Does anyone pick at the bottom of their feet? My story


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December 31, 2010

here we go, okay so this is my first time ever talking about my skin picking/eating problems. ive never been told i have OCD or any other mental illness that in normally associated with skin picking mental illnesses. As far as i, and my family and friends know, i am mentally fine and "normal." but heres where the grossness comes in... since i was at least 3 years old i have always been a nail bitter. i used to bite my nails untill they bled, then hid them with bandades and cover up stories. this is where it gets gross so sqwemish ppl stop reading:). about two years ago i made am discovery. i began to take my nailclippers, which i normally used clip and eat my finger and toe nails, and started to clip the hard parts of my skin on the tips of my fingers and on the bottom of my feet. id eat every piece i clipped when i was nervous, mad, sad, bored, it began to become a part of my daily life. id also peel my finger nails on top of all of that (finger nails have 7 layers, id peel id say 2 or 3 which in reality means i created my own hang nails just to eat them... i know.. gross..) but its my addiction, its my stress relief, and i guess my drug. tons of people do it but i take it to the next level.. this is my self diagnosis. 1.) i obviously have OCD and need to feel that my hands and feet are "groomed?" 2.) i have stress problems, my brain has to many endorphin recepters or whatever they are. 3.) i have an addictive personality. is there help you may ask? i answer why change? i very rarely am ever affected by my addiction becuase i hide it so well. im also very laid back after practicing my addiction (similiar to the effects of drugs) sooooo why should i change..because others would think its gross if they knew? NO i dont care and if anyone else suffering from this "disease" wants to change good luck..... becuase if its not this itll be something worse, addictive personalities need an addiction.. comment me back, talk to me, id like to also honestly include that im not some wierd nerdy kid who doesnt go out, im 17 i have friends i sleep around and im not thought of as wierd as far as i know so if anyone has any comments questions concerns feel free
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December 31, 2010

YES, I pick my feet. The bottoms. Yes, until they bleed. Much worse too.
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January 21, 2011

I have almost the SAME EXACT thing!! I have to take pain meds for my shoulder, and they make me a little itchy. i tore of a long strp that was way too thick (oddly satisfying), so I am currently tip-toeing around. Anyone ever told you about mathods to stop? I also do the same with body hair, and (not often) scalp hair Let m e know if you have any luck! Justin
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January 26, 2011

Most of the time, as i'm sure most of you know, i know that it's motivated by stress, but i even really enjoy doing it and even look forward to it throughout the day like oooh i've got it down to literally the worst i can get it but i'll wait a few days and it will have healed a bit and then yay i'll be able to pick some more.
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February 17, 2011

this is the craziest thing ever.. I didn't realize that other people do this. The first time I remember picking at my feet I was around 8 or 9..I would peel the skin on the ball of my foot..In the 18 years I've been doing this Ive never picked at my left foot..I've always considered it to be my "good foot"and I have no idea why, maybe it's really only because Im right handed and so it;s easier to pick my right foot. I only picked at the ball of my foot for a year before I realized that my heel was better to pick.. There's nothing more satisfying than peeling the most perfectly even strip that follows the natural "grain" of the skin,especially if you can repeat this for an entire section. Typing this out makes it seem weirder to me than it feel when I'm doing it. Sometimes I'll peel it too deep, or too far into non-dry skin, and it will crack or bleed. I've gotten it to the point where Ive had to wrap it with gauze and polysporin.. people at school would notice I was walking with a limp and now sometimes co workers will. It only gets that bad if Im super stressed out. I don't even know what to think of all this, its the first time I've heard of anyone else doing it.
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February 21, 2011

Your not alone i do the same thing, and ya it hurts to walk my bf had been trying to help me, but i mean hes only around a couple hours out of the day cuz he works, honestly i dont really have any advice seeing as i just recently found out about this sight i just want you to know you are not alone i do the exact same thing.. and myabe a little worse i actually eat the skin which makes me feel so dirty but there is nothing i can do about it. i hope your feet get better.
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March 14, 2011

As I sit here reading these posts, I am picking at my feet and my hand. I can't explain how RELIEVED and SAD I am feeling at the same time. I have been picking off the skin on my hands and feet for so long, I can't even actually remember when I started. At first, it was just the cuticles around my nails. Then it was the dry skin on the heels of my feet. That led to the dry skin on the inside part of my thumbs/palms and now I do all 3 simultaneously. Just like many of you, I would pick and peel the skin off so bad there would be raw spots and sometimes bleeding. If I see or feel a slight crack/'flake', I immediately start peeling at the skin and almost every time don't or won't stop until my hands or feet are red and throbbing with pain. All this time, I justified what I was doing by telling myself I'm just getting rid of the dry skin so my hands and feet can be all even and smooth. Well as we all know, once you start picking at that first piece, there's another 'uneven' piece that you now have to pick at too and so on and so on. Though I am the biggest baby when it comes to enduring pain, I always seem to manage to go on as normal when it comes to the injuries I have caused myself due to this horrible 'habit'. Tonight was the night I finally googled this issue I've been carrying around with me forever and I am SO glad I found this site. What I also found online was we are definitely not alone in what is considered an IMPULSE CONTROL DISORDER which tends to run in families. My older sister was the only other person I know of with this behavior and could relate to exactly what I meant and felt when I say I hope no one notices my hands at work tonight. It feels so good to have finally let this out and I can't wait to tell my sister about this site and finally able to not feel like we're alone in this and also maybe there's a 'cure' some where out there for us :)
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March 16, 2011

