Most Importantly Be Positive
Making a big deal out of your childs nail biting, shouting at them or punishing them might cause your child to bite their nails even more.
Skip the its gross lecture – shaming them wont make it better. Instead, try and get your child on board using rewards, an encouraging attitude, etc. and be patient.
Its hard enough for adults to kick a habit, so a child may find it even harder.
Just keep at it and find a way that suits you and your child in helping them give up nail biting once and for all!
Make Your Nails Taste Bad
If something tastes bad, youre not going to want to put it in your mouth, right? Try applying this to your fingernails.
Not only can it help you associate the habit with something negative, it can also put a stop to absent-minded nail biting because sometimes you wont even realise youre biting your nails until its too late.
There are many nasty-tasting formulas on the market already that you can paint onto your nails, butheres some natural ways to help make those nails un-bitable:
How To Recognize Nail Biting In Children
Before we get into how to stop nail biting in children, we need to know how to recognize if the child has been biting their nails.
If youre cutting their nails weekly or fortnightly, youll instantly know. Nails, much like hair, dont just stop growing unless theres something wrong. If little Lisa has trimmed nails and you did not cut using nail clippers or infant scissors, then shes probably trimming them with her pearly whites.
No one can really explain why, but when asked if theyre biting their nails, a child will usually deny doing it. Maybe theyre humiliated by it, or the habit has formed and progressed beyond the point of limited toddler constraint. Either way, once you know about it, you must find out why theyre doing it, and what you can do about it.
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Should I Worry About The Nail Biting Habit Are There Any Complications
In some cases, nail biting can be a sign of an underlying psychological disorder. This is rare, but not unheard of. It might point to excessive anxiety, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder , Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or Oppositional Defiant Disorder . Talk to your childs doctor if nail biting is accompanied by constant worry/tension and other habits like pinching his own skin or plucking hair or eyelashes.
At What Age Do Children Get Into The Habit Of Biting Nails
Biting Nails after three to four years of age. There is a clear mention in a research paper that children usually do not start cutting teeth by the age of three or four.
According to the Global Journal for Research Analysis, this habit is more common in children between 4 and 6 years of age, which may increase further in adolescence.
This habit may also decrease if it grows gradually. About 28 to 33 percent of children between the ages of 7 and 10 have this habit. Also, 45 percent of adolescents also suffer from this habit.
Learn further how children feel the habit of chewing nails.
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Make The Stop Biting Nails Reward Match The Nailbiter
I knew I couldnt just hand her $5 nope, not this money-saving teen.
It had to be worth the hard work to stop biting her nails.
After all, she rather enjoyed it.
It was something to keep her busy when she had to sit still.
It was something she could do when she felt nervous or pressured and now, what would she do?
So, I raised the stakes and offered her $20 to stop biting her nails for five days.
Her eyes grew big at $20!
Her sister piped in, I bite my nails too!
She immediately became the object of envy.
Complications Related To Child Nail Biting
Following are the complications related to nail biting in children:
- Sometimes children can gnaw into their nails so deep that they often bleed that can hurt their fingers or make their gums sore.
- Nail-biting with dirty hands can lead to infections and diseases.
- Severe nail-biting can be a sign of underlying attention or anxiety problems that need to be dealt with.
Understanding why your child continues to bite their nails is half of the solution to stopping the habit. Over time, it is possible to get them to quit by reinforcing positive alternatives.
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How To Stop Your Kids From Biting Their Nails
Suzie is a busy mom with three energetic kids. She loves finding and sharing activities and solutions to help her fellow moms stay sane.
Is your child biting his or her nails? How can you stop this habit?
Nail biting in children is a very common habitone they usually grow out of but can take into adulthood if it goes unchecked.
Most of the time it is just that…a habit. It’s something a child unconsciously does when bored or anxious.
Occasionally it can be a sign of more serious, underlying problems, such as real anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or obsessive compulsive disorder . Don’t worry though if this is the case, there will be other signs, so nail biting on its own is not a major issue.
Mostly it’s just a simple activity that the child isn’t even aware he or she is doing. Usually, the only result is that the nails look ugly and can develop sores around the fingertips and cuticles, plus it can be a bit unhygienic if nails are dirty. In extreme cases, newly developing teeth can be weakened, but again, this is unusual.
