I Have Dermatillomania


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May 14, 2018

That is one hell of a loaded question you are asking. Figuring out that you suffer with the disorder is one thing, but treatment is a whole other ball game. Why don't you read a good amount of posts on this site and understand the level of suffering people go through. Trying to quit is not easy and there is no one remedy. It can take years just to get better. Not sure how many are able to fully quit. I hear it's a low percentage. There is no simple response to how anyone can beat this disorder. But you caught it early and I would suggest limiting yourself in your behavior as much as you can so that it doesn't get worse over time. Start monitoring it now and keep setting limits for yourself. Don't allow the condition to get a head start. What I'm telling you is basically advice that I wish someone told me when I was your age. Become introspective...do not allow the emotions to derail you into dissociative spells of picking. Practice self care, create a self care regime and follow it with rigid vigor. The self care is important as it conditions you to value yourself... flaws and all. The more you are able to internalize your self worth, the more control you can have over the condition. Also it might be beneficial if you can find a therapist who is knowledgeable about this disorder. Not many of them are aware of it, so you might need to ask around. Such disorders are usually chronic and need a whole lifestyle approach instead of a quick fix. The quick fixes often don't work, even if you try them multiple times. It's more of a daily mantra mentality that will yield slow and gradual results. If you treat the disorder as an addiction, it will be easier to have compassion for yourself. To be able to observe the urges and compulsions for what they are instead of blaming yourself and feeling guilt.
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January 10, 2019

Serene, I've noticed that you are very active on this site . How long have u been using it?
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March 02, 2019

A couple of years, probably around 2 or 3. Been active on here because I have hope that one day I will be able to beat this disorder, just like I was able to beat many others forms of OCD and a chronic nail biting habit. Posting on here makes me feel less alone in my struggles.
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March 03, 2019

I’m a lip picker too and have been reading a lot about treatment for dermatillomania. It appears first line treatment is an SSRI medication like fluoxetine as well as cognitive behavioral therapy. If that doesn’t help, there are other medications like Namenda, topamax, or Inspirons have been effective in some studies. I’ve been on Lexapro, primarily for depression and anxiety, without any change in behavior. I’m considering Namenda or Maybe buspirone next. I’ll let you know how it works.
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March 03, 2019

What worked for me was Seroquel, which is an antipsychotic. It was effective to the point where I forgot what it feels like to have a picking compulsion. The medication also eliminated my breakouts...which makes me wonder about a possible stress/cortisol effect on inflammation and acne. And even when I did get a pimple, I felt no desire to do anything about it. The drastic difference in compulsions after I stopped the meds was upsetting, but I am too afraid of side effects and future complications from the medication.