nail-biter

or nail bit·er

[ neyl-bahy-ter ]
/ ˈneɪlˌbaɪ tər /

noun

a person who bites his or her nails, especially habitually.
a situation marked by anxiety or tension.

Origin of nail-biter

1970–75

Related forms

nail-bit·ing, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for nail-biter

  • The passage of health-care reform will suddenly shift from sure-thing to nail-biter.

    Stop the Feminist Guilt Trip|Dana Goldstein|January 15, 2010|DAILY BEAST
  • He'd been a nail-biter when he was a kid, but he'd kicked the habit when we got to high school.

    Little Brother|Cory Doctorow