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Picking Your Nose Just May Be Good For You... Seriously

Updated on July 2, 2015

Nasty Nose Picking

The act of digging one's finger into one's nose to pick for nasty boogers is a taboo thing to do in our society. We often look to the right or left of us while driving and see someone who thinks that their car window shields them from other drivers, rigorously digging their schnoz.

You have your different kinds of nose pickers.

Those who drive.

Closeted pickers who sometimes fling their boogers on the wall or just simply fling them wherever they may stick.

Open pickers who pick anywhere at any time with no shame.

Kleenex pickers who, in public, think it's okay to pick their nose as long as a piece of kleenex is placed over their fingers.

Booger pickers who like to look at the size of their nostril creation before rubbing it on a kleenex.

Of course- we have the classic 'pick-their-nose-and-eat-it' disgusting kids (and some adults) that make you want to vomit.

At any rate- nose picking is indeed pretty gross, however- you may be doing yourself some good regardless of which type of picker you are.

Everyone, even the President, does it at some point.

A 1995 study into nose-picking, requesting information from 1,000 randomly selected adults, gathered 254 responses. It defined nose-picking as "the insertion of a finger (or other object) into the nose with the intention of removing dried nasal secretions". Of those who responded, 91% said they were current nose-pickers (but only 75% of these believed everyone did it) and two people claimed to spend between 15 and 30 minutes and between one and two hours a day picking their noses. **Source- Wikipedia

Another study I read said that the average person picks their nose at least three times a day. So, if you go daily digging- you are perfectly normal as more than likely, everyone does it.

The compulsion to nose pick really isn't our fault.

A person swallows with the help of cilia which keeps phlegm and mucus moist so they go down the back of the throat. However, when mucus is close to the nostril it gets much dryer and turns into hard little nuggets. These dried little morsels cause a very irritating sensation. Your nose can wheeze, whistle, or feel obstructed. The boogers can also cause itchiness which makes us all want to dislodge the hard stuff. So, see- it's not our fault- it's nature's fault. We naturally don't want to have our breathing impaired, it only makes sense to remove the boogie.

Even the Queen Goes Digging For Gold

Why Nose Picking (And eating it!) May Be Good for You..

There have been several studies that show that picking your nose and eating it may actually have health benefits (believe it or not). Professor Scott Nepper has a theory that ingesting your own snot isn't necessarily a bad thing. He believes that eating mucous from the nose may boost the immune system by introducing germs back into the body, especially infants and young toddlers. He believes that since we've been telling our kids to QUIT picking, this has caused more allergies and auto-immune disorders. (Source, Rachel Riley of Daily News)

Chronic Nose Picking Kid

True This!

The Other Side Of Nose Picking

I have read five studies on nose picking and of course, there are medical researchers and scientists who think that nose picking is a recipe for bacterial infections due to the bacteria under the nails and bacteria on the fingers. Also, someone else's mucus spread if it's infected and make other people sick.

There have been several bad side effects from chronic rhinotrichotillomania as well.

  • Perforation of the nasal septum
  • may be a sign of obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • spreading the disease because chronic nose pickers are more like to be carriers of Staphylococcus aureus bacteria
  • picking your nose can lead to more boogers

Honest Survey

Be honest- have you picked your nose today?

See results

In Conclusion

Nose picking is in and of itself, pretty gross. However, studies show that we all do it- most of us several times a day.

Like anything that spreads germs, there are scientists who think we should be subjected to nose picking because it will strengthen our immune systems. Other scientists believe 'sterile' is the way to go.

I guess both make sense..


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    • lyoness913 profile image

      Summer LeBlanc 2 years ago from H-Town

      Lee, thank you so much for the comment. We used to have a kid in grade school who would shake his head and boogers would fly out. We called him Greenie- urgh, so gross. LOL Tell Mr. Green that he should give up that nasty habit! LOL

      Thanks again,


    • FatBoyThin profile image

      Colin Garrow 2 years ago from Kinneff, Scotland

      It takes a good writer to make a great Hub out of nose-picking. Very funny. Voted up.

    • profile image

      Lee Cloak 2 years ago

      A brilliant hub, very informative with interesting conclusions, i work with a guy who is always at it, so everybody calls him 'Mr Green', i must show him this article, thanks for sharing, voted up, Lee

    • lyoness913 profile image

      Summer LeBlanc 2 years ago from H-Town

      Rochelle- I got the idea from my 8 year old niece who asked me 'Why do boys pick their nose?' LOL

      Thanks for reading and thanks for the comment!


    • Rochelle Frank profile image

      Rochelle Frank 2 years ago from California Gold Country

      What an odd and improbable subject to write about. It was actually informative and interesting, once you get past the disgust.

      I wonder how many people do it while reading hubs.