Nail biting to be classified as a mental disorder?


Lord of Penmai
Jul 5, 2011
Nail biting to be classified as a mental disorder?

Nail biting, perceived as a mere habit, may soon be classified as a fullfledged obsessive-compulsive disorder, experts say.

Millions of people around the world suffer from a selfmutilating and often painful addiction to biting their nails, which can be harder to quit than smoking cigarettes, but is often overlooked as a relatively benign habit, the Daily Mail reported.

The American Psychiatric Association is preparing to change the designation of nail biting from 'not otherwise classified' , to 'obsessive compulsive disorder' (OCD) in its upcoming issue of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

Habits that are commonly associated with OCD include repetitive hand-washing and hair-pulling .

The disease is characterized by unreasonable thoughts and fears that lead to such repetitive behaviours . "Nail biting isn't a disorder unless it is distressing and meets a certain clinical level of severity," said Carol Mathews, a psychiatrist at the University of California , San Francisco.

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