Our expert says:
I think you may have a medical condition called 'pica': this is a type of eating disorder, when a person feels a need to eat non-food substances. Different people with the condition eat different substances: some eat soil, some paper - and the list goes on. Chalk is in fact one of the commoner ones on the pica list. Previously on this forum, several people admitted to eating sponge/foam rubber.
There are several possible reasons why you have this condition, and you definitely need to see a doctor to find out the cause and to get treatment. Some people with pica are lacking a nutrient in their diet; but it may be caused by an underlying mental health problem.
You could see a GP about this, who could find out if you have a nutritional defficiency, and refer you to a psychologist or a psychiatrist if necessary.
Chalk (calcium carbonate) is generally considered to be non-toxic, but eating it is not advisable and it may result in the following problems: abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, constipation, diarrhoea. The chalk from the dust may cause eye irritation, and isn't good for your lungs. Some kinds of chalk may contain toxic additives.
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