Wearing a face mask takes getting used to for adults, but it may be even more stressful for young children who don’t fully grasp why it’s necessary. Luckily, there are ways to help your child understand the importance of a face mask and turn it into a pleasant habit rather than a tantrum trigger. Like most sensitive issues, it starts with conversation.
Talking to Your Child About Masks
The facts: Face masks are now suggested in public places for adults and children over two years of age who are unable to properly distance themselves from others. While masking may be a relatively easy adjustment for the grownups, seeing masks on parents or loved ones is strange for kids, and can even be a bit scary. They may need a little extra support and understanding during these difficult times, especially when we ask them to put on a mask while they are playing with other children. Here are some suggestions for helping your little ones learn why wearing a mask is important.
For Children Under the Age of Three
Explain that people wear face masks when they’re sick. When they are all better, they stop wearing face masks. But more than that, help them understand face masks are also a way to keep everyone around you healthy, so loved ones do not fall ill.
For Children Older Than the Age of Three
Focus on germs. Help them understand that germs can sometimes make you sick and wearing a face mask can help make sure that you push the germs away and stay safe and healthy. While you should reinforce that coronavirus often does not affect most kids, children should understand that taking precautions, like wearing a face mask, can help keep everyone safe and healthy.
Tips for Getting Your Child to Wear Their Mask
While some kids may be eager to wear their face masks emblazoned with the latest superhero or sports team, others may be hesitant and resistant when it comes to this new trend. Because masks hide people’s faces, it may be scary at first to young children.
Here are a few tips to help your child feel more comfortable about face masks in public:
Make it Fun
For younger children, it may help to incorporate a fun art project or activity when discussing the importance of wearing face masks. Place a face mask on your child’s favorite stuffed animal or help them draw masks on their favorite superhero in a comic book to help normalize the situation. Have your child play with a mask on themselves and their stuffed animal to attempt to make them comfortable and at ease.
Comfort and Style
Kid-friendly mask styles will go a long way to hold your child’s interest. Letting your child be part of the mask acquisition process can help make them feel empowered and even excited to wear a face mask.
Buy a few different options and put them in charge of which face mask they decide to wear on a particular day. The goal is to get them more invested in the process. You can also try encouraging them to get excited about coordinating their masks with their outfits, and lead by example by having the whole family wear matching masks.
Additionally, ensuring comfort is important. Boomer Naturals Face Masks come in two child-friendly sizes and some also have adjustable nose pieces and ear loops to maximize comfort. To ensure your child will wear the mask, it should fit correctly and comfortably, keeping fidgeting to a minimum.
Get Your Child Involved
Children love to be helpers. Giving your child a job of monitoring whether everyone in the family has their mask when they leave the house will make them feel important. For example, having younger children remind older or younger siblings about their mask can make them feel empowered.
If they’re wearing a mask and the complaints start rolling in, giving them a task can help them feel useful and allow them to forget about their face mask momentarily. Also, allowing them to understand that they are helping their community and loved ones stay safe can give them a sense of pride.
Your child looks up to you. If you’re always wearing your face mask properly in social situations, they will be more likely to see this as a positive habit. Children look up to you as an example and are always watching. The goal is to get them to follow your lead, allowing them to experience how they are helping their community as they follow suit.
To learn more about Boomer Naturals kid-friendly solutions, check out our fun selection of masks. No doubt, these fun animal and food mask patterns will have your child wanting to show off their face masks to their friends!