How to Stop Biting Your F*cking Nails

In my mind, there’s a clear image of when I started biting my nails: I’m young, maybe 9 or 10, seated on top of a staircase while a gathering of some sort goes on without me in the living room below. I notice my nails are long enough to get me into trouble at school but my mother guards access to the clippers. Too nervous to ask for help, I nibble a little. Then I bite harder and I get into it, and I don’t stop. It all goes downhill from there.

Now all of this is bullshit. I’ve never lived in a house with stairs in them, and my mother would not appreciate the characterisation of her as a careless caregiver. (She was the exact opposite.) I may have picked up the habit somewhere around that age, but at 23 I can longer explain it away as the product of a child’s weak will and bizarre rationality. Still, this persistent image of myself as an anxious, isolated child probably speaks volumes about how deeply rooted nail biting is as a habit in my life.

G-d bless stock photography for allowing me to illustrate this in a way that doesn't betray how grotesque nail biting really is. via Shutterstock

G-d bless stock photography for allowing me to illustrate this in a way that doesn’t betray how grotesque nail biting really is.
via Shutterstock

Which is all just to say that I get that it can be really, really hard to stop biting your nails. I don’t want to be ripping off and consuming bits of my flesh in the middle of an exam or a meeting, and neither, I suspect, do you. I’m well aware that it’s gross and may lead to well-documented horrors (you know where that link leads, click at your own risk). But even — maybe especially — as a grown-ass adult, nail biting can be an impossibly difficult habit to kick.

My last “relapse” happened when I was buried a couple of feet under the pressures of grad school. I resolved to stop (again) when the pain was making it difficult for me to do things. Here are some tips that I’ve found make the process a little easier.

1. Have A Plan

You’re gonna do this thing! I believe in you. Now how are you gonna do it? Are you working towards something, like getting a manicure done before a wedding, or just generally looking to improve yourself as a human person? What will you need to help you along? When do you want to start? If you’ve been waiting for a sign that it’s time to stop, this post is it.

Think of your nails as a potential canvas. Now STOP EATING THE CANVAS. via

Think of your nails as a potential canvas. Now STOP EATING THE CANVAS.

What’s worked best for me is stopping gradually — first leaving the nails on my right (dominant) hand alone, then cutting back one by one till I’m just down to one maligned finger, then stopping entirely — and not putting a time limit on it, because I know from experience that I rarely make straightforward, linear progress on this. Think about what might work best for you, but quite importantly, be prepared for your plans to fail. Chances are trying to stop nail biting is going to make you more stressed and anxious for a bit, making you want to bite your nails even more, so don’t give yourself a hard time if it takes multiple tries for you to figure out an approach that works.

2. Identify Triggers

Most people bite their nails when they’re anxious or bored. Take the time to really pay attention to what you do and you might be able to narrow it down to more specific triggers. For example, I often find myself biting my nails when I’m writing or typing (i.e. procrastination) or when I’m waiting for webpages or games to load because I’m a spoilt-ass millennial. I’m also way more likely to bite my nails if they’re already rough or broken, exacerbating the problem.

3. Change Your Behaviour

Knowing when and why you bite your nails isn’t necessarily gonna be enough to stop you from doing it. I’ve definitely found myself fully conscious of my fingers between my teeth and still found myself either unwilling or unable to stop. Sometimes you need a physical reminder to snap you out of it, like a rubber band around your wrist you can snap whenever you catch yourself biting your nails. Alternatively (or additionally), you can:

3a. Make Nail Biting More Difficult Or Unpleasant

Putting stuff on my nails that makes it harder to actually physically bite them, whether I’m conscious of doing it or not, is by far the most effective quitting method I’ve found especially when you’re just getting started. Things I’ve tried with varying levels of success include:

Regular scotch tape: Don’t do it.

Unfortunately I did it, circa 2008.

Unfortunately I did it, circa 2008.

