- Personal Health Information & Self-Help
Nose Picking - What is it and how to stop this bad habit
Considered to be a disgusting habit, Nose Picking in public places is frowned upon in most parts of the world. Looking at someone picking their nose in public is a gross sight. Some even try to stick their nasal mucus under tables and chairs! Why? Let's answer the following questions: What is Nose Picking? How does Nose Picking affect you? What effect does Nose Picking have on others? How to stop Nose Picking?
What is Nose Picking?
Nose Picking is the act of removing nasal mucus, dirt and other foreign bodies from one's own nose, with one's own fingers. In most cases, Nose Picking is a habit rather than an addiction. For some people, the habit of picking their nose may be hard to control and can even turn into a compulsive habit. However, this compulsive habit of Nose Picking is not deemed as a medical problem until it becomes overpowering, obsessive and repetitive to a great extent. Once this habit meets the threshold that doctors have for it, this condition is known as Rhinotillexomania.
How does Nose Picking affect you?
Some of the common causes for nasal bleeding occurring due to nose picking are long or sharp fingernails, excessive picking or rough finger movements while picking the nose.
2) Entry of foreign bodies in the nose
Nose picking also carries with it the inherent risks of foreign bodies entering the nose.
3) Possible damage to the Nasal Septum
For those of you who don't know, the Nasal Septum is the walk that separates the left and the right nostril. Although there is no threat of damage to the Nasal Septum simply by normal Nose Picking, but it is a possibility in rare cases.
4) Risk of Infection
Small cuts on the skin inside the nose can be caused by the scraping effect of the nail. These cuts may lead to an infection if there are germs on the very fingers that pick the nose.
5) Unhealthy personality
Nose Picking is often considered to be a sign of a person who maintains poor standards of hygiene and an overall unhealthy personality.
As Nose Picking is considered to be a bad habit, people are often subject to humiliation and made fun off by friends or colleagues.
What effect does Nose Picking have on others?
- Nose Picking is considered to be a private act which can gross out onlookers
- The fact that many people who pick their noses stick their dried mucus on things like chairs and tables
- People who pick their noses may infect others if they have fallen sick with a viral fever because the germs and bacteria on their fingers are going to spread everywhere they touch or go
- The very sight of someone picking their nose is repelling, annoying and dirty and an early morning conversation at work may start off like "Oh this fellow next to me on the train was grossing me out with his constant nose picking. What a bad start to the day"
How to stop Nose Picking?
If the above mentioned points are not compelling enough reasons to stop picking your nose, here are things that you can do to stop this nasty habit.
1) Acknowledge that Nose Picking is a dirty sight
Many times, people don't even realize that the act of picking their nose can be a sight that is very unpleasant. So if you want to stop picking your nose, the very first thing that you must do is understand and acknowledge that Nose Picking looks disgusting. If that sounds difficult, ask others how they feel when they watch someone pick their nose. Remember, learning how to stop picking your nose is more of a mental battle, than anything else.
2) Acknowledge that Nose Picking can be a health risk
Nose Picking has health risks for you and others around you. Read the above mentioned risks of nose picking again and top it off by a visit to the doctors, if necessary. It will be much easier to win your battle against Nose Picking if you subconsciously acknowledge that there exists a medical risk when you indulge in this habit of yours.
3) Keep a handkerchief or tissue with you
It is easier and convenient to remove itches and mucus from your nose by blowing and sneezing rather than poking your finger inside. Keeping a handkerchief or a small pack of tissues with you all the time so you can use it to blow, rather than poke.
4) Set a reminder
As silly as this sounds, setting a reminder on your cell phone can go a long way in curbing your habit. Try it out by setting a reminder that goes off every day at noon and reminds you to stop picking your nose. The deliberate act of acknowledging that reminder will strengthen your psyche and mental battle against the habit.
5) Leave a tiny post-it on your desk
Whether it is study desk, your office desk or your usual workplace area, you can leave a tiny post-it note saying "Don't pick your nose" or "Say no to nose picking". This note will be a constant reminder to you and will literarily drill the idea of stopping your dirty habit in your head. Before you start writing out that post-it, make sure that you use a tiny sticky note and post it at a discreet yet strategically visible place on your desk. The last thing you'd want is for everyone who walks past your desk to see that you are waging a battle against your nose picking habit.
6) Clean your nose in the morning
It is understandable when you feel like picking you nose if it feels itchy. A great way to reduce the itchiness that is caused by mucus and other foreign particles during the day is to clean your nose every morning. There are Nasal Irrigation devices and tools available that flush out mucus and other dirt from your nose that you can use after taking advice from an expert.
7) Wrap a bandage around your finger
In many cases, the habit of nose picking is often done over and over again by the same hand and same finger. If this sounds like you, try putting an adhesive bandage around that finger. The bandage will act as an obstruction that will immediately remind you not to pick your nose.
8) Excuse yourself every time you have to pick your nose
Excusing yourself, by itself is not directly an aid when it comes to refraining from picking the nose. However, you should make a rule that you will always excuse yourself when you feel like picking your nose and do it in private. How many times in the day are you going to excuse yourself?
9) Tell your close friends or relatives to help
As a last resort that you want to try at home to stop the habit of Nose Picking, you can ask your friends to help you. Simply tell them to stop you when they see you picking your nose. This can be in the form of a subtle, yet rude reminder or a little tap on the fingers.
10) Go to a doctor
If you feel that you've exhausted all the above methods and still can't figure out a solution to your Nose Picking habit, go and visit your doctor.