I feel your pain (literally & figuratively). I pick the skin around my fingers AND I pick the bottom of my feet. However, I only pick when my nails are not done. My solution is kinda simple. I usually have acrylic/tips on my nails. When they are coated with the acrylic the nail is just thick enough to prevent the picking altogether. Unfortunately, a new nail person recommended that I take the acrylic off so she could introduce me to a new product. The new product did not work or look good and my fingers are now picked and picked and picked. And so are the bottom of my feet. Because the skin on my fingers are raw, the fumes and chemicals will cause my fingers to burn so I have not had my nails done. Everyday I tell myself that I am going to stop. Every night I put lotion or Vitamin E around my fingers. All for naught. My fingers and feet are still raw. Oh well. But getting your nails done at a salon with acrylic and tips does work and your hands look good. Once you stop picking your feet get your feet done too. Good luck!!
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March 22, 2011

I know what it feels like. I however use nail clippers and just clip the bottoms of my feet till there raw and in pain. Then the next time I shower or am bored I do it again. The worst part is I will chew on the skin I clip off. I don't know why, but I do..whoa,, that feels great to talk about finally
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June 10, 2011

^^ relief. This is the exact same for me, down to chewing on the picked/clipped of skin like its gum or something. I feel like the pain felt when walking is my punishment for picking but I also get excited because I know there is more to be picked at.
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April 23, 2011

Thank you thank you thank you to all of you who have admitted to this embarrasing compulsion. I can't tell you how long I have been destroying the heels of my feet, the bottoms of my pinky toes, the toenails on my pinky toes, and ALL of my fingernails and cuticles. I remember seeing my dad do it when I was a kid, so I guess I got it from that. I always bit my fingernails and picked at my heels until they would bleed. But it has gotten to the point where I do it so often that I worry about my heels NOT being able to heal. The reason I googled this tonight was because I was at a friend's house and she saw me picking at my heels on her couch! How nasty! I was totally embarrased. I hadn't even realized I was doing it. So, I came home, used my dremel tool to file my heels down as far as possible, and put giagantic bandaids over them. I have three open wounds on my left foot and one on my right. Before seeing this forum, I thought that I was the only one (other than my dad) who did this. Just knowing that other people have the same compulsion helps me to want to fight it. Too bad there is no "PA" (Pickers Anonymous). I would go to a meeting every week! I will probably never completely get rid of this disgusting compulsion. But I guess admitting the problem is the first step.
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November 05, 2011

April 23rd is my birthday lol. Yes first step and then you have to get rid of the stress that makes you pick your feet. instead of picking the skin look for ways to smooth it. theres a lot people online who know how to treat your feet you just have to look for them on google and that shud be the next step after googling foot picking, google foot maintenance or treatment.
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April 24, 2011

i thought i was the only one picking my skin on feet and fingers. it is good to know there are others out there with the same problem. i cannot figure out how to stop doing it. it is a force that is causing me to do it and i do not know what it is. also when i am driving i n eed to drive with one hand a lot of times so that i can pick with the other hand also i used to pick the heel of my left foot for a couple of years until it would bleed and i would have to hobble around at work for a couple of days because of it. but i never eat the skin that would be gross.
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June 05, 2011

Success story: I think that I am cured now and I hope that my story will help a few of you, I have picked at my feet for 40 years. Every time I would clear an entire layer of skin from the bottom of my feet I would promise "this time it will stop," but then the roughness and unevenness came back and tempted me to pick again. Last month, in despair over sandals season, I found this site, and read a recommendation for the Black and Decker Mouse sander. I ordered one on Amazon for $27 and went to work. In no time my feet were beautifully smooth, after which I applied Eucerin. My soles are still reddened, as they have been for years due to picking, but texturally, they are lovely. Last night I went out in beautiful sandals and felt so proud. Thanks to the "fresh start," I haven't been tempted to pick for an entire month. I use Eucerin morning and night, and I "touch up" with the sander once a week or so. Next project: to find a way to stop picking at head. Maybe someday even I'll figure out a way to stop being so anxious and neurotic, but I'm not too hopeful about that...
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July 31, 2011

Thanks for sharing this froglover! I will try the sander and Eucerin. I've been using a tool to peel the thickened skin that grows back on my feet then I use a buffer, the kind they use at nail salons for your feet. Then I apply a thick lotion my Mom gets from the hospital and cover with socks before I sleep. This seems to relieve the tight, itchy skin for a week perhaps. I've also used the vaseline like ointment used for cow udders. That has helped significantly soften the pads of my feet in the past.
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June 30, 2011

Hi this is Sam. I thought I was the only one with the bad habit. I pick my feet the same way you described. I have the exact problem you do right on down to the bleeding and the bandaids. Do you get itching too? And now my new skin grows back hard making it even easier to pick. my family hates it and so do I buy I can't help it. What have you done about it and have you stopped ?
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July 01, 2011

