important to teach your children good hand hygiene at home as
they get ready to head back to the classroom.
Robert Jacobson, a Mayo Clinic pediatrician, says parents need
to be the leaders when it comes to ensuring their children
know the importance of clean hands.
turn out to be the dirtiest things ó the things most likely
to carry germs, and the things weíre more likely to put near
our mouths, near our food, in our nose, and in our eyes,"
says Jacobson. "If youíre talking about weapons of mass
destruction at home, youíre talking about the hands. Hand
hygiene is difficult if you just depend on it happening at
school and you donít do anything about it at home."
have an opportunity to lead the way. Jacobson says children
need to get into a habit about hand-washing, and theyíll do
it when they have examples at home.
ask my parents to be demonstrative when setting examples for
their children," he says. "Say things like, ĎItís
time to get breakfast ready. Iím going to wash my hands with
soap and water before I reach into the refrigerator to get
your food. I just came in from taking out the trash. I can
pour you a glass of milk, but I have to wash my hands first.
The bottle dropped on the floor. Let me pick it up, clean this
up and go straight to the sink and wash my hands with soap and
water before I go back to eating."
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stresses the
importance of proper hand hygiene as a way to help families
and communities stay healthy. Despite widespread knowledge of
the importance of hand-washing, the CDC says there is room for
improvement. A recent study showed that only 31 percent of men
and 65 percent of women washed their hands after using a