Make Him Aware Of The Habit
As we mentioned before, he is biting his nails unconsciously. Help him be aware of it. Once you point out to him that he tends to bite nails often under pressure, ask him how he prefers to be alerted every time he does it. Some kids prefer a physical reminder like a touch on the arm some kids prefer verbal reminder. You can even come up with your own code for this. The more aware he becomes of this habit, more likely he will be able to consciously stop himself
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How Should You React When A Toddler Bites
A biting toddler can be painful, frustrating, and test your patience, especially if you dont know what to do to make it stop. Remember, though, your reaction will have either a positive or negative effect on the situation.
There isnt a single way to stop a toddler from biting, so it might take multiple strategies to get the problem under control. Heres are some options to try:
What Could Go Wrong If The Habit Persists
Without getting overly worried over your childs nail-biting habit, there are some dental and medical problems that you should watch out for.
Other than the obvious cosmetic problems, severe nail-biting could infect and damage the skin. These are possibilities:
- Chronic paronchyia, a bacterial infection that involves inflammation of the skin around a finger
- Subungual infection, a condition during which blood collects under the fingernail causing a lot of pain
- Onychomycosis, a fungal infection of the nails
- Onycholysis, damage to the nail bed14
Children can also contract other infections from touching things around them and then putting their fingers into their mouth.15
If nail-biting persists for several years, it could lead to damage and hinder normal nail development.
It could also lead to dental problems.
- Continuous nail-biting creates mechanical forces that could lead to misalignment of teeth, dental crowding, and rotations.
- Onychophagia could also cause temporomandibular dysfunction or problems with the chewing muscles, and the joints between the base of the skull and the lower jaw.16
In rare instances, nail-biting may be a sign of a deeper problem like obsessive-compulsive disorder which requires treatment with medication.17
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Find Out The Underlying Cause Of Nail Biting
Understand what is causing your child to bite nails. If you know the reason , the talk about it. Address your childs concerns and help her distress. If you do not know the reason , then patiently ask your child about what is eating her. The little one might not open immediately, but with time, she would. Unless you identify and address the root cause of your childs nail biting, it will be difficult to break it
Ask Your Friends And Family To Help
You may not notice youre biting your nails as often as you are, and once you do the damage is often already done.
One thing you can do is ask the people around you to remind you not to bite your nails you choose how cruel or kind you want them to be.
This not only gives you accountability and a better visibility of your nail-biting habit, but it also gives you the support to help you stop.
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Fear About Nail Trimming
After having worked our way down a list of reasons that could contribute to our sons new-found habit of nipping at his fingertips, we discovered that the whole thing stemmed from an incident where we had trimmed his nails a bit too close to the cuticle. That minor incident had given birth to a reluctance to trim nails, and eventually to his reasoning that if he trimmed them himself, we wouldnt have to.
The solution: Over the following months, we took great care not to hurt him while trimming nails after bath time. We slowly eased him into the trimming process by involving all the kids. We even tried to make nail care fun and fascinating. We sat them all down and explained to them how their nails worked what was the cuticle, what we trimmed, where we should cut the nail away, and showed them how to do it themselves.
How To Stop Kids From Biting Nails: Causes & Solutions
As a parent, you will encounter loads of bizarre habits in your children. Be it hair pulling, thumb sucking, nose picking or nail-biting, there will be something. Some of these habits may unnerve you, while others make for funny video clips.
While nail-biting is a common habit in young and old, children are more prone to this impulse control disorder. Approximately 30% of all kids actively bite their nails and this behaviour is known as onychophagia.
Read on to find tips on how to stop kids from biting their nails and ways to figure out why they are doing this.
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How To Stop Your Child From Biting Their Nails
Parents should never be punitive or insulting about their kidâs nail-biting habit. âOften, calling attention to the behavior, especially through ridicule or punishment, will cause it to worsen,â says Dr. Montez.
Instead, if youâre disturbed or distressed by nail biting, you can try habit reversal training, which uses positive reinforcement. Most people are unaware of their habits, explains Dr. Hill, so the first step is bringing it to your childâs attention. One way to do this is sitting them in front of the mirror as they bite their nails and saying, âThis is what it looks like and feels like when youâre biting your nails.â
Or, if your child is old enough, you can simply ask them about their nail biting. âWhen you gently bring it to their attention, you can say, âDo you feel better when you do that? Or are you just bored?’â says Dr. Chavis. âKids can give very insightful answers to simple questions.â
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Why Do Children Bite Their Nails
First things first, its useful to know why our children end up nibbling on their nails.
Like thumb-sucking, hair twisting and nose picking, nail biting is a common habit for children.
These behaviours are known as nervous habits although, confusingly, that doesnt actually mean your child is nervous.
