Need Suggestions! My Toddler Is Eating Her Hair!

Fia’s hair is finally at chewing length. I noticed lately she’s been picking around at her tongue. When I’ve asked her what she’s doing, her reply is, “Eating my hair.”

“No Fia, you don’t eat hair, it’s bad for you,” I told her.

Now I seem to be repeating that sentence a couple times a day.

Yesterday I even saw hair in her poop. I wasn’t on an archeological dig in the toilet. I just happened to notice it while, well, wiping her.

Sure, I can put her hair up in a ponytail, but let’s face it, if you want to find a way to eat your hair, you will.

I’ve heard this is a really bad thing because hair doesn’t digest (as evidenced by my sewage excursion this week).

Can anyone offer me any suggestions? Appreciate it.

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  1. by Leslie

    On October 4, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    Maybe use whatever discipline techniques you normally use, when you catch her in the act.
    Good luck (that’s definitely a new one)!

  2. by Emily

    On October 4, 2012 at 6:58 pm

    I chewed my hair whenever I was little. I was told a (true) story about a girl who ended up with a hairball in her stomach and she had to go to the doctor to get it out- I was like 6 at the time and it was enough to freak me out. Good luck! Ultimately, I think I just had to outgrow it.

  3. by Desiree

    On October 5, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    Get her tested for PICA at the pediatrician – http://kidshealth.org/parent/emotions/behavior/pica.html

  4. by Kathy

    On October 5, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    Hi Jill,

    I’m going through the same thing as you. My daughter (aged 5 now) started pulling out bits of her hair at a younger age and eating. I, like you, would notice hair when I wiped her. I’ve taken her to multiple doctors and lastly to a psychiatrist (last resort). The advice I got is to use some sort of distraction therapy. Give her a doll with string hair so she can play with that instead of her own hair or some other toy. I guess you need to find out why she is doing it too. My daughter has always told me she eats it because she is hungry, which has baffled me as I’m constantly feeding her! But honestly I feel for you. It’s been such a struggle for me (and her). I’m looking forward to the day she stops!! I hope this has helped you. You are not alone too. Apparently many people suffer from this. It’s called trychophagia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trichophagia.

    Kathy

  5. by Aleksandra

    On October 5, 2012 at 8:14 pm

    It could be trichotillomania.. I would take her to a child psychologist for an evaluation.

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