nail-biting

noun

Medical Definition of nail-biting

: habitual biting at the fingernails usually being symptomatic of emotional tensions and frustrations

called also onychophagia, onychophagy

Learn More about nail-biting

Cite this Entry

“Nail-biting.” Merriam-Webster.com Medical Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/medical/nail-biting. Accessed 21 Sep. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on nail-biting

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for nail-biting

Comments on nail-biting

What made you want to look up nail-biting? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Homophone Quiz

  • three bears two of them look like theyre whispering to a third bear who looks chuffed to be the center of attention
  • In order to judge how people felt, the senator's office hired a firm to take a ______.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!