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Skin Picking Disorder is a serious and poorly understood problem. People who suffer from Skin Picking Disorder repetitively touch, rub, scratch, pick at or dig into their skin, often in an attempt to remove small irregularities or perceived imperfections. This behavior may result in skin discoloration or scarring. In more serious cases, severe tissue damage and visible disfigurement can result. Hair Pulling Disorder, biting the insides of the cheeks, and severe nail biting can also occur. Most people pick their skin to some degree.
Occasional picking at cuticles, acne, scabs, calluses or other skin irregularities is a very common human behavior. It also is not unusual for skin picking to actually become a problem, whether temporary or chronic. Skin Picking Disorder may develop at any age. How the disorder progresses depends on many factors, including the stresses in a person’s life, and whether or not the person seeks and finds appropriate treatment. In addition to reviewing these materials, you should talk to your doctor about whether counseling (also sometimes called psychotherapy) and/or a medication evaluation might be helpful.