went to doctors. I had medications. I had pills. I had scalp injections. I refused to accept that this could not be fixed.”
Dr. Samantha Hill, a dermatologist with Ridgeview Dermatology, said dealing with hair loss can be a very emotional and stressful experience for many of her patients. Especially, because it can be hard to treat.
“The thing that I always tell my patients is the biggest thing to both understand and kind of wrap their heads around with autoimmune processes, is that they’re really unpredictable,” Dr. Hill said.
Dr. Hill said because the process itself is so unpredictable, the therapies can be unpredictable as well.
She said there are many different approaches they can take though, depending on how much hair loss someone has.
For more information, ‘It’s an emotional roller coaster:’ Women talk about their journey with hair loss was originally published on WSET ABC 13 by Cynthia Beasley