A teenager has been hospitalized this week, and nearly had a finger amputated after her frequent nail-biting habit led to her contracting an infection.
In a TikTok video that has now gone viral, 18-year-old university student Lauren Nichol has shared how she first noticed that she had a "green spot on my cuticle" on January 8.
In the video in question, she explains: "I thought it was a bruise or something, but it turns out it was paronychia or a cuticle infection. On January 10th it was a lot more swollen and more red and the green part had expanded, so the antibiotics weren’t working."
She continued: "On January 12th it got pretty bad, it was really painful at this point and my antibiotics obviously still weren’t working. So I decided to pop it after watching YouTube videos on January 13th."
She added: "But then I go back to the doctor and it turns out I have to have surgery … I dead*ss almost had to get my finger amputated because I bite my nails [sic]."
In a later interview with Buzzfeed News, she stated: "[The doctor] told me that he has to amputate the tips of people's fingers because the infection gets too bad and that I'm lucky I came when I did."
"Since this has happened to me, I have stopped biting my nails because I never want to have to go through that again. I made the TikTok to educate people to not bite their nails because it can have serious consequences," she added.
This story comes just a few weeks after a woman named Karen Peat shared a similar warning on Facebook. Peat, who hails from Coatbridge in Scotland, wrote: "A message to nail biters out there STOP!!! Someone I know who prefers to remain nameless who bites their nails ended up having to get rushed to Glasgow Royal Infirmary today for emergency surgery. [sic]"Listen to this expert advice on how to avoid infections yourself:
She continued: "This person had been to two chemists and spoken to two separate pharmacists over the past few days who had advised to use magnesium sulphate and keep it covered it still got worse. [sic]"
"When we finally went to the A&E this morning was told if left much longer it could have been fatal as the infection was traveling up the arm hence the emergency surgery! So please please stop biting your nails!! [sic]"