Nicola Kirkland: How I’ve learnt to live with my alopecia

When Nicola Kirkland was just 13, she started to notice scaly skin on the top of her head which felt itchy and red spots were also appearing.

After trying various creams and steroids, she was diagnosed with alopecia.

Alopecia is when a person's immune system attacks their hair follicles, causing hair loss.

The cause of alopecia is not known but genetics and stress can play a role in it.

Nicola says it has taken her two decades to come to terms with her diagnosis but she has finally found comfort online and through a local support group.