WOW!!! As bad as I feel for you, I'm really happy, and somewhat relieved that I am not the only person in the world with this problem... I'm 32 yrs old, and I've been doing this for as long as I can remember. It really is embarrassing, especially when its so bad that I have real trouble just walking. IT DRIVES ME CRAAAAZY!!!! No matter what I've tried, I just can't stop picking. I've started using scissors so that there wouldn't be any 'loose' edges to pick as, but all that has done, is created a way for me to start new sections to pick at. The raw, bloody, pain isn't enough for me to stop, I feel almost hopeless... I was just wrapping my feet in bandages right before I found this site!!! Oh man, I'm afraid nothing is going to make this stop, and eventually I'm frightened that I'll wind up with a bad infection, and have to just amputate my foot/feet!!! Anyone have any suggestions?? --Pete
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July 01, 2011

WOW!!! As bad as I feel for you, I'm really happy, and somewhat relieved that I am not the only person in the world with this problem... I'm 32 yrs old, and I've been doing this for as long as I can remember. It really is embarrassing, especially when its so bad that I have real trouble just walking. IT DRIVES ME CRAAAAZY!!!! No matter what I've tried, I just can't stop picking. I've started using scissors so that there wouldn't be any 'loose' edges to pick as, but all that has done, is created a way for me to start new sections to pick at. The raw, bloody, pain isn't enough for me to stop, I feel almost hopeless... I was just wrapping my feet in bandages right before I found this site!!! Oh man, I'm afraid nothing is going to make this stop, and eventually I'm frightened that I'll wind up with a bad infection, and have to just amputate my foot/feet!!! Anyone have any suggestions?? --Pete
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November 05, 2011

Man what you say is pretty bad. Ive cut myself too deep too but after that when i knew the limits of the dead skin i never bled again. But the same thing cant be said about my lips i pick on em even before they heal completely. Maybe you should make a list of the things that make you upset and stressed and try to get rid of em or find a substitude activity for the picking. Ever tried drawing or some other skill? How about sharpening knives check out google for how to sharpen your knife. get sucked into some interesting activity and youll slowly pick less and less. I cant guarantee youl stop cause i cant get rid of picking either but ive reduced the picking time to just 10 %. Try to do as much as possible i n a day. set goals and do your very best to achieve them. How about learning a new language? Try it. And about thje picking i suggest whene ever you do pick youself do it carefully if you keep cutting yourself write I SHOULDNT PICK ANYMORE on post its so you will be reminded of it all the time. Program you brain by telling to NOT DO IT. For every problem theres a solution you just have to want to look for it.
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July 06, 2011

I have never known anyone to do what I do, but I am glad I found a place. I have been picking since childhood and my picking as an adult has become increasingly worse. I also bite off hangnails, fingernails, toenails and eat them, sometimes I throw them away. I started using nail clippers to clip my heals so I can start picking again. This part of my life is a secret, but only because it took me until very recently to realize what I was doing. I thought I was weird, but am now more conscious of what I do and it grosses me out. I just got done wrapping my big toe, both heals and my right thumb in bandages and thought to myself how far this is getting out of control. Yes it hurts too, but I can't stop. I am trying to make it better, but I leave the area looking worse. It is not debilitating and I don't think people notice. I have not tried to hide it really except that I do not wear sandals. I am also socially withdrawn and anxious most of the time. On the outside, I am functional, got it all together and people would never suspect. I am a good natured person and work with people all day long yet I go home and don't want to ever leave my house again because of people. I pick and pick and pick and PICK! I have stopped many times for long periods of times. I keep coming back to it though. It's pretty bad. Glad I found people who do this too because I seriously thought I was alone.
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July 06, 2011

I sadly know exactly you mean... I always felt like a freak, thinking there's no way in hell that anyone else in the world is doing this also!! Finding this message board has really helped my level of anxiety, just to know I'm not alone! I still do feel awkward though because people without OCD, let's say "normal" people, still couldn't possibly understand what we go through everyday, and I feel that I would be looked down upon for it. Looked at as though I was some sort of 'freak', therefore I do everything I can to hide this. Even my family has an extremely difficult time understanding why I am the way I am, they think its gross that I pick and eat the skin, and they tell me to 'just stop doing it'. Trust me, I want to!! I've tried so many different things to deter myself, not even the extreme pain that I suffer at times is enough! And the medication I take for my OCD, seems to help the OCD somewhat, but has not changed or affected how bad I pick!! I feel so lost... Maybe I'll try hypnotism.....
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July 10, 2011

I pick the bottom of my feet constantly. I stopped for a few years and now I am doing it again. I also pick my scalp, hidden scabs and my cuticles. I can barely walk on my feet it hurts so bad. I peel the skin so deep it is painful to take any steps. I do it at work under my desk and if I have to get up for something I get aggrivated that I have to stop. My cuticles bleed scabs take so much longer to heal because as soon as it scabs over I am picking it off again. One sore on the back of my scalp did heal for a year. My cuticles and the small calluses around my nails hurt so bad typing this. The muscles in my fingers from picking my feet ache on a constant basis. When I am off I pick all day long to the point it interferes with my daily activities. I will do it for hours and hours. My legs get shooting pain because I have to keep them bent up to get to the bottom of my feet any resting point for my leg is sore and bruised. Why do we do this? How do we get to the root of the problem and fix the cumpulsion? It takes wastes my days and hours away... what is the resolution?
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July 12, 2011

