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Hairdressing as Therapy

“Let hair be your medicine”... the UK’s Daily Mail recently ran a great article by Dr Max Pemberton “Dr Max The Mind Doctor”, explaining how so many of the problems he sees in patients today are the result of simple loneliness. The therapeutic effects of gardening, knitting, or sitting in the hairdresser’s chair and getting a gorgeous new look, can be extremely effective according to Dr Max – more effective than any medication, in certain cases.

Here’s what Dr Max has to say about hairdressing:

“Grooming plays an important role in the lives of most gregarious primates, and we humans are no exception.

Sitting in a hairdresser’s and getting things off your chest is pretty similar to sitting in front of me in an outpatients’ clinic and talking, except I’d be rather put out if you asked me for a cup of tea and a copy of Good Housekeeping magazine.

But it runs deeper than that. Not only is hair of social and cultural importance, but since becoming a doctor I’ve learned it can also be a good indicator of how we’re feeling. When people’s mental state begins to deteriorate, one of the first signs is that they stop doing their hair.

An old professor I used to work for would say that the time to worry about patients with depression is when they stop brushing or combing their hair.”

He tells the story of a depressed patient for whom a very important step on the road to recovery, was getting her hair done and regaining the pride in her appearance that her depression had eroded.

For the full article, click the link HERE.

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