Heather says, “Dr. Sears, please help me. I have a 14-month-old daughter who is completely bald on one side of her head. She started pulling her hair out when I stopped nursing her and when we stopped bringing her into bed with us in the middle of the night. I feel like I should go back to nursing her again, but my husband says no way. Why is my little girl pulling her hair out and how can I get her to stop?”
Dr. Phil introduces Dr. Bob Sears, the son of Dr. William Sears, who gave advice to the previous guest.
“Well, Heather,” Dr. Bob Sears begins, “this is a great question, and this all started when your doctor told you to wean your baby at 12 months, and then the mom also weaned the baby out of her bed, so the baby lost two things right away ” the breast and sleeping with her mom.”
“It would freak me out,” Dr. Phil quips.
Dr. Sears continues, “Doctors have told her, that ‘This is normal. Pulling the hair out of your head is normal,’ which clearly it isn’t. One-year-olds just don’t do that. A doctor told her her baby has obsessive-compulsive disorder, which, again, babies just don’t automatically come out with OCD out of nowhere. And third, a doctor told her this was abandonment issues, but I think that’s a little too harsh. I think this is a simple case of too much, too soon. Bring your baby back into your bed, enjoy some snuggle time, nurse your baby again, either actual breastfeeding or simulated breastfeeding with just snuggling at mom’s chest and Dad can get involved in this as well. Reconnect with your baby and all this stress will leave her, she’ll be happier again, and the hair-pulling will stop.”
“OK, all right, We’ll plug her back in. Good point,” says Dr. Phil, provoking a chuckle from his guests. “All right, well, you know what I mean.”