It’s no secret that school-aged children are exposed to germs at a much higher volume than they traditionally would be at home. Kids want to touch everything they see, and germs are quickly spread from one child to another. Handwashing is one of the easiest ways to protect your child’s health, as well as the health of those around them. Simple things such as touching a doorknob, playing on the playground, or flushing the toilet are easy ways germs can be spread to your child during a school day.
These are some of the health risks your child could face without proper hand washing:
- The common cold
- Other viruses and bacterial infections
If your child regularly washes their hands, they can avoid contracting anything more serious than the common cold. Frequent hand washing is important, but so is knowing how to properly wash their hands. It’s estimated that less than half of secondary school children wash their hands with soap, so it’s no wonder that diseases are spreading rapidly. These diseases and illnesses can lead to missed school days for your child and missed days of work for you if they bring the germs home with them.
Teach your child about germs
To best protect your child, you should begin teaching proper handwashing techniques at home at a young age. It should become a habit for your child to wash their hands regularly and thoroughly throughout the day. The proper handwashing technique includes wet, lather, scrub, rinse, and dry the hands completely. This means children shouldn’t be rushing through the hand washing process because they may miss a germ-covered area.
Speak with your child’s school district and teacher to see if they put an emphasis on hand washing for children. Schools can aim to make handwashing a fun and engaging activity for younger children to begin forming a habit they’ll use as they get older. Many classrooms contain hand sanitizer as well but be sure your child knows regular hand washing should still be utilized. If the school and the parents work together to teach children about proper handwashing techniques, we could begin to see lower absenteeism rates and improved overall health of students and teachers. The hand washing education doesn’t stop with younger children, so be sure your middle and high school aged children still practice proper handwashing on a daily basis as well.