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28 Month Old WILL NOT Let Me Trim Her Nails, Any Suggestions for Calming Her?

My 28 month old FREAKS out anytime I try to trim her nails. I can get to her fingernails when she sleeps, but her toes are a different scenario. Even in her sleep, she kicks and cries when I touch her feet. She has always been sensitive about her nails. He dad clipped one really short when she was a newborn and sometimes I think she is traumatized..Is it possible?? A couple of times her nails have gotten caught on her pajamas, socks, etc. and caused her pain which isn't helping the situation at all. I'm hoping she'll grow out of it, but in the meantime, I don't want her toenails clicking when she walks across the floor!! lol...any suggestions, besides wresting??

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I've been trying to come up with a solution to this lately because I have the same issue with my 22 month old daughter. Her grandma is always talking about painting her nails, which I so far have put off, since I'm worried about the chemicals in the nail polish. But she loves my painted toes, so I thought this might be a way to "persuade" her to let me clip her nails. I did a little searching online last week, and there is nontoxic nail polish for kids called "Piggy Paints." They even have nontoxic remover. My daughter recently started biting her thumb nails, so I think this is the only way I would be comfortable putting paint on them. The website is www.piggypaint.com, and they even have gift sets where you can pick 2 colors of paint and a bottle of remover and get free shipping. Thought you might find this interesting!

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That natural consequences of her not letting you trim her nails are that she gets hurt when they catch on things. Use that. When she comes crying next time use love and logic..."oh bummer (said with honest empathy). I bet that really hurts. It is too bad you won't let me cut your toe nails. I bet that wouldn't happen if your nails were short. Hmmm. You are so smart. You'll figure out what to do. (smile)" Then turn and walk away. It really is HER problem, not yours. And you have a solution to help her, but you can't force her to accept it. But you can let her live with the slight discomfort of her choices.

check out www.loveandlogic.com for more info on this parenting model. We LOVE it!

My son is 16 months and he is starting the same thing. I started cutting them about 1/2 hour after he falls asleep. This way, I know I can get them done. I do the hardest ones first. Same with the toes. Do them when she is sleeping---you will have a lot less stress--trust me!

My son was also like this when he was younger, although he didn't have a problem with me trimming while he was asleep...I would just use a flashlight to get in and out quickly. My daughter is just fine since she can see her older brother getting it done first. Maybe you could try having her see you do your own first (or you do your husbands) and maybe paint your nails. My 21 month old daughter likes getting the attention and has sat twice now for me to paint her finger and toenails. It could become a fun thing girl task instead of a chore.

Good luck!

I can't offer any help, but I can sympathize with you on this one. My 2.5 year old son is the same way. It's a huge deal to even get ONE nail clipped, much less all 20 of them! Sometimes I can get the finger nails, too, if I'm lucky and he's fast asleep. I can never get the toes, though. Anyone who saw his feet would wonder what kind of parents this kid had because his nails are so long. Even when he's in a deep sleep, he pulls his feet away, kicks and cries. I know exactly what you mean!

do it when shes sound asleep.

J.,

I have the same problem with both of my kids. My daughter (6) now is pretty easy. We started doing it as a fun manicure, pedicure time when she was little. I always trim the nails first, then paint them her choice of color. She knows that she can not have her fingernails or toenails painted unless they get trimmed first. This has worked very well for her. My son on the other hand is just like your daughter. I can't really bribe him with polish - so we have tried cartoons and a treat afterward - that sometimes works. Good Luck - you are not alone!

J.,

My son gave me a hard time as well. Since he just adores his grandpa, I asked him to do it. That was fine for a little while. Then I told him that I had Grandpa's Magic Clippers. That also worked for a little bit. Now, since he loves to play in the bathtub so much, I tell him that he can take an extra bath if i can cut his nails. Sometimes I play around with him and only cut every other nail...telling him that not all of his nails are long enough yet. He loves that he is "getting away" with another bath...without getting all of his nails cut!
Good luck!
J.

A few things we have tried that seem to work...
1. Let her play with the nail clipper. This seemed to make it not so scary for our daughter. And it was cute watching her 'try' to clip her own nails!
2. Clip your nails (or a sibling's nails) first. Our oldest loves watching us clip the baby's nails
3. I like to count, "one, two, three," (clip) and make it seem like fun! Then say, "your turn. one, two, three," (clip).
4. Clip nails one or two at a time at each diaper change. It takes all day, but you get the job done.
Good Luck!

Try playing "spa"????

