Let’s face it. Sometimes kids can think good hygiene is a waste of time. It isn’t uncommon for your child to feel as though hygiene is nothing more than a hassle that cuts into their playtime.
No one wants their child to be the stinky kid in class, so we as parents, attempt to convince them of the importance of washing up and brushing their teeth. There are ways to make the journey to a squeaky clean and good smelling child, less difficult though.
HOW TO ENCOURAGE GOOD HYGIENE IN CHILDREN
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MAKE HYGIENE EXCITING
Have you ever made the suds from a shower into a beard on your face and pretended you were Santa? Don’t deny it, you have. Make hygiene more fun by showing your children how to make a bubble mohawk, sing a funny teeth brushing song, or do a dance while you wash your hands. Show your children that hygiene doesn’t have to be as boring as they think it is.
In fact, when my daughters were young I sang a song to the tune of “Frère Jacques” while they were washing hands. It went something like this: “Tops and bottoms, tops and bottoms, in between, in between. All around the outside, all around the inside, make them clean, make them clean”. They thought it was fun and to this day I think I sometimes hear them humming the tune as they wash their hands.
IMPLEMENT A ROUTINE
You have heard it time and time again, routines are so important for children, and it’s very true. Make sure to add brushing teeth and hair into their morning and evening routines. Make showers or baths a precursor to their favorite part of bedtime.
When your children start to participate in these hygienic tasks daily, they will begin to adapt and recognize them as part of their daily life. In fact, they may start becoming so used to these tasks that you will find them reminding you when you have forgotten.
USE EXCITING HYGIENE ITEMS
Purchasing an electric toothbrush or one with their favorite characters on it is a great way to get your young children excited about hygiene. It doesn’t take much to make something as seemingly boring as hygiene, something your kids look forward to. Bath time playtoys, or even some of your water pitchers and plastic measuring cups and funnels, these are just some of the things your children will be happy to use.
There are so many different ways that you can change your child’s mind about good hygiene. The important thing is that they get used to the fact that keeping clean is part of their daily routine. Once that happens, chances are they won’t even notice they are doing it without prompting. In fact, they may even look forward to it.
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