Read on to learn more about nail biting in children, why it occurs, and how to stop it.
Research shows that up to 50 percent of children will bite their nails at some point. There are many reasons that can lead babies and children to bite their nails. But the most common reason is also the simplest: boredom.
If your baby is bored and doesn't have any colorful, interesting toys on hand, they could resort to biting their nails for fun. In many cases, babies will indulge in nail biting because their nails are there and easily accessible to them.
Fingernail biting can also be a form of self-soothing. This habit can be similar to sucking their thumb or a pacifier. In these cases, you'll probably notice that your baby is biting their nails during specific situations; for example, when they're exposed to loud noises.
If your baby is teething, they could chew on their hands or bite their nails to relieve their sore gums. Teething can cause itchy gums as teeth erupt, so it's normal for babies to look for something to bite on during this stage.
Babies love putting everything in their mouths. This includes their fingers. It's easy to worry if this habit is hygienic and wonder whether your baby can catch any diseases from it.
If your baby is still a newborn or toddler, it's impossible to explain to them that their hands can get dirty. When your child is very young, try your best to keep their hands clean.