Keep infections away, teach kids to wash their hands

Bronchitis, the common cold, flu – schools are breeding grounds for the germs that cause infections like these.

But teaching children how to wash their hands properly can help keep germs from hitching a ride home, the German Professional Association of Paediatricians says.

It starts with warm water and liquid soap. Bars of soap are slippery and hard for small hands to hold. Plus, sometimes the soap sits in dirty water, which can be a breeding ground for germs.

Children should first wet their hands and rub them together until the soap begins to foam. Then they should make sure to rub between the fingers, under the nails and even around the wrist. Next, the child needs to dry their hands – ideally with a paper towel.

Hand disinfectants are not recommended for children. They do not remove dirt, are flammable and are problematic since many children often put their fingers in their mouths. – dpa


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