Hi jadiegirl, When I read your story I thought OMG that is so me. I pull the skin off the bottom of my feet and they are so raw that I'm limping around my house, LOL!!! Talk about an odd obsession with doing this to my feet. My husband is always telling me to STOP IT!! I also bite my nails and the skin around my fingernails. UGH...I can't stop. I will bite the skin off by my fingernails until they are bleeding just like the picking I do on my feet. I thought I was so weird and I would never know anyone who would do that, but here we are, LOL!!! If you've stopped how did you do it?
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July 13, 2011

Wow. Ya'll! I have been struggling with this for most of my life. My story is an echo of so many of yours. I started biting the skin around my fingernails when I was in first grade. My family moved at the beginning of the school year and it started. I don't remember starting the habit, because I was a child, but my mom told me that when we moved I started biting my fingers until they bled. That is how she knew I wasn't taking the change so well. I do remember having trouble fitting in at my new school and kids picking on me a little bit. When I was 15 I started to peel the skin off of my feet for the first time. I remember being at the beach the summer after school got out, sitting in a hammock, and peeling my feet while I read. The previous school year I had changed schools and started going to a different high school than the one all the kids I grew up with went to. I didn't know anyone at my new school and again, had trouble fitting in. So here I am today, 32, and I still chew my fingers and peel my feet. I'll stop peeling my feet for awhile, they'll heal, and I'll be able to get pedicures :-). But I always seem to start back again. It helps in the winter, when I'm wearing boots or shoes to cover most of the time! I've also tried the pedi egg, like some of you have mentioned. And it did help to get all the 'hard and peelable' skin off so that I was less likely to pick. I need to be more consistent with it. I've recently gone on an extended vacation and didn't bring my pedi egg. But after reading our blog I realize I may just have to go out and buy what i need and cover my feet until I can leave them alone! I just want to say to all of you, HANG IN THERE and god bless you. Don't give up! We can beat this!! I didn't know if I should laugh or cry when I read your entries. I was so happy and relieved to know there are people out there that understand. My parents love me and harass me about stopping because they care. My dad yells at me and I know he just cares and wants to help. But they don't understand and sometimes make me feel worse, like something is wrong with me. They can't understand how someone would do this to him or herself. When I tell them I can't stop or try to explain that even I don't understand why I do it, they don't seem to believe me. So, when I found this blog, like so many of you I was relieved. Not because I think that our behaviors are healthy, but because I know there are people out there that understand. Thank you for sharing your stories. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. We can all get better, we just need some support. Reading your stories tonight has been such a great support to me. Thank you. I'm here for all of you. Let's try to get some sort of support group going to help each other overcome this and improve our lives. Again, god bless each and every one of you.
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July 14, 2011

I am 30 years old and I have been picking my feet for years. My sister is always screaming at me to stop but I can't. During the summer I wear socks with my flip flops and water shoes in the pool so people can't see my nasty feet. I will sit on the couch and watch a movie and just pick and pick until my feet are sooo raw by the time I am done there is blood all over and a nasty pile of skin on the floor. I hate the fact that I do this and the fact that half the time I can;t walk because they are so sore but I just can;t stop! The morning is the worst , as soon as I stand up I have to sit down because it hurt so bad. It is gross this I know but I just can't stop. I have tried the ped egg (dosen't work) I also pick scabs, again gross, but can't stop. My husband doesn't say anything to me about it but I have to have sex with my socks on because I don't want him to see my feet. He knows I am a foot picker but he never says anything to me about it. I just want nice feet where I can go with friends/family and get mani's and pedi's. If I went now they would be like "EWWWW, PLease leave" lol
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July 16, 2011

I have been picking my feet for years now and frankly I don't have a clue how to stop and really haven't seriously tried to stop. My girlfriend thinks I'm crazy for doing it. It really blows her mind. I started very young chewing on my fingernails and the skin around my fingers. I didn't always pick my feet but in the last 5 or 6 years it has been uncontrollable. Everytime I sit down to watch TV off comes the socks and the picking starts. I guess I find it relaxing. I really like dry skin to pick at the most. It is a compulsion for sure and it hurts to walk on my feet everyday. I don't know how to stop, simple as that. It is downright embarassing.
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September 28, 2011

I have the same problem I used to pick around my fingers and now I do my feet and same thing I sit down and off come the socks while watching tv right in front off him and he can't believe that I do that worst off I eat the skin so I feel really weird doing it in front of him but I've got to the point that I dont care!! Which is horrible
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July 31, 2011

YES! I am so happy to have found this post! I am not alone. I've always been so embarrassed about the bottoms of my feet. I've been doing this since I was a kid. I used to scratch at my scalp too until it scabbed. I also used to pull my eyelashes out just to see how many I could pull out a day. I still peel my lips and use a tool now to peel the skin off of my feet. When I was younger I would chew on those peelings and for fun light the peeled pile of skin on fire in the sink. I can't believe I'm disclosing this as I have never told anyone that but after reading this post and all the responses I don't feel so alone in this act. Anyway, I should read more about this. Is it a disease? I've always thought it was some sort of anxious tick of mine along with my other anxiety induced behaviors. I'm a bit OCD and am very controlling. Oh boy! Too much information. Anyway, thank you for sharing.
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August 30, 2011

