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8 Easy Steps to
Teaching Your Child Personal Hygiene
You know, we’ve all been there, all kids stink! I’ve noticed that by the age of 10-11 boys usually start to sweat more and take on a smell. Especially if they don’t use proper hygiene. I’m sorry if that offends anyone, but it is the truth. It is so important that we teach our kids proper hygiene — but it becomes even more trying if your child has special needs.
My oldest son has autism, developmental delays and CP. That means this is a challenging subject and one my husband and I have to be extra vigilent on. We need to remind him to brush his teeth, take showers, use deodorant, change his clothes, and his socks. He is now 14 years old but these are still things we are working on. And that is ok. That is why we have our life skills list and we keep trudging away.
How we are teaching our child proper hygiene:
1.Taking a shower every night (after dinner). It makes it easier for him to be ready for the day. We make sure to have TruKid Silly Shampoo on hand in the shower ( or a different one with a pump –no turning bottles over).
2. Using deodorant every morning and after every shower. He has trouble with dexterity and fine motor skills, so we assist him to make sure he aims it correctly. We love this one — Old Spice because I try to avoid aluminum in deodorant – so this is not an anti-perspirant but it does stop stink!
3. Brushing his teeth after breakfast and before bed. Because of his fine motor skills, this, too can be difficult. We use Aquafresh Kids to help get the right amount on his toothbrush. It’s easier to push the button than squeeze from a tube for our son. He is fairly independent now, but we have to double check his work. We also choose to use an Electric Rechargeable Toothbrush because his dentist feels it will help him remove plaque more efficiently.
4. Putting on clean weather appropriate clothes every morning. We bought a Forecast Station with Temperature Alerts digital weather center for our wall. We have taught him temperatures and to check for conditions such as rain.
5. Cleaning his face after meals. This one he has mastered! He goes into the bathroom and puts some water on his face, or uses a cloth if he needs to.
6. Washing hands after using bathroom, and before meals. We use liquid soap (with soap pump) in bathrooms to help him get the right amount of soap on hands.
7. Pottying at regular intervals, and waking up at night. In the past, we’ve had to buy flushable wipes to help with toilet time, as well.
8. Staying well hydrated. My son has had issues with not drinking enough water and actually becoming dehydrated. Even though I remind him, I sometimes have to bring him a cup of water or keep his water bottled filled because he forgets to drink.
It may help to model these things, and allow your child to see you brushing your teeth and washing your hands. However, for us, repetition has been golden. Also, in the beginning we would use visual reminders and step by step instructions which we taped to various places in the house. I’m actually going to start using another visual reminder schedule with him because I think it helps to reinforce the order and sequencing that needs to take place (both morning and night).
About the Printable:
XOXO ~ SASHA
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