healing:) R u?


Online Test For Skin Picking Disorder

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October 06, 2010

That is great! Happy for you, keep at it. I don't think I am at the point yet where I can actually stop. Just starting to wrap my head around the fact that this is an actual disorder.
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October 06, 2010

I am trying to quit too... I have done well at the past, but it always come back to me picking the keritosis on my upper arms...i am taking the advice on this sight, and do not even begin to let my hands wander. I think that starts programming the brain to pick our skin!!! So i need to wear tank tops and very fashionable clothing to work, i am in the Hairstyling Industry...I have my ups and downs...but when I stop hiding my "imperfect skin" and let myself still wear stylie clothes I tend to feel so much better and keep the momemtum going ....best of luck to you!!
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October 06, 2010

Thanks for the response.... my worst area is the back of my arms. I've convinced myself that at least no one really expects the back of your arms to be sexy. I love that we all know what keritosis (pelorisis) is... someone referred to it as kp in another post. It's interesting that you "fix" hair for a living. I'm a fixer in life as well and I fool myself by thinking that I'm fixing the bumps on my arms by popping them when I'm only making it worse!! I would love to wear more tank tops, but I can't at the moment. I wear long sleeves so that I don't have to look at the bumps. As soon as I start to survey the problem area it's so difficult for me not to pick. I just can't help myself. So for now I'm wearing sleeves until I'm strong enough to go sleeveless. Have you looked into cognitive behavioral therapy?
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October 07, 2010

You know what really works for me the this medicine in the scar treatment area of a drug store, called Scar Zone, go in and buy 3 bottles and use it generously on your bumps and scars twice a day and by the time you finish the tubes, your arms will be smooth and bump free!! not perfect, but we are never gonna be perfect...but it really helps smooth the skin and you will be on your way to showing your arms....I hid my arms for about 2 years, and in a way that gives you an excuse and coverage to pick and pick and pick....you are better than that, and deserve to love yourself....i know the picking has brought me so much self hatred and as I have gotten older and had children i am learning to be as loving to myself as I am to my children and husband...I hope you will give yourself the love and care that you need...
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October 06, 2010

I totally understand. I was you a few years ago. It's hard to let go of something that has helped you to get by for so long, but know that you deserve only the best. Skin picking is certainly not that, as you know... take care, wishing you all the best
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October 06, 2010

I would love to be your 'support partner'..I am more determined than ever to stop. I've just completed my second full day of not picking (I know, sounds insignificant, but its actually a big deal), and surprisingly, I already see the difference....over the weekend, after a terrible (and painful) episode, I realized that this was a problem that went beyond the physical, and actually IS a disorder. I've done a lot of research on recommendations to stop, and types of therapy recommended, and from that point, I vowed to take control. I have been logging my actions/emotions daily, and confessed my 'problem' to my best friend to hold me accountable. I no loner want to live in isolation and reject the world because of something that is in my control....so tomorrow is day 3, and I hope this path continues for me.
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October 06, 2010

Awesome! K, let's stop together. I think it's great that you haven't picked for two days and it's certainly a big deal. especially because you know you deserve better for yourself. journaling is a great tool. I'm in therapy , but cutting back because it's too costly so I really need the support group. My main goal is to attract people like you who want to stop and who know they have the power to. This is certainly something I don't want to lean on anymore. The back of my arms are starting to look not so good anymore, and I want to start valueing and taking care of my skin. I get really upset when I start to think about how I could have done this to myself and my skin! It's so frustrating, and that's why I just need to stop. I started the 21 day challenge today. It's day 1 and no picking, my only problem is that I tend to eat compulsively to compensate for my non skin picking so I'm really trying to stay mindful all through out the day. I'm so glad you contacted me. Please feel free to keep me posted on your progress and your struggles because it's all a process, I truly understand that, and I'm here if you need to vent etc...
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October 06, 2010