I'm both relieved that there are other people out there who pick like I do (and want to talk about it), but also sadden, because I can relate to the anxiety, shame, and pain that comes with picking. I've got this sick assumption that if I keep on picking, somehow my heels will feel and look better; like somehow, one good pick will painlessly peel off all the raggedness, and my heels will be pretty and smooth. After a lifetime of picking at my cuticles, I should know better! Also, when my heels are really hurting, rubbing, massaging, and inevitably picking seems to relieve the pain somewhat. I end up doing more damage. My biggest concern is infection--with these open cuts, I could get a terrible infection walking in flip flops around my own house (much less the supermarket.) I used to work as a nurses aide in a nursing home, and I know that if I saw a patient harming herself like I am harming myself, I would report it as "self-injurious behavior," and there would be serious interventions. And rightfully so. I wish I had someone to talk about this in real life. I could cry, I feel so messed up! Okay, I am going to go wash my heels in the tub with warm water and a soapy washcloth, and then rub Eucerin Aquaphor on my heels and wear socks to bed. I invite you all to do this with me ... there aren't many problems that you can solve at 1 AM, but we can start a good habit, right?
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August 30, 2011

I actually pick at my toes on the bottom of my feet..depending on how I feel controls which areas I will pick it's weird, ya know. Sometimes, I'll pick my face..sometimes the back of my neck or my back or arms..sometimes my thighs. Oh and sometimes my ears...which is painful because when I put earrings in it hurts! I just realized you posted this back in 2009..how are you doing with it now?
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September 12, 2011

Does anybody have any ideas to help us all stop? Maybe and extended site with pictures. Or helping to hold each other accountable? Just thoughts. No one knows I do this but I have for 20 years. I don't want anyone I know to be aware so I hide it real good. But my though was if we were completely open with each other or even just a couple people, we could help more that expressing the experience. But don't get me wrong, I felt amazed to read people that were just like me! I would love a partner to success! k
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November 05, 2011

To stop the picking you first have to understand the cause that makes you pick. Because im also a picker i know what people go through when they pick their skin. Its out of frustration/ stress that we seek shelter in some activity that makes us forget about our problems and pick away. To successfully stop picking you have to either relieve the stress or find substitute activities for the picking. Something that is less hazardous to you. Make a list of things that youre not happy with in your life and look for ways to to improve those areas. As you work your way up and you mind is occupied with other things theres less and less time to pick. And dont wait start as soon as possible with improving your life.
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September 12, 2011

Hi there! Yes I do pick at the bottom of my feet. Although my biggest target is my cuticles, if I get a nitch to pick my feet, I will pick at them the same as u. I usually only go thru phases with my feet, but when I do its really bad. I'm talking huge chunks (mostly where u callus like the edges, the big toe and heels), bleeding, sore, and painful to walk. The way I adjust my mindframe is to think of feminity. Put urself in the mindframe of thinking... what if? What if my husband wanted to randomly rub my feet? I don't want to gross him out. I want him to think of me as a lady who takes good care of herself and her appearance. What if I had to take off my shoes for some random reason? An exercise at work, a new boyfriends house, an exercise at school. How embarrasing. First off, I advise u to read my comment to the post here "picking=trance" I gt some pretty effective and satisfying advise on another forum regarding the realease of anxiety and stress that might help take the edge off of ur urges and also some things that can redirect ur mind at the moments of urges. Secondly, follow these steps and buy the necessary tools to keep ur feet soft and healed. Tools.. Pumice stone (buy from a nail salon) Bag balm cream (I get mine at walgreens) Any form of hydroxy cream (I get mine on amazon but retailers should have it. Try for %10 or more alpha hydroxy) Severe dry skin lotion of ur choice Steps: 1. Get a pedicure and make sure they use the razor (it might hurt a little but its for a good cause) 2. Scrub ur feet with the pumice stone and liquid soap or body wash EVERYTIME u shower. Get in the habit. 3. Use ur alpha hydroxy lotion (this will also sting a tiny bit if ur feet are really cut up but the purpose of the alpha hydroxy is to eat away at the dead skin) use this throughout the day as many times as needed. Use it when u get the urge to pick even if ur feet are dirty. Follow with a severe dry lotion. 4. Use the bag balm cream at night and wear socks (the smell is not pleasant and its a little greasy so u'll only want to use this in privacy or urgently) Give your feet a week of this method. Don't look for instant results. Your skin is precious and takes time to heal so please be patient. The one thing I will mention is that this method will dry your feet beyond belief if not kept up with. You have to do this everyday and religiously. The problem with feet is that we walk on them so much and in the summer they are exposed to the environment more. Of anything else, they take the worst beating off all. The key is to maintain, no matter the season or situation. Don't worry about the healing aspect. They will heal beautifully on their own if u just leave them alone. Make it a priority and I gaurantee u will be happier and pick less if at all. And drink lots of water. It is a natural remedy to more hydrated and less dry skin. Keep in touch and let me know how it works out :)
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September 21, 2011

I cant believe other people do this! I pick my feet so much that they are so sore that i cant walk. Does anyone have solutions???
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July 11, 2012

