Skin blemishes and acne are annoying to deal with. They’re itchy and stick out like a sore thumb. Most of the time, they’re so unbearable that we can’t help but scratch them. While scratching your skin is a perfectly normal response, it can go overboard and develop into a condition called excoriation or skin-picking disorder.
When it has become a disorder, it can get very intense to the point of wounding, bleeding, and scars. The problem is that when the wound is healing, there’s this urge to pick and scratch it again, causing it to heal very slowly. Of course, over time, this can be a perilous habit to form as not only will it cause you scars, but there’s also the risk of infecting these open wounds.
When and How Does It Develop?
While it’s hard to pinpoint when and how skin picking develops, there are common situations that can trigger. It often develops because of:
Some people mindlessly pick and scratch at a wound or skin or even bite their nails to cope with stress and anxiety. It becomes a form of obsessive-compulsive behavior and is best treated by going to a psychiatrist.
Itches, Rashes, Skin Infections.
Sometimes, the habit comes from a physiological source, such as having a terrible itch that you can’t scratch off. When the source of the itch is left untreated for a long time, the scratching and picking habit can remain even after the itch heals.
How Do You Stop Scratching and Picking
Everyone wants to get rid of their bad habits, especially if those habits can affect their life. Skin-picking is no different as it can make your daily life painful, and in some cases, embarrassing. Here are some tips and techniques you can do so you can finally put up a headstone for your skin picking habit and call it quits.
Seek Professional Help
Of course, the first on the list should always be to seek professional help. Many people are embarrassed to admit that they have a disorder such as this, and a professional can help both psychologically and physiologically. This habit often begins innocently but spirals out of control. A professional will understand the situation and provide objective advice without judgment and discrimination.
Manage Your Stress
Most of the time, stress is the primary culprit of our bad habits. Be it smoking, binge-eating, or even skin-picking, stress is often the trigger that starts it. Realizing your triggers and managing your stress from it is among the best ways to address your skin picking issue. Since picking and scratching normally comes from stress, learning stress-management techniques will help stave off that habit.
Get a Fidget Toy
Scratching and picking the skin is often done absent-mindedly. Most of the time, the person is entirely unaware that they pick their skin until it’s wounded or bleeding. In this situation, having a fidget might help prevent picking since the hands and the fingers will be occupied with the toy. There’s a wide variety of fidget toys available as well, and you can find one that’s best suited to your habits. Hopefully, having something like this will prevent the desire to pick and scratch the skin.
Cut Your Nails… or Cover Your Fingertips
You can make picking and scratch harder for yourself by simply cutting your nails. This will stop your skin from getting too scratched or wounded. However, if you find yourself scratching harder because of the lack of nails to scratch with, try covering your fingertips with adhesive bandages. This will make you aware of your fingertips, prevent you from scratching, and not wound your skin.