Handwashing is one of the very best ways to stop the spread of viruses that live on all the things we and our children touch on a daily basis. Now, in the midst of a global pandemic, teaching kids proper hand washing is more important than ever. Most parents understand the importance of how to teach kids to wash hands properly, but getting them to follow through is another story.
Each December, we recognize National Handwashing Awareness Week. Here is advice from Natural Healthy Concepts on how to teach kids to wash hands properly, as well as a few products to make it easier.
The Data on Handwashing
The science on proper handwashing doesn’t lie. According to the CDC, teaching kids proper hand washing techniques “can prevent about 30% of diarrhea-related illnesses and about 20% of respiratory infections” such as colds. Additionally, keeping our bodies free from stomach and respiratory illnesses reduces the need for antibiotics, which are contributing to gut imbalance and antibiotic resistance.
Steps to Healthy Handwashing
There are a few tricks and gimmicks that pediatricians recommend to help kids learn more effective handwashing.
Soap and Water – First off, you’ll need soap and water, temperature is not important. Also, antibacterial soap is not needed to get your hands clean and some studies show they do more harm than good.
Rub, Rub, Rub – Friction plays an essential role in getting hands properly clean. So as your kids wash their hands, be sure they are rubbing them together and focusing on the front and back of the hands, in between the fingers, and up on the wrists.
Time – When it comes to hand washing, rushing through it is natural for kids, but it also means leaving bacteria and germs behind. Experts encourage kids to sing the “Happy Birthday” song through their heads twice before finishing. If that song seems too boring for your family, come up with a custom song to get the job done!
Rinse & Dry – This part is pretty self explanatory, rinse the soap and germs down the drain and dry with a clean towel. Be sure to change your hand towel out regularly to cut down on bacterial growth.
Products to Help Kids With Better Handwashing
One way to entice kids to wash their hands is to stock your bathroom or kitchen sink with products that they enjoy using. Here are a few Natural Healthy Concepts recommends:
Foaming Hand Soap from Mrs Meyer’s Clean Day
Naked Bee Orange Blossom Honey Hand Sanitizer
If you and your kids are without access to a sink and soap, hand sanitizer is great in a pinch. Naked Bee’s Orange Blossom Honey Hand Sanitizer kills 99.9% of germs on hands and includes ingredients like aloe vera gel, witch hazel, seaweed, and green tea extract, and a blend of essential oils.
Velvet Glove Natural Hand Cream by Real Purity
Handwashing, particularly in the colder months, can leave hands chapped and dry. Show those hands some love with Velvet Glove Natural Hand Cream by Real Purity. This hand cream uses beeswax, bladderwrack, and olive oil to leave hands nourished and soft.
Do you have any advice on how to teach kids to wash hands properly? If so, share them with our team in the comments section below.