Paper surgical tape: Far more durable than scotch tape (though it’s still not gonna last more than a day or so) and a cheap solution. It’s gonna be really obvious you have tape on your fingernails, which is good for reminding you to Not Do The Thing but bad if you’ll feel self-conscious about it.

Cotton gloves: I found these particularly useful at night when I’ve slathered on moisturiser and didn’t want to find myself absentmindedly chewing on my nails before I went to sleep. You can still do most things in them, including operate touchscreens. (Also, your regular gloves, the ones you wear out when it’s cold? They’re probably the filthiest thing in your wardrobe. Think of that the next time you put your fingers near your mouth.)

Nail polish: Look at how great Contributing Editor KaeLyn‘s doing!

I haven’t had the same success — I pick at even the slightest unevenness in a manicure, and you can bet my still-healing nails were plenty uneven — but colour polish can be a great visual reminder to stop yourself from biting, while a strong transparent top coat can make it tougher for you to do so.

Nail biting treatment solution: This is a clear, bitter liquid that you apply onto your nails. The bitterness lingers a little even after you try to bite them and is thus a pretty effective deterrent, but I’ll admit I had to change brands a couple of times because I got used to the taste/just stopped caring about it.

Acrylic fake nails: Probably the most expensive and time-consuming solution, but it works for me without fail every time. I put on fake nails even when I’ve (mostly) stopped biting my nails if I know a particularly stressful period is coming up, like essay season. But again I gotta confess that once I chewed through even the acrylic when I was working on my thesis.

3b. Develop Alternative Habits

Think of something else you could do with your hands/mouth instead of biting your nails. Now scrap that thought, and think of something you could actually do in polite company.

Some of the alternative habits I’ve cultivated have been productive or at least harmless, like playing with my necklace, while others considerably less so, like compulsively checking my phone or that one time I started finishing a pack a day… of orange Mentos. Take better care of your nails! Whenever I find myself wanting to bite my nails in public, I rub Burt’s Bees lemon butter cuticle cream on them instead, and at home I have gotten cuticle trimming down to a therapeutic art. (Trimming your cuticles is bad for you, but I can say with a fair amount of certainty that eating them is probably worse.)

This stuff smells good enough to eat... but we're not doing that anymore, no.

This stuff smells good enough to eat… but we’re not doing that anymore, no.

Going back to triggers, it helps not only to find alternatives to nail biting but to tackle the problem at its root: look for ways to reduce your stress, anxiety, or boredom. I’ve recently taken up cross-stitching, because few things occupy my hands and restless brain better than sewing “MACHO” in a pink flowery font. You do you, whether it’s yoga or Netflix marathons.

4. Hold Yourself Accountable

Print out a small calendar, pin it somewhere you’ll see it often, and mark each day you manage to go without biting your nails. I enjoy being able to physically chart my progress but of course there are plenty of apps that’ll do the same; I like Good Habits for its simple, straightforward interface. If you’re a bit more hardcore, you can try something like Beeminder or 21 Habit that’ll charge you if you go off track. What’s currently working for me is Habitica (formerly HabitRPG), recommended by Autostraddle’s Tech/Geekery Editor Ali, in which I’ve listed “stop biting nails” as a habit so every time I do it my pixelly avatar takes a hit. I really don’t want the little guy to die.

Get people around you on board, too! Ask your friends to point it out or smack your hands when you’re about to put them to your mouth; ask your girlfriend to yell “those fingers aren’t going anywhere near me!” every time you do the same. Visit a professional manicurist, if you would like to be reprimanded by a stranger about how you’re treating your body.

THIS IS FOR YOUR OWN GOOD via Shutterstock

via Shutterstock

Full disclosure: I hate when people do this, because I am That Person who will do more of what she is told not to. So if you’re like me, make clear to those around you that it hurts more than helps if they police your nail biting.

