Parents have a long list of responsibilities toward their families. As a parent yourself, you can relate for sure. You not only provide guidance and support but also take care of your family’s nutrition. Some parents are even good at listening to the stories of their children, whether personal problems or great experiences outside the home.
Most importantly, it’s your responsibility as a parent to keep your family well and healthy. When it comes to your family’s health, promoting good hygiene should be at the top of your list.
Why is good hygiene essential?
Good hygiene lowers the risk for illness, disease, or any medical conditions caused by germs. With poor hygiene, a person’s body can accumulate bacteria that may lead to diseases such as scabies, head lice and athlete’s foot, among others. (1)
When an individual doesn’t practise good hygiene, parasites that cause diseases like malaria and toxoplasmosis can also grow and multiply on the skin. (2)
How do you instill good family hygiene habits at home?
Good hygiene practices are a pretty straightforward process. The aim is to keep germs at bay and prevent the spread of infectious diseases and nothing else. However, do keep note that promoting good hygiene isn’t only one person’s job—it should be a team effort. It’s especially true when promoting good hygiene at home.
Without further ado, in this article, you’ll learn three family-friendly ways to promote good hygiene. Read on below to learn more.
1. Educate your loved ones on the importance of handwashing
You might have heard this tip all the time when talking about good hygiene. But why is it essential to wash your hands properly? Well, the hands are the part of the body that gets into contact with various surfaces regularly. Germs could attach to your hands and enter your body when you and your children touch your mouth, nose and eyes. (3)
That’s why handwashing is one of the best ways to prevent yourself and your loved ones from getting sick. Here’s are crucial times to perform handwashing with soap or apply hand sanitiser to your hands:
- Preparing food (before and after)
- Eating food (before and after)
- Using the toilet (after)
- Sneezing, blowing your nose or coughing (after)
- Touching your pet or any animal (after)
- Touching or throwing away garbage (after)
Note that there are other times when you need to wash or sanitise your hands. Basically, handwashing is essential every time you feel that your hands will get into contact with or have touched contaminated surfaces or objects.
Also, avoid wiping your hands down on an old hand towel or your jeans after washing. They’re actually the fastest ways to make your hands unhygienic again after washing or sanitising them. Instead, use absorbent paper towels so that everyone in your home can dry their hands effortlessly but cleanly.
2. Encourage family members to wipe down surfaces regularly
Door handles, workbenches and tables are some areas that everyone in the family comes into contact with. They should also be the first places to be cleaned or disinfected. It’s especially true for kitchen surfaces where you prepare food. That’s because raw meat, eggs and other food items are common sources of harmful bacteria. Doing so prevents the spread of disease-causing germs.
Here are essential things to keep in mind when cleaning and disinfecting high-touch contaminated surfaces: (4)
- Remove all visible dirt and grime before disinfecting. Doing so helps the disinfectant become more effective at doing its job. If you have a pet at home, you will want to take note of how to do so most effectively.
- Use disinfectants that are proven to work, such as bleach and hydrogen peroxide. Grain alcohol and rubbing alcohol are also good choices.
- When purchasing over-the-counter products with a ‘disinfectant’ label, ensure that they meet government specifications.
- Follow the product label instructions when using any disinfectant.
- The alcohol content of the disinfectant should be at least 60%.
- Let the area dry for at least 30 seconds after wiping or spraying with disinfectant.
3. Help your kids create a personal hygiene routine
The practice of personal hygiene includes bathing, eating healthy and brushing the teeth. Of course, exercising and getting enough sleep should also be part of a personal hygiene routine. It’s all about caring for your body. Personal hygiene practices not only help you and your family members prevent illnesses but also make everyone feel good about their appearance. (5)
Introduce different personal hygiene activities to your children. Let them know why it’s essential to practice them. Also, teach them how to follow their personal hygiene routine properly every day.
Taking care of your family as a parent comes on many levels. However, promoting good personal hygiene and providing a sanitary environment top the list. Maintain cleanliness in your home and build a better quality of life for you and your loved ones by applying what you’ve learned here. Good luck!
- “Hygiene-related Diseases”, Source: https://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/hygiene/disease/athletes_foot.html
- “Parasitic Disease”, Source: https://medlineplus.gov/parasiticdiseases.html
- “Show Me The Science – Why Wash Your Hands?” Source: https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/why-handwashing.html
- “Speed-Cleaning To Kill Household Germs”, Source: https://www.webmd.com/parenting/speed-cleaning-germs#1
- “Why Is Personal Hygiene Important”, Source: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/personal-hygiene