It’s dirty and disgusting. So why do we bite our nails? | Spanlish

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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

It’s dirty and disgusting. So why do we bite our nails?

I’ve been biting my nails ever since I can remember. I do it automatically, without even realizing it: I’m focused on writing a story, and before I know it, my finger is in my mouth and I’m greedily chewing a nail or a cuticle. I hate that I bite my nails; it makes me feel ashamed, and I’ve tried quitting multiple times. So why do I keep doing it? The answer is more complicated than you’d think.

Scientists, in fact, are still trying to figure out exactly why people bite their nails. But they do know that it’s a habit for a lot of us: about 20 to 30 percent of the population are nail biters, including up to 45 percent of teenagers. I thought that nail biting was a sign of nervousness or anxiety, but research shows that’s not necessarily...

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