5. Seek Professional Help (If Necessary)

If you’ve tried everything and it doesn’t work, or if you’re just too overwhelmed to even try, consider seeking professional help. Nail biting can be a symptom of something more serious, and it’s okay if you don’t have it in you to deal with it yourself! I know it feels like a trivial thing to go to a therapist or psychiatrist for but you guys, there is a world in which your nails do not bleed onto paper and you don’t want to cry from how much it hurts to do anything with your hands (which is a lot of things), and it is a world you could most definitely come to live in in time. You deserve all the care and help you need to get there.

Any other tips? Share them in the comments!

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Fikri has written 61 articles for us.


  1. I fucking love biting my nails, but I hate how it looks (mainly while I’m biting, but also how my nails end up looking). After seeing one too many photos of myself with my finger in my mouth, I decided to stop.

    What works best for me is regular (at home) manicures – I don’t want to eat nail polish and also don’t want to mess up the manicure. The nicer my nails look, the less inclined I am to bite them. If my cuticles are smooth and not jagged or dry, there is less to bite and I have to actively make something ugly that is already looking good. I’ve been doing this for a few years now and still, if my nails are not painted, I will bite them. I have no idea what makes this sort of compulsion – I don’t think it’s really a habit or I would have broken it by now, with the extended stretches of no nail biting.

    The bad part is that something about the nail polish (or remover maybe?) makes my very strong nails start to peel and flake after a while. Any tips from other polished nail people? I don’t know why this happens and it bugs me.

    • I get that peeling/flaking thing with my also usually strong nails, and it’s ridiculous because then I start picking at my nails to remove the parts that are peeling, which just ruins my manicure, which makes me want to bite my nails. (Also the peeling thing makes them jagged which is another biting trigger.) I have had some luck with the ORLY BB creme polish for recovery periods except that the boring nude color kind of defeats the putting on nail polish point.

  2. Keeping polish on my nails is the only foolproof way I’ve found to stop biting my nails. I’ve tried the bitter polish but I found that the taste gets on food i eat with my hands and i don’t like that.
    I’m also obsessed with trimming my cuticles. Why is that bad for you?

    • It increases your risk of infections! (And it gets even worse if you get it done at a salon.) I have to do it though — if they’re the slightest bit uneven, I’ll pick at them, and I’m guessing that’s significantly worse. Also I totally feel you re: the taste getting on food.

  3. I’ve been biting my nails FOREVER. Even if I paint them, after a few days of chipping I’m back to biting.

    I’ve recently gotten into Jamberry, which has severely curbed the biting urge. I can bite off nail polish but I can’t bite off vinyl nail wraps! It’s sort of an expensive endeavor, but I have nails for the first time in my life and now I’m so proud of them I don’t want to bite them!

  4. I am on month 2 right now–the longest I’ve ever gone!!!

    I actually seem to not want to bite as much when I was wearing nail polish every day and I found nail polish pretty, but exhausting. I tried regular polish, gel polish, and Jamberry wraps. Every time it started to chip or peel, I had to redo my manicure or I’d pull it all off and/or want to bite. So I was doing my nails like 3-4 time/week, which is TOO MUCH for a lazy femme.

    So I actually took off all the polish and clipped my nails very short, but I’m not biting them anymore and the edges are filed, not raggedy. I’m trying to grow and clip off the unhealthy parts that are all gross looking. Then I’ll try growing them a little longer again! I think I’m probably going to be a nail minimalist, but right now I’m too embarrassed to let people see my yellow-y, damaged nails without polish on top.

    I can’t believe I might actually stop doing this after 26 years of nail biting!

    • Yay you!! When I started putting on acrylic nails they wouldn’t last more than a couple of days — one would fall off some way or another (usually from me poking at it), and then I’d feel the need to remove all of them — but I got so fcking annoyed with having to do it over and over again that I committed to leaving them alone. Now that the biting’s not so bad I’m doing the same as you with cutting them really short and keeping them as neat as possible.

