Have you ever noticed how quickly baby’s fingernails grow? And when they do grow in, they are the sharpest things ever. The one baby task that I absolutely do not like doing is cutting fingernails. I cringe every single time I have to cut Avery’s nails. I try to put it off as long as possible, but between the fear of her scratching herself and her digging into my skin when I am nursing her, there just comes a point when I have to just suck it up and cut them.
The only problem with cutting them is that Avery seems to hate it just as much as I do. She wiggles, attempts to pulls her hands away, and even tries to grab the fingernail clippers. It is usually not a very pretty sight because I am trying to concentrate on cutting her nails and not her finger all while trying to keep her still and distracted.
A couple of days ago, it was finally time for a nail trim for Avery and I knew that I needed to get a new strategy in order to make this process easier on both of us. It only took two little girls and three years, but I finally figured out a way to make cutting nails easier for both me and my baby.
Check out my tips after the jump!
Try Cutting Their Nails When They Are Sleeping 1 of 7This worked perfectly with my oldest daughter. As soon as she was in bed at night, I would go into her room and cut her nails. My oldest was a very heavy sleeper and wouldn't wake up very easily. It never became much of a problem for me when she was younger because all of her nail cutting was done at night time when she was sleeping. Although Avery is a great sleeper, she is a very light sleeper. This doesn't work as well with her because she wakes up most of the time. Even if your little one is a light sleeper, make an attempt to cut their nails when they are sleeping. You never know, they may surprise you and stay asleep!
Image via Flickr User valorian
Cut The Nails After Bath Time 2 of 7Your baby's nails are always the softest once after they have been in the water for an extended amount of time. I cut Avery's nails after bath and noticed how much easier the nail cut because it was so soft. It made the process easier on me and Avery hardly noticed that I was cutting her nails.
Image via Flickr User deanwissing
Sing a Song 3 of 7I didn't think anything of this until the other day when I was trying to cut Avery's fingernails. I started singing a song that she loves for me to sing to her, and low and behold, she stayed calm and quiet the entire time! I was so shocked. She had never reacted that way to me cutting her nails ever before. It took me about two minutes to get all of her nails cut, which is probably a record for the two of us.
Image via Flickr User rkimpeljr
Get a Sibling or Other Parent Involved 4 of 7If you can't seem to distract your little one while trying to cut their nails, get a family member involved. My oldest daughter is always wanting to get involved when it comes to helping with the baby. As I was singing to Avery, Harlan started singing along too. The extra distraction helped me concentrate on cutting her nails so I could get finished faster and it helped keep Avery entertained and her attention elsewhere.
Image via Flickr User marktristan
Buy Fingernail Clippers With a Built in Light 5 of 7I received these Safety 1st Sleepy Baby Nail Clippers when I was pregnant with Harlan. They are one of the best and most useful baby products I have ever received. I thought that the light would only come in handy at night when I would cut her nails, but what I soon realized is that they help when I cut her nails during the day time as well. The extra light on the end of the clippers help give you extra illumination so you can carefully cut your baby's nails.
Image via Safety 1st
Don’t Freak Out if You Accidentally Cut Their Finger 6 of 7It is the worst feeling in the world seeing your little one in pain. I remember the first time that I accidentally cut Harlan's finger when I was trimming her fingernails. I told myself I would never ever cut her nails ever again and was going to leave that task to my husband. After gently applying a little bit of pressure and a cotton swab, her finger quickly stopped bleeding and she stopped crying. It didn't make me feel any better, but it was good to know that she wasn't in pain any longer. If you do cut their finger while trying to trim their nails, don't worry. It happens to the best of us. Just grab a cotton swab (I suggest keeping them on hand while you are trimming, just in case) and apply a little bit of pressure to stop the bleeding. Give them a lot of love and before you know it, they will forget that it happened.
Image via Flickr User valorian
Use an Emery Board- 7 of 7If after trying everything and you are still nervous to cut your little one's nails, use an emery board to file them down. When both of my girls were born, I was terrified to cut their nails because their hands and fingers were so tiny. Although tiny, their nails grew so incredibly fast. Rather than risking cutting them with clippers, I grabbed an emery board and filed them down. It made the process more relaxing for me and much more comfortable.
Image via Flickr User shawnzlea
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Read more from Lauren at her personal blog, A Mommy in the City, where she chronicles her life living in New York City with a suburban mentality. For more updates, follow Lauren on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram! Check out more of Lauren’s Babble posts at Being Pregnant and Baby’s First Year.
Image via Flickr User e-jays