Today is particularly rough, especially right now. I want to pick, but I'm not going to... I'm hungry and I'm tired and the best thing for me to do right now is obviously eat and sleep, but instead I'm dying to get a sewing pin to release all of the stuff in my posres. Cos I know it's there.... I'm overly stressed at work and I just can't take it anymore. Venting is way more productive then picking so alas here I am puting out my frustrations into cyberspace. My pain is bubbling, I don't want to go to work. I just want to pick and focus on something to take away my anxiety. No time to exercise, I just need to breath I guess and control my rapid, circular thought process that would deem anyone insane. AHHHHHH. I want to piclk. I'm not going to, instead, I'm going to pick myself up and learn to cope in a healthy manner. I wish my thoughts weren't so repetitive. If I could control that, I wouldn't need to escape reality with the compulsive picking. I wish my mind would STOP! So I'm going to coax it into peace. Everything will be ok. I will be fine. I am fine. All is well. Thanks for listening....
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October 06, 2010

You will be ok, and you will be fine and you're definitely not alone. Its funny you mentioned exercise because that's a huge tension reliever for me and I was going to suggest it, maybe, to occupy your time. I hate wearing make up, especially when I work out, because I almost feel claustrophobic with the sensation of applying something that is going into my pores...and especially now that I've picked so much at my face that the skin there is so thin and sensitive, there has been a permanent stinging sensation, no matter how much antibiotic I apply. But exercise keeps me away from mirrors...get me in front of a mirror and I can literally torture myself and analyze for hours....yet I keep telling myself 'if you touch, you have to write it all down in the journal...do you really want to log this...you'll regret it' Have you tried maybe applying a skin mask to the back of your arms while you're home...it could help with the healing, and be opaque enough that you don't see your skin/pores through it and it may not be as tempting to go for the sewing needle....
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October 07, 2010

Thanks for the response... I'm going back to school full time nxt semester and I'm leaving my jobs in December and so everything's changing and it's very disconcerting. Now that I'm really resisting the urge to pick, all my feelings are just there and it's weird to actually feel them, and deal with them. I have a great mom so she's very supportive. Thanks for the syggestion of the mask for my arms, but I'm not so good with putting product on the keratosis pelorisis because then I become obsessed and put way to much energy into the clensing process. When I put lotion on now I literally have to like rub it on really fast so I'm not triggered to pick. Thanks again for being there, I hope you were able to resist picking today, too:)
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November 19, 2010

Shit...I do that to! Everytime I decide to try a lotion for my KP I find it difficult to resist picking while putting it on....I feel much better about it if I just don't apply anything. I've found the feggari glove helpful with exfoliating my arms in the shower and I just don't bother with lotions.
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November 19, 2010

thanks for the response. Trust your instinct on that. My therapist suggested i use a timer in the bathroom while i get ready when i first began my healing process. it worked. now i can successfully put on lotion well on good days at least...
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October 14, 2010

Hi! I am also in the process of healing. I used to pick myself to bits and I found joy and excitement in "cleaning out" my skin (I always thought I had acne and went to numerous doctors. No treatments ever worked!). Over the past few years I have reduced my picking slowly without really realising it. Since I've been married quality time with the mirror was very limited... So now I'm trying to quit. IN the process of quitting completely, I realised the full extent of my picking. Even though I don't pick deeply anymore and I rarely get sores from picking, I realised that I am picking almost every inch of my body. Recovery is hard and my main obstacle is unconcious picking while bored or stressed, but I am positive and I am seeing results. My skin will never be perfect, but that's OK. Do yourself a favour and search fro pictures on google of Victoria Beckham and acne or bad skin. There are a few other celebrities as well, like Cameron Diaz. It makes me feel better when I see these "perfect women", people I've always thought are beautiful, are also just human and have the same skin problems as I have!
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October 14, 2010