Hello fellow feet pickers! I am 56 years old, and started picking at my feet when I was 13 years old. I started by taking the razor blade out of my father's razor, and then proceeded to slice off the bottoms of my feet. It was a bloody mess, and to this day.....I cannot figure out why no one in my family ever did anything about it. I don't know how I made it through high school walking around on severely cut, raw, bandaged feet. But I did. I continued this behavior into my twenties. Then I began cutting a snag of skin with fingernail clippers and peeled off the sole of my feet. As painful as it was afterwards trying to walk on raw feet.....I actually felt a tremendous relief as I would peel the skin off. I had several other self mutilating habits such as pulling out my eyebrows and eyelashes, as well as pulling out some of my hair. Eventually I went into therapy as I suffered from so many problems....most of which are due to the fact that I suffered extreme abuse at the hands of an alcoholic mother and step father as well as being made to feel as though I didn't even exist with my father and step mother. Wonderful families....Huh!?! I was abused in every way you could ever think of and in ways that would never cross your mind, including emotional, psychological, physical, molestation, rape, having loaded guns pointed at my head, and being set on fire on a regular basis. I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, Anxiety Disorder, PTSD, and Self Mutilation Disorder. My therapist figured out there were a couple of reasons why I was cutting off the soles of my feet. One being that I was trying to get rid of all the bad I felt in me resulting from years of horrendous abuse, and the other being that it was easier dealing with physical pain of my own causing than from any type of abuse heaped upon me from someone else. However.....knowing what may be causing me to cut off the soles of my feet did not help me to be able to stop it.....even after years of therapy. But.....I have great news. I figured out a way all on my own to deal with my compunction to remove the soles of my feet.....either by cutting or picking or peeling. I discovered the foot file! The one I love the most is a Swedish Foot File that I buy at Sally Beauty Supply. They have an expensive one and then there is also a cheaper one. I usually buy the cheaper one which works just fine. Whenever I get the urge, which sometimes is very strong, to pick at the soles of my feet.....I just use the foot file and file away at the bottom of my feet until I get that sense of relief. Then I usually put some nice vitamin e cream or shea butter cream on my feet. I never have to suffer bloody, raw feet. I just file away the callouses caused by my years of cutting, picking, and peeling causing no stress or damage to my feet. I am actually making them better. I always have two or three on hand at all times. I started seeing a new therapist years later, and informed him of my cutting, picking, peeling solution...........and he said it was brilliant. Of course....that made me feel rather good. Sooooooo......did I get rid of the urge to cut, pick, and peel my feet? No, however, I did find a solution to this terrible problem. I hope this helps some of ya'll as well. I know it has been a real foot saver for me! And lifesaver as well.
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September 26, 2011

i could have written that post which is why i am googling dry feet remedies. i think if my feet were not dry i definitely would not pick them, but the back of the arm thing is also me. sadly my face has not escaped nor the backs of my thighs. i cant stand a bump or flake but as you all know i only make it a thousand times worse. help. if you have any
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September 26, 2011

I cant believe I found this site where people actually do what I do . I know it has to be some compulsive thing.' Im sure we have all been nail biting all our lives also?
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September 28, 2011

I do the exact same thing I also bought solarcaine because yes it does soothe the pain dont feel alone I also do it as well and I understand the feeling
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September 30, 2011

Happy Feet Treatment Steps Since you are reading this, then you are having problems with excess foot callus and possibly callus cracking and infections. Please read the following instructions carefully before beginning to treat your feet. As you get older our arches fall, which causes an increase in foot size. Poorly fitting shoes and shoes without good arch support affect your distribution of weight, body posture, foot position in your shoes, and foot size; all of which can lead to buildup of calluses and related problems. If you suspect that fallen arches may be causing this, then you need to have your feet examined by a professional foot specialist or a podiatrist. During the examination they will determine the shape of your feet and arches, type of shoes you typically wear, pressure points and walking posture; to determine if you need different shoes and possibly ‘orthotic’ arch supports to relieve pressure and stabilize the foot position. Steps for Removing Excess Foot Callus Step 1– Foot Soak: To remove excess foot calluses that already exist, once each week soak your feet for 20 minutes with a mixture of 24 oz of very warm water (115 - 120º F.) that is not too hot or uncomfortable to touch, and 12 oz. of white vinegar (acetic acid concentration ranges from 4% to 8% that you purchase at the grocery store) into a tub that your feet can soak in or approximately 12” W x 18” L x 6” H. Next, remove your shoes and socks, place both feet in foot soak treatment, and let soak at least 4 minutes. This treatment will soften the callus. Then remove one foot from the soak and cross it over the other knee, then using your fingernails and/or coarse pumice stone to “gently” message, (avoid bruising), and exfoliate the excess callus from the areas of the foot. After a couple of minutes with one foot, repeat the process with the other foot while the other foot soaks, and continue this until most of the excess callus is removed which should take approximately 16 - 20 minutes. The tips of your fingers and fingernails can feel where foot callus is thicker, which needs to be removed; whereas a pumice stone is less differentiating. The softened callus will collect under the fingernails or on the pumice stone as you rub it, which needs to be cleaned after the treatment with an old tooth brush. After four to six weeks of foot soak treatments, this will remove or most of the excess callus, which will begin to minimize callus cracking and the side effects of infection and discomfort. Cautionary Notes & Suggestions: • During the foot soak treatment, if a piece of healthy skin should remain attached; do not pull it, which will tear the healthy tissue and cause bleeding. Instead carefully cut and remove it with scissors, but avoid cutting healthy tissue. • Since dry callus is prone to cracking, each night before bed and in the morning apply a good quality lanolin cream lotion that is rubbed in to soften the callus. Consider CeraVe Moisturizing Cream. • If you have a callus crack, do not use hydrogen peroxide to disinfect it; because this can cause the callus to become dry and brittle, and prone to cracking. Consider using good disinfecting ointments like: Bacitracin with Zinc or Neosporin. • To fill a callus crack, do not use Super Glue; because Super Glue is brittle and does not flex, which the skin on the bottom of the foot requires. Consider using New Skin Liquid Bandage gel, which dries quickly, is flexible and waterproof and has an antiseptic. For deep callus cracks, several applications of New Skin can be applied. • When the skin is dry, do not use a pumice stone to remove callus. The pumice can cause the stiff callus to crack. Step 2 – Routine Washing & Brushing: Each day wash your feet vigorously, (especially around and between the toes) with wash cloth, Ivory soap and water. Also, at least once each week use a stiff boar bristle bath brush, like one from Bass, to vigorously remove dead skin and clean the top and bottom of the feet during your shower or bath. Step 3 – Allow Feet to Breath & Keep Dry: Our feet not only need proper fitting and well made shoes, but they also need fresh air so we minimize extended periods of our feet being enclosed in a moist environment, which promotes the growth of athlete’s foot (see treatment below). Each day apply some good quality foot powder to your feet, (especially around the toes), to keep them dry. Also as often as possible, wear good quality sandals, (with firm arch supports), both indoors and out, which will allow your feet to breathe. Periodic and limited exposure of the bottom of your feet to the sun is also healthy. After 4-6 months: This will remove most of the callus, your feet will be much better looking, and the tissue will be healthier, for a more active life style. However, this does not mean you should discontinue these recommendations. If you find this treatment helpful, then copy it and share with others. t_texas@msn.com
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November 04, 2011

