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Parenting Connection: Establishing a personal hygiene routine for your children

Parenting Connection

It’s Parenting Connection Tuesday and 6 News is here for you with tips, strategies, and helpful reminders from local child development experts on how we can be better parents and guardians.

Today’s topic: Establishing a personal hygiene routine for children.

The month of May is usually the first of many “warm to hot months” in Michigan and when the weather get warm — kids get outside and play harder than ever. Now add a future when we’re all being social once again — and you can expect your kids to stinky, sweaty, and caked with grime from who knows where. So, as we’re all learning from this pandemic… there’s maybe no better time than right now to teach your kids how to follow a solid personal hygiene routine. In fact, child experts say a good personal hygiene routine will help your kids stay healthy, ward off illnesses, and build better self-awareness.

The first and most important good hygiene habit to master is hand-washing. It needs to be done properly and often, for example:
*Before and after handling and eating food
*After using the restroom
*After coughing or sneezing
*After combing or touching hair
*After playing with pets
*After playing outdoors

Set up regular bath or shower times, and maybe a requirement of an extra shower after an unexpected event that causes them to get dirty. Make sure you teach them about all the necessary body parts that need washing too, with soap, like the armpits, neck, arms, legs, and feet. Health experts recommend kids wash their hair at least two to three times a week

Don’t forget about finger and toe nails. Teach your kids to keep them short and clean to prevent build-up of dirt and germs that can easily get them sick.

Of course, dental hygiene is key. Get them to brush at least twice a day for at least 2-minutes.
When they turn 7 years old, introduce daily flossing to their routine.

Child experts say, in can be tough at first for younger kids to get into this routine without you pushing them along, but experts say, teaching them will create healthy hygiene habits that will last throughout their lives.

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