For more than 20 years, Aneela Idnani Kumar hid her hair pulling disorder.
Disguising her absent eyebrows with makeup and concealing her isolation with smiles, Idnani Kumar kept her trichotillomania a secret from even her husband.
A mental health condition in the family of obsessive compulsive disorders, people with trichotillomania, “trich” for short, are plagued by irresistible urges to pull out their eyebrows, eyelashes, hair on their heads or anywhere else on their body.
Ellen Crupi can easily recall when she first pulled out a strand of her long dark hair in the same way some people might remember their first kiss or losing their first tooth. She was 12 years old and in gym class at her suburban Rhode Island middle school, waiting for teams to be chosen.
“I was probably just playing with my hair to calm myself down, and I pulled a piece out. I don’t know why,” says the 54-year-old Crupi, who lives in Bethesda. “Ever since that moment, I was hooked. I just felt a zing.”
Pulling out her hair became a coping mechanism for Crupi, a way to tackle anxiety or even boredom, and nothing she was too concerned about at first.
Alan interviews Aneela Idnani - inventor of the Keen bracelet.
Tune in to learn how, after suffering for years with a psychological disorder that caused her to pull out all her eyebrows, she invented a solution - the Keen bracelet.
The Keen bracelet has changed habits and touched thousands of lives all over the globe.
It's important that Keen fits snugly. Here's a quick guide to help you decide which bracelet size to order: