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Treatment Recommendations for Excoriation (Skin-Picking) Disorder

Matthew D. Jacofsky, Psy.D., Melanie T. Santos, Psy.D., Sony Khemlani-Patel, Ph.D. & Fugen Neziroglu, Ph.D. of the Bio Behavioral Institute, edited by C. E. Zupanick, Psy.D. Updated: Jan 2nd 2014

Treatment for skin-picking is the same as for other body-focused, repetitive behaviors such as trichotillomania (hair pulling). A combination of traditional cognitive therapy, behavioral exposure and response prevention, and habit reversal training is the standard treatment for this disorder. These therapeutic approaches were described in the recommended treatments for trichotillomania section.  It is crucial to tailor treatment to each individual, and to incorporate other cognitive-behavioral strategies as the combination has been shown to be more clinically effective than HRT alone.

It is also helpful to strengthen the social support system (e.g., family) to provide feedback and encouragement. As such, family therapy can be particularly beneficial in the treatment of excoriation (skin-picking) disorder.

 

Matthew D. Jacofsky, Psy.D., Melanie T. Santos, Psy.D., Sony Khemlani-Patel, Ph.D. & Fugen Neziroglu, Ph.D. of the Bio Behavioral Institute

Authors Statement: Established in 1979, the Bio Behavioral Institute is a psychological and psychiatric clinic dedicated to the treatment and research of anxiety and mood disorders. Based in Long Island, NY, USA, the institute serves both a local and international clientele. Our staff have over 40 years of experience treating anxiety and mood disorders and have been at the forefront of scientifically supported treatments for anxiety disorders for many years. We offer a variety of programs provided by a multidisciplinary team of professionals. For more information, please visit us online at www.biobehavioralinstitute.com or view Bio Behavioral Institute and author biographical information on this website.

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