Every parent has a goal for their children to be healthy. One of the biggest fights with your children’s health, though, is their own disdain for hygiene. Here are five tips to teach your children about hygiene to lead to a healthy life.
Start a bath routine
Parents of infants start a nighttime routine that includes a bath because it helps to lull babies to sleep.
It doesn’t matter whether you encourage bathing in the morning or at night, as long as you’re encouraging a daily shower or bath, but keeping it at the same time helps to build those healthy habits.
As your child grows, allow them to take on more and more of the bath time routine themselves, including washing, drying and dressing.
Teach healthy hand washing
Washing your hands before meals and after using the restroom is important, but only if you’re doing it correctly. Make sure your children are lathering up and using warm water to remove germs and dirt from their paws.
Teach your children to scrub with soap for at least 15 seconds before rinsing, to sing their ABCs or Twinkle Twinkle Little Star while they scrub. When the song is over, they can rinse.
Brush early and often
Your dentist will tell you that oral health is a good indicator of how healthy your body is as a whole. Encourage proper dental health with morning and nightly brushing and daily flossing. To encourage your children to brush for a full two minutes, consider a funky timer.
You can even purchase a toothbrush that plays music for the duration. A fun toothbrush also makes dental hygiene more appealing to kids. Let them pick out their toothbrush and toothpaste to help them get excited about brushing.
Apps like Pepi Play, available for iOS and Android, get your little ones thinking about cleaning their bodies and home similar to the way you might have learned about brushing teeth from Sesame Street when you were a child. Dirty Kids is a similar app.
Use these apps to help build healthy habits in your children.
Show, don’t tell
No matter how many times you tell your little ones to wash their hands, it’s not going to sink in if you don’t show them the same behavior. If you want your children to develop good habits, you’ll need to show examples of them on a daily basis.
One of the most important parts of creating healthy goals for your child is to start young. If they always wash their hands and brush their teeth, then it will be a way of life rather than a fight.
Information credited to Saddleback Dental Centre, emergency dentist in Edmonton.
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