Kayleigh proves she’s a warrior to raise awareness of health condition

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An energetic South Tyneside woman faced the elements to raise awareness of a hair loss condition.

Kayleigh Winter from South Shields took part in the 10km Total Warrior Challenge which was held in the Lake District at the weekend.

The 27–year–old, who was one of 21 members of the Apatchy Warriors team, faced ice, fire, heights, electric shocks, tunnels and lots of mud to complete the obstacle course.

The event was extra poignant as it also took place on International Alopecia Day - a condition that causes hair loss, which Kayleigh has experienced since she was a youngster.

She said: “I’m 27 and I’ve had alopecia areata since the age of 11 and eventually lost all of my head hair at age 20.

“I wear wigs most days but am slowly becoming more confident to go hair free.”

I am slowly becoming more confident.

Kayleigh Winter

Alopecia areata is a condition in which the auto-immune system attacks hair follicles causing permanent total or partial hair loss from the head and/or body.

The cause isn’t known and there’s no known way of effectively treating it and permanently reversing the loss.

The team represented Alopecia UK, a small national charity working to improve the lives of those with Alopecia by supporting sufferers, raising awareness and enabling research into the condition.

Collectively they raised more than £4,500.

Former Italian Rugby League head coach, Carlo Napolitano, was also involved with the event as he’s had alopecia since the age of four.

He received support from his best friend, former Great Britain and England Rugby League Player Adrian Morley, who was also a team member of Apatchy Warriors.

Carlo said: “I used to wear hats but I got comments and stares and that’s when Moz [Adrian] would step in.

“He became very protective of me.”