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Picking and Biting Your Nails

From the Colorado Dermatology Institute in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
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Colorado Springs Dermatologist Dr. Reagan Anderson

Video Transcript

So here’s another tip from your friendly, local dermatologist!

I see a lot of people picking at their nails the whole time. It’s a nervous habit. I also see a lot of people chewing on their nails. Again, another nervous habit. The problems with doing this, besides chewing on your nails is disgusting, and picking your nails, well that’s really annoying, but besides those, the problem with doing that is you can permanently damage the part of your finger that grows the nail, and if you do this long enough or aggressively enough, you might have permanent deformities in how your nail grows. So if you’re constantly biting on your nails, first of all you’re actually consuming a lot of fecal matter because fecal matter is underneath your nails. It’s kinda gross, but second of all, you could cause what we call a Paronychia, or and inflammation or infection around your nails and that can lead to significant problems. Constantly picking at your nails, not so much getting an infection unless you’re actually removing the skin around the sides, but it can permanently damage the part that grows the nail. So, guys we do all of these nervous habits, because they’re nervous habits. It means we’re masking something that is producing anxiety in our lives. I want you to really look at those things, cause they’re tell tale signs to the entire world that something is going on up here, and i’m not sure you really want to show your hand, so to speak, to everybody out there. Wouldn’t it be better if we took the time to have actually got mental health, so we don’t need any of these nervous habits? Give it a shot, I am slightly concerned about what could chronically happen or happen long term to your nails and how they would look, but i’m more concerned as to what that shows is going on internally, and you’ve got a whole host of medical professionals and friends and family and loved ones, who if you just talk to them, they’ll help get you through it.

Because Dermatologists treat more than just skin cancer!

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