Hair Twirling: A Habit or A Symptom?

Coiling the hair, also known as hair twirling, is a common habit of pulling your hair into a circle with your finger.

hair twirling

It can be a nervous habit, and at the same time, a sign of an underlying health condition. Hair twirling hurts your hair, causes breakage and weak strands resulting in knots and split ends.

Causes of Hair Twirling

hair twirling

A Helpful Distraction: Perhaps you started this habit from childhood but never stopped. It could have turned to something to rely on to alleviate boredom, tiredness, or frustration.

A symptom of anxiety: Your hair twirling could have turned to something you resort to when you’re anxious. If you do this when you feel nervous, it is not just a habit but also a symptom of an anxiety disorder.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD): It can be a symptom of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). If you engage in other repetitive acts, your hair twirling habit might be a part of your condition.

How to stop twirling your hair

hair twirling

  • Take good care of your hair to quench the desire to pull it.
  • Engage in mindfulness or meditation.
  • Create small goals and reward yourself (goals like not touching your hair for 1 hour at a time)
  • Wear a cap, beanie, or hoodie
  • Get your hands busy with something constructive like knitting.
  • Consider anti-anxiety medication.
  • Consider cognitive behavioral therapy with a psychologist.

In summary, people twirl their hair for different reasons. Sometimes, the habit develops in childhood and just does not stop. Other times, it can be a symptom of a condition. However, if it is affecting your daily life, you should see your doctor.





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