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Why cutting my son's nails is my idea of hell

By 15:29:00 , , ,

It's that time again. The time I dread - time to cut CK's nails. I've been putting it off for a few days, trying to avoid having to do it, ignoring the fact that he blatantly needs both finger and toe nails cut but it's got to a point where I simply have to do it as every time he scratches himself it leaves a horrible red mark or worse it looks like the cat has been at him.


Toddler nails


I don't know if I'm alone in my dread of cutting his nails, I don't ever see this come up in forums or blog posts so it could be just me, but my hatred started in those very first days after he was born. CK was born with nails and scratched his own face within hours of being born and whilst I'd expected his full head of hair I hadn't expected the very long sharp nails. 

Confusion

I wasn't sure what the right way of dealing with them was as I read and heard some contradictory ideas before he was born. Specifically that you shouldn't cut their nails because it could damage the nail bed, and you shouldn't bite them as this could cause an infection. I thought about filing his nails but they were too small and he wasn't too happy about it because of the time it took.

Ignoring advice

In then end I ignored the advice bought the Tommy Tippee nail scissors and we used those for a while, but it was terrible he hated having his nails cut, would wriggle, cry and scream. I found the only way I could do it was when I gave him his bottle and I would hold the bottle in one hand whilst I cut his nails with the other. His toe nails weren't so bad to cut back then and I used to just do them whilst he was playing on his playmat. When he then started holding his own bottle that made things a bit easier but once he was weaned the bottles went during the day and he drank his own at night so I didn't have the opportunity any more.

Other Ideas

I spoke to other mums to see what they did and it was suggested that I cut his nails whilst he was asleep, but CK is the lightest sleeper in the world if I even open his bedroom door he is wide awake. I did try this once anyway and went in with a torch - but it didn't work he sleeps on all fours and the second I touched him he woke up and stirred from the moment I entered the room.

Present day

We use nail clippers now as I find they are quicker. I usually set him up on the sofa and try to distract him with Paw Patrol or Postman Pat. Sometimes it works or he will let me do a few fingers other times he just doesn't let me and screams and makes a fuss, but what can I do? We tried holding him down once too - It was terrible, I felt like such a bad parent for making him cry.

I'm hoping he'll grow out of it at some point so that its no longer an issue but for now I just do the best I can and dread the day I have to trim them.

What has your experience been like? Let me know in the comments below and if you have any tips please also include them as well.

Dear Bear and Beany

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20 comments

  1. I absolutely hate cutting Lilys nails! I'm paranoid about hurting her x

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    1. Me too - I'm always worried I'm going to do more damage than he would do scratching himself.

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  2. Yes, cutting baby and little kid nails was traumatic in our house. I think clippers are definitely easier than scissors. Taking them outside to do it was and is a good strategy; kids of all ages are both calmed and distracted by the outdoors.

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    1. Hi Holly, I like the idea of this. Next time we are due to cut nails I will try taking him outside and see if that works for us. Thanks so much for the tip!

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  3. I hate cutting my sons nails, they grow so quickly they need doing every week too! Once I cut his finger and felt terrible, so now I get my mum to do it for me! http://nowmynameismummy.com

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    1. I've cut my son too - felt so guilty when he started bleeding, that I'd hurt my child. Maybe my mum would do his nails on his weekly day with her - good tip x

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  4. Oh gosh, I don't know why there isn't more written about this as I absolutely hate it! My son has hated it since he was born, and he's now 2 and hates it even more! I have to hold him while my husband cuts them (I say hold - that sounds almost calm! It's more like wrestle him and try to pin him down!) And why do they grow so quickly?! I don't need to cut my own nails that often! Thanks for the clippers tip - anything to make life easier! Thanks for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

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    1. We've tried to wrestle and pin him down but I feel so horrible when doing it and I find its more difficult. And why do little nails grow so fast - I was shocked in those first few weeks as to how fast they did grow. Thanks for popping in #sharingthebloglove

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  5. I think I must have had a luck escape as both my girls sit nicely while I cut their nails. I think to begin with they were fascinated about what I was doing and just learnt to sit still. My friend has terrible trouble and brought a nail clipper made by the guy that was on The Apprentice had Alan Sugar hired, its the best thing ever and now her children are no trouble. Thanks for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove Laura x

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    1. Perhaps its a boy thing? I will have to check out that nail clipper, I would do anything to make this easier. Thanks for commenting #sharingthebloglove

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  6. I have heard from a lot of friends that they hate doing this. The first time I did it I was nervous but we use clippers and my little one is quite interested so sits and watches. I just make sure I move really quickly. I know one friend who is so nervous about doing it that she does it with her mouth so she can feel how close she is getting! Whatever works for you.... x

    #marvmondays

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    1. Good to know I'm not alone in hating doing this - I'm still not sure about biting them off. I just wish he'd let me do it then the problem would be solved. #marvmondays

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  7. Oh bless you! I wonder how my Freddie will be with cutting his nails, he's a right wriggler! He will need his doing soon and if I'm honest I haven't thought about it until now. #MarvMondays

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    1. Thanks for commenting - I hope he's ok with having his nails cut #Marvmondays

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  8. I relate to this, i hate it when it comes to the time where my son needs his nails cut, and they grow so fast! Its almost become a weekly thing but it's got easier since hes got older. #marvmondays

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    1. Why do they grow so fast? I'm hoping that when he is older he will let me do it. He is ok having his hair cut. #marvmondays

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  9. I so understand your concerns over nails. I've been wondering what to do about our one month old daughters nails. #MarvMondays

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    1. Hi Helena, they are so tiny at that age which makes it more difficult to cut. Good luck with the trimming. #Marvmondays

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  10. I wish I had some tips for you, but I usually do them when our little ones are asleep. We have a 3 year old and very recently a newborn and I seem to be able to get away with doing that with both of them for now. I have occassionally also cut our daughters nails in the day time when shes awake, but she doesnt really like me doing them so its a matter of getting her in a good mood or distracting her like you do! Thanks for sharing this on #MarvMondays. Emily

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  11. Thanks Emily, it's difficult and I wish I could do them when he's asleep. I'm going to try some of the ideas here and see how I get on. #Marvmondays

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