Saturday, September 1, 2012

N-Acetylcysteine, anyone?!?

In college I took Effexor, made me feel nauseated. Then I took Prozac, no bad side effects, but despite having my dosage increased and increased... I never saw a change in my pulling. So one day I just quick taking it. I quit seeing the doctor that prescribed the medication too... I'm sorry but taking deep breathes and pretending I'm on a beach just doesn't do it for me.

However, I do think that medication can help people. I'd kinda like to try again, maybe there's something else I could take. But the only doctor in my area that specializes in trichotillomania is... well, the same doctor I saw before. So I decided to see if there was anything OTC that I could take. And that's when I came across N-Acetylcysteine on the Internet. Dr. Jon E. Grant, M.D.,J.D.,MPH studied the effectiveness of N-Acetylcysteine on people suffering from trichotillomania- the study and research information can be found here. You can also check out a video of Dr. Grant talking about the research here.  WebMD says that it is "possibly effective for reducing symptoms of hair pulling." That "possibly" is enough for me... enough for me to give it a try.

So what is N-Acetylcysteine? Well, I'm not entirely sure. I hadn't heard of it before. So here's more of what I found on WebMD. "N-acetyl cysteine comes from the amino acid L-cysteine. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. N-acetyl cysteine has many uses as medicine. TLC shared an article from InTouch, Issue #55, "N-acetylcysteine is an amino acid which can be found at nutrition and health food stores. This supplement affects levels of glutamate in a specific area of the brain, making it easier for patients to decrease unwanted behavior."

So I think it's worth a shot... I'll let you know when I end up giving it a try. 

 And a little disclaimer here: I'm not saying you should go take N-Acetylcysteine if you have trichotillomania. Like all drugs and supplements, check with your doctor first.

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