A: Doctors classify chronic nail biting as a type of obsessive-compulsive disorder since the person has difficulty stopping. People often want to stop and make multiple attempts to quit without success. People with onychophagia cannot stop the behavior on their own, so it’s not effective to tell a loved one to stop.
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Nail-biting is frequently associated with anxiety, because the act of chewing on nails reportedly relieves stress, tension, or boredom. People who habitually bite their nails often report that they do so when they feel nervous, bored, lonely, or even hungry.
Is nail biting a symptom of OCD?
In some cases, nail biting can be caused by an underlying mental health condition. For example, chronic nail biting may be a sign of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). OCD causes you to use repetitive, compulsive behaviors to ease the anxiety caused by obsessive, intrusive thoughts.
Is nail biting a symptom of ADHD?
Therefore, nail biting is a possible indication of the presence of the more severe ADHD-C subtype. Our results imply that a nail biting habit among these ADHD children is more related to insufficient parenting skills, rather than being part of general anxiety symptoms.
Is it hard to stop biting nails?
So why is it so hard to stop biting your nails? Researchers insist that onychophagia, the medical name for nail biting, is a very prevalent problem wrongfully camouflaged as a bad habit. Kieron O’Connor, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Montreal, told me that onychophagia is not an anxiety disorder.
Is there medication to stop nail biting?
Clomipramine and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are generally recommended in severe cases of nail biting, but the use of these drugs can cause treatment-emergent mania in individuals with bipolar disorder.
Why does biting my nails feel so good?
Recently psychologists have come to a more plausible theory of nail biting: that it can provide a temporary escape, distraction, or bit of pleasure or relaxation for the biter. Penzel points out that many people get the urge to bite when they’re understimulated (i., bored) or overstimulated (stressed out or excited).