Search This Blog

Skin Picking [Excoriation]: Stupid Addictions that Only Harm You

Image talks about the excoriation disorder, more common in womenYou might not have heard about this condition if you don’t like the psychological roleplay plots. This is a type of obsessive behavior where a person will continue to scrape away skin layers on the hands feet, along the corners of the nose and mouth and majorly on the scalp. Skin picking as a habit can reach such limits that you fully realize that the skin is being bruised to the extent of remaining inflamed throughout the day or even bleeding and even then, you cannot stop yourself.

How common is this? A lot, beyond what you can imagine but most people don’t count it as a mental health condition. 
Some healthcare agencies believe that skin picking is closely connected to obsessive behavior symptoms. Such folks might have a concurrent running or previously existing condition that makes them perform the same activity repeatedly. This can be some form of OCD too - if you have read my discussion about stress management and anxiety control measures, you will realize that when you are bogged down by thoughts that make you squeamish, there is a big chance that you will indulge in activities that you realize are counter-productive but still, stopping yourself seems impossible!

Image created on about skin picking obsessive habbit

Scratching yourself seems so natural – where is the harm in this? However, when scratching reaches uncontrollable levels, when you are picking away at your own skin with the seriousness of a grave-digger, day and night, you have a problem. Do you need medicines for this? Not really! Yes, there is a proper term used to describe this condition - Excoriation Disorder - however, it becomes an actual problem only when you allow it to reach unmanageable proportions. For me, this problem comes and goes and often leads to facial rashes when I am stressed but I have been able to cut back and snip back the problem!

Image about skin picking and gratification, about dermatillomania

You need to create some type of controlling mechanism to take charge. You have to unteach yourself, i.e. kick scratching out of your mind’s vocabulary. I recall some type of movie about this habit where a person would compulsively prick and pluck his teeth, imagining the worst scenarios about out of space creatures existing along the dental landscape.

Though this was more about hallucinations and some serious mental health issues, the depravity of the symptoms can be found in obsessive skin picking too. If you are doing this out of being stressed, you need to get out and find a less health-denting way of keeping your hands busy. You want to defeat the habit, not allowing it to cause issues like hair fall or being an instigator of skin conditions like psoriasis – the latter being very relevant for me!

Dermatillomania Body Skin Picking Disorder Image

#skinpicking #psoriasis #menthalhealth


  1. You have this rather good, almost accurate test for skin picking syndrome on this link - the link has not been used much but it seems to get the job done, i.e. makes you realize whether you are overboard with scratching the plaques on your head or is this due to anxiety and stress

  2. One of the best discussions, more of information actually, about skin picking - testing to find out if you have it, to notice it, the usual and not so evident symptoms #skinpickblogs

  3. I will also be sharing some insight into how I have struggled with this problem. How it often leads to a sudden flare-up of rashes. How I now want to control it by using a hand gripper every time I have idle minutes to manage or the internal stress is building up - please stay tuned for the short, hand-gripper story - not blowing my own trumpet but yes, this will be brutally honest

  4. There is another scientific name for the skin picking disorder and yes, it sounds rather confusing unless you break-up the words like a small Maths problem:
    where Derma means skin
    tillo means digging know it!

  5. Seems like there are medically certified professionals who offer some sort of coaching to cope-up with this problem
    the coaching is actually about diverting your mind away from this maddening urge to scrape or touch those sore spots that emerge when you have been at the patch for some weeks.

  6. One thing I can share with all potential and already aggressive skin pickers is that if you are doing it on your head, in and around the scalp region, this might cause hair fall. I did not believe it for the longest time and now, it seems like some damage has already been done.

  7. Just when I thought I had read all about the diagnosis and support for skin picking sufferers, I found this link:
    - this talks about how your partner can help you through this problem, creating some sort of defense mechanisms - this makes some sense too since Moha has literally had to slap-off my hand off my scalp many times!!

  8. Another skin picking forum that talks rather openly about the subject -

  9. Some brilliant tips about how to keep your fingers and the head occupied when you feel you are going down the rabbit hole.


Please Share Your Thoughts...

Mental Health Battles, Confessions

Opinions About Everything