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A female asked:

are treatments for dermatillomania very effective? what are they? i have been obsessivly picking scabs on my scalp for years and it is completely out of control. i have about 70 scabs right now and am starting to notice bald spots. i will pick scabs an

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Heidi Fowler
Psychiatry 25 years experience
It : It takes courage to share this. Dermatillomania, as you already know, is an impulse controll disorder that involves compulsively picking at your skin. It is very important to tell your psychiatrist about your dermatillomania because if you have 70 active scabs, it is clearly not under any sort of control. The embarrassment you feel about your skin picking contributes to poor self esteem. The picking could lead to permaent scars. There are medications that can help with compulsive behaviors. Behavioral therapy is often very helpful as well a therapy to get a better understanding about what is driving you to pick at your skin. It sounds like you are ready to share this now. By sharing this secret it will have much less power over you. I applaud you for the decision to bring this problem foward and to start working on it.
Dr. Kate Erwin
Specializes in Child Psychiatry
Don’t delay: If you are not seeing a psychiatrist please make an appointment. As the answering doctor has pointed there are effective treatments for your situation so don’t delay!

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Last updated Oct 31, 2018
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