September is Alopecia Awareness Month. If you have been around According to Laura Jean for some time, you have heard many stories of what it is like to be bald. Alopecia is a disease that occurs when an immune system mistakenly attacks hair follicles, therefore blocking any hair growth. In simple terms, I say that my body is somewhat allergic to my hair.
I was diagnosed with Alopecia at eleven years old and have the most advanced typed called Alopecia Universalis, meaning I have complete hair loss on my entire body. Day to day Alopecia does not negatively effect me. I often brag to my friends about the short amount of time it takes to get ready, the money I save on haircuts and styling products, and not needing to shave my legs or armpits. Win, win!
As much as I have learned to love and embrace this part of who I am, what Alopecia is and what it is not needs to be shared on a larger platform. Over 2% of the world’s population has a type of Alopecia. This may not seem like much compared to other diseases, but with no known cause or cure, it is a disease that needs more attention.
WHAT ALOPECIA IS
- Alopecia is an autoimmune disease that has no known cause or cure at this point
- Alopecia includes variety of hair loss types – some people lose patches of hair while others lose everything
- Alopecia is a condition that can surface at any age and is equally found between both male and female
- Alopecia is unpredictable and hair regrowth can come and go
- Alopecia is a disease that can be emotionally and socially troublesome or devastating to some people
- Alopecia is a different journey for everyone
WHAT ALOPECIA IS NOT
- Alopecia is not male pattern baldness
- Alopecia is not Cancer
- Alopecia is not an illness, most people with Alopecia are completely healthy despite not having hair
- Alopecia is not a curable disease, but can be treated in some cases
- Alopecia is not painful and does not make a person feel sick
- Alopecia is not contagious and cannot be spread to other people
While I dream of the day a cause and cure will be found, I am completely content with my journey of Alopecia. I love being bald and have learned where my true identity is formed. Beauty is so much more than hair or physical appearance. Would you join me in spreading the word about Alopecia? Share this article on Facebook or Twitter and be a part of making a difference for many living with Alopecia day to day.