Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors

Treatment for Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors including:

Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors (BFRBs) refer to a group of specific behaviors that can cause mild to severe physical damage, emotional distress, and interference with one’s ability function and relationships with others.  BFRBs usually develop in childhood and often persist into adulthood.   The most commonly seen behaviors captured under this umbrella include:

  • Trichotillomania (Hair Pulling)
  • Dermatilomania (Skin Picking)
  • Thumbsucking
  • Nail Biting
  • Cheek/Lip Biting
  • Nose Picking

These behaviors are typically categorized as impulse control behaviors and are considered to be a part of the Obsessive Compulsive Spectrum.  However, BFRBs are not simply OCD.  Most often individuals engage in these behaviors to regulate their nervous system.  There is a pleasurable component to them which either helps people to calm, excite/attend, or both.  Often time people engage in these behaviors without awareness of what they are doing.  Other times people do it with full awareness.  Typically the behaviors are done impulsively – actions without thought.  Most often misunderstood by friends and family, its not something that a person can “just stop” on his own.  (If it were only that easy!)

Treatment for Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors at Healthy Behaviors of Westchester may include the following:

  • functional behavioral analysis
  • habit reversal training (HRT)
  • stimulus control (SC)
  • relaxation training
  • exposure and response prevention (ERP)
  • sensory integration techniques
  • attentional/organizational skills training

 

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