Is There a Manual?

Does anyone have instructions on how to cut an infant’s fingernails?  How can this task be so difficult?  Maybe it’s the instrument we are using; I doubt it because it looks like regular fingernail clippers.  Just smaller.  Much smaller.  The minute Oster sees them he wails his arms and immediately throws himself backward.  Odd behavior for someone who LOVED getting his nails clipped not so long ago.  That’s right; when Oster was younger he let me cut them anytime and anywhere.  He even put his fingers out for me and watched intently as I did my job.  Sadly, the moment he reached 9 months old, it’s been an ongoing battle.

I now have to cut one finger at different times of the day. I distract him with a book, sneak it in after he eats a snack, and while he is engrossed in playing (sometimes he doesn’t even feel me gently grab his hand).  But no way can I cut them all at once.  No Way!

Well, at least I’m able to get one hand done throughout the course of a day.  Thank goodness there are 7 days in a week. I get a 5-day break from my job as a nail technician!

16 thoughts on “Is There a Manual?

      • I’m with travellady – I put on short clips of Sesame Street (or stuff from pbskids.org – old school Mr. Rogers?!) or something on YouTube to keep him distracted for a couple minutes. Though, thankfully, R is pretty good still about letting me get a couple fingers in for “free” every once in a while. Usually when he’s in a milk coma is a good time to catch him! Good luck!
        BTW, I got some Safety1st clippers that have a light on them, for what it’s worth. When he was itty bitty, they were my flashlight for nighttime changes; now they are a little beacon that distracts him, though this often backfires with him wanting to grab the light. Ugh. Fun never ends, right? ;o)

  1. We have the same nail clippers but found it hard to hold onto when Jaydon protests so we use a standard small nail clipper.
    When Jaydon protests he twists and turns, cries and tries to get away. Mommy is scared she will cut him so I’ve been the only one to clip Jaydon’s nails.
    I place Jaydon on his back on the changing table. With baby music playing in the background I talk to Jaydon softly. Kneeling down so my head is at his level I take the first hand firmly and hold one of his fingers in mine. I alternate one finger at a time. His arm and hand are now immobilized allowing me to clip his nails.
    At this point Jaydon will cry but not move. If he does mommy will hold him and talk to him.
    After I finish one hand I’ll flip him around so he faces the other direction and start again.
    I hope this helps. Good luck.

  2. Oy, I am still looking for that answer myself. I cannot use clippers with Livi because she doesn’t sit still enough. But I file her nails about twice a week.
    I need my husband’s help to keep her occupied and even then it’s a struggle. Lately, he’s been using apps on the iPad to distract her. I think right now it’s the baby piano, doodle buddy, and an aquarium app where she can feed fish. We’ll see how long this works.

    • Never thought of using apps! Oster likes to use his right hand to move the screen around. I wonder if I can clip his left hand while he’s using his “Small World” app. I’ll give it a try!

  3. OMG, you brought back so many memories, I actually nicked my oldest daughter’s finger the first time I ever tried clipping her nails, and I almost passed out when I saw the blood. Then, I learned the secret…use a nail file. I have 5 little girls and I never used nail clippers again after that 1st time. GOOD LUCK!!!

  4. We cut his nails after he takes a bath and his dad is reading him a book. This is pretty much the only time he’ll let me cut them, unless he specifically complains about a nail and will therefore let me clip them during the day.

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