By nature a new born baby will usually have the habit of willing to swallow anything that he/she can get hold of. Don’t worry, soon enough, the baby will get out of that phase. When he does, you need to quickly start teaching him the good habits that will protect him from germs that cause cold and flu.
The pediatrician Laura A. Jana, MD, emphasized on the fact that it is much easier to teach good hygiene habits to children when they are still young. She has co-authored a book entitled “Heading Home with Your Newborn and Food Fights” . In the book habits that are hard to break are discussed.
The benefits of teaching your kids good hygiene habits are real. Making sure your kids don’t get a cold or flu could save you a lot of money especially during the fall and the winter. You may not immediately enjoy the benefits of teaching healthy habits to your children but in the long term it always pays off.
Another pediatrician named Tanya Remer Altmann, MD said the earlier they start developing healthy habit the less chances they get sick when they get older. She wrote the book: “Mommy Calls:Dr. Tanya Answers Parents’ Top 101 Questions About Babies and Toddlers”.
Here is what you need to know when it comes to teaching your kids good healthy habits
How to make your kid develop a good habit
First you need to remember that you are teaching toddlers who know nothing about bacteria and viruses. They don’t understand concepts like contagious disease. You don’t need to bother them with that yet. Just focus on what is important and within their level of understanding.
Jana, the pediatrician said, at that point there is no need to explain to a preschooler why he needs to stay away from his friend coughing. Since explaining things might be too difficult for now the best is to rather ritualize good habits. By systematically entraining your kid into those habits, the chances are that he will stick to them. In the long run a lot of infections are going to be avoided that way. By inculcating good hygienic habits as part of the daily life, your kids will just do them without thinking.
The important habit of hand washing
This is one key habit that you should focus on. You need them to develop that habit as second nature. You should not be to obsessive about that but there are certain moment in the day where you need to remind them to wash their hands until they are able to remember it by themselves. You definitely need to remind them of washing their hand before they eat, after using the toilet, after a play date and as soon as they come into the house in the case they went out.
You need to be consistent about this and also be an exemplary parent by doing it yourself too. Overtime the kids are going to remember it by themselves and even remind you in a situation where you forgot.
Take note that the washing of the hands have to be done properly. It is supposed to be done with warm water and soap. The CDC has recommended that people wash their hands for at least 15 to 20 seconds. The scrubbing of the hands is equally important.
Children by nature are always willing to learn. If you teach them with love and patience they will usually take your advices into their habits.