Archives for mindset

Learning to Thrive: Bridgid Dunn Weber

The focus of World Alopecia Community, Inc. is to enhance the overall well-being of those affected by all forms of alopecia, through evidence-based education, wellness activities, and community support. We want to teach people to not just live with alopecia but how to thrive. One of the best stories I’ve heard over the past few years is the story of Bridgid Dunn Weber. Diagnosed with androgenetic alopecia (AGA), Bridgid struggled for years to reverse or hide her hair loss… until one day she decided to let go and learn to thrive!

Q. At what age did you start noticing your hair loss?

I was in my early thirties. My ex husband joked that I looked like I was going bald. He thought it was funny but as the hair loss on the top of my scalp became more diffuse no one was laughing. It progressed over the course of 20 years gradually. The Ludwig scale illustration perfectly depicts how my loss progressed. I don’t have pictures of my early hair loss because I would not allow myself to be seen in public without having Toppik or Dermatch or some other concealer on my scalp. My pattern of hair loss now mirrors the illustration entitled “Type III.”

Ludwig_Scale_of_Female_Hair_Loss

Ludwig Scale of Female Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA)

Q. What treatments did you try to stop the hair loss?

I used biotin, hair vitamins, tried Paleo and gluten-free diet (lost weight and felt great but it didn’t do a damn thing for my hair.). I tried Nioxin products, Rogaine, and spironolactone. I visited medical doctors, dermatologists, and even an endocrinologist. Read more…

Alopecia: My Story

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Family Fun Day(s) and Meet & Greet in Washington, DC

picnic logo 600We have some fabulous events coming up in July, all happening in Washington, DC.  The first event will on July 15 from 12:00pm to 4:00pm.  Our Picnic on the Mall is a family-friendly FREE event.  Bring your own food and beverages or purchase a boxed lunch at the concession stands located on The Mall. The picnic is open to adults and children.  Visit our Events Calendar to learn more.

That evening, join us for an evening of fun, frolic and fabulous food at The Dubliner located within The Phoenix Park Hotel, just one block from the beautiful Union Station.  Dinner begins at 6:30pm and ends at 9:00pm but feel free to stay longer and listen to live music by Brian Gaffney.  The Dubliner is America’s premier Irish pub, established in 1974, serves hearty Hibernian fare including their world famous Fish’n’Chops and Irish Beef Stew.  Click here for ticket information and to reserve your seat!

A stay in Washington, DC is not complete until you have visited world’s largest museum, education, and research complex.  We will also be sponsoring a Family Fun Day on July 16 for an afternoon touring the National Air and Space Museum (one of my personal favorites and always a hit with kids!). The Smithsonian is a free museum and open to the public.  The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum maintains the world’s largest and most significant collection of aviation and space artifacts, encompassing all aspects of human flight, as well as related works of art and archival materials. It operates two landmark facilities that, together, welcome more than eight million visitors a year, making it the most visited museum in the country. It also is home to the Center for Earth and Planetary Studies. Visit our Events Calendar to learn more.

We look forward to seeing you there!  Questions?  Contact melanie@worldalopeciacommunity.org.

Learning to Thrive Series: Amy Johnson

One of the best things about being part of a global alopecia community is that we enjoy meeting people who also have alopecia and are learning to thrive with alopecia every day, every where in the world. For this installment, we’re visiting with Amy Johnson, the Communications/Fundraising Manager of Alopecia UK, a charity organization based in the UK whose vision is to improve the lives of those affected by alopecia.

Alopecia is something in my life, but isn't something that should change the person I am.

Alopecia is something in my life, but isn’t something that should change the person I am.

Q. When were you diagnosed with alopecia areata?

I first had two small patches of Alopecia Areata in October 2007. They quickly grew back. By 2010, I had lost everything. I have experienced different degrees of patchy regrowth since 2012.

Q. How has alopecia changed you as an individual?

I’d like to think that alopecia hasn’t changed me too much. I take the approach that alopecia is something in my life, but isn’t something that should change the person I am. Saying that, it has had a BIG impact on me in that I have ended up working for an alopecia charity so I suppose you could argue it has become my life! Read more…

Learning to Thrive Series: Angie Tozier Bryan

For Mother’s Day, we had a chance to chat with Angie who tells us what it’s like being a mother with alopecia and how she’s learned to thrive.

Q. How long have you been living with alopecia?

I have been living with alopecia since 2012. I first noticed it right in the middle of my front hairline. I also have diffuse loss all over my head that has gotten progressively worse over the years. I have been wearing wigs/hair pieces since March of 2013. I decided to “come out” about my alopecia and buzz my remaining hair in January 2016 and I currently rotate between looks – I mostly wear wigs at work, scarves or hats when out at other times, and just rock my patchy buzz cut at home. Read more…

Everything Heals

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Learning to Thrive Series: Trisha Repp Benzing

For our third Q&A session, we had the pleasure of interviewing Trisha Repp Benzing. Please take a moment to read Trisha’s courageous journey with alopecia.

Q. When were you diagnosed?

I was diagnosed at 19. My hairdresser found a small spot on the back of my head. I went to my dr who referred me to a dermatologist. Within 30 days half of my hair was gone. I think the stress of the diagnosis increased the speed of the hair loss. I was devastated. At that age, appearance is very important. I had severe depression for a while, which didn’t help either. My friends and husband eventually helped me realize I was beautiful with or without my hair, but it was a rough time for me. Read more…

Restoring Your Soul

What does it mean to feed your soul? How often do you slow down enough to notice exactly what you need to restore yourself and not just ‘escape’.

And I’m not just talking about a mani/pedi afternoon! (Of course those are great too!)

Taking a moment, as often as possible, to really honestly ask yourself what you need will not only provide you with some relief and satisfaction but a new sense of self and what’s important to you may emerge. Read more…

We are the Guardians of our own Mind

Positive mindset is something we need to feed ourselves with daily. It’s easy to think negative and hard to think positive. Why? Why is it so easy to think of different scenarios that are bad for us?

For me there is only one word that fits — fear. Since this is a guest post for us with alopecia, I take it as an example. It’s been very easy for me to feel fear, and it’s because I’ve been feeding my mind over a long period of time — even during the school years — and it’s not easy to make it go away, it’s a bad habit. Read more…

4 Myths I Didn’t Need To Believe About My Chronic Illness

In an ideal world, we’d all support our body’s miraculous ability to heal itself and develop new cells through our lifestyle choices. Whether through the food we choose, physical activity, the amount of rest we receive, or even the conversations we have, everything would either contribute to our ongoing good health or inhibit our body from being well or healing.

This is even true when it comes to autoimmune disease. Often, when a person is diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, medications are prescribed with little to no explanation about the disease and how our lifestyle impacts that condition. Read more…