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Nail biting


Nail biting is a very common, seemingly benign habit. If we look at a habit through the lens of TICM however, we know that everything is related and should be considered a window into the complexities of our pathophysiology.


TICM understands all situations and symptoms in terms of body mind energetics. We are a whole, nothing we do is by accident.


In TICM, nail biting can be a manifestation of mental stress, nervousness, anxiety, disappointment, boredom, hunger or feeling insecure. All of these feelings can be results of physical imbalances within the body. Nail biting can be viewed as an obsessive compulsive habit which often stems from anxiety and worry. Anxiety and worry are emotions associated with the Spleen organ system which is paired with the Stomach. If those emotions resonate with you, look into Spleen formula’s which treats anxiety and weak digestion.


Nails in general have to do with the Liver system. A deficiency or imbalance in the Liver system can draw attention to the nail, along with the feelings of stress, anger, frustration and irritability which funny enough are reasons why people bite their nails. Those are all emotions which correlate to the Liver and Gallbladder systems. If those emotions resonate with you, look into Liver formula’s, which helps to balance this system.


Several acupuncture points have had success in treating nail biting, especially auricular acupressure. You can rub your hands together 36 times and then rub your ears until they feel hot, twice daily. Do consult with your practitioner if you are dealing with nail biting and want to address the root cause.

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