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How to stop skin picking?

(8 Posts)
user1490734428 Fri 12-May-17 23:00:41

Ever since I was about 10 (I'm now 23), I've picked/bitten the skin around my nails. They are always sore and bleeding. I've managed to give up for about 2 weeks at most, but I always start again whenever I'm stressed or bored - for example if I have a train journey and no book.

I keep saying I'll reward myself with a manicure if I stop for long enough (it takes about 3 days for it to heal) but I hardly ever manage it, and I even had a nail tech tell me off once.

I know it's really gammy and I just want to have nice hands, but I don't know how. I tried a free hypnosis video on YouTube but it only worked for about 2 days.

Does anyone else do a similar thing or have any advice? Thanks!

RhinestoneCowgirl Fri 12-May-17 23:03:17

Wish I knew, it's my bad habit, especially when stressed sad

DramaAlpaca Fri 12-May-17 23:10:08

I do it too when I'm really stressed. I'm a lot older than you, OP, and I still do it sometimes. I have no answers I'm afraid, but you aren't alone.

BadTasteFlump Fri 12-May-17 23:57:34

I've done this for years too. Tbh the only thing that has stopped it (my hands are 90% healed now) has been to deal with the anxiety that's making me do it in the first place.

But then I suppose that only works if it's a way of dealing with anxiety and not just a habit.

PenelopeFlintstone Sat 13-May-17 03:38:14

Keep them really well-moisturised with Vaseline or ChapStick so there's no bits to pick at. I'm terrible for it too.

cauliflowercheese14 Sat 13-May-17 08:44:19

I suffered from this for years but three things have helped me stop:

Substituting the picking with flicking my fingertips when I feel the urge to pick.
Doing a mindfulness course and learning to manage my anxiety.
Becoming interested in gardening and knowing how dangerous it would be to get dirt in damaged skin.
Being embarrassed by the state of my fingertips.

It's really hard but I seem to have conquered it. I keep my nails short and neat, put hand cream on every night and have some flexitol(?) cuticle cream that I push into my cuticles every night too. I motivated myself by giving myself a score every night of how many fingers were damaged that night. When I started it was 8/10 now it's always 0/10!

picklemepopcorn Sat 13-May-17 09:06:39

Listen to the hypno vid more often! Every two days at the moment, then four days, then once a week etc.

LoveB Sat 13-May-17 09:13:05

Urgh this is my bad habit too. I have some white gloves from the body shop - I look ridiculous but I wear them when I'm home alone, or only the DH. That stops it. And when they're good, there's nothing to pick! So they get better and better. Also, moisturise moisturise moisturise!!

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