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 Psychological & Emotional Health

August 2010
That Thing You Do
Self destructive habits
Farrah Chinoy
We have all heard of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and we know that it means that certain behaviour is repeated to a point of self destruction – mental as well as physical. Due to new advancement, another aspect of compulsive behaviour has been brought to our notice.

Once considered a part of OCD, Body Focused Repetitive Behaviour (BFRB) has found a niche in our society; it is self inflicting pain by the person. These behaviours for some individuals are simply referred to as “nervous habits”. However, these “nervous habits” become problematic when they interfere with the person’s everyday functioning.

Check out some of these body focused repetitive behaviours mentioned below, to see if you have any of these habits.

Nail biting (Onychophagia), is not only the destruction of one's own fingernails but often the skin around the nails and cuticles. It can become quite serious, as people who suffer from compulsive nail-biting may experience bleeding, bruises, infections, or even permanent damage to the fingers.

Skin picking (Dermatillomania), people may pick skin in any part of their body in an effort to reduce stimulation, such as when a person feels stressed; or in an attempt to increase stimulation or when a person feels bored.

Nose picking (Rhinotillexomania), can lead to infections in the nose, which is situated very close to the brain. They share the same blood supply. Getting an infection anywhere in the area doctors call the Danger Triangle, presents a good cause for alarm.

Hair pulling (Trichotillomania), most often, people pull hair from the scalp, but it may be pulled from any area of the body; eyelashes and eyebrows are commonly pulled and in some cases, pubic hair, and hair from the extremities is pulled as well. Some hair-pullers must pull "special" hairs that feel "different" or as if they don't belong due to their look or feel.

Acne Picking: The condition usually starts out like other acne outbreaks. A pimple erupts, first one, then another. By picking away at the blemishes on the face, no matter how small, many people find satisfaction, as if they are picking away at their troubles or their emotional pain. The main reason for these habits is stress. When one indulges in these habits, they feel a sense of self-soothing stimulation. It has a calming effect on their nervous systems. Try yoga, meditation or other stress busting practices to rid you of these habits. Remember that self motivation is the main ingredient.

Rejuvenate with Castor Oil
It’s time now to work on regaining your natural beauty with some castor oil.
  • If you have thin eyelashes and eyebrows, dab some castor oil on the lashes and brows every night, before going to bed.
  • Castor oil is the only known source of the valuable unsaturated fatty acid ricinoleic acid, known for its extraordinary healing abilities.
  • Massage your body with castor oil. It works great as a moisturiser, preventing your skin from drying up and getting white patches.

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