Thanks for the response and the tip. I live in LA and I've actually seen a lot of celebrities in person so I know they are flawed too (emotionally too, yikes:)! Good for you and your healing process. It sounds like we are kind of in the same place. I too have gone to numerous doctors and nothing they prescribe ever works. We totally just have to get used to the concept that sometimes there's going to bumps on our bodies... this is the one thing I still can't grasp. I hate the thought that there is something white and oily and hard and yucky inside those bumps. I love "fixing" them, but hate coming to the realization that I'm only making it worse time and time again. It's so annoying. Everytime I pick the smallest of bumps it turns into a red scabby mess. It looks and has a worse texture than the original blemish (I keep thinking that if I remind myself of this enough I will come to my senses and STOP picking). Alas, I still need to accept that my skin is not perfect and it may never be, and that doesn't make me any less loveable than anyone else. I would like to find a boyfriend so that I'd have someone to talk to when I'm stressed or lonely and I feel like picking. We're in the same boat in that we both pick when we are under or over stimulated. My therapist suggests I find something active to do besides picking when I get understimulated (ie: journal, go for a walk, dance, sing) or when I'm overstimulated/stressed to calm myself down besides picking to zone out (ie:meditate, breath, call a friend). First, she suggests I ask myself: Why am I picking? Then I'm supposed to identify whether or not I'm over or under stimulated, and then she suggests I do one of the corresponding activites. I don't know if this will help you, but it certainly helped/helps me.... Now it's just the perfection thing, ugg, and the unconscious picking which I can now stop before it gets out of hand. One person on the forum suggested I wear short sleeves because I deserve it. I think she is right, so I tried it, but when my arms are showing it just gives me less time to control my impulse. Immediately, I start to scan the problem area (the back of my arms) and before you know it I've picked a bump) Today I picked at 2 and I'm totally regretting it. I will stop completely eventually, I just need to control the impulse before I respond to it. Thank you for listening, I cut down on seeing my therapist to reserve my resources and as I'm sure you know it's too shameful for me to share all of the details of this compulsive behavior with my friends. Stay strong and stay aware!
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October 15, 2010

So glad to find this sight as I am desperate and feel very alone.
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October 17, 2010

Welcome! You're not alone and the good news is that you found this site. Wishing you all the best!
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October 15, 2010

So glad to find this sight as I am desperate and feel very alone.
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October 15, 2010

Hello! I'm 20 and I've been picking at my fingers and lips since I can remember. I used to pick at my face when I was younger, but now my face has cleared up (past the acne age I guess) and I'm happy not to do it any more. But my fingers and lips are getting worse, and I was even doing it when I was reading your posts... I think I'm also neurotic and there might be some more to it, but I don't want to look for more. The problem with me is that I know I can't fight it on my own, but I'm also too scared to sign up to see a psychiatrist. Yesterday I looked up all such doctors in my clinic and I'm not sure if I want to confront them (I know it sounds silly, but it's the most sensitive part of me - my psychical side) and, more importantly, I looked up what such an appointment looks like, and it scared me a lot. I know I would be really stressed, cry etc. I react to stress very poorly, my blood pressure goes crazy and I would feel faint. I know I will get an appointment, but just the fact of calling the clinic scares me. I guess I just have to do it :) Good luck to you, and I'll be happy to join your online support group :)
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October 17, 2010

Thanks for the response. Ironically, I work at a psychiatrists office,... It sounds like your feeling emotionally overwhelmed at the prospect of making an appointment, but I believe one should face their fears. A great book to understand compulsive behavior is Women food and God by Ganeen Roth. The book is focused on compulsive eating, but the stuff she talks about referrs to compulsive behaviors in general. I have the audio book and I listen to it in my car quite often. There is one specific chapter where she talks about dealing with your emotions and it's very good. Take good care of yourself! Let me know how your first appointment goes if you do end up making one...
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October 16, 2010