I purposly went looking on google to see if anyone does this. I started a year ago when I got my art kick for my freshman year of college. My calluses have always bugged me but I had no real experience with picking at them. But when I got my art kit for school it came with an exacto knife. I use it still to this day. quite a few times its been to the point where I've had blood pour outta my foot because I've cut too deep and the next day it kills. I try not to cut them raw but It happens all the time. it really doesn't hurt till the next day. Then the next day when I'm limping around my 9 hour shifts with no breaks at work I tell myself I'm never going to do this again but a few days later I go back at it. Its seriously an addiction. I also bite at my fingertips right by the nails. its really bad on my thumbs. I have a horrible addiction with all of it
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November 05, 2011

Isnt it nice to realise youre not the odd one. Since i realised that the bottom of my feet was pickable, ive been pickicing the living f##k out of my feet. I have utility/art knife and sharpening stones to keep it ultra sharp for slicing and dicing the almost concrete like parts that have gone dry. But mine is pretty severe couse ive been working in construction for many years and the bottom of my feet is about 2 mm thick and its peeling off all the time. What i can say to the other fellow pickers is to be very careful when picking because its very addictive and can leave scars. Ive never gotten over picking to me its impossible when im frustrated i automatically look for something to pick.
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December 29, 2011

Wow i was thinking that something is wrong with me mentally or I am getting weird because of this bad habit of peeling underneath my left foot. I know it is menopause and my anxiety that is causing me to start picking and peeling away. I am now starting to have problems with my husband because he keeps founding dead skins on the carpet or behind the sofa that sometimes I do hide the dead skin. It always happen at night time when he goes to sleep and I stay up to do it. Especially, when I end up peeling off a big side of skin it starts to turn me on mentally which is kind of weird. I feel as that I am alone in my own little world and having a pleasurable moment. I really need to stop because it is starting to affect me wearing shoes and walk at work. The dead skin hard surface are turning colors and it looks really unattractive wearing sandals. But, when I start getting that urge I peel all the way. I am so happy to know I am not alone on this, and it is better than taking medication for my anxiety. I really need a cure for menopause that is my next search. Well, that is my story God Bless!!!!
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January 01, 2012

and here I am at 63, thinking I was alone in this...if it is menopause, I am past that;if it is mental, I agree. now what to do to stop???
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January 24, 2012

