Small clean hands in 6 steps

Small clean hands in 6 steps

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With water, soap or with a hydroalcoholic gel? How long and how often? Here are the simple hygiene rules to teach your child so that hand washing is effective.

A US study conducted by the University of Michigan found that the average handwashing time is six seconds for most adults, while it should be 15 to 20 seconds. Here is a little reminder of the rules of hygiene to teach your child to wash his hands well and eliminate germs.

  • 1. Wash your hands often! Before going to the table, after going to the bathroom but also when coming home, after shopping or taking public transport.If your child is going to play in the garden, the sink box is also essential when has finished. In case of illness, washing hands should be more frequent.
  • 2. For 20 seconds minimum. As with brushing teeth, the method is important for washing to be effective. After getting your hands wet, your child rubs them for at least 20 seconds without neglecting any surface. Teach him to cross his hands to clean between the hollow of the fingers, an often neglected area, without forgetting the top of the hands up to the wrists. And thumbs, he thought? A good hand washing lasts not less than 20 seconds, the time of a small nursery rhyme.
  • 3. With soap it's more effective. To eliminate germs and bacteria, it is better to use soap. Water eliminates dirt but is not always enough. Opt for an unscented Marseille soap, this will limit the risk of allergy. But if your child has trouble washing his hands, a scented foaming gel can entertain him and encourage him to do so.
  • 4. With a hydroalcoholic gel from time to time. Practical troubleshooting, or during outbreaks of influenza, it should not be abused, the risk of imbalance the flora of the hands which can cause fungal infections and resistant germs.
  • 5. Wipe your hands is indispensable. A good hand washing is nothing without a good drying, with a clean towel, not wet, to prevent the proliferation of germs. Make sure your child always has one available in the bathroom.
  • 6. With short nails, it's better! Hand hygiene also involves maintaining your child's nails. Cut them regularly to prevent bacteria from nestling underneath.

Stéphanie Letellier with Dr. Arnault Pfersdorff, pediatrician