  5. Oh God my nails look so bad right now, I went on a first date and kept thinking “please don’t look at my hands!”.

    Usually what works for me is a nail file. If i’ve got one in hand, then the “nail biting” will turn into “nail filing” and so my nails will look nice and even. If i don’t have a file close by I’ll bite that sucker down. I think “uneven nail” is my trigger maybe ? …

    (Nothing else worked for me btw : that bitter stuff on your nails just leaves a shitty taste in your mouth but if you’ve got an uneven nail you’re still gonna obsess about getting it even).

    • I am really conscious of my nails when meeting new people, especially if those new people are girls who might wanna hold my hand. I’m glad you’ve found something that works for you though! (And I hope that date went well otherwise.)

  6. I don’t bite my nails, but I have a similar anxiety-related habit wherein I must seek and destroy even the tiniest pimple that appears anywhere on my skin – usually, of course, making it look a thousand times worse than if I had just left it alone. When I’m having a breakout (as I am right now after coming off a two-week course of antibiotics), things can get real ugly real fast. :(

    I’ve tried every trick in the book, and for me the only thing that’s successful in the long term is removing the object of fixation by keeping breakouts under control. Unfortunately, you can’t exactly remove your nails, so that’s not very helpful for you. But I can at least offer some empathy and understanding for what you’re going through.

    • Me too. And the self-surgery is so much worse with adult acne, because when I was a kid I didn’t have a magnifying mirror and three types of tweezers.

    • I do this too, and right now it sucks because I have a patch of irritated skin on my face that just. won’t. stop. breaking. out. And maybe me not messing with it at all would help it heal better, idk!

    • Okay this might be totally not what you are looking for, but if you search whitehead/blackhead removal online there are videos of spots being popped which can be watched in lieu of going at your own skin. They are oddly soothing videos and i end up there every couple of months. Although if you are squeamish you really should stay away.

  7. In middle school, I suddenly began biting my nails. I don’t really know how I started, but I know what made me stop.

    I was just living my life, minding my business when I noticed that my thumb kinda hurt. I looked down and saw that the tip was full of yellow and green puss!

    My dad offered to poke it with a needle and squeeze all the puss out for me. But I (reasonably in my opinion) declined his offer. So he took me to the doctor, and she proceeded to poke it with a needle and squeeze the puss out.

    She handed me my prescription for antibiotics, looked down at my abused nails, and told me in a very matter-of-fact tone, “Stop biting your nails, you’d be surprised how filthy the inside of your mouth is.”

    I was revolted.

    And so as we drove home, my dad saying, “See? I could have done that,” I vowed not to bite another nail.

  8. I started biting my nails when I was six or seven. I can remember my older and wiser neighbor friend telling me that I somehow would get worms in my stomach (!) from it, but that just made me worry hardcore whenever I bit them.

    I actually used habitRPG to get myself to stop biting last year—it was the only habit I managed to make/break using it, and of course I found about two or three more to replace it, but overall I’m happy to have stopped. Part of the strategy was just keeping my nails cut super short as much as possible, which is good for playing violin (long nails make it hard to press down the strings—they get in the way). Plus I don’t have rough feeling nails, which my gf appreciates.

    • Long nails were a serious roadblock for me when I finally successfully stopped biting my nails long enough to get to that point. How does anyone do anything with them?? Even typing feels weird!

      • By using the pads of their fingers instead of the tips, but there are still limits which kinda depend on length and strength.
        Past a certain length tho some things are just outright impossible no matter how strong your nails are they’re taking up space will be in the way.

  9. Ok, this is kind of an important topic for me. ^^ Something no one ever seems to get about me. I only ever talked to people who bite their nails and hate it and want to stop.

    I love biting my nails and I have no problem at all about it. Is it just me? Is it just that I’m doing it not as much/far as other people do it? Probably. People never tell me my nails look bitten down, just short.

    I have been biting nails my hole life because I can’t stand it when they get long (they are just always in the way or I scratch myself accidentally) and I hate how they feel after being cut or clipped. They get so sharp! So I just bite them down how other people would cut them.
    I tried stopping when I was younger because people told me it was bad. But I never got why and by now I just don’t care anymore.
    Anyone else out there who is perfectly fine and happy with biting their nails?

