Since the show Dr. Pimple Popper started about 12 years ago there have been over 5 billion views. According to Parrot Analytics, the audience demand for Dr. Pimple popper is 17.2 times the demand of the average TV series in the United States in the last 30 days. The popularity of this type of show is consistent with this level of demand.
Let’s just go there, why is pimple popping so satisfying?! When a pimple goes “pop” some individuals experience an immediate sense of relief which is brought on by the release of dopamine, the “happy” hormone. This is the same hormone that gives off the feeling that you’ve accomplished something. It’s the safe danger which allows the feeling of fear without actually being in danger. Similar to the sensations one may get watching a horror film or going on a roller coaster. Others find the release to be soothing and relieving of stress and anxiety.
While some people may pick at their own skin and pop a pimple on occasion, this behavior can spiral into an ongoing skin picking disorder. This is when you compulsively pick at your skin, leading to lesions, scars, bleeding, and psychological distress. Skin picking disorder, also known as a body focused repetitive behavior affects approximately 1.4% of the adult population. If your daily functioning is impacted by your skin picking, there are several treatment options which include seeing a doctor to discuss medication options and counseling which is a great way to work on any underlying mental health condition.
Skin picking may be satisfying or relieving in the moment but it’s important to remember that the dermatologists you see on YouTube are trained and have proper equipment. I get it, I watch a lot of medical shows and sometimes believe I’m WebMD! But if you can get a similar sensation from viewing, why not just watch! If you’re past the point of being able to stop the skin picking yourself, treatment is out there, and YOU CAN get better. Your skin will thank you for it. Let’s go, you got this!