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Toenail clipping, or "They're trying to kill me!"

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
At least, that's what it sounds like to our neighbors I'm sure.

We cannot clip DS's toenails. It's gotten so bad we've had to hold him down kicking and screaming just to get one toe done per day. I've even tried doing it in his sleep and he'll kick like a mule. Fingernails he'll *usually* let us do, as long as he's watching something particularly engrossing on television. We've talked to him, tried bribing him (which he really just doesn't *get* quite yet), we've done everything we can think of. He'll take the clippers and "pretend" to clip them himself, but when it comes to one of us actually holding his foot to get in there he FREAKS OUT.

Cleaning his ears is almost as bad, but I can usually get in and out quickly enough. Toenails take a bit more precision and he just won't stand for it. I'm envisioning some sort of de-sensitization program to get him to not freak out when we hold his foot, but I'm not sure how to go about that. Help?
post #2 of 10
Wait until he's in a deep sleep and do it then. Or don't clip at all - eventually they'll get too long, start to break off and then you can just pinch/peel them off with your fingernails.

Is it really worth the trauma of being held down kicking and screaming to clip one nail? I mean, it's just a toenail, it's not going to kill him if it gets long!
post #3 of 10
nak

is he ticklish? my dd is nearly 3 and ridiculously ticklish. it even tickles her to get her teeth brushed. i do manage to get her nails clipped when she is in a deep sleep however she still kicks.
post #4 of 10
I can only second clipping nails in a deep sleep.

Also as I understand it there is no need for cleaning the ears as part of a regular maintenence. A little ear wax protects the ear canal and ear drum and cleaning it with a q-tip or other things can actually increase chances of infection, by removing the first line of defense as well achance of creating tiny tears.
post #5 of 10
During a deep sleep only. We try to cut 2 nails per day--whichever two are longest. Before I go to sleep, I turn on a dim light and try to cut them. Sometimes I make Huz hold a flashlight instead. To keep her from waking up, I put immediate pressure on the limb after clipping the nail and she thinks I'm hugging her or something.

I only worry about the toenails when they get really scraggly. The big toe nails split sometimes if I let them get too long, and it looks painful so I get those first.
post #6 of 10
My DS is 3 and has sensory sensitivity to all things hygiene. I haven't cut his tonails in a really long time. I just let them get long and then when they start to break, I tear them off. The big toe really needs to be done more often because they grow weird and it looks like he's going to be prone to ingrown toenails, but to me, it is absolutely not worth traumatizing him to do it.

Remember that anytime you do that, you risk creating bad associations that make them not want to EVER do it.
post #7 of 10
right after the bath works better too. the nails are soft from soaking in the ater. DD hated it too..but would be more tolerant then because they were more pliant after the bath. Later I asked her and she said that it hurts when they are dry, the clippers make them twist as they cut
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by HeliMom View Post
Also as I understand it there is no need for cleaning the ears as part of a regular maintenence.
Don't worry, I don't go digging around or anything, just the surface.

Interesting comment on the after-bath technique, we'll have to try that. I wouldn't worry about it that much except that he's got a couple of toes where the nail tends to grow downward when they get to a certain length (if that makes any sense) and like someone else said, I think he'll be prone to ingrown nails if we don't cut them. He won't let me peel them off either - it really doesn't seem the the clipping part of it, he just really doesn't like his feet held. He's not overly ticklish, just...sensitive I guess.
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by InMediasRes View Post

Remember that anytime you do that, you risk creating bad associations that make them not want to EVER do it.
Uh Oh - I'm in trouble then because my DS refuses to brush his teeth and there is no way we can do it without a struggle.

OP - my DS doesn't like his toenails cut either and so I've been working at touching his feet more often. I touch my toes and do "this little piggy" and then touch one of his toes. He still doesn't love to have his toenails cut, but at least it isn't so traumatic.
post #10 of 10
We're finally to the point where DS happily lets us brush his teeth. Up until recently, while we were sympathetic and nice and loving and caring... it just HAD to be done. Period. Screaming or no. Now all the sudden he loves inventing far-fetched things that are in his mouth for us to brush out... last night it was "kids dancing."

The other night, though, he had some meat caught in his teeth that we had to floss out. Good lord, you'd have thought we were hanging him from the ceiling by his ears had you heard the screams. I couldn't even do it... wasn't strong enough. Had to call in DH.

We finished and said, "I'm sorry that was no fun, but we have to do stuff like this sometimes because we're trying to be good parents."

His response? "NO GOOD PARENTS! MAMA NO GOOD PARENT!"

I had to stifle a giggle on that one. DH and I have taken to calling each other "No good husband!" and "No good wife!"
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