Nails, unless they are cut short, become a home for bacteria and fungus that easily grow in areas that are not always cleaned. And biting them gives them immediate access into your body. Everybody goes through this phase where you just can’t stop yourself or your child from biting them out.
No matter what makes this habit to start, after a while, the original reason disappears replacing it with just an urge to bite them out. This can be easily fixed if it’s only recently begun. One of the most effective way to have them stop biting nails is to make their nails taste bitter. This is something that nobody wants to taste.
You can place a couple of drops of neem oil or anything that has a bitter taste or wipe their nails with a cotton swab dipped in the oil. You can also go for gloves but they can easily remove them. Petrolium gel also works the same way as making the fingers bitter. Once they find the taste unpleasant, they’ll eventually control themselves from biting.
Another way is to simply keep their nails trimmed so that they won’t have any nail to bite onto. Nails children usually grow to a considerable length in a week or so. So make it a routine to cut their nails every Sunday morning. It’s also advisable that you let them know the consequences of biting nails. Let them know that it can make them ill or worse, they’ll end up with fungal infections on the fingers.
Another way to do this is to keep their hands busy so they won’t think of biting nails. Give them some stuffs to play with, like playing dough or building blocks etc. This might not work all the time, but it’ll definitely reduce the number of times they bite their nails.
Sometimes anxiety can also spawn this kind of habit. Try and find out what is bothering your child and help them deal with it. Try finding out what kind of environment their school has and the kind of friends your child has. This can also create a lot of anxiety and depression in children which gets them to start nail biting.