August 18, 2023Habit replacement training significantly reduced body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) for more than half of patients with excoriation (skin picking), trichotillomania (hair pulling), nail biting, lip-cheek biting, and other BFRBs, according to a six-week proof-of-concept study published in JAMA.1Of the study’s 268 participants, 53% of those who practiced habit replacement techniques reported improvement compared to 20% of the control group.
Those who exhibited nail-biting benefited the most.Further, 80% of those who practiced habit replacement said they would recommend it to a friend with similar problems, and 86% reported overall satisfaction with the training, which substituted the pleasurable sensation of skin picking, nail-biting, or hair pulling with another action that feels good but isn’t harmful to the body.“BFRBs refer to recurrent and chronic behaviors inflicted upon the body (like trichotillomania and excoriation) that often result in physical damage,” said Roberto Olivardia, Ph.D., in the ADDitude webinar “Nail Biting!
Skin Picking! Hair Pulling! Understanding Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors with ADHD.”The TLC Foundation for Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors estimates that BFRBs affect about 3% of people worldwide.Read more on additudemag.com