Here’s a nasty little fact for you; 50% of adults habitually bite their nails. Just think of how many germs and bacteria your mouth is now coming in contact with because you couldn’t resist nibbling them. Gnarly!
There are several reasons why people bite their nails. Stress and habit can trigger this nosh-fest, but a desire to fix imperfections also influences it.
When we see an imperfection on or around our nails, we get the urge to fix it. Biting off that hang nail or whittling away at your one chipped finger kickstarts this vicious cycle.
What you probably don’t realize is that biting your nails can lead to infections and severe tissue damage. Yikes!
Though rare, extreme nail biting can lead to compulsive or pathological picking and result in some one-on-one time with the doc down at the local loony bin!
There are a few simple tricks on how to stop biting your nails that you can use to ditch your nasty nail biting habit so let’s get to them, shall we!
How To Stop Biting Your Nails: Recognize the Stressors
Have you ever noticed that certain situations or scenarios bring on your biting?
Sometimes mindless activities like perusing the internet or watching t.v. induce the habit, but for others it can be a result of emotional stress.
Whatever the reason, identifying the situations that cause the nibbling is your first step in learning how to stop biting your nails and fighting the urge.
Making yourself more aware of your habit also helps to break the pattern. When you find yourself going for the fingertip, write down what you were doing and in a few weeks you’ll be able to identifiy your environmental stressors.
Offence is the Best Defence
To prevent your nail biting from going too far, there’s one little tool you can carry with you as your first line of defence.
This tool is small, easy to store, rough in texture, but leaves you feeling smoother than a baby’s bottom. What is it you ask? Your nail file, of course!
Sometimes a simple split nail, chipped tip or uneven cut can cause you to want to bite your nails. By carrying around a nail file you can fix these imperfections safely and easily while still allowing your nails to grow healthily.
Consistent use of a nail file will build a new habit. Every time you see a rough nail surface, pull out your file and deal with it immediately.
Break the Habit by Building Strength
The stronger your nails are naturally, the less likely they are to chip or tear which can induce biting.
There are nail hardening products you can purchase, but here’s another fun fact for you; they contain formaldehyde. Formaldehyde is a preservative for tissue and embalming. Eww!
As always, I’d rather go the all natural route. A while back, V wrote a great article on how to harden your nails packed with easy-to-follow instructions so be sure to check that out!
Awareness, defence and prevention are your best tools in learning how to stop biting your nails and fighting this distasteful habit.
The best part? They hardly cost anything at all. Now I don’t know about you, but that’s my kinda price!