Any advice on nail cutting?

Cindy - posted on 11/21/2008 ( 9 moms have responded )

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My daughter turns 3 next month and has a diagnosis of PDD-NOS. Trimming her fingernails is an absolute battle. She fights as hard as she can and screams the whole time. It absolutely traumatizes her. I have tried just doing a couple at a time, doing it while she watches a favorite video, giving her an M&M after each one, you name it.

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Hayley - posted on 07/05/2009

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one way you can try is to let them see you cut your own nails, it was one of the first stepping stones with my son! also I have done them when he was in the bath as well! but now apart from having a wriggly 5 yr old on my lap I have no real problems, the other thing was that my son loved to count so i got him to count as I did one, made it into a game

Kylie - posted on 07/05/2009

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i cut my sons nail whils asleep and his hair while in the bath ( he likes puoring water form one cup to another) while he is distracted with sensory issues I get the whole haircut in and just use a sink strainer when I let the bath out to catch all the mess. Beats fighting him all the time

Tricia - posted on 11/23/2008

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My boys (both PDD-NOS) hated all nail clippings and haircuts as well. Hated is actually a weak description - they fought these events like wild animals and we gave up on nail clipping altogether for a long time. What changed for us was Son-Rise. After we learned a new way to approach our interactions with our boys, things improved exponentially - and immediately. SR is similar to Floortime, and after one day of changing our mindset, one of my boys actually brought me the clippers and asked me to clip them! I know it sounds unbelievable, I didn't believe it myself, but it happened. Good Luck!

Yvette - posted on 11/23/2008

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Hi Cindy... my 4 year old son (who was diagnosed w/ Autisim in March 08) hates to have his nails and hair cut... I do his nails when he's asleep (if I get them all its a miracle, but sometimes I can only get 1 or 2 and it will take me a few nights to get them all). As for his hair cuts... well I try to trim away at it when hes alseep... its tricky. I was taking him to my hair dresser and having her buzz it, but he screams and struggles and it breaks my heart cuz it really bothers him... the last good cut I did was this summer when he was asleep outside in his stroller.... my neighbor saw me trimmin away w/ scissor and let me borrow her clippers... I couldn't believe he slept thru the whole thing... hair was everywhere but we were outside so it was all good.
Try doing the nails when she's asleep... I also don't turn on any lights to wake him up, I sneak in w/ a flash light... :)
Good Luck!

Stacy - posted on 11/23/2008

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My daughter is the same so i just gave up,i know its not ideal but she bites hers off or when they become to long they break off,i just couldnt physically pin her anymore...

Jennifer - posted on 11/22/2008

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I just wanted to add that I think it would have been over a lot sooner if I had realized he wasn't just being a pain and really had serious issue with it. I had no idea he could possibly have autism up until maybe two years ago.

Jennifer - posted on 11/22/2008

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He will be 8 next week. The after bath thing is what started helping with us. That and after each finger I made a big show of kissing it and saying "See, that didn't hurt, did it." He learned that the calmer he was the less I would accidentally hurt him.

Cindy - posted on 11/22/2008

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I'm curious. How old is your son?

Her OT suggested doing it after a bath when the nails are softer and she's probably started to wind down for the night.

Jennifer - posted on 11/22/2008

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I honestly don't know how to help you but I do understand. My son was the same way up until about a year ago. We tried distracting and bribing but nothing ever worked. One day he was fine with it. Still a little skittish but let me do it. Now it's not a problem. Hopefully she will get better about it soon.

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