My 5 year-old has developed some anxiety. My first observation came after we moved from my parents house, this is strongly related. Since moving I have observed the following symptoms in my child: night bruxism (grinding teeth), nail biting, and shirt sucking/chewing. I am extremely concerned about the nail biting, she practically has no nails and she even bites the nail plate. Her little fingers look especially dreadful. She has not been able to stop this habit on her own or with my help, even though it causes her pain. To date the following attempts have been unsuccessful:
- Manicuring - with the hope she would not want to bite because her nails looked good.
- Incentivizing - designating (using a bandage as a reminder) one nail at a time as "protected" and promising a reward for not biting. With the intention of adding another nail each week.
- Anti-bite nail polish. This works for her, but not for me. She touches my lips when she's falling asleep (she likes the texturs so that soothes her), and the anti-bite nail.polish was all over my mouth.
- Professional help.
- Substitution (e.g., pencil)