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Picker1975 , 28 Feb 2019

I'm new. My picking has gotten out of control!! I don't know what to do.

Hello, I'm new here. I remember picking at my skin some when I was younger. I am now 43. As I got older I started only picking at my breasts (I know that sounds sick), then I gradually started picking at my stomach. Over the years it just got worse. Now I pick from my scalp to my feet. It hurts so bad to sit on the toilet to use the bathroom. It's horrible!! I have severe anxiety, and when I pick, that's really the only thing that calms me down. I've been on the medication Klonopin, and that has helped a good bit. It wouldn't stop it completely, but it did help. Back last August, my medical dr took me off the klonopin after being on it 15 years because I recently started going to mental health, and he said he wanted them to take over that medication, but since it's a controlled substance, they won't. Or they say they won't. My therapist says they prescribe it to some cases. I just dont know how bad I have to get before they will help me. I've already been hospitalized multiple times because of my anxiety. I just dont know how to stop picking. My hands are always searching my body for something to pick. It's affecting my life tremendously. Any advice would be greatly appreciated

6 Answers
March 01, 2019

What if you ask for an antipsychotic instead. How did you get off the Klonopin? Was it a gradual tapering off or a cold turkey event? Maybe you have to show them all of your wounds in person so that they believe how dire your situation became.

March 01, 2019

My medical dr took me off klonopin cold Turkey, and it was hell. I do have good news though. I went to see my psychiatrist, and my face was a mess from picking, so he did put me back on the klonopin, but he only put me on the .05mg and he tells me to half that, and that does not help at all. I'm used to 1mg twice a day, which worked fine. I go back to see him in 3 months, and I dont know how to tell him that I need the 1mg.

March 02, 2019

What worries does he have with the Klonopin? Is he afraid of you developing physical dependency on the med? Or are there other side effects of the medication? Maybe you now need to again gradually build up to the 1mg dose. I know they gradually prescribe and slowly up the dosage so that the body adjusts well. Usually it takes at least a month for a medication to start working. So wait until then to see if you feel better and don't have as many urges to pick. Are there any other stressors in your life at the moment or is everything basically the same aside for the medication changes?

March 02, 2019

Oh also I want to mention that the doctor should have never taken you off the medication so drastically. He doesn't know what he is doing. When you experience withdrawal and discontinuation syndrome, all your previous ticks and behaviors might get amplified. Over time it might or might not stabilize. It seems cruel of him to cut off your medication in such an abrupt manner. I know this because I experienced it first hand and I had to gradually taper off...and even then it took a couple of years to feel normal because my body was so accustomed to the buffer which the meds provided. I was on the medication for around five/six years prior to quitting.

March 03, 2019

Have you tried other medications for anxiety like Buspar? You can take it everyday and it’s for anxiety. Also, SSRIs like Prozac? You can even take them both together and daily and they aren’t controlled.

March 26, 2019

I am new as well. I find so far that sharing done what with other that understand without judgement helps. My picking started maybe over 10 years now and lasting scars to prove it. Currently on Zoloft to help minimize the anxiety which triggers, but does not help me. Depending on your situation, recognize your triggers that start the picking. Get into a routine when it starts, exercise, take a shower, do something to counteract that impulse if possible. Try skin oils at night to help with scratching or even band aids on areas or favorite scabs. Good luck

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