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DD won't stop twisting her hair into knots. Help

(16 Posts)
polythenespam Fri 28-Feb-14 08:37:06

DD, 2.11, has recently developed a habit of pulling and twisting at her hair. She does this CONSTANTLY - I don't think I would be exaggerating if I said I am telling her 100+ times a day to stop and removing her hands.

What makes this problematic is her hair type - she has fine, very curly hair - it doesn't take much for it to end up in a horrible knot. I am detangling knots dozens of times a day; it was once impossible to detangle and I had no option but to cut a chunk off.

She has moved on to doing it in her sleep - I have seen her doing it when checking her and this morning, it was in a horrific knot again.

I don't know what to do. She is going to wreck her hair at this rate - I have to detangle with my fingers/a tangle teaser far more than I'd like, and I can see already that it's affecting its condition. Curly hair should be left alone! I tie it back into a little ponytail but she just pulls the bobble out and starts twisting. I have tried actually putting a hat on her inside which did work slightly, but ultimately it gets pulled off and the twisting starts up again.

Feel at the end of my tether with this

DontWannaBeObamasElf Fri 28-Feb-14 10:15:14

Is she doing it as a comfort thing? I remember watching Jo Frost and a little girl pulled her hair out when she had her dummy/sucked her thumb.

BloooCowWonders Fri 28-Feb-14 10:19:37

My curly haired dd does this. And you won't be thrilled when I say she's 7...

At least mine has moved from twiddling my hair to just her own...

I don't think there's much you can do. As Obama's elf ^ said, it's a comfort thing. I just cut out the biggest knots and leave the rest of the hair alone.


ISeeYouShiverWithAntici Fri 28-Feb-14 10:23:39

cut it short? If she can't fiddle with it, it can't grow into a habit that takes years to break (if ever)

it will grow again and hopefully she will have grown out of the fiddling with it phase?

JokersGiggle Fri 28-Feb-14 10:23:48

A friends Child did that so she cut it really short (like a boy) by the time it grew long again she had forgotten about twisting it and it was thick and beautiful again.
Drastic method but it worked!

murphy36 Fri 28-Feb-14 10:26:09

I do this whenever my hair gets long and it really messes it up. So, my hair is short. Cut it I'd say

Seeline Fri 28-Feb-14 10:26:48

My sister used to do this when she sucked her thumb - just a small section at the front. My Mum sometimes had to cut it because she'd knotted her finger into it and couldn't get it out again! She had a little bald spot there for a while - from memory from about 2 -5 years.

polythenespam Fri 28-Feb-14 11:51:08

I know cutting it would be a solution, but I'm really loathe to do that. It's not long as it is, it's taken nearly 3 years to grow long enough to put a tiny bit into a ponytail (about an inch when dry and curly). It's so fine and sparse that if it was cut short she would look like a bald baby again! And I worry that it would take years to grow to any length again.

PseudoBadger Fri 28-Feb-14 11:52:48

My friend's dd does this. Recently she did it so badly in her sleep that her finger went blue and they had to cut the knot out!

DontWannaBeObamasElf Fri 28-Feb-14 12:13:32

Could you give her a small item to play with as a distraction? Like a barbie so she can play with that hair?

Cringechilli Fri 28-Feb-14 12:24:50

I would cut it even though that particular solution is not your 1st choice. If it is done, cutting it may help it get stronger and thicker so may solve more than the hair twisting. If the hair type permits, I would get a fringe and the rest of it jaw length or very slightly shorter. This way, none will fall into her face/mouth and she may become less fascinated with it.

smaths Fri 28-Feb-14 12:40:53

My daughter is 2 and a half and does this too. She has straight hair but still gets it into frightful knots. She also does it in her sleep (same as with previous poster) and we have also had to cut out her finger a few times as it had turned blue while she was asleep and woke her up! Now we just keep her hair chin length and well conditioned, there is a certain length it gets to where it knots on itself but if we keep it shorter the knot just pulls itself out.

polythenespam Fri 28-Feb-14 12:58:26

Her hair isn't even chin length, none goes into her face or mouth. It's just a ball of curls

ZuleikaD Fri 28-Feb-14 14:25:44

Cut it. It'll give her a chance to break the habit - can't be much fun for her having you telling her off 100 times a day. Who are you keeping it longer for?

Sovaysovay Sun 02-Mar-14 20:31:45

Kids look adorable in pixie cuts. Having long hair is a privilege, not a right, and if she's making wok for you it has to go.

ThePippy Mon 03-Mar-14 10:00:05

My DD developed this habit as a soothing technique when she was tired and once or twice we ended up being called to her in the night because she had actually got her finger stuck so tight the end was going bright red! She is now 4.5yrs and her hand still creeps up to her hair when we is tired, but she is less frantic with the twiddling so doesn't tend to get in a pickle anymore.

She also has super fine hair (although hers is straight) and it has taken a very very long time to develop any real length, but since she turned 4 it is growing like crazy and really thickening up - she even has had bunches for the first time recently (she was thrilled to show them off at school as it seems nearly all the other girls are mini Rapunzel's).

So I agree with the cutting option - I know you think it has taken ages to get to where it is, but I think cutting at this age will really help and it will soon start to grow a lot faster than it has so far.

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