Yes - this site is great! When I first dared to search for "skin-picking" and eventually found my way to this forum, I was so relieved to find out there were other people that did this compulsively, and that it even was a disorder with a name! For so many years I thought I was the only one. Even every doctor I went to (for staph infections, from really bad picking bouts) had never seen someone pick like that, and they would let all the nurses and interns and whoever come in and look at my face. I've never met or even seen another picker. I'm so glad I found this place, and I also want to scream at all the doctors and family members who refused to listen to me when I said over and over "It isn't acne, I don't think that's what's going on." or "I really can't stop, I can't explain it, but I can't control it." I hate them for 11 years of living in shame and humiliation (and sometimes exclusion from family events, and once refusal of medical care) when I was right and such a thing as uncontrollable picking exists!! Okay that was my rant. Thank you for allowing the rant. Onto more helpful things that have been helpful for me over the years of trial and error. I was fortunate to have gone through the year-ish long DBT (dialectical behavior therapy) treatment process to help stop a separate issue (cutting), which I do not do at all anymore, and haven't for years. I was able, later, to use a lot of those skills to curb picking. I highly recommend it, actually far more than CBT, at least for me. Here are a few DBT skills that work for me (reworded to describe picking episodes, specifically): - If you are in the middle of a can't-stop, manic picking episode where it seems like you have lost control over your hands, and you can't seem to get out of it, even if you are screaming at your hands inside your head to stop, try this: Make an actual vocal noise. And it can't be a whisper or whimper - at least normal talking volume. If you are worried someone in the next room will hear you, you can have a pre-planned phrase that won't draw attention if heard. Mine is "Oh, there it is!" (like I had just found a pen or whatever.) I didn't think this would work when I first tried it, but it totally did, and it still does. It just, like, snaps your mind and body back together somehow. If you can't make a vocal noise, a drastic physical movement, like lurching over or jumping in the air, will do the same thing. - Have a ready made list in your head (or at least handy) of simple, non-harmful, easy activities that take a minute or less. They can't be bad or unpleasant, but they don't have to be super-fun necessarily. When the urge to pick gets to an overwhelming point, just go do the first thing on the list. Do not stop to decide or ruminate. (If the first activity is not possible whereever you are, just skip to the next thing that is.) Continue down the list as long as you need to, if the urge persists. And repeat as necessary. (My list includes: wash hands, brush hair, brush the cat, play one song on the piano, etc. But everyone makes up their own) This is really long already, so I will stop here. But if this is helpful I can post more stuff. I also would love to hear any tips that others have - I think this topic is great! Thank you!
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October 17, 2010

Your rants are always welcome here:) I like blogging way better than journaling... it's nice to know that someone can hear you! I love the tip you gave that you learned in DBT. Please share more!! I truly believe we can eradicate this behavior from our lives. We have a choice!
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October 17, 2010

Thanks! Sometimes I really worry that I will never eradicate it unless I actually cut off my hands or something. It comes and goes, as far as how bad it is, but I've never been a even a year episode-free. And the older I get, and the more times it happens, the more estranged I get from my family. When I pick my number one priority is that nobody in my family finds out. And I've had two bad ones in the past two months. Right now my face looks like it was burned with acid. But coming here is a great way to calm down, move away from the shame, and NOT pick. I'm so glad you liked the DBT tips! I am more than happy to post more, because the packet is huge and it is all about ways to NOT do a destructive behavior. Lots of ways, so there is something for everyone. But the entire DBT program can be prohibitively expensive, or hard to find locally. I will see if I can locate the packet itself, and just post the file up here for people to look at for free. If the site owner can't do it, for legal reasons, maybe I can post it on another page and put a link. For whatever it's worth, I am always interested in healing tips. One of my worst problems is that when I have an episode, it happens in one evening, and then I am sort of housebound for a couple of days, so I have to try to use whatever I happen to have around to clean and heal it. Darn it. I think I'll hunt around and see what people have posted.
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October 21, 2010

wow.... talking about not having control over ur hands hit me hard.... I just cannot stop... EVER... its really weird too, cause both my sisters have the same problem... I just cant control it... one of my sisters even yelled at me one day cause she said my legs looked like I had chicken pox... all the red marks... cause I had to wait on her at the store... just cant be left alone and bored... even if i feel something remotely weird i pick it... I even have moles that I forget are there... i just feel the lump from them and have to go look to see if its something I can pick... im 29 and should be used to them, but im not... I hate this... im at the point where if I cannot find anything to pick, im grabbing fleas off my dog and popping them... wtf? I feel like crap everytime someone points it out, but still cant stop... ;((
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October 26, 2010

I'm 29, too.... which only makes me more ashamed that I can't get a grip on this behavior (eventually I will)... I keep telling myself when I turn 30 I'm no longer going to do this, I will stop. That's my birthday wish this year to stop picking (good thing I have until april)... The waiting thing is tough for me to when I'm being idol. Hand toys are good... I have magnets that I play with while I'm driving, it helps.... knitting is a good hobby to take up as well.
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November 19, 2010

my psychiatrist told me to start knitting. he said.. "i don't know if you're a knitter".. and he laughed. even he knew he sounded goofy. i'm 20. knitting doesn't really appeal to me. i've taken up other hobbies, like cutting coupons for soldiers and such.. volunteer stuff.
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November 19, 2010

