How to cut nails to newborns?


The nails of babies begin to grow actively even during the period of intrauterine development, and therefore many children are born with a decent size manicure, which is also very sharp. The tender skin of an infant is easily injured if it scratches itself, and therefore one of the first questions in the topic of caring for a newborn is how to properly and safely cut baby’s nails.

When to start?

Anyone who has ever seen and held in his hand the hand of a baby born only a few days ago knows how thin and delicate crumbs are. They break easily, they are almost impossible to pick up with scissors.

Many mothers in the first days, if the child’s manicure is very long, use their own teeth to shorten it, which is not so surprising for natural laws as well. However, this does not guarantee that the baby will not scratch his face, because he is still very poorly coordinating the movements of his own pens.

Even if the child is swaddled with hands “at the seams”, there is no guarantee that the baby will not be scratched in those minutes when the hands are still free - during bathing, during massage, changing clothes or morning hygiene procedures.

Many people buy newborn special mittens or vests with wired sleeves. And this is, indeed, a very useful acquisition.

But the nails grow stronger and grow with surprising speed, and it comes time to think about the manicure.

Usually the first time a child is recommended to cut his nails after the baby is 3-4 weeks old.

What is needed?

Mom may have an excellent manicure set to care for her own nails, but, alas, it is not suitable for infants. Manicure scissors with very sharp and thin tips, which the mother successfully uses for herself, the baby cannot cut her nails. The child constantly jerks his hands, his movements are unpredictable, and therefore there is a risk of injuring the child.

The local immunity of newborns is still very weak, and the world in which the child has come is inhabited by bacteria, and not every one of them is harmless. Wounds and cuts should be avoided.

There is another danger of manicure items used by the whole family - they are populated with microbes and particles of dirt, can be a real "repository" of pathogenic fungi.

Therefore, it is worthwhile to make sure in advance that the child has his own accessories, which will make it possible to cut the baby’s nails as safely and conveniently as possible. These accessories include baby scissors with blunt rounded endswhich is almost impossible to hurt the child.

It is important to make sure that the cutting surfaces of the scissors are quite sharp; attempts to “tear off” the nails with blunt scissors can lead to the separation of the nail plate.

Some injuries of the nail plate form the features of its growth in the future, and the defect may remain with the child for life.

You should not use special manicure tweezers. In an infant it is very difficult to find the space between the edge of the nail plate and the skin, and therefore it is possible to “pinch off” the nails along with the skin.

Important conditions

To cut the child's nails on the run is not worth it. This is a responsible process, which is best carried out in an atmosphere of maximum purity. It is clear that at home it is impossible to achieve sterility, but some precautions will not be superfluous.

  • Before clipping the nails, you need to smooth the diaper from both sides, on which the baby will be placed during the procedure.
  • Hands should be washed with baby soap before you start trimming your nails.
  • Mom should take care of the purity of her own hands - soap with antibacterial properties is suitable for washing, and it will also be useful to treat them with any non-alcohol antiseptic, for example, Miramistin.
  • Next to the mother at the time of the procedure should be "emergency" means that will be useful if you hurt the baby finger. These are cotton swabs, a sterile bandage, furatsilin, hydrogen peroxide (3%) or "Chlorophyllipt."

Remembering the security measures, mom should not forget about the psychological mood. A child, even such a small one, perfectly feels “important” moments when the mother is tense and worried. If a woman is in a bad mood, she is upset, offended, she is angry or worried, it is better to move the nail clipping at a later time when mom completely calms down. Otherwise, the child will scream and wave his hands heart-rendingly, which is clearly not conducive to the success of the procedure.

The child will be calmer if he is full, he has dry diapers or a diaper, if he is not currently suffering from colic or other unpleasant physiological sensations, if he is not tired and does not want to sleep.

Experience shows that the most favorable to babies are nail clipping after bathing and relaxing massage, as well as during sleep. Many parents prefer to cut their nails only sleeping child. But even here there is a risk and it lies in the fact that at any time you can wake up with such difficulty laid toddler. Especially this should be remembered mothers restless and easily excitable children.

If you decided to cut your nails awake newborn, you should take care that the procedure turned into a fun game, with songs or rhymes, with toys-rattles and other distracting maneuvers.

Action algorithm

To cut the baby's nails correctly, quickly and safely, you should know the sequence of actions.

  • Enlist the support of an assistant - any household will be able to hold the hand or foot of the baby, while the mother takes care only of the nail plates.
  • Mom grabs the baby's finger and fixes it with her own fingers, it is best to gently pinch the finger between the index finger and the thumb of her own hand.
  • The skin, which is under the protrusion of the nail plate in front of the fingertip, should be slightly delayed so as not to injure the baby.
  • Cut the nail in one or more movements with scissors. It is important that the crumbs do not cut too much, it will cause inconvenience and pain. Leave about a millimeter. Marigolds on the hands do oval, legs - can be made straight.

If a child has burrs, they should be carefully trimmed with scissors, do not lift them, do not try to tear them with tweezers. If there are ingrown corners or a part of the plate completely grows, be sure to visit a toddler's surgeon with a baby, because trying to remove an ingrown nail yourself is painful and very dangerous.

If something went wrong

About how to act, if something goes wrong, any mother should know. If a child has a finger, do not panic - cotton balls and a sterile bandage with antiseptics are not in vain advised to keep it at hand.

If blood appears, gently remove it, treat the wound site with an antiseptic. There is no need to bandage a finger. Bandage among the necessary exists not for this, but in order that they can process the wound. It is preferable to cotton wool, whose fine fibers may remain in the wound.

How often to cut?

As needed. In general, this is usually done every 1-2 weeks.. But it all depends on the individuality of the offspring: some have nails grow faster, others have more slowly.Uniform requirements for the frequency of cutting nails in newborns does not exist. Pediatricians leave this question entirely at the discretion of parents..

Please note that in some kits there are special nail files. You can use them, but not more often than once a month. The filing, if it is frequent and unlimited, contributes to the stratification of the multi-layered nail plate. As a result, the nails will become brittle.

Useful tips

To cut the nails of the child without any problems, experienced parents give some useful recommendations.

  • To do this in the prone position - in this position, the newborn will not throw his arms and legs up too sharply.
  • If the child is very worried when cutting the nails, you can try to do it right during feeding, when the child is fascinated by another activity - food. The child is relaxed at this moment, but it is impossible to do without the help of relatives - while the mother is feeding, the father or another household must carefully carry out all the necessary manipulations to bring the child’s arms in order.
  • If a child has a hostile attitude towards nail clipping, try to do everything possible not to aggravate the situation, do not frighten the child, do not try to carry out the procedure right now at any cost, wait until a more favorable moment. Otherwise, hostility will become persistent, and an older child in 2-3 years will find it very difficult to cut his nails, since he will not only spin and scream hysterically, but also run and crawl away from the parent with scissors in his hands.

If you follow these simple rules, nail cutting will be easy and pleasant for all participants in the process.

For more information on how to cut nails to newborns, see the following video.

Information provided for reference purposes. Do not self-medicate. At the first symptoms of the disease, consult a doctor.