    • I have a similar experience! I can’t even remember when I started biting my nails, it feels like I’ve always done it, and I don’t really mind or care. I got told off for it by my dad for a while when I was little but it never made a difference and I’m still biting my nails almost every day at 23.

      I definitely don’t have the bleeding-fingers experience that the article describes, I just have short nails and don’t bite them any further than that. It doesn’t help that any time my nails get slightly longer I’ll start getting bothered by the sensation of the nail pressing on the skin further than usual, and having anything but my very short nails feels awful when I’m drawing, so honestly I don’t feel compelled to stop or try to stop.

      • Thank you!! I sometimes get a bit self conscious just because it feels like a childish thing to do, but take away other peoples judgement and I am totally fine with biting my nails. I get that its technically gross but I also chew pens and remote controls and lots of other gross collectors of bacteria. I do notice that if I have a day or two off work my nails grow out a little, because I’m less stressed. But tbh its stress in likely to worry about, not nail biting. No need to feel guilty about something else in my life. Biters unite!!

  10. I’ve been biting my nails my whole life, & I’ve been working on stopping since the beginning of this year. I got some of that nail growth stuff that comes in the gold bottle. It speeds up the growth process (making me not want to bite them off). It’s also super goopy & tastes like poison so there’s no way you’ll ever want it near your mouth.

  11. I don’t remember when I started biting my nails. I’ve always bitten my nails, and my cuticles, and the skin around them. I stopped biting my nails on a scholarship trip to China. Why? I have no idea.

    However, I’ve never been able to stop biting the area around my nails, which is quite painful – especially because I paint my nails every week, which means nail polish remover in cuts. Ouch.

    This has gone on so long that I have a band-aid scale to measure stress. Part of my solution is a tarot reading every time the band-aid scale shows up (if I’ve bitten my hands bad enough I need even one band-aid, something is bugging me) to figure out why and what to do about it.

  12. I’m not a biter, I’m a picker… which is a little less gross. This post made me want to pick my nails SO BADLY. Besides this post, I usually get the urge when life is haywire and I’m super anxious, and I tend to rip them way too much… I can always tell how “stable” I am by the quality of my nails lol.

  13. I did it for a really long time. I blame my mother; she still bites her nails. Eventually my stepmom commented on the ‘bad’ habit and i stopped doing it. Stopping the biting was hard, but when i discovered i actually had beautiful white nails and it made look my hands a lot prettier, it was totally worth it!
    Sometimes i am tempted to do it again when a nail is broken. I just can’t seem to leave it alone until i can cut it properly.. And once i’ve bitten one finger, i want to do all the others because the nails have to have the same lenght (that’s not weird is it?). Another good motivator: my wife gets angry when she sees it…

  14. I bite my nails while I read. I don’t even realize I’m doing it until they’re down the quick and painful. Sometimes I manage to break the habit for a few months but I always start again when I’m feeling stressed. Maybe I’ll try your fake nail trick before it gets to that point next time!

    • Strangely enough, I noticed that reading was one of the times I was least likely to bite my nails even though I’m not really doing anything with my hands. I still do it, it’s just not as bad as when I’m say, watching TV. Can’t explain it!

  15. Started biting due to sensory issues; clippers were painful and nail files felt super weird so I used biting to manage length. Nail scissors are the most pleasant alternative I’ve found so far.

  16. I was a lifelong nail-biter (and toenail-biter as a small, flexible child), and my family tried pretty much everything to get me to quit.

    What finally worked was being in my final semester of school and getting ready to interview for full-time, professional, wear-a-suit jobs. I kept thinking about how embarrassed I would be to interview with raggedy nails, and how silly it would be if that was the aspect of my “professional appearance” that distracted an interview committee. I had so much anxiety building up about employment that it served as an effective interrupter every time I went to bite my nails.

