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What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

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What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby Nola on Sat Mar 03, 2012 12:34 pm

DD bites her nails ALL the time. It's constant :roll:

We're tried the Mavala (yucky paint on your nails stuff) and that worked for awhile but now sh'es back at it like gangbusters and I've had enough.

I don't know why she does it. Maybe she's nervous but can't believe she's nervous all the time :-k doesn't seem to be any triggers that I can spot.

She is not girly girl so a promise to get her nails done or anything like that is not going to work. The promise of a treat will not work. So all I'm left with is some kind of deterrant.....

Has anybody else had a die hard nail biter that broke the habit. It's gross, it's unsanitary, her nails look disgusting (she bites them below the normal nail line).... help :cry:
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby barb on Sat Mar 03, 2012 3:23 pm

would the threat of getting worms stop her? Many icky things lay eggs in dirt...if she is then eating that dirt, nasty things can happen!

How about other 'negative' things that can happen?

Red & Sore Fingertips.

Cuticle Bleeding.

Infections on your nail bed and your mouth.

Dental problems, infection of the gums. It damages in the long term the teeth, making them more prone to develop caries.

Nail deformation.

I am sure there are many more. Google nail bitting!
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby LeftyChef on Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:20 am

As a small child I used to bite my nails....badly. I'd chew them til they bled. By the time I was in grade five or so the habit went away on it's own. Eventually you get tired of the pain and when the other girls have pretty nails and you don't it makes you more conscious of it.

On the other hand(no pun intended) my mum still bites hers...my husband has never used nail clippers in his life and neither of them have suffered greatly for it. Sometimes it's just something that people do.
For the record I HATE it when my husband does it. I can't change him but I can make him do it outside my presence.

I know that probably doesn't help you with your situation, but maybe it helps to know that many other people do it too.

=-)
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby rosamond on Tue Mar 06, 2012 5:29 pm

I don't have any suggestions on how to stop it, but i do have hope that it may remedy itself. I was a die hard nail biter until the age of 12. I think it was a stress/boredom thing and no amount of rewards/punishments was going to get me to stop. When I turned 12, vanity got the better of me and I wanted to have nails that I wasn't embarrassed of so I replaced my nail biting with knuckle cracking :lol: . Now I am not suggesting she crack her knuckles, but she may need to replace one compulsion/habit with another. Maybe a stress ball?
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby HoneyMama on Wed Mar 07, 2012 11:24 am

I was a die hard nail biter for years and years. I stopped in my mid - late 20's :shock: and to be honest, I don't even really remember why or when. Just one day I didn't do it anymore. Now I have beautiful nails.

My dd is a nail biter, I just figure I'll let her figure it out on her own. She knows the ickyness of it all but doesn't seem to care. I figure if she's comfortable with it, so am I.
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby Nola on Thu Mar 08, 2012 8:20 pm

Thanks for the input :D Her nails are horrendous and tonight I see she's working on eating her fingertips too :?

Thinking of getting something safe she can chew on...any ideas? Like jewelry or something maybe :-k
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby Blacken on Thu Mar 08, 2012 10:02 pm

How old is she? Our dd is 5 1/2 and has been chewing since she was almost three. We've tried many things as well. What seems to help a lot is her own nail file and nail clippers. A few months ago I taught her how to care for her nails. When they get ragged, use the file. If there's a bit hanging, trim it off. If it feels like there's crudge under her nails, use the pokey bit to clean out under them She does still chew, but not to that extent anymore. When I see her chewing, I'll remind her to use her new tools.
I chew my nails occasionally and found this helps me as well :) Pretty ceramic nail file, etc...
"Those who hear not the music, think the dancers mad." ~unknown
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby Nola on Fri Mar 09, 2012 6:54 am

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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby jaimelr on Sun Apr 15, 2012 3:07 pm

I was a nail biter into my mid 20s. No one going to stop me. I didn't care if other peoples nailes looked nicer. I didn't really care if I bit them down too low (they only hurt for a day). I had to practice piano many times on very sore fingertips. the bad tasting stuff did not work because if I even licked my finger I got the taste. I also tried self-deterrence with an elastic on my wrist that I would snap when I became aware I was doing it.
When I was in my mid 20s my biting decreased and I noticed that I mostly only bit when I was going home to visit my parents every few months (interesting!).
What helped for me was a) working as a dishwasher at age 16 and realizing how disgusting my hands got and b) buying 5pairs of clippers and keeping them handy everywhere. Even now in my 30s if I find a rough edge in a work meeting and have no clippers I gnaw on my nail (Ndebele then the rest of them) for the rest of the meeting! If I am ble to clip the offender promptly then it ends right there.
Different poeple have different opinions of how long the like their nails. I prefer my finger and toe nails very short.
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby Lora-Lee on Sun Apr 29, 2012 9:03 pm

My daughter, 6, has been biting her fingers, and nails too, for a few months. Her fingers are pretty much lacking a few layers of skin and it is a heartbreaking sight. She is aware of how her fingers look like, gets quite upset about it, but then one day confessed that she enjoys the pain of it (very insightful, I was surprised she managed to pinpoint it). She did it before when she was three, somehow she stopped it one day. But now it's a different story. Sometimes she just doesn't get her fingers out of her mouth (especially when bored, nervous, relaxed). I've done some research on that and found out that psychological reason behind the majority of cases is self soothing. Amongst other reasons suppressed anger and aggression. I feel pretty confident that anger and aggression is my daughter's case. She is not an evil, aggressive child. Quite the opposite: she is a big hearted and very very sensitive, add to this explosiveness and you'll get a picture. I've tried to involve the teacher and a school counsellor, but it didn't go far unfortunately. I don't know, I feel like it is quite an issue and would like to try to figure it out. I am seriously thinking I'll be looking for help. I know that no threats, punishments, etc. will ever work and actually might be quite damaging. It's a symptom and there must be a cause for it.
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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby pugsmommy on Thu May 17, 2012 8:47 am

My 5 year old ds is a hardcore nail and skin biter. His poor fingers look awful. His hands are in his mouth all the time! His teacher suggested i give him gum to chew at home but I don't like that idea. I've reminded him how dirty it is and how his fingers will hurt and he might get an infection from ingrown nails. I've even suggested if he gets sick from an infection he might need a shot from the Dr! Nothing helps. I grew out of nail biting around the age of 12 but my DH still does it. It must be genetic. I sure hope it stops soon and will be checking back here to see if there are any great ideas! :)


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Re: What to do about a very persistant nail biter??

Postby cotton on Thu May 17, 2012 9:42 pm

I don't have any suggestions on how to stop it, but i do have hope that it may remedy itself. I was a die hard nail biter until the age of 12. I think it was a stress/boredom thing and no amount of rewards/punishments was going to get me to stop.
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