10 Tips to Stop Biting Your Nails Once and for All
When trying to fight our nail-biting habit, we need practical tips that can be implemented easily without having to put forth too much effort. Whether we bite them due to anxiety, anger, or boredom, we do it subconsciously. Not being aware of something makes it difficult to fight, and only hands-on tips can do the job.
We at Bright Side have finally discovered some proven solutions to this problem and we’re happy to share them with you.
1. Cut them as much as you can.
Always keep your nail clipper nearby. The moment you notice that your nails have become even just a bit longer, trim them. Even that little chipped nail needs to be clipped and not bitten. So when the urge starts, reach for your nail clipper. When they’re short, they won’t be as satisfying to bite.
2. Wear gloves or bandage up the fingers.
Since it’s hard to catch yourself before you go for a bite, you should consider covering your nails. There are 2 ways you can do this: either bandage your nails or wear gloves.
Once you bandage your nails, it will be a constant reminder that you shouldn’t bite them. In fact, you can even use clear tape as a more discreet option. Gloves are also great for when you’re at home because you won’t need to change the tape or bandage constantly.
3. Find activities to keep your fingers busy.
This can vary from person to person. We all have different hobbies, so it’s good to think about using one as a defense mechanism. Create illustrations, paint, knit, or simply sit on your hands, fold them together, put them in your pocket or try doodling or clicking a pen.
4. Keep your mouth busy too.
Keeping your mouth busy will help a lot when it comes to avoiding nail-biting. You’ll see that after some time, the impulse to bite your nails will go away. Start chewing gum and eating hard candy or mints. You can also keep a water bottle nearby and take a sip whenever you reach for your nails.
5. Bitter-flavored nail polish
Use nail polish that has a bitter flavor. This is a safe chemical with a very strong, long-lasting flavor. When applying it, make sure to cover the whole nail along with the surrounding skin. Its awful taste will repel you. Make it a habit by applying this nail polish every morning.
6. Moisturize your hands when the urge starts.
Think of this method as 2 positive habits. Keep hand moisturizer with you and use it when the impulse to bite kicks in. This will not only distract you, but you’ll also keep the skin on your hands soft and moisturized.
7. Keep a nail file close to you.
Get yourself a few nail files and place them around the house, in your pocket, and in your purse. This way, you won’t have an excuse to bite your nails. When the impulse starts, grab your nail file and start tending to your nails, one by one.
8. Place a rubber band on your wrist and focus on it when the urge starts.
Placing a rubber band on your wrist will help to deter the urges. So when you lift your arm to bite your nails, start playing with the rubber band instead.
9. Use your phone to keep your fingers busy.
Your phone can now become your best friend and your helper. But since we pass our free time by scrolling through social media, one of our hands is often free, which becomes a target for biting. Download a few games that require 2 hands to play. You can also start writing some stories in your notes just to get your attention away from your nails.
10. Use visual reminders.
Fill your home with notes so when you look up, left or right, you get reminded that you should put your hands down. You can also change your wallpaper and lock screen with a note or photo that will keep you motivated.
Bonus: “I bit my nails for 20 years. The first photo was taken in July 2019 and the second in December 2019. My self-confidence is back.”
How long have you been biting your nails? Do you have any tips that helped you kick the habit?