I’ve been a nail biter since childhood. For periods of time I could stop and grow my nails. However, I would always return to my bad habit. In my late 20s I decided to make more of an effort and have had great nails for over a year now. Here is what helped.
Figuring Out The Context for Nail Biting
There were only particular times that I bit my nails. This was when I was studying or had a lot of computer related work to do. The question was what was I doing this at these moments? I was nail biting because it felt good and it was comforting in stress situations. I would also only do it at home and not in public places. (Due to my idea of germs and viruses.)
Replacing The Habit
This was a difficult area. There is no activity that is on par with the action of nail biting. I tried chewing gum. It would hurt my jaw. Stress toys would hurt my hands and I didn’t find them effective. What did replace the habit was playing with my hair. The key thing is comfort. The smooth texture of my hair gives me comfort, so I now do this action while I’m working, doing tests or if I’m under too much stress.
Health and Nutrition
To some extent my nail problem was due to health and nutrition. I was anemic (ie. low iron) and that causes brittle nails. I also used to drink a lot of coffee and tea. After drinking a tea I would immediately feel the need to bite my nails. These drinks also contributed to my anemia.
Manicures do help in several ways. Nice nails can serve as a reminder that you don’t want to ruin them. They are also great for protecting the nails. My nails are often brittle and thin. The extra protection helps tremendously. There is also a nice variety of techniques available.
There are Manicures for Short Bitten Nails
If you have severely bitten nails there is hope. Surprisingly no matter how short your nails are there are techniques to apply fake nails. This can help you on your journey to stop nail biting.