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personal hygeine? - July 25th 2018, 03:21 AM

For several years, I have struggled with keeping up my personal hygiene. It feels wrong and disgusting to admit it but sometimes I go awhile without brushing my teeth, taking a shower, washing my face, taking my contacts out, changing clothes everyday (or putting clean clothes over my dirty ones), etc. Sometimes I forget, other times I remember but just don't feel like it. I've always been embarrassed of this negative habit of mine but I don't know how to fix it. I know I struggle with anxiety and at one point in my life, I had depression. But what else could cause this? Is it just my ignorance that causes me to do this? Do you think I'm falling back into depression?

quite frankly, I'm surprised that I don't have tooth aches from cavities (I don't know if I have cavities or not because it's been awhile since I've been to a dentist) it's probably just because I don't eat refined sugar or too much citrus. i'm always grinding my teeth too. But I should still brush them regularly.
But I do experience pain in my eyes from not taking my contacts out and it was so bad that I had to go to the eye doctor right then and there because I could barely keep my eyes open. They made me take several days off from my contacts to let my eyes heal. But it didn't stop me from continuing to sleep in them.

This is so embarrassing. But why is it happening and what can I do about it?
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Celyn Offline
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Name: Holly
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Re: personal hygeine? - July 26th 2018, 10:44 PM

Depression can affect memory and motivation, so if you've been depressed before, it may well be the depression creeping back in and causing issues with your hygiene. But we can't say for sure. When you say you forget, is it just forgetfulness or are you busy doing something else and forget to take of yourself?

If you are feeling depressed, then maybe pick one thing to work on for now, even if it's something small like brushing your teeth, just so you don't get overwhelmed and can factor in other things with time. Sometimes just making the effort to start something can feel big, but when you get into it, it's not too bad and you may notice your mood improve (especially taking a shower and putting on some clean clothes). Also, if you stick at, with time, it will get easier to get motivated and it will feel less like a chore.

You can also use reminders on your phone to remind you to brush your teeth and take your contacts out. If you still lack the motivation, then maybe thinking about how you can reward yourself for when you do follow through with self-care. On the flip side, you can think of the negatives...if you don't brush your teeth, you may end up with cavities, or if you don't take your contacts out, you will be in pain. A few minutes of self care everyday can stave off a lot of pain!

You may also want to schedule a check up with your dentist if you haven't been in a while. You could also talk to your optician about getting glasses if you feel you will forget about taking your contacts out.

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Re: personal hygeine? - July 27th 2018, 02:30 AM

Thanks Holly. Most the time I don’t think it’s forgetfulness. Usually I am working on something like getting ready for work or for bed and don’t feel like brushing my teeth or taking contacts out. I’m just doing things that I enjoy more or seem more important. For example, I’m in recovery from an Eating Disorder and I have to make sure I get my food prepared for the day before I go anywhere... that is pretty important and easy to find excuses not to pack food. So then I feel rushed and don’t make a point to take a few minutes to brush my teeth. So I chew gum instead. Showers are easier to remember to do now but I used to skip days of it because I never felt motivated and just wanted to go to bed early... that was probably during a time of depression. And also, I don’t want glasses... I used to have them and started wearing contacts a few years ago. I just need to learn to take care of them and my eyes.
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