Personal Hygiene is a fundamental life skill that helps children to remain healthy and to feel good about themselves, from preschool years to later years in life. To avoid getting sick and to kill germs, everyone needs to keep clean. So how can we help our children into keeping healthy personal hygiene habits?
For children, the basics of good personal hygiene are washing hands, covering mouth when they cough, having regular baths or showers, brushing/flossing teeth and wearing a clean set of clothes each day.
Helping your child to practice and talk about good personal hygiene habits will become even more important as they grow older and approach puberty. Most importantly, the role modelling you show your children is absolutely paramount to leave them with life long impressions on keeping healthy.
Hand washing: most germs are spread through hand contact. The habit of regularly washing hands will prevent your child and others from getting sick.
Encourage washing hands with soap and water not only when hands look dirty but before eating and preparing food. After going to the toilet, vomiting, touching blood, touching animals, blowing nose, sneezing and coughing. When sneezing and coughing always try to encourage coughing or sneezing into the crease of their arm or higher up onto their shoulder to decrease droplet spray.
Showering and Bathing: In order to keep healthy children need regular baths and showers. Getting into the practice of having a bath or shower at the end of the day practically at night before bed is a great routine to have. Encourage child to wash all the parts of their body with soap and to thoroughly dry themselves with a towel.
Clothes: Children need fresh clothes everyday, even if their old clothes don’t smell. Clean underwear is especially important. Clothes harbor all sorts of nasty microorganisms and clothes with these microorganisms on them can lead to skin infections.
By doing all of these vital hygiene practices daily, through role modelling, talking and inaction will leave a life long impression on our children and will help ensure they remain healthy and feel good about themselves throughout life.