What is in the DSM-5 about BFRBs is very brief, in fact, it’s only a paragraph in a subsection of the Obsessive Compulsive and Related Disorders called “Other Specified Related Disorders,” which is essentially saying that these issues don’t have full-fledged categorization yet, but they’re on the radar of medical researchers. Nail, cheek and lip biting are all mentioned as examples of these fledgling BFRBs, along with how these behaviours would differ from everyday habits. “These symptoms cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning,” meaning that these aren’t throwaway instances, but frequent ones that the individual has a difficult time stopping. The only other specification the DSM-5 gives is to say these BFRBs are not “better explained” by skin picking or hair pulling, nor are they inclusive in “stereotypic movement disorder, or non-suicidal self-injury.”
So at present, this is all the DSM-5 has to say about the other BFRBs besides trichotillomania and dermatillomania, which would explain why we don’t hear much about them. Hopefully more research will be done between now and the next volume of the DSM and then we’ll have a better scope of what has been learned about all the other BFRBs.
What the DSM-5 Says About: