Sunday, November 8, 2009

How To Address Germs With Your Toddler

With the flu and H1N1 virus so prevalent today, you must do all you can to protect yourself and your toddler. I will discuss some of the ways to help your toddler develop healthy hygiene habits. Although you don’t have control over everything, you do, however, have control over a few things. Those things are listed below.

Toddler petting dog.

1.Washing Hands.

Talk to your toddler about washing hands often. Emphasize that germs get on the hands. Explain to your toddler about the importance of washing hands before eating or after touching the dog. Washing the hands often kills germs. Be sure your toddler lathers and rubs his/her hands for at least 20 seconds if possible. Proper hand washing is just as important. This can be done by having your toddler sing a song. It could be a song about washing the hands, the “ABC song”, or “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.”

Young Boy Washing Hands

Below are 2 short videos about washing your hands.



2. Washing Vegetables and Fruits.

Demonstrate the importance of washing vegetables and fruits before eating. We have a garden, although my toddlers are allow to pick the fruit and vegetables, they are instructed to wash them before we eat them.

Boy Washing Vegetable in Sink

3. Coughing and Wiping the Nose.

Although I have seen several toddlers stick their fingers in their nose, it is important to encourage your toddlers to use tissue to wipe the nose as oppose to using their fingers. Encourage your toddler to bring their arm across the face and cough into their sleeve.

Child Coughing Into Sleeve

Below is a video demonstrating how to use the sleeve when coughing. It has been endorsed by the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention.


4. Restrooms.

It is imperative that your toddler wash his/her hands after visiting the public restroom or any other restroom. They should do this whether they use the toilet or not because there are germs on the doorknobs, handles, and on bathroom stalls. There are germs nearly everywhere they touch.

5. Sanitizers.

Have there been occasions when you were not near a restroom to wash your hands? This has happened to me. So it is important for you to carry hand sanitizers in your purse. Antibacterial wipes or sanitizers are nice. Purse size sanitizers are very convenient. They are available at many of the dollar stores for just .99 or $1.00. Toddlers are very smart and perceptive. Explain the difference between sanitizer and washing the hands with soap and water. I was so elated when my 3 and 4 -year-old toddler told me while in the restroom, “That is sanitizer, we must use it on our hands.” I realized they knew the difference between sanitizer and soap.

Antibacterial Hand Sanitizer

Captions: Fotosearch.com,Utube videos

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