How do you get an Austic child's hair cut?

My son absolutely will not get his hair cut. And it's not just a case of being stubborn. He is actually scared to death. When we've tried it, he cries and shakes like he's going to die. :(

We've tried taking snips here and there when he's sleeping, but he ends up just looking raggedy. He hasn't had a real haircut in about 6 months.

11 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    While he is sleeping is still the best bet... many children with autism or other sensory/communication disorders have an unnatural fear of hair cuts. The best you can do at this stage is to do the haircuts yourself while he is sleeping. Try to comb it as flat as you can and hold it taut while you cut. While this may not be efficient, it will save you a melt down in the barber's chair. Right now, the most important part is keeping the fear to a minimum. Many children are afraid of the sound of the clippers, while others are fearful of the other noises and smells in a salon. If your child is hypersensitive to smells, chemicals used in salons can upset them. If they are hypersensitive to sounds, the clippers and even the sound of scissors near their ears is going to make them freak. This causes their sensory systems to go into overload. Just do the best you can as he sleeps, and don't worry about what his hair looks like too much... as long as the ends are trimmed so that they don't split, it's ok. You may want to ask a hair professional for some tips on cutting his hair.

    Source(s): special education preschool teacher
  • 1 decade ago

    I had this problem with my son. I finally figured it out. He sat on my lap while his hair was being cut. He was around ten or eleven when this was no longer needed. I talked to him the whole time to let him know mommy was there and was not going to let anyone hurt him. Ever Autistic child is different. I'm sorry to say everything in life is trial and error. It is really hard to find someone to talk to when all your friends kids are( normal). Please let him know that he is safe and you will always keep him safe. Also the electric clipper are what scared him. We could only use scissors. He finally was able to use the clippers at ten or eleven years old. Good Luck, my thoughts are with you. My son is now eighteen and doing very well. Works on a ranch with his Dad and works at a grocery store ten hours a week.

  • helly
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    Same problem here - my son is 5 and autistic too, and like most, hates hair cuts (along with nail cutting, teeth brushing, shoe fitting, dentists, etc etc).

    Unfortunately we have had to be a bit ruthless with the haircuts. We have tried hairdressers, watching daddy getting his done, distracting him, using sneaky scissors...nothing worked. When he was still napping in the dayI used to do it while he slept, but of course, that is impossible now.

    It's a bit of a trauma for him, but it's over as quickly as we can do it, and he forgets very quickly. We run a bath ready, strip him down, and use the clippers to get it as short as we can. He kicks and screams, and hates it. It takes both me and my husband to do it, but once it's done, he gets straight in the bath, washes it all off, and is fine, and it doesn't need doing for up to six months. Lately, he has been letting me do a tiny bit of trimming with scissors before he starts a tantrum, but I'm hopeless at it, and it ends up looking awful, and he wouldn't let a hairdresser do it.

    For now, this is all we can do, but hopefully as he gets older, he may be easier to bribe, or reason with, and he will get over it. Obviously buzzing trimmers are unpleasant when a child has sensory issues, but it is worth it at the moment, because trimming with scissors upsets him more, takes longer, and means it needs doing more regularly. At least getting it really short means more time between traumas!

  • 1 decade ago

    Wow, I am so glad that I am not the only one who has had to adopt the SURFER look for her 4 year old! My son is also autistic, and haircuts are a nightmare, he is absolutely terrified. We tried doing them at home, no luck I finally found a lady that is very good. (and she doesn't look at me as if I am the worst mother in the world!) she is patient and sweet, she hides the scissors, we give him a lolly-pop DURING the haircut and turn him AWAY from the mirror I stand in front of him and CHAT with him to distract him. He thinks she is just combing his hair... it is still tough as he does have an idea that we are tricking him, but he can't prove it.......

    Needless to say, we do not get a lot of haircuts.

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  • Blondi
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    I had the same problem with my son, but he didnt like electric clippers because it was the noise that scared him to death. I was never able to get him to the barber. So I just did it myself with scissors. He was ok with that. I know you said you snip his hair while he is sleeping, so obviously you use scissors. but the most you can do is take those scissors and if it takes all day, just get it done, or do a little at a time throughout the day. I know it hurts you to see him scared, but just tellh im it has to be done. I understand.

  • ?
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    a million. could you particularly have short (pixie or ear length approximately) healthful hair or long dry brittle hair? ? short hair. 2. could you particularly have immediately or curly hair? ? Wavy. 3. could you particularly be lined in hair in all places (like a cat or dogs is) or thoroughly bald everywhere, even your eyelashes? ? Bald everywhere. 4. could you particularly shrink off all your hair (almost bald) as quickly as, or in no way shrink your hair for something of your existence? ? shrink off all my hair as quickly as. 5. could you ever get an ingredient shrink? (shave a million/2 your head) what's your opinion on them? ? i would not, in my view. I even have seen females at my college do it however. and that they dye all of it like one colour and the shaved area a distinctive one. It looks cheesy. 6. Whats the shortest your hair has ever been? ? Shoulder length. 7. what's the longest? ? suitable above my waist. 8. could you shave your head if it may magically keep 2 babies from loss of life of maximum cancers? ? Yeah. 9. superb/worst haircut you have ever had? ? I had a 'bob' haircut whilst i substitute into youthful and it curved inwards and regarded awkward. 10. Hair you opt to attempt yet are scared? ? Scene hair. 11. Hair you in no way opt to attempt? ? ingredient shrink. 12. could you ever dye your hair? An unnatural colour even? ? My hair is already dyed unnatural. 13. Male or lady? ? lady. 14. Blunt bangs, ingredient bangs, or no bangs? ? Blunt bangs. 15. Describe how yours looks now. ? My hair is a shaggy burgundy shrink with blunt bangs and short layers descending into longer ones.

  • 1 decade ago

    autistic child are mostly scared of any motorized based gadgets in your home. even blender, lawn mowers or anything motorized. Try buying the low noise haircutter and cut your hair or any male family members hair first and let your child see it. (This process might take some time)

    If there's any toys he can concentrate on while sitting down, then let him have it and play with it while you try to cut his hair.

    The hard part is the first time.. eventually it will become easier to cut his hair because he will enjoy feeling lightheaded after you cut his hair again next time.

  • 1 decade ago

    First of all don't call it a cut (cuts hurt), call it a trim. Have you tried using clippers instead of scissors? It's almost impossible to get cut with them. You may even want to let him hold them to see that they're harmless.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    We really had to tough it out with my son, who is also autistic. You may want to resign yourself to electric clippers and a "basic training" sort of haircut until he gets more settled with the concept. They're ticklish and it's quick.

  • let him "balance the clippers for a while ...maybe! lol...

    I dont really know, I think I might have to go with Bill on this one.

    Poor mama....

    a buzz first then snips\

    good luck !!!

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