I should have known there's be a website for this. I've struggled with picking at the skin on my cuticles, and feet calluses, and even the inside of my lower lip, for years. My heels would crack so deeply I'd bleed into my socks. My cuticles on my fingers would be so bloody I had bandages on them most of the time. No lotions would work and I thought it was some sort of obsessive compulsive problem until I found that if my skin was healthy I quit picking... Here's what I've found and maybe it might help you. .. I read a small ad that said that dry,deeply cracked, heavy calluses can be a dry form of athlete's foot. So I tried Lamasil and it actually improved my heels a lot, but not so they were smooth and so I kept tearing away. Then I tried Mycocide CX Callus Exfoliator, which comes with a sanding tool and was amazed when after just 2 weeks using both the tool and the cream my feet were baby smooth and soft and there was nothing to pick on! I've recommended this to 2 other friends who also have thick deeply cracked yellowish heel calluses and they've had the same remarkable results. This particular brand might not work for you, but explore the idea that you have a fungal infection that causes this skin problem. It's been such a relief. BTW, I told my podiatrist about this stuff because HE has dry cracked heel calluses and told me it's because he stands all day. He totally blew me off and said it was callused because my feet were out of balance. It couldn't possibly be athlete's foot. Yet, when I stopped the cream, the calluses slowly came back. and when I got the cream again, it all went away. On to cracked cuticles. I was always picking away at my cracked peeling cuticles. I work at a preschool and we don't have hot water. I have to wash my hands several times a day and since the problem would get better in the summer, I figured it must be the cold water. I always used antibacterial liquid hand soap for all these washings and then, two years ago we ran out and I substituted plain dish soap. Big surprise! My cuticles healed up! I realized that I never use this stuff at home during the summer. So instead of the washing being the problem, it turned out to be the antibacterial hand soap. Think about what you're using on your fingers and toes and heels. It might be that you're really just sensitive to some product you're using. I had given up trying to find out why I chewed on my bottom lip. Doctors said it was a habit, but I would notice that on the rare occasion when I had to use a antibiotic my lip would heal and I couldn't bite it if I tried. Then last year I was treated by a GYN for a chronic vag infection that took a 2 month treatment of antibiotics. I hated doing it and don't really like using antibiotics, but it did clear up the infection and, surprise again, my inner lip has been smooth as silk for 1 year! No more biting on my lip. There's no roughness to bite on. So here's the bottom line for me. I truly believe I tore at my skin because it was irritated. In all 3 cases it wasn't some OC problem, or terrible habit. The origin was irritation. Look at what you're putting on your skin. Try antifungal creams and see if you can find one that heals your feet. See about an antibacterial cream for your cuticles. We get treated so terribly and feel like we do this to ourselves and don't have the, I don't know, strength of character or something, to stop picking at ourselves. Could it be that subconsciously we're trying to get an irritant away from our skin? It turned out to be just that for me. When the irritants were gone I just naturally stopped picking at my skin.
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June 28, 2014

I couldn't agree more. Podiatrists have not been taught and do not understand that this chronic callousing of the bottoms of their patients feet are due to a fungal infection -- and are not simply caused by friction. If there was nothing to pick at in the first place, the habit would not have been formed. They need to be educated by their patients. In addition, I believe that a change of diet can help with chronic fungal issues. Two major culprits are sugar and dairy. Thank you for sharing your advice. I hope everyone on this forum sees it!
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February 03, 2012

I've had this problem a while now. I know how to take the pain away over night from picking my feet. " Bag Balm" will take infection and pain away in a matter of hours. I suppose if you pick till you bleed it would take a couple of nights of treatment. If I've picked at my feet unusually bad I know I won't be able to walk without a lot of pain the next day so I glob on quite a bit of the Bag Balm and wrap my feet with kitchen plastic wrap. Then I put on foot socks to keep everything in place and then overnight all pain or infection is gone. Unfortunately because I can do this I might tend to pick the next day. I always say never again but there are times I can't seem to stop myself. If I keep at the Bag Balm it can really clear up my feet but then I break down and do it again. Anyway, to avoid infection or clear it up fast this works perfectly so at least you can walk the next day. As a kid I'd chew my nails and cuticles then as I got older my feet seemed drier and drier till I started peeling the callus off. I know it's purely stress related because it comes and goes. If I make it a point to relieve my stress I can quit for a while but then when I forget to concentrate on stress relief I find myself going at my feet again. I no longer chew my nails now because I transferred my stress to my feet (less obvious than hands). So with that I will wrap my feet tonight and tell myself I want to quit this but then I wonder what I'd substitute for my feet? Life goes on. I can think of a lot of things that would be worse. Good luck everyone. :)
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February 07, 2012

I was in the middle of peeling the bottom of my feet to the point of being raw and bleeding when I decided to find out if others do the same thing. It's nice to know that I'm not alone, but it still disturbs me that I HAVE to do this. When I was little i used to bite my nails well into my twenties. I was also fascinated with picking scabs and stuff like that. As an adult I don't bite my nails or scratch. Recently I went through a nasty divorce and I have found the need to pick at myself and it manifested into peeling my feet. I just wonder if there is a cure or behavior modification to end this insanity.
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February 08, 2012

heey,im 18 an have a really big raw patch on right heel i pick it everyday until it bleeds and it hurts so bad to walk i miss alot of school because of the pain. on my left foot i pick at the skin on my big toe an it gets really sore i use too think something was wrong with me i found that hydrogen proxide you can get from the chemist helps dry out the raw flesh i have put a plaster on and were socks at night i have set the goaal to leave my skin alone, i also bite my my nails an pick at the skin around my nails this will be harder for me to stop as i can pick at them more easily. i really thought i was going insane, i really am obsessed with peeling my skin to the point of bleeding an being raw, but i am trying too stop. will keep you updated on how im going.
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February 21, 2012

Wow I'm amazed and surprised I'm not the only one with this kind of addiction. I am so embarrassed of this but can't find the way to stop. It feels so relaxing but my husband finds it disgusting to look at. What can I do? I go threw so much stress and tension daily and this really calms me. This comes with a price because the pain is bad. Someone please help!
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April 19, 2012

It doesn't fix everything, but putting glue on your hands and waiting for it to dry, resembles skin after it is dry; I sometimes do that, just because I pick my feet at least once everyday and I need some relief.

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