Babies solely depend on their caregiver for nutrition and hygiene. You have to feed and wash them while they are young but as they grow older, you must teach them how to take care of themselves and create a good “clean” routine.
This can start with a simple habit like to making a mess during their feeding times and gradually letting go of control as you may deem appropriate as time goes. Teaching your child self-care at the appropriate age is important since you don’t want them lagging behind their peers as it may hamper their growth and behaviors as an adult.
Make bath time an enjoyable time for your toddlers by allowing them to play with water and even their favourite waterproof toys. Let them ‘wash themselves’ after you are done bathing them. This makes it easy for you to gradually let them to care for their personal hygiene.
It will take time before your children learn how to properly bathe themselves and even when they know how to, you will discover that they are not very enthusiastic about showering. You will need patience and friendly constant reminders to have them go to the bathroom, sometimes well into their teenage years.
You don’t expect your 6-year old kids to be able to do their laundry on their own but you can teach them the importance of wearing clean clothes. By this age, they should be able to dress themselves and you want them to look presentable.
Dirty sweaty clothes can inhibit your child’s ability to play with their friends and it is important to remind them to change their dirty clothes often.
After laundry, teach your kids how to fold their clothes and arrange them in their closets such that they don’t make a mess of everything when picking out a cloth to wear.
Dental care is important in avoid foul breath. Teach your kids how to brush effectively and to take their time while at it. The best way to do this is by demonstrating to them how to hold the toothbrush and the movements the need to perform for clean healthy teeth and gums. Kids tend to rush while brushing leaving some parts unattended which can lead to development of plaque. They also need to floss regularly.
Equally important, is to honour all the dentist appointments. Take your kids to a qualified dentist with a child-friendly assistant (see All Schools that train dental assistants) so they don’t dread a visit to the clinic.
As they say, nothing is more attractive than confidence. As parent, it is your duty to make sure your child grows up to be a confident person who is comfortable in their own skin. This calls for you to be sensitive and thoughtful about the way you treat and communicate with your child.
Since children tend to hand onto their parent’s every word, you could be treating your kid in a way that damages their self-confidence for life. Don’t compare them with their sibling or peers and always use a kind tone and language when talking with your kids.