Healthy Habits: Encouraging Proper Hygiene to Your Kids

Fostering lifelong positive healthy habits not only keeps one’s self-clean, but it also helps our immune system fight deadly viruses and bacterias. Encouraging good hygiene practices to your children at an early age is crucial for they are more susceptible to infections and diseases.

But before going further, let us learn more about personal hygiene for children.

What Is Personal Hygiene

Personal hygiene includes different everyday activities including brushing teeth, bathing, washing hands, and changing clothes. It fundamentally means taking care of your body. Good personal hygiene, not only helps prevent getting sick, but it also helps you look good.

Whether it be parks, schools, malls, or any other place, children always come in contact with dirt and dust. These elements carry with them microorganisms that may carry infection with them. As most kids tend to put their toys and hands in their mouth, they could transfer these microorganisms into their body.

Types of Personal Hygiene You Should Teach Your Kids

Food Hygiene

Improper food hygiene is extremely dangerous as it not only causes diarrhea, vomiting, and tummy pains, but it could also lead to death if left untreated. When preparing, serving, and eating food both parents and children should observe proper food hygiene.

Parents may start educating their kids about the value of food hygiene at a young age by starting with the basics. Parents can talk about germs and how these pesky little microbes can spread from their hands to the food and into their nose and mouth.

Hand Hygiene

The top-most personal hygiene habits we should teach our kids are properly washing their hands. Hand washing goes a long way. Based on the data by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, handwashing with soap helps reduce respiratory infections and diarrheal diseases by up to 50 percent.

While your children are still young, give them a practical lesson on how to wash their hands. They simply have to follow these steps:

  1. Wet hands with clean water.
  2. Apply soap and rub hands together to form a lather for at least 20 seconds.
  3. Clean under the nails, in between fingers, and up to the wrist.
  4. Rinse off the soap completely with clean water.
  5. Dry hands using a clean towel or a paper towel.

Encourage them to wash their hands every after these instances:

  1. Before and after touching or eating food
  2. After using the toilet
  3. After playing outside the house
  4. After coughing or sneezing
  5. After touching the pets

Body Hygiene

Hands are not the only part of our body that requires the application of proper hygiene habits. Kids also need to know how to take care of their bodies by observing good body hygiene. These include keeping every part of one’s body clean, healthy, and presentable.


Our skin is the largest organ in our body and it protects all the soft tissues and internal organs from being exposed to various microorganisms. Thus, keeping our skin clean from any germs is important.

Although for us adults, showering seems like second nature to us, young children need to be taught the importance of taking a shower. Taking a shower or bath once a day helps eliminate bacteria that cause body odor.


Good body hygiene also extends to your kids’ hair. With poor hair hygiene, could develop dandruff, lice, and other scalp infections. Washing your hair at least twice a week helps prevent dirt and grease buildup that causes dandruff and itching.

During hot summer months, it is even better to wash your children’s hair daily as they are prone to sweating. Teach them how to clean their scalp with shampoo, brush their hair, and to avoid sharing personal grooming.

As kids grow older and more independent, teach them the value of wearing clean clothes. Encourage them to change their clothes after playing outside. Teach them as well to put dirty clothes in the laundry basket and never to mix dirty and clean clothes.

Oral Hygiene

Good oral hygiene is just as critical as hand hygiene. Having proper oral hygiene helps fight cavity-causing bacteria and gum diseases. When children grow out of their baby teeth, all the more parents should make sure their children take proper care of their teeth.

We only have one set of adult teeth, so practicing good oral hygiene is important to keep our teeth last for a lifetime. In addition to brushing and flossing, parents should schedule a regular appointment with a pediatric dentist, since our teeth also need professional cleaning and checkup. ;

Teaching Your Kids About Personal Hygiene

For us adults, it may seem like a no-brainer how important practicing good personal hygiene is. However, little children cannot yet comprehend such concepts. Thus, instead of telling them what to do, it would be best to set yourself as an example for them to follow.

With constant practice and patience, eventually, your kids will carry out this good personal hygiene throughout their life.

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