He's been pulling his nails for around 2 years. His fingernails are short but plus, but recently his toe nails have been pulled so much they bleed. I've repeatedly tried to stop him (dire warnings/bribes etc) but he says he feels compelled to do it.
He keeps pulling even though it hurts and he cries. What can I do to stop this?
Yeah, it's a compulsion, and it probably won't respond to bribes or punishment or anything. I have tricotillamania which is a hair pulling disorder, and I also bite and pick at my nails till they bleed, and have done since I was very young.
I wear false nails now, which I loathe doing but it's the only way I've found to stop the behaviour. Obviously that's not a solution for your son, I just wanted to agree that it's something that's worth checking out medically. It also doesn't necessarily mean that there's an underlying SN issue; I'm NT except for the tric.
good luck peaceflower. when one's child is hurting themself it is so painful for a parent, but it never ceases to amaze me what bothers a child so dont worry it may be something quite silly that is easily over come.
Thank you both. My ds knows it's not right to pick at his nails and we have agreed to put a plaster on one finger and one toe every night to remind him not to pick. So far so good. He tells me he misses picking as he enjoys peeling off thelayers of nails and looking at them against light! I promised to try to come up with something he can peel and look at it against the light........
So far can only think of sticky tape on a nonstick surface!!!