5 Little-Known Risks to Biting Your Nails
Your mum might say it’s dangerous, others who don’t understand might say it’s horrible, but for those who bite their nails, it’s a habit that’s just hard to break.
The smartie pants name for biting your nails is onychophagia.
But to those of us who can’t stop having a chew, it’s just an annoyance.
I think biting your nails is a fairly normal habit which affects all ages and all nationalities.
There are many theories why people bite their nails, but most people think it comes from over anxiety and stress.
I once read that 30% of kids bite their nails but only 5% of adults.
For some people, the social stigma and embarrassment over the look of their nails causes them to become depressed, isolated, or avoid activities they would otherwise enjoy.
I know it used to really frustrate me when someone picked up on my terribly bitten nails.
Not something you want people to point out, that’s for sure.
Want Some Strategies To Help You Stop Biting Your Nails?
Nail biting tends to begin in childhood, peak in adolescence, and then slowly declines as you get older.
If you’re an adult who can’t seem to kick the habit, or a parent of a child or teen who bites their nails, here are simple steps to help you kick the habit.
- Keep your nails trimmed short or manicured
- Wear gloves
- Keep your hands busy, such as the new fidget spinners
- Using a journal to identify your nail-biting triggers, such as boredom or watching TV, then avoid the triggers
- Wrap your fingertips with plasters (band-aids) or tape
- Think about using behavioral therapy, such as habit reversal training
- A great technique my mum recommended is dipping your fingertips in bad tasting stuff like fish sauce, vinegar, or even Tabasco sauce.
Stop Nail-Biting With the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)
You should try the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT). EFT can be an awesome method that can help you rapidly reduce the emotional impact of memories and incidents that trigger emotional distress.
It’s very effective for regular stress management as well as for breaking all kinds of addictions. Once the emotional distress is reduced or removed, your body can often rebalance itself and accelerate healing.
EFT is a great healing because it is a form of psychological acupressure, based on the same energy used in traditional acupuncture to treat physical and emotional ailments.
Tapping with your fingertips is used to input kinetic energy onto specific meridians on your head and chest while you think about your specific problem — whether it is a traumatic event, an addiction, pain, etc. – and voice positive affirmations. This combination of tapping the energy meridians and voicing positive affirmation works to clear the “short-circuit” — the emotional block — from your body’s bioenergy system, thus restoring your mind and body’s balance, which is essential for optimal emotional health and the healing of physical disease.
When you are on the road, there are at least four different EFT applications available in the iTunes store at my last count. The apps range from a simple recap of the EFT’s Basic Recipe to a sophisticated virtual coaching app for specific mental health problems like anxiety and depression.
Although, EFT is fairly easy to learn, I suggest you to seek out a qualified therapist for more serious issues. It is an art, and tapping for deep-seated issues typically require the kind of skill that only a well-seasoned practitioner will have.
If you try to self-treat, you may end up falsely concluding that EFT doesn’t work, when nothing could be further from the truth…
This is important if you’re trying to address trauma-based stress such as PTSD or grief following the loss of a loved one, but if you’re a chronic nail biter, this would certainly still apply.
Hope this helps…
“The Future of Bathroom Hygiene in the 21st Century”