If you are fond of biting your nails, then you need to stop whatever you’re doing and read this. Studies suggest that individuals who indulge in mindless activities like nail biting and hair twisting possibly possess certain character traits.

A study was done at the University of Montreal in 2015 and it revealed that involuntarily biting your nails, pulling your hair or other related practices can uncover a person’s trait or personality. The study also revealed that people who get frustrated or bored easily or an impatient person to be a hair puller or nail-biter or twister etc.

According to the study, these characteristics indicate perfectionism. A publication in the March 2015 edition of Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry suggests that the perfectionist trait could be a major cause of these lifestyles, and also that perfectionism is something that people ought to take seriously.

biting nail

A lead author and Professor of the University Psychiatry department, Dr. O’Çonnor Kieron said he believed people with such repetitive characters are likely perfectionist, and it means they are unable to perform tasks at a normal rate and are also unable to relax. He also said they are easily frustrated, prone to dissatisfaction and are impatient when they do not achieve their goals. They also get bored easily.

The interesting aspect of this research is that most people affiliate nervousness and nail biting. In general, the study suggests that anxiety is not always the underlying force behind these repetitive behaviours.

Scientists have also discovered that frustration and boredom (two characteristics associated with a perfectionist personality) could aid this character. In the past, it was also discovered that scratching your head or biting your nails can cause you to feel better momentarily, as it will help calm the perfectionist desire to be engaged in an activity rather than being idle.

Are you a chronic nail biter and you’re wondering if there hope for you? Two treatment methods current exist for this situation. One of them is a behavioural technique which involves trying to replace the habit with something competing and the technique focuses on the real factors that generate the need to pull or bite, be it anxiety, perfectionism or anything else.

O’çonnor told Huffpost that people do not tackle the habit directly so it is not necessary for the individual practice a similar repetitive action to replace the habit. The use of cognitive therapy is employed to change situations with more risks and will make them look like those with lesser risks.