5 Ways to Control Nail Biting in Kids

| July 4, 2019 | 10 Comments

5 Ways to Control Nail Biting in Kids

Nail biting is a common habit that many kids develop, and statistics reveal that around 50% of children between 10 to 18 years of age have this habit, and it can be annoying and stressful for a parent to deal with.

While there may be different possible reasons for it- right from boredom and comfort to stress and anxiety, there are some actionable steps that you, as a parent, can take to discourage nail biting in your kid. Read on to know more!

5 Ways to Control Nail Biting in Kids
Girl biting her nails

Talk to Your Child

One of the simplest yet easiest ways to tackle nail biting in kids is to address his anxieties and detect if there are any particular causes or triggers that lead him to bite his nails. Some kids tend to start biting nails when exposed to stressful situations, or when they are unable to do something. Sit down and discuss ways in which you can help your kid learn different positive outlets for his concerns.

Get Real About the Germs

Another effective trick is to discuss with your kid about how there are germs under his nails, and how biting nails could cause the germs to enter his body easily, which may increase his risk of falling sick.

5 Ways to Control Nail Biting in Kids
5 Ways to Control Nail Biting in Kids

Offer Reward

This one’s a no-brainer, and it almost always works. Offer your little one a small reward in exchange for not biting his nails. It doesn’t have to be grand or something that could have him hooked. It can be as simple as a movie trip or his favorite homemade dish.

The Awareness Trick

This one’s one of the most tried and tested techniques when it comes to helping your kid stop nail biting. You can try applying nail paint on your kid’s nails or wrap a little bandage around his fingers as a reminder of how he should not bite nails. It will make him aware of his habit, and will definitely help him take an active step to tackle it.

5 Ways to Control Nail Biting in Kids
A white and black fidget spinners

Suggest an Alternative

Another great trick is to suggest your kid a substitute activity to try! If your kid is biting nails due to stress, get him to try some relaxation techniques or even just grab a stress ball or play with a fidget spinner.

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Category: Family, Kids, Tips, Weekly Themes, Wellness

About the Author ()

Lyne is a Certified Infant Massage Instructor (CIMI), Certified Professional Wedding Consultant, and an Event Planner. It has always been her dream to create a website dedicated just for Moms since her children were young. Thus, after 10 years, she finally accomplished it, and the Ottawa Mommy Club was born in May 2011. She loves all things Disney and is an avid chocoholic. She was also the Queen B of the BConnected Conference, Canada's Digital Influencer and social media Conference in Ottawa and Toronto. She coordinated the Annual Infant Information Day/Early Years Expo for the City of Ottawa for 8 years. She was also the co-chair of the Navan for Kraft Hockeyville 2009-2011 committee that organized five community events within 6 months, and helped Navan reach the top 10 finalists in Canada. In April 2011, she received the City of Ottawa Mayor's City Builder Award.

Comments (10)

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  1. Erin N says:

    Great tips! I am still struggling with biting my nails as an adult :/

  2. Fan R. says:

    Suggest an Alternative is the best advice to get, one habit should be changed for another, hopefully for good one!

  3. Calvin says:

    A better distraction always helps, definitely lots more out there than before.. I had this nail biting issue as a child too, usually it is a phase, which was for me too

  4. JoKing says:

    I was a nail biter for many years and into adulthood. I started getting my nails done and they looked so nice I did not want to destroy them or waste my money by destroying them.

  5. Shirley P says:

    Thank you for the tips A fidget bracelet might also help

  6. Elizabeth Matthiesen says:

    With some of my kids it was just sucking their thumb or fingers – not good for their teeth at all. I took my thumb sucking son to the pediatrician for his normal check-up and mention his thumb sucking to him. The Dr talked to him and suggested I put a nasty tasting varnish on his thumb and if that didn’t work them for him to wear tied on gloves at night. He just sucked off the varnish and kept on sucking his thumb so I sewed mittens for him that were tied on at night – even that wasn’t a huge success and he was well into his teens by the time he really stopped.

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