Skin Picking

I've had a skin picking addiction since I was a young child. At about 4 years old, I would scratch at my ears until they would bleed. By the time I was 9, it had escalated to scratching my scalp until I had small open sores. I'm now 30 and fighting a battle with cutting myself. I think it's all anxiety based, but does anyone else do this?
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  • @alianna hey there! i have not had an issue with may be anxiety based and now a habitual pattern. have you been to therapy concerning this? there are some great tools you can use to help stop this....

    here is a link to some strategies that work for one woman....  

    i do think counseling would be beneficial, especially if you are thinking about cutting.

    thank you so much for sharing and reaching out.
  • Skin picking can also be called dermatillomania. It's an OCD spectrum disorder. Picking/ cutting releases hormone and you become addicted to the release. Similar to what happens with bulimia. Try to draw on your skin with washable marker. It's a creative outlet you can involve your skin in. Also it washes away! Unlike scars and scabs.
  • I was munching my skin. And not only the fingertips, but also the tip of my toes and random patches around my body. This stopped at the age of 12 or 13, though. I had anxiety, cutting and depression issues as well, though, but I don't know if it's related to skin picking unless you do it because it's an obsession rather than a way to release the emotional pain. 
  • I used to scratch myself but not to the point of bleeding, although my skin used to get really red and I kind of liked it. After I started to realise I'm starting to develop a bad habit I stopped doing it, but this behavior might as well be connected to anxiety. I suffer from the latter as well.
  • Saying you are fighting the battle to cut, you need to get to a doctor IMMEDIATELY!
  • I had something similar going on, but with my nails.  I ate quite a bit of my fingers too... I bite them too much. I often ended up bleeding so badly. I am so very glad it's over, it was awful.  It was fueled by anxiety, but I do really think it had something to do with OCD too, because one I started I couldn't stop until I had bite them all... and leave some of them even bleeding... I cring just remembering that.
  • I did not realize that there was even a name for this until I met someone in an outpatient therapy setting. I admit that it has become suddenly much worse as my anxiety is increasing - along with the scars on my face. I am still looking for a therapist so I am open to suggestions. Thank you.
  • I used to have a huge problem with this as well. It got to the point where my skin was shedding and I would always pick on it until it started tearing my skin and started to bleed. Really bad!
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