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jnizzle , 28 Mar 2013

First time post/confession

I am 22 and I pick my skin and eat the scabs-God that sounds disgusting. I have been doing it for the past seven years but I haven't ever had enough awareness, courage, or interest to get help until about a year ago. I've been working with my therapist on trying to stop and even bought a habit workbook, but for a while now I've just been stuck. I really do have the desire to stop, it's just that the practice is such an engrained and sometimes involuntary ritual by now that it seems that no matter how hard I try, I won't be able to stop on my own. I am too embarrassed to tell any of my family or friends about it (although I am sure they can tell by now from the marks and scars) so that rules out trying to help with someone else's help who is actually able to give me gentle reminders for when I do it. I was just about at the point where I thought that it was really never going to get better (even despite my usual optimism about things) when I went to my psychiatrist. He mentioned my skin picking problem after reviewing my therapist's most recent notes and he suggested that since the methods I had tried did not seem to be working, that I could perhaps try Klonopin to lessen my picking based on the assumption that my picking may be anxiety related. Although I usually try to research these kinds of things first and like to take as little medication as possible when it comes to any medical problem, inside I just felt like "This may be it- the way out. This could be my last resort remedy." I'm really hoping that this works because although I am familiar with meds used for mental health purposes (I also take Lithium for Bipolar Disorder), I am not so familiar with meds specifically used for anxiety. If anyone can relate to what I am going through or can tell me about their experience with Klonopin in treating skin picking I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks
3 Answers
April 04, 2013
its such a difficult thing ti stop doing. i find picking somehow really calming and i think i relate it too good thoughts and to enjoying it which i really need to work on. i have found cutting my fingernails really short helps a lot, as soon as you go to pick suddenly you cant go in as hard as you normally would and cause so much damage.
April 05, 2013

In reply to by sm123

I know it is so difficult to stop, especially after doing it for so long. I find it calming as well, but I also do it in other situations such as when I'm anxious or nervous- this is especially hard when I am in public because sometimes I start picking without even noticing. I agree, cutting my nails does help, but I still manage to do a good amount of damage regardless. I think it would really help if I told someone other than my therapist about it, so that they could help to remind me to stop when I am doing it in public or just ask how I am doing with it periodically. However, I have way too much shame and embarrassment around the issue to do that, so I guess this is the next best thing. I really need help with some strategies to stop, so if anyone could help me with that I would greatly appreciate it.
April 05, 2013

In reply to by jnizzle

i was considering putting images of hyperpigmentation and scarred skin on my mirror, which are my main problems after picking, in order to think about the consequences and evoke the bad feeling i get after i pick. i agree about telling someone, i think that would possibly help, however i too have the fear of shame and embarassment in opening up about the problem. i think to others they see it as a bad habit, however to people with the problem, it is a huge blow to your self esteem, you dont feel in control, self concious, so many other things that go hand in hand with the problem :( its good to know other feel are dealing with the same issue

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