There are people who cannot really stop picking their skin. Scabs, pimples, skin pieces, broken nails - all works. This is an example of compulsive behaviors, but it is not related to any magical thinking (believing that it will somehow resolve an unrelated problem). Picking simply acts as a relaxing act, decreasing anxiety and stress and is focused on skin imperfections rather that any other problem. There are some negative consequences though - skin in the long run becomes uneven, infected and scarred.
How psychology can help to deal with it?
- defines your triggers - situations, people, times that are related to increased picking (bathroom in the morning, boring calls at your desk, etc.). Make sure you have a reminder in this spot to stop picking or pick less. It can as well be an empty note - but when looking at it, you will remember why it s there.
- use soothing cream; the calmer is your skin, the less pleasure picking will bring, the less you will want it.
- use barriers - clothes, plasters, other covers, layer of cream will help as well. It will act as reminder and will stop you from actual scratching.
- keep your hands busy, get a fidget toy, a bracelet or any other accessory that will be readily available to you. You cannot manipulate your toy and pick at the same time, so it will act as barrier as well.
- keep your hands and tools clean; cleaning activity will keep you busy and away from picking, and even if you still do - you will risk infection less.
My name is Monika, I am psychologist. I help to deal with daily and difficult questions about behavior, thinking, emotions. I write, counsel and teach.
Photo: mapowterr from Pixabay
#spoonfulofreason #psychology #picking #cognitivebehavioraltherapy #cbt
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