Nail biting can be termed as a temporary or not so destructive behaviour. But if it develops into a severe and long term then it’s a problem. This uncontrollable nail biting is called Onychopahgia . It is considered a pathological oral habit and grooming disorder characterized by chronic, seemingly uncontrollable nail biting that is destructive to fingernails and the surrounding tissue.
The symptoms of Onychophagia are hair pulling or skin picking. The people who chronically bite their nails can be experiencing stressful feelings of unease or tension prior to biting, feelings of relief or even pleasure after biting, feelings of shame, it may also lead to complicated family and social relationships.
The cure to this problem is applying bitter-tasting products to the nails, which are generally ineffective. One can even use gloves, mittens, socks, and retainer-style or bite-plate devices can serve as impediments to biting or reminders not to bite. One can always go for therapies such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or acceptance and commitment. A thing to remember is that every therapy requires a permission from the child or adult who is biting their nails, along with positive reinforcement and routine follow-ups.