Thank you so much for those tips...I will give them a go. I've learnt to control my picking by using my will power...thank god I'm a Taurus lol we can be stubborn, but it can work to our advantage!! I told myself that my skin would look better if I didn't mess with it and if I went to bed without picking I would feel sooo much better in the morning. I even have phases were I don't even feel the urge to look in the mirror first thing in the morning. Also, the times when I do go to the mirror I just look at my skin and maybe squeeze/scratch lightly at a couple of blemishes and then say to myself that's enough and go do something else. Hope this helps someone....I feel your pain...love to everyone xo
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October 21, 2010

Am a housefire victim, I was burned over 38% of my body. Basically arms, hands and torso... My picking began because of the scars healing... now I can't stop! From head to belly button, I now have approximately 20 scabs I can't stop picking!
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October 21, 2010

Am a housefire victim, I was burned over 38% of my body. Basically arms, hands and torso... My picking began because of the scars healing... now I can't stop! From head to belly button, I now have approximately 20 scabs I can't stop picking!
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October 26, 2010

Wow! That sounds really intense from the get go! I hope you can stop picking. There is choice involved between the impulse and the behavior. Wishing you all the best in your recovery.
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October 26, 2010

Hi, I'm new and am not really sure what to say exactly except that I have been picking my skin for 15+ years and only now, through "google" research of my own found this site and a validation for my years of unknown CSP. I too have been to numerous doctors, dermatologists, etc and have been prescribed meds for acne and anti-anxiety eventhough I knew I did not have acne. Ive been on every anti-biotic for acne (oral and topical) and then some (sulfa drugs-which only gave me massive migranes) yet my "acne" didnt go away...hmmm...maybe its NOT ACNE?! Right, its Dermatillomania. Obviously we all know not to pick, plenty of the people we are surrounded by "remind" us of this constantly yet I think that makes my picking worse. Right now I have two large open sores on my face and two on my back and am on clyndomiacin (sp?). Eventhough I told myself during my last episode (which resulted in the biggest picking spot I EVER had) that I would never do that to myself again, alas, here I am. I am always interested in ways of healing for infections, open spots, and so on. I have tried A LOT of things but have yet to find a very effective process. Any suggestions that have worked for others? Many Thanks.
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October 26, 2010

Hi... I hear you. I'm happy you found this site. I'm sorry to hear you have the sores on your face and your back. I don't have any advice on how to heal the sores, but I'm sorry your anxiety was so high that it manifested physically in this way. Sending you lots of light and love and know that you're not alone.
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November 19, 2010

I've met someone dating-wise and he's really nice. He's asked me to go to Las Vegas with him for the weekend and my initial thought was, "oh no, my skin!" Believe it or not I came home and picked at three small blemishes on my arm which are now scabbed. Luckily, we postponed the trip for another 2 weeks so I'll have sometime to heal even more. I'm doing waaaaay better than I used to be, but every now and then I'll get trapped in the zone of obsessive analyzing over every little flaw on the back of my arms which usually leads to at least one attack on one little bump which at the time of anhialation seems absolutely enormous and disgusting! Oh the woes of body dismorphia, anyway, that's getting better, too. My point is, I have 2 weeks before I have to be in a bathing suit and well I'm hoping I can refrain from mutilating myself in the meantime. The appearance of my scarring has gone done dramatically, what bothers me now is the texture. The skin on the back of my arms is bumpy and in some places the dried up skin is rough... not very sexy lemme tell ya. We were together two nights ago and he asked me, "Why do you have a bump on your arm?" (He felt it through my long sleeve tee). I went into my normal monologue about Keratosis Pelorisis, Leaving out the part that the keratosis isn't the real problem rather it's that I can't control myself from picking at it, but alas he continued to joke about the ghastly idea of keratosis in his attempt to flirt with me. I tried my absolute best not to get defensive. I'm really hoping my arms will be smooth by the time we take the trip. Wish me luck!!