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12 hygiene habits the child has to learn

Hygienic habits are important for the healthy growth of the child on many levels and are built on a daily basis.

Healthy personal hygiene habits that are learned in childhood will last a lifetime

Caring for a baby's delicate skin, and later teaching him hygiene care as a child, are acts of love!


Learning moments can always be fun and informal. And don't forget: example is not a way of teaching, but the only one! The child imitates what he sees!

Following are 12 hygiene habits that should be instilled in children from an early age.


1. Take a shower daily

The bath eliminates toxins, dirt and bacteria that accumulate on the skin and can cause disease.

During the bath, teach the child how to wash each part of the body from head to toe, without forgetting the ears, armpits and the underparts, finally drying the body with the towel. At Mipmed you will find a baby hygiene kit ( consisting of three articles, suitable from the first day of the baby and with a very pleasant smell: shower gel, shampoo and moisturizer .



2. Comb, wash and watch hair

The hair gets dirty very easily. The hair very easily attracts dust and grease that accumulates on the scalp, preventing the skin from breathing and attracting parasites. You should watch for parasites (nits and lice). Head lice are very itchy and can cause headaches, discomfort and irritability.


3. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water.

When should a child be insisted to wash his hands?

  • Before and after meals.
  • After going to the bathroom.
  • When you get home from the street.
  • After playing sport.
  • If the child shares toys. Also sanitize the toy.

Hand washing is one of the most important personal hygiene habits! It is cheap and effective. This simple attitude prevents the spread of bacteria that cause diseases such as tuberculosis, pneumonia, cholera, influenza and respiratory infections.


This habit strengthens the child's health day after day!


4. Change underwear everyday

Cotton is the best underwear fabric and should be changed daily to prevent the build up of microorganisms.

Children's and adult's shoes should air on the porch overnight whenever possible.

A common mistake is to bundle up children too much. Excessive clothing increases sweat retention and causes a higher body temperature than necessary.



5. Clean and cut nails

The best time to do this is after the shower because the nails soften.

Nail care is not just an aesthetic issue. The space between the nail and skin is a perfect deposit for dirt, bacteria and other microorganisms, some of which are hazardous to health. Therefore, it is crucial that the child learn early to clean the nails and not have the bad habit of biting them.


6. Clean up well after going to the bathroom

From front to back to prevent bacteria from migrating to the genital area and causing infections.



7. Keep underarms clean

Usually the strong armpit smell appears at 8 years.


8. Keep your nose clean by avoiding the bad habit of using your fingers.

At school age, it is important for the child to know how to blow properly using disposable handkerchiefs that should always be in the backpack, thus avoiding the bad habit of sticking his fingers in the nose!

In children with respiratory diseases such as rhinosinusitis and rhinitis, regular cleaning with serum or seawater is advisable.


9. Brush your teeth after each meal and watch for cavities

Brushing should be done even before the teeth are born to inhabit and consent to clean the gums. There are pediatric finger tips ( indicated for this purpose.


Important note: The fingerstool can be used from 4 months to stimulate the break of the teeth and create the habit of washing. The child gets used to having something to brush the oral cavity, and then it is easier to create a washing habit. From the break of the first tooth is mandatory to use the finger! At about the age of one, when the child eats practically everything, he should switch to a normal child's brush. The size of the little toenail is a reference to the amount of paste to put. As the child grows, the amount of enough needed as well.


During the early years of life, help your child brush their teeth correctly. Ideally, from 3 years of age the child already has autonomy.


Important aspects regarding oral hygiene and health:

  • It is recommended to brush your teeth after each important meal of the day or at least twice a day.
  • Explain and exemplify the correct brushing movements to the child so that no area is forgotten and all teeth are clean.
  • Properly flush teeth and oral cavity prevents tooth decay, bad breath and other dental problems.
  • Wash your teeth three times a day.
  • We are all aware of the problems caused by poor attention to dental hygiene and tooth decay is one of those major problems, which can cause severe pain, infection of the periodontal area and, worse, the destruction of teeth.
  • Ensure your child has a toothbrush and toothpaste appropriate for his age.
  • Visit the dentist at least once a year.


10. Care for flu and colds

Teach the child to cover his mouth when coughing and sneeze to his elbow… and reinforce the importance of washing his hands as often as necessary!


11. Toy cleaning and disinfection

When toys are shared or on the floor, they are dangerous vehicles for spreading disease. Therefore they should be carefully and regularly cleaned. The younger the child, the bigger the care should be, as his immune system is still very fragile!

Special attention should be given to cuddly toys that must be washed frequently!



12. Always Healthy Foods

  • Healthy eating is crucial in the growth and development of any child.
  • The habit of washing food before eating it (peeled fruit, for example).
  • Packaging food to protect it from dust and dirt.
  • Do not pick up food that has fallen to the floor to eat it!



Catarina Vilela (Nurse)