An essential part of building and maintaining a child’s confidence is helping them to develop prosocial skills. Prosocial behavior—or behavior that benefits oneself and one’s community—includes skills like cooperation and kindness, as well as good hygiene and cleanliness. These positive behaviors will help your children make friends and succeed in life, boosting their self-esteem and providing them with the tools to thrive in their social spheres.
Washing Their Hands
Knowing how to properly wash one’s hands is an important skill that will keep your child healthy and clean, according to MomJunction. Nevertheless, this simple skill is not something that your child is going to develop on his or her own. As a parent, it is important—in the early years—you coach your children to maintain proper hand hygiene, especially after using the bathroom or sneezing. Teach your children to first apply clean water on their hands and then lather them thoroughly with soap. They should spend about twenty minutes really scrubbing their hands, including under their fingernails, before rinsing and drying.
Brushing Their Teeth
Oral hygiene is another essential habit that you should help your child adopt early on. Not only is good oral hygiene important to maintain your child’s health, but it is also a prosocial behavior that will ensure that your child doesn’t make others uncomfortable with bad breath or gunky teeth. As you coach your children, you should lead by example and show your kids how to properly brush their teeth, says Maccaro Pediatric Dentistry. Set a timer when they are young so that they can learn how long they should be ideally brushing every morning and night.
Managing Body Odor
While little children may not have to deal with body odor, it is still a good idea to begin teaching them how to manage body odor before it becomes a major problem in adolescence. After all, nobody wants their child to become the kid known for their bad smell. Teach your children early on that it is important to frequently wash their clothes, bathe, and change their underwear. When they get a little older, teach them how to properly use deodorant and cologne/perfume.
Set your child up for success by teaching them important habits and prosocial skills early on rather than waiting for later. Even though these habits may seem insignificant compared to skills like reading or independence, they truly are just as impactful on your child’s life. They will build your child’s self-esteem and help them develop important social connections when it matters most.
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