How to stop children from chewing their nails?

Nail biting in children is quite common, and they may do it because of boredom, habit, or when they are anxious and stressed. The habit is quite harmless and is not a medical problem, unless they chew into their nails and make them bleed. In general, nail biting in children stops over time; however, it can affect the way the nails look. Also, nail biting exposes the cuticles and makes them susceptible to infection.While there are plenty of nail biting remedies, not all are equally applicable to every child. This is because the causes or triggers related to the chewing nails behavior of children may differ from one child to another.

It is therefore essential to first identify the cause, and then pursue a mode of treatment. If your child seems like an introvert and bites nails while meeting new people, you can always encourage them to express their anxiety and help them overcome them. Tell them that nail biting spoils their nails and spoils its cuticles. Sometimes nail biting in children could be because of stress. If your child is biting his/her nails because of stress, try to make situations less stressful for him/her. Some of the things that can push your child into chewing nails, and other such behavioral changes, is change of location, frequent quarrels, divorce, and other stressful situation in the family or outside. Eliminating the cause or the factor causing the stress is one of best way to stop children from biting their nails.

Also, avoid nagging children as this can make them even more sensitive, thereby increasing the urge to biting their nails, and at times, doing it deliberately to relieve their angst. You could also apply nail polish, especially with girls, as it is another good way to stop nail biting in children. For boys, you can apply bandages on the nails to prevent biting.It is also important to take into account of other members in the family like an older brother or sisters who might be chewing his/her nails. If you want to stop your child from biting his/her nails, you need to make sure that no one else in the family is doing it. You can also use elder sibling as an example.One of the other ways to stop the biting nails habit in children is to reward them. Get into an agreement to reward them for not biting their nails. However, this may work better with older children, as younger children may eventually stop chewing their nails. If your child bites his/her nails, ask them to wash their hands frequently. This will ensure that the exposed cuticles do not get infected. Medical help may be necessary when the child bites and tears off the nail, leading to bleeding.

answered by G R

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