Winter has officially arrived and with it comes a sleuth of Viruses and Germs.
Having two boys in playschool it’s safe to say trips to the doctors’ office are a pretty common occurrence in our household. My husband is the OCD hygiene policeman in our house. He is constantly telling us to clean up, wash hands etc. I’m not sure if it’s his OCD kicking in or more a germ phobia but safe to say its due to him that we wash our hands all the time. He is absolutely correct though, educating our kids from a young age about hygiene is half the battle won.
Creating Healthy Habits
Recently, I’ve made one small change to our hygiene routines and I’ve seen a world of difference. Immediately after fetching the boys from school I give them a dollop of Dettol Instant Hand Sanitizer In the car and then immediately when we enter the house, the first thing they must do Is wash their hands. This year (touch wood), we are yet to suffer from any major tummy bugs or viruses.
Luckily at my son’s school, they have already taught them to combat the spread of germs, they need to sneeze or cough into their bent elbow. I made the mistake once of sneezing into my hands and my 4-year-old was very quick to correct me and tell me how it should be done.
Together with Dettol here are some ways to teach our children the importance of hygiene. You know that hygiene is important, but how can you make your child understand to prioritize it? Energetic kids have no time and patience for hand-washing, nose-blowing, and tooth-brushing! By making learning fun, it’s more likely to become a good habit.
Tips for promoting healthy hygiene in kids:
- Sing a song while washing hands. They say the correct amount of time to wash your hands is to sing happy birthday twice over (or 20 seconds for children that can count). Use a proper disinfecting hand wash, lather (Without leaving the tap on), getting in between all the fingers, and sing! It’s actually not as long as I initially thought and the kids love it, they keep asking whose birthday it is today.
- Play games and make it fun! To add to the hand washing, we played a simple paint game to highlight the spread of germs, and just how much washing you have to do to get them off! Paint your hands and pretend to sneeze into your hands. From there go about your regular day. I placed disposable items around to ensure easy clean up. We pretended to “have lunch”, drink some juice, played ball etc. Then step back and look at all the paint everywhere! Aadam has a little melt down when he saw just how many “germs” had spread. He started to cry and said he wanted to wash them all off! Straight to the basin we went where he immediately washed his hands, and then earned a star on his rewards chart.
- Feather activity – We all know the struggle in trying to teach kids how to blow their noses. Nothing is more frustrating than trying to get your 3-year-old to “push air out” through their nostrils, Yusuf ends up sniffing his back in! Try the Feather activity – Get two feathers. Cover your mouth with your hand, and then blow the feather across the table using only your nose. Show your child how to do it, and then have a race! Whoever can get their feather to the other side of the table first, wins. Once your child is used to blowing air out her nose, introduce tissues. Don’t forget to wash your hands after!
- Reward good hygiene – Dettol have made it easy to make learning fun by creating a hygiene hero toolkit for kids. You can download yours from here, and it includes a hygiene chart, a fun game, activity book and a rewards chart. Making learning fun is the best way to remember the importance of hygiene. Download yours and you’ll suddenly see an increased awareness of hygiene in your kids. Of course, they are waiting for a prize once all the stars have been filled in.
- Make it Special – Keep it engaging for your children. For example; I know when I buy liquid soaps for Aadam’s favourite colour is purple, and Yusuf’s green. I buy soaps in their favourite colour and I quickly see how they run to make sure they get their favourite colour. Another great way to make it special is to buy matching wash cloths or a special stool.
I think it’s important to remember we don’t want to create any OCD disorders in our kids, we also don’t want them to be “afraid” to do things as they will get dirty. Nothing we do could ever avoid all the germs our kids are exposed to. I’m a firm believer in a child SHOULD be exposed to dirt and a few germs to build up strong effective immune systems. My boys love playing in mud and getting dirty, they love animals and pretending to clean the kitchen. A sign of a good day for me is when they come home super dirty! Thanks to Dettol we are equipped to make clean up a breeze. The boys take their handy hand sanitizers to school. Accessorised with a handy silicon strap this waterless hand sanitizer goes everywhere with us. From the car, to the bike park and even attached to the boy’s school bag, it’s always available when they need it. The convenient wet wipes are also in mummy’s bag of tricks, ready to be pulled out when we need it. Dettol has also recently launched another convenient way to protect your family. The Dettol “Soft on Skin” Disinfectant Liquid with Aloe Vera. Launched at the end of March this contains Aloe Vera which is so soft on skin, its perfect for bath time! A pop a little into their bath at night, or especially after an active day to ensure that we are protected. Ease of mind helps me sleep peacefully at night!
Just by practicing simple hygiene habits and encouraging them in our children we can help raise strong, confident, healthy children. Thankfully Dettol makes this so much easier for us by providing us with products that have the incredible disinfectant properties that Dettol is known for.
I’ll be giving away one incredible Dettol Hamper to a lucky “In these Stilettos” reader. Taking care of all your hygiene needs this winter.
To enter all you need to do is tell me how “you are a Dettol mom”, how do you encourage healthy hygiene in your children?
Comment below and If you want an extra entry comment on the “In These Stilettos” Dettol Giveaway posts across Facebook and Instagram. Make sure you have Subscribed to the blog!