Pica is a condition in which a person craves substances that are not food, such as clay, dirt, ice, or flecks of old paint. Pica can have a physical cause, such as iron deficiency anemia or pregnancy, or it may be due to a psychological problem.

Treatment depends on the cause and may include psychological counselling or medicines to reduce the craving.

Current as of: July 26, 2016

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: John Pope, MD - Pediatrics & Thomas M. Bailey, MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Fred Volkmar, MD - Child and Adolescent Psychiatry & W. Stewart Agras, MD, FRCPC - Psychiatry