A new infographic recently published by SkinPick.com depicts a little known impulse control disorder known as dermatillomania. Dermatillomania is the scientific name composed of derma or skin; till, to pull; and mania or madness. While people have always suffered from the malady, it has only recently been officially accepted as a disorder, in 2013.
Dermatillomania goes well beyond the occasional itch we all have from time to time or the unconscious plucking of an irritating hangnail. It is the compulsive habit of picking at one's own skin, often causing tissue damage. In addition to leaving physical scars, dermatillomania interferes with daily activities, impacts social life and can stimulate stress.
The infographic also says it is linked to Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and is often preceded or accompanied by stress, tension and anxiety. During episodes of skin picking, there is often a compulsive, uncontrollable urge to squeeze, scratch and pick at skin tissue for no physical reason. It is considered a form of self-injury.
A survey of college students found that 4% of the survey takers suffer from the illness and it is estimated anywhere from 1.4% to 5.4% of the general population have the condition. Women are more likely to suffer from the malady at 86% compared to only 14% of their male counterparts.
Statistically, the onset of the disorder peaks in adolescents around 11-13 years old. Most commonly, the face is the effected area of the body but it can also affect anywhere from the scalp to the Cuticles and nails of the persons toes. Biological, environmental and hereditary factors are thought to contribute to the cause of this disorder; however, the exact causes of skin picking disorder are unknown.
There is still no cure that is 100% effective and treatment has to be tailored to the individual. Most treatments involve cognitive behavioral therapy. Other alternative methods have also shown promise in the treatment of the disorder and the infographic lists them. SkinPick.com is a Website that is dedicated to the treatment of dermatillomania. Online counseling for dermatillomania is available on skinpick.com.