Start with a bubble bath and wash her hair. And explain what your going to do next. Have a manicure - soaking her hands/filing/then ease the clipper - I use the small clipper becasue my hand will cover it and they can't see it. Because I have her occupy with warm apple juice (tea) or warm coco (coffe) and a book or magazine. Then lotion the legs and move down to the feet (have her feet soaking) and do the same as the manicure. And then we move to the hair unwrapp it and then comb it and then the final touch some smell good spriters?? all over to smell like you come from the spa.

I know it alot once a month when you have to cut the nails it becomes alot of fun and she looks forward to that.

Just an suggestion that worked for me and my daughter.

If she has a favorite show let her watch it and you while you clip her nails. This is what we do with our 2 year old.

I've been trying to come up with a solution to this lately because I have the same issue with my 22 month old daughter. Her grandma is always talking about painting her nails, which I so far have put off, since I'm worried about the chemicals in the nail polish. But she loves my painted toes, so I thought this might be a way to "persuade" her to let me clip her nails. I did a little searching online last week, and there is nontoxic nail polish for kids called "Piggy Paints." They even have nontoxic remover. My daughter recently started biting her thumb nails, so I think this is the only way I would be comfortable putting paint on them. The website is www.piggypaint.com, and they even have gift sets where you can pick 2 colors of paint and a bottle of remover and get free shipping. Thought you might find this interesting!

Maybe try using just a fun emry board instead of a clippers. If you file them often enough you shouldn't need to use a clippers at all. AND if you bring her to the store with you to pick out a fun emry board, maybe a character one, she may be more prone to allow you to show her what it will do... and it will be pain free. Just my first thought.

Good luck!

When my son went through that phase, I used a favorite TV program to distract him. He only got to watch it when I trimmed nails. Eventually, he got over it.

Jessica

My daughter has always hated having her nails clipped, when she was a newborn I know I did clip one too short not sure if that is what started the issue or not. My daughter is 2.5 years old now and it still can be a struggle, we have never been able to do it while she slept.

Here is what we do: We never cut both the toenails and fingernails at the same sitting, we always cut them after a bath because the are softer and will not make the clicky noise which seems to freak my daughter out more. When it is time to cut either her toenails or fingernails I tell her we need to do ALL 10 whatever and countdown so she knows how many we have left. I also turn on a cartoon that will help take her mind off what I am doing. I have her sit on my lap when I clip her fingernails and I have her lay down on the side of me with her feet in my lap, this way I can "lock" her foot in place if she is too wiggly.

It is getting a little easier so I am hoping that someday it will not be an issue. For now I just tell her it must be done, I also clip my finger/toenails while she is around so she can see that it really is not a big deal.

I hope you find something that works for you!

I discovered with my son that if I put him on my shoulders while he watched his favorite show (currently Wall-E), he will let me clip his toenails.

I also take opportunities to rub his feet when we are sitting around so he's used to me touching his feet and isn't always expecting me to clip the toenails.

So I do a little rub rub, snip snip, rub rub, snip snip.

Looks like you got a lot of great advice already. The only thing I have to suggest that wasn't mentioned already is the "Snappi" nail clippers (you can get it at www.punkinbutt.com). It looks like a butterfly, so it might make it a little more "fun" for your little one.

How about not clipping them at all? I have never had to clip my boy's nails since he was born (he's now 4-1/2). Kid's nails are so soft they just peel off naturally. I've seen some parents bite and peel off their kids nails.

After awhile, your child will forget about freaking out. When she get older and hangs out with other girls for whom playing with nail polish etc is fun, she'll learn to enjoy it. Maybe she can watch you clip your own nails, too.

There's no way she can remember being "traumatized" as an newborn. If that were so, there's a lot of "traumatized" circumcised kids out there, right? Relax and enjoy your beautiful baby girl.

I used to do my sons when he was asleep and it always worked like a charm... she must be a light sleeper! Or I pretend to clip his stuffed puppies nails and then act like I DONT want to clip his. Then he gets jealous and want's me to do his! I do his toenails by sitting on the floor when he is on the couch with his feet dangling where he cant really see what I am doing then I go on the attack! Or you can try bribery with M&M's.. my son will do ANYTHING for M&M's. Anyway, lots of luck. It seems like every child has something they dont like to have done, my son's is brushing his teeth and believe me, I HAVE wrestled the little guy, then I feel bad and am scared I have traumatized him but I dont want his teeth to fall out! Same with your daughter, you dont want her catching a nail and tearing it badly. Let us know if you have any luck!

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