    Since then, I’ve found that keeping them trimmed and filed (with a four-part file that makes them super smooth) is essential–they’re much harder to pick and nibble at if they’re well-maintained.

    My brother still bites his nails and now the sound really grates on me. How did I not notice it for 20+ years?

    • Oh, man. I never bit my toenails, but a couple of years back I caught my youngest (still small, flexible) brother doing it and I felt like The Worst for passing on a bad habit. Idk if it’s rational, but it was def a core motivation for me to stop.

  17. Yeah. I need to stop and I want to stop. The actual act doesn’t bother me but I hate the way my nails look as a result. And I know that filing them and being generally hygienic with them helps but it’s so often a pain to be carrying around a file. I don’t carry a bag so having a nail file in my pocket is the only other option I can think of and that’s not the most practical. Any advice there? Also @kaelynrich that’s fantastic progress. Your IG post was definitely an inspiration for me to try again. And this article I guess should be my sign that now is the time.

    • Get this fancy ass portable nail clipper/file situation? I’m (only partly) kidding but yeah, I feel you — I don’t enjoy carrying a tonne of things around either even though a nail file or just tweezers would be really helpful sometimes. You might wanna try acrylic nails or nail wraps then, which means a couple of hours or less of work at home but then little to pick at when you’re outside!

  18. Not gonna lie, the thing that ultimately got me to stop for good was this: My first week of Freshman year of university I was so anxious, and I chewed my nails so short, that after nearly a week of gnawing at them, it actually hurt to bend or flex my fingers for a good 3-4 days. Once they healed, I never chewed again nor was I even tempted to chew them. I would not recommend this method, so go with the above mentioned in the article, readers!

    • BEEN THERE TOO v glad I’m not the only one (my fingers are actually slightly bent and I suspect it’s from years of serious childhood nail biting)

  19. Briefly in middle school I was nail biter, but my textured ( a rough glitter on top a black) nail polish discouraged it.
    And probably the scalp dermatillomania too, but I don’t recommend that.

    Nail polish with a texture however I would recommend, unless the chipping of your nail polish makes things worse for you.


    I shit you not.

    I’ve been picking & biting the skin around my nails and other parts of my fingers/hands for as long as I can remember. The only periods of my life in which I quit completely are when I have silly putty.

    My mother tried lightly smacking me whenever she noticed, but it just made me avoid her more. I asked a couple of my friends to mention it whenever they noticed; after snapping at them a few times, we dropped that. Nail polish did nothing, because it wasn’t the actual nail I was biting. Thanks to anosmia, I couldn’t smell or taste the bitter spray stuff my parents bought (which I’m pretty sure was actually for dogs). I’ve tried being personally accountable, and that never lasts more than a week or two.

    Any time my hands are idle, I’m picking or biting. Silly Putty, however, keeps them busy (and kittens). I almost always have one of those plastic red eggs in my bag.

    Silly. Putty.

  21. Agh I’ve been trying to quit biting my nails forever. I hate the way they look and how childish/unprofessional I feel with my fingers in my mouth constantly. I’m also embarrassed just in general for anyone new I meet to see the sorry state of my nails. That said nothing has worked for me yet.
    I tried the bad-tasting nail polish when I was younger (something with cactus extract?) but like @findquiet said you can taste it whenever you eat food with your hands which is too unpleasant. The nail file suggestion is a no go for me because my nails are bitten too short for that to be an option (or maybe I just don’t know how to use one? I never have).
    I’m currently trying the Good Habits and Habitica apps and so far Habitica seems to be better because I have to input every single time I catch myself biting my nails, whereas with the Good Habits app, after I catch myself once I’ve broken the streak and it’s hard to be motivated for the rest of the day. I might also try the cuticle cream to give myself an alternate habit.
    I have high hopes for quitting this time! Thank you for this article and all the suggestions :)

  22. I don’t bite my nails but this is a really good thing on behavioral change!

    also hai if you are a person who has sex by using your hands to touch a vag without using gloves especially if you are putting your fingers in said vag, if your hands are all torn up, it will HURT. bc the natural ph of a vag?

    just thought it should be said.