Most children bite their nails when they are feeling bored or curious, to pass the time, to relieve stress or simply as a force of habit.
So, nail biting can be caused by a multitude of issues, and the most important thing is encouraging them to stop without it turning into an unhelpful nag-fest.
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Why Do Kids Bite Their Nails
So why do kids pick up this strange habit anyway? Just like in adults, nail-biting is done for many reasonsusually unconsciously. Your child may gnaw at his or her fingernails out of curiosity or boredom when trying to pass the time.
An infant will often suck on his or her thumb to self-soothe, and as they grow this habit changes slightly. Fingernail biting is a modified version of thumb-sucking, which can feel like a soothing action many times.
Nail biting can also be a sign of stress or nervousness in some children. Some common stressful triggers for children include:
- Fights between family members
- Relocating or moving to a new place
- Pressure to perform in school or sports
If you find that your kids are biting their nails so much that they draw blood or have sore fingertips, you will want to consult your doctor and work together on a plan to figure out how to get kids to stop biting their nails together.
Lastly, nail biting can be picked up from someone else around them. If you want to figure out how to get kids to stop biting their nails you will need to conquer the habit first, and model the appropriate behavior.
So Whats The Trick To Stop Nail
Brainstorm about a reward that would motivate your child.
It needs to be something way bigger than normal, and trust me, its worth the investment!
Then, give your child a certain cut off date.
I have found five days to work best.
For younger kids, you can use a chart to mark off the days or make paper rings for the countdown.
Anything visible is a great reminder to keep going.
My daughter just needed verbal reminders, plus she has five siblings making sure she keeps her side of the bargain!
I always give my kids three strikes.
If I see them biting their nails three times, the plan is over no reward.
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How To Stop Child Biting Nails
How To Stop Child Biting Nails Do you ignore the habit of chewing childrens nails thinking that it will automatically disappear over time? If so, be careful. Childrens habit of Biting Nails is inviting unwanted diseases.
If children are not stopped in time, this habit is not lost even when they grow up and it can have serious consequences. This is why we are telling you in this article of Made Me Perfect
How children get used to Biting Nails and how to get rid of this habit. Also, we will give information about the loss and risk of it.
In this article mademeperfect.com, we will give you full information about How To Stop Child Biting Nails so lets start reading this article.
First of all, we will tell when and when children start chewing nails.
Stop Nail Biting Treatments
There are a number of treatments available to help children stop biting nails. Of these, I have personally found Mavala to be the most effective for my kids.
Usually treatments are harmless, bitter tasting substances that you paint directly onto the nails or rub onto the fingertips. The idea is simply that your child is reminded every time a finger goes in the mouth.
These treatments are very simple to use, and are particularly effective if your child wants to stop. If not, a persistent child might suck the treatment off no matter how horrible it tastes, in order to keep enjoying the nail biting. If this happens, you might need to look to some other ideas to help stop the habit.
Remember to reapply the treatment during the day as it wears off with hand washing and other activities. We have noticed that Mavala seems to stay on longer than other similar treatments we tried.
Aloe vera plant
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What To Do About It:
Left alone, your child may gradually outgrow this habit, especially as he finds other ways to relieve stress . Until then, take these steps to subtly steer your nibbler away from his passion.
- Reduce anxiety. Counter stressful events in your toddler’s life with extra attention and affection. Help him find other ways to blow off steam. Physical activity works as do quiet activities, like drawing or listening to a story.
- Create a code. Make it secret, so just the two of you will know it then, use it to gently remind him to stop biting without nagging or embarrassing him. Discreet options include a light touch on the arm, a pinkie wave or a special word.
- Offer a substitute. Keep his hands busy with a sugar-free lollipop or frozen ice pop.
- Keep his hands otherwise occupied. When he starts grazing on that pinkie finger, distract him with a hands-on activity, like playing with clay or working on a puzzle.
- Keep nails short. Shorter fingernails are boring for nail-biters.
- Reward his efforts. A sticker for each unchewed nail or a bigger prize for going a week without nibbling can be very motivating. For little girls, the promise of a manicure may work.
How Can I Get My Child To Stop Biting Her Nails
Nail biting is a common habit, but usually not a serious one for most children. Most children who bite their nails eventually lose the habit, but some may continue well into adulthood. In more serious situations, nail biting can lead to health concerns. There is no prescription to stop nail biting, but it can be addressed. Dr. Cindy Gellner talks about the reasons why nail biting occurs and offers suggestions on how to help your child stop biting her nails.
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