Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Booger Picking?

After spending five days at a good friend's house, three of them hanging with her five youngest children, I found myself pondering booger picking. It amazed me that a nine year old would pick their nose and eat it without batting an eye. Honestly, I thought that just little, little kids did that and only because they did not know better. Well, I did a little research.

According to KidsHealth.org, boogers are mucus with an important job in our bodies. They protect our lungs from things like dust, dirt, germs, and pollen. This prevents our lungs from getting irritated or infected and keeps us breathing freely. Their advice is to blow your nose instead of picking to rid yourself of unwanted boogers thereby reducing your exposure to the germs trapped in boogers.

It has become evident to me through this brief research that children are not alone in booger picking. Apparently, people of all ages pick and eat their boogers. Can you say gross? However, this does remind me of an English teacher who shall remain nameless that I had in Junior High School that picked his boogers and put them either behind his tie or his ear. Yes, it is true! I saw it with my own eyes. Anyone that had this particular teacher could easily vouch for my accuracy.

Booger picking is such a happening thing that there are actually medical terms to identify various aspects of booger picking. Here's a quick English lesson:

Rhinotillexis - using one's finger to extract a booger.

Rhinotillexomania - compulsively using one's finger to extract a booger.

Mucophagy - the act of eating one's boogers.

Joel, at The Straight Up Truth, has apparently wondered about booger picking himself. His article, Eating Boogers Is Like Really Grody Penicillin, informs us that there is actually evidence that picking and eating boogers is good for our health. It seems research has been done to support such a claim. Seriously, just Google "eating boogers", and you will find numerous links to support this claim.

Happy hunting!


Melissa said...

Wow talk about a history lesson, and a social lesson. Yucko I am so glad my kids do not do this.

Karen, author of "My Funny Dad, Harry" said...

I'll admit to picking my nose on occasion, but I never ate my buggers. That's just too gross!

Tina said...

I hear ya', Karen! There probably are not very many of us that could honestly say we've never picked out nose. However, I pretty certain that I can honestly say that I have never eaten my boogers! I have been thinking and thinking, and I do not believe I have even done it as a child. Maybe I will have to ask my mom...

ray gratzner said...

Well, it is some sort of disgusting for me, to imagine people eating their booger. But you made a wonderful job be producing such an excellent article out of so much mucus

Jill said...

It's not only 9 year olds that pick and eat. We're trying to break my 11 year old of the habit.

Enjoyed your post!

lina said...

I've been told countless of time I ate my booger when I was small. When mom asked why, I apparently told her it was because I was hungry. LOL
Thank goodness I've grown out of that habit!


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