  23. I used to bite my nails and the bitter nail polish was the only thing that worked. One taste was all it took.

    Now, actually cutting my nails is the problem. My nails have always grown very fast, and they get really sharp if I let them grow but I always seem to forget to cut them before I hurt myself (or someone else).

  24. Fikri! So good to see you!

    Ugh, this is my number one awful habit. I’m actually encouraged to see so many folks owning up to being finger-chewers. When I was a kid, my mum would say “no man will ever want to put a ring on that” ho ho ho (though as it happened a man did actually put a ring on that.)

    Like @tttango it’s the skin that I chew. To the point where they would get infected. One of my earliest memories is sitting on the kitchen worktop while my mum popped each disgusting little fetid finger with a needle. I would get a packet of opal fruits if I didn’t scream the place down.

  25. So biting nails, although only #4, maybe, of my habit list. My main concern (and I hope I’m not the only one here!) is I.
    Biting and chewing the inside of my lips! Like in front of the gums. I remember when I was younger I would do it for a phase or two, then stop. Ever since a few years ago, I do it whenever I get the chance, at least once a day!
    It blows because, well, I love my lips heh and it probably looks like a mess in there lol.

    Anyone out there addicted to chewing the inside of their lips? Cheeks? Please say I’m not the only one..

    I’d love to stop but have no idea how to, boo!
    Would love to hear some responses.

  26. I’ve been biting my nails for as long as I can remember, and I’ve been trying to stop on my own for a few years, with little success. My nails and cuticles have made me feel pretty self-conscious, especially in meetings at work, where I try to keep my hands hidden in my lap for as long as possible. I’d wrap some in bandaids most days, either when they actually need one, or just look so ugly that I feel the need to hide it.

    Now I think I may finally be on the verge of stopping for good. Thank you, painful wisdom teeth.

    Just went to the dentist, and one are impacted, two are sideways. I’ve been popping ibuprofen around the clock, eating a mostly liquid diet, and distracting myself with Netflix marathons when I don’t have to work, so it’s been impossible to bite my nails or cuticles (without being in a lot of pain.)

    At first I was too preoccupied to pay any attention to my fingers, but three days into my teeth pain, I noticed my nails suddenly looked a whole lot better than they have in ages. Not great, but better and longer, which is a decent motivator for me at this point. Maybe I can finally stop.

    This is the weird silver lining to having shitty wisdom teeth that are still waiting to be removed.

  27. I have bitten my nails so far down, that most bleed, they used to hurt like hell, but I guess they just hardened to that treatment, I hate it when someone see’s them and say’s stuff about them, I also pick at then bite my toenails, which I know is disgusting anyone else who bites this bad, and wanting to stop ? I’d love to hear from you, maybe we can inspire each other

  28. hi Iv been biting my nails since I was about 7/8 years old. Im 42 this year, 2 of my nails (one on each hand) I can just bite the whole nail off and it wont hurt or bleed. im trying my best to break the habit at the moment. nearly 4 weeks not apart from 2 that I still bite. but I will a amit its been the hardest thing iv ever done in my life. I have a elastic band and I will pull hard when I put my nails in my mouth. every night I put new nail varnish on. the nail biting solution well over the years I love the teast. im aiming for my birthday in june to go have them done in a shop. I got the habbit of picking now, and I think its stopping them from growing. any advice please….

    • I came across this post looking for help quitting this terrible habit. I bite my nails when anxious and stressed, which is nearly all the time. I only bite one finger but it is a doozy. About half of the nail is bitten off and the cuticle is all ripped. It hurts to bend it. I am hopeful some of these tips will work for me. Thank you for sharing.

  29. Gritlets work for me. Check out It’s a nail file thats a band around your wrist so you can always file a ragged nail or fidget by filing.

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