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How Do Yoo Stop Picking Your Nose

Are you a booger picker? Is nose picking a vice? What happens if you pick your nose too much? Does nose picking make it larger? Yes. It can be disgusting but read on to get responses from various people including victims, doctors and experts.

What is nose picking? A widely conceived meaning of picking nose is the action of inserting your finger in the nostrils to remove a boogie or clear it.

  • Picking your nose is not a vice but may be considered as such by some people or in certain situations
  • Picking nose can become a habit when triggered or done repeatedly
  • It cannot cause brain tumors
  • Individuals who have a behavioral disorder can obsessively pick their noses
  • The nose is one of the organs that keeps on growing so picking it does not make it larger.


What happens if you pick your nose too much?

Infection can occur after you engage in constant nose picking. Research clearly indicates that in every three people, at least one of them has Staphylococcus aureus in their nose. An example of staph infection linked to nasal picking is nasal vestibulitis.

Nasal vestibulitis

This is a bacterial infection of the nasal vestibular skin. It is one of the secondary infection that results from injury, irritation or harmful foreign substances such as dust. Notably, injury is caused by scratching while you are picking your nose. You are also likely to develop this infection if you smoke or have a perforated septum.

There are two types this infection. Namely, acute and chronic nasal vestibulitis.

Symptoms of acute nasal vestibulitis are mainly reddened vestibular erosion skin that appears swollen.  The chronic stage is characterized by “dry and pachynsis of nasovestibular skin, often with rhagas or lichenification as well as mycteric dryness and itch.” [www.medigoo.com]

Patients with either type experience a painful burning sensation and itching nose.

A man picking nose [wikipedia.org]
A man picking nose [wikipedia.org]

Note: This is a secondary nose infection from picking.

Primarily nasal vestibulitis is treated by cleaning vestibular skin using hydrogen peroxide preferably by a doctor. Use of antibiotics can also treat this infection. However, your doctor would want to diagnose it or distinguish the types by asking for symptoms.


Nose picking is such a disgusting thing. Picking the nose is not only a habit that will crop up in many people since childhood. It may be not only be messy and distasting but a real serious issue.

Have ever watched a girl or boy picking nose or any other person around you? All of a sudden you see them eating! Yuck! You look away in total disgust. “Is this one sick?” And that is almost the immediate string that stretches your mind.

What is the likely problem?

Benefits for the body?

Do you pick your nose and eat of the boogies and mucous? If scientific theory is anything to go with, individuals who habitually pick their noses and eat the booger or mucous get a stepped up or boosted immune system by stimulating antibody production.


Away from booger picking and eating. Now, compulsive nose picking behavior described as an irresistible urge to do so is called Rhinotillexomania. People who have this symptom have a psychiatric disorder characterized by impulse control disorder. In particular, Rhinotillexomania is symptomized by excessive nose picking that causes damage to nasal lining.

Other effects constantly having this habit

Besides infection risks other harmful effects of picking your nose include:

  • Occasional nose bleeding
  • Perforation in nasal septum
  • Scabbing and scar formation

NOTE: You cannot get a brain tumor from booger picking. Thus, there is no report of such a case where any victims has died from nose picking.

Booger picker tools or kit

Boogie pickers can optionally help in cleaning your nose.

Booger picker for babies

A child picking her nose
A child picking her nose

Are booger picker tools safe for use on my baby? Some tools are safe for use to remove crusted dry mucous in your baby’s nose. Since babies cannot blow their noses, you can request ones specifically made for sucking mucous stuck in nasal passage.

Nose picker kits

Do you fear your nose may get bigger if you use fingers? Go for adult nose picker tools. Some of the items in nose picker tool kits include:

  • Boogie snatcher
  • Booger grabber
  • Nose cleaner
  • Tweezers

Adults can acquire automatic nose pickers or kits if they want to stop using fingers. Unfortunately, these tools or kits are assurances and guarantee to risks such as bacterial infection.

How to stop this habit

Unless you have a psychiatric disorder associated with compulsive nose picking, the habit itself need to be “unlearned” desperately. Here are some of the tips.

  • Adopt to strictly cleaning or clearing your nose with a handkerchief – whether you have a cold or not). Have a good number of them. Always keep them clean after every use
  • Repeated learning through self-memory. Livestrong.com suggests identifying particular situations then remind yourself picking your nose
  • Identify your weaknesses and work towards getting lasting solutions
  • Do not ignore if you have a problem with your nose. If it is an infection that cause itching get treatment yourself or see a doctor

Social story

Does picking surround any social story in your own community? Many people indeed have a general subjective feeling to the perception that picking the nose is a widespread habitual thing. Do you know of any other social story on the disgusting nose picking or perhaps booger eating? May be it is rumors. We hope not so, but if you have experienced or are a victim you can share it out.

No one is out to condemn you here. Have your say!

  1. US National Library of Medicine. Rhinotillexomania: psychiatric disorder or habit? https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7852253. Accessed online on 2nd March 2017.
  2. Ronald D. Caruso, Richard G. Sherry, Arthur E. Rosenbaum, (et al). Self-induced Ethmoidectomy from Rhinotillexomania. Accessed online on 2nd March 2017
  3. How to Stop Picking My Nose – com
  4. Nose-picking: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nose-picking

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