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Nail/Finger Biting: Please Help

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Old 02-01-2008, 09:15 PM   #1
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legalrun HB User
Nail/Finger Biting: Please Help

I chewed off my nails terribly until I was 14, and I somehow managed to just quit. I am now in my 20's and in college, and have developed the horrible habit of picking at the skin around my nails. Not only does it look bad, but it is very painful. It is enough that my fingers aften bleed. It is a subconcious thing, like the nail biting was. Any suggestions to remedy this? Thanks

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Old 02-01-2008, 09:52 PM   #2
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singer78 HB User
Re: Nail/Finger Biting: Please Help

My sister, who is bipolar, did that, too...(chewed her nails down).
I think it's an anxiety issue, which you probably already know---since you posted here.

How did you stop yourself biting your nails before?
Can you apply "that" to your picking now?

I would think, if all else fails, for you to seek help through a doctor.
You may need something to calm you. I'm not trying to be negative, but there could be an underlying factor, as to why you're doing this. You don't want to replace a bad habit, with another "bad" habit.

Good luck.

Old 02-02-2008, 12:08 PM   #3
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acryforhelp HB User
Re: Nail/Finger Biting: Please Help

Funny you mentioned this - I do the same thing. I use to bite my nails constantly until I was probably 12, and then I started the picking of the skin around the nail. I know how painful it is as well, and I do it also subconsciously. I was diagnosed with GAD/Depression...but I'm thinking there is something more to it.

Thanks for posting , lol, i'm glad to know I'm not the only one who does this!

Old 02-02-2008, 07:54 PM   #4
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Re: Nail/Finger Biting: Please Help

I dont have a big issue with biting my nails down low but i pick at the skin around my nails so bad my fingers are sore most of the time and look horrible. I have done this for years. I make them bleed daily. I have tried to stop but i just cant.

Old 02-03-2008, 02:59 PM   #5
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Benjamin01 HB User
Re: Nail/Finger Biting: Please Help


Upon first reading your post the term CSP came to mind. This stands for Compulsive Skin Picking which is a form of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, which is obviously an anxiety disorder. However I see that you believe what you are experiencing is subconscious, whilst CSP is definately a conscious process.

Are you sure it is a subconscious process? Are you experiencing much stress at the moment? Do you feel anxious if you consciously stop yourself picking? Do you experience any guilt or feelings of hopelessness after picking?

I believe that whilst the above questions may not necessarily 'cure' the problem, they may help identify the underlying problem (if there is one).

Old 02-15-2008, 09:06 AM   #6
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legalrun HB User
Re: Nail/Finger Biting: Please Help

Several years ago I was diagnosed OCD, they later decided it was Anxiety and Depression. I was on meds and going to counseling for a year. Then I just quit everything, even the meds, and was better than ever. I didn't think about it before, but recently I have had alot of major stress in my life. But it is nothing that I can change at this time (home, work, school, etc.) I do not feel the way I did when I was diagnosed previously. But the nail picking is still something I can't seem to stop.

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