Can a child wash their hands too much?

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  1. profile image0
    mdawson17posted 10 years ago

    I have children and everyone of them went through the stage of always wanting their hands in the water! I have had Doctor's tell me that it is a very bad thing to allow your children to compulsively wash their hands do you feel that is true or not? My feelings were always as long as they are inspired to keep clean than it was not going to hurt them and if their little hands were getting dry we would put lotion on them! As a parent what do you think!

    1. Catlyn profile image72
      Catlynposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      As long as they wash before meals, after using the toilet (and that might be numerous times), and obviously, after playing outdoors and getting dirty, I don't think kids can wash their hands too much.  Probably it is more the other way around.  I taught my kids to wash their hands while singing "Happy Birthday to you,"  as a means of making sure they were spending sufficient time lathering the soap too!

      1. profile image0
        mdawson17posted 10 years agoin reply to this


  2. Davinagirl3 profile image60
    Davinagirl3posted 10 years ago

    It is possible to wash hands too much.  You will notice the skin drying out on their hands.  I am a compulsive hand washer, and my hands look like an 80 year old woman's.  If your children like to wash their hands alot, make sure you have moisturizing hand wash.

    1. profile image0
      mdawson17posted 10 years agoin reply to this


    2. blondepoet profile image67
      blondepoetposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Wow Davina it is hard to imagine that your hands are like a prune, ROFL.

      1. Davinagirl3 profile image60
        Davinagirl3posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        It's true.  I have to over moisturize or they crack and bleed.  So, I know, first hand, you can wash your hands too much.

        1. Catlyn profile image72
          Catlynposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          It could actually be the type of soap you use that is the culprit.  Or you could have a skin condition known that needs dermatologist attention

          1. Davinagirl3 profile image60
            Davinagirl3posted 10 years agoin reply to this

            You are probably right.  I have contact dermatitis, but it has never shown up on my hands until about 4 months ago.  I have tried different soaps and moisturizers, but nothing works.  I wash my hands like 20+ times a day, though.  I can't help it.  I do it out of habit.

            1. Catlyn profile image72
              Catlynposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              I had a similar condition on my hands and found out it was a stress-related condition.  I had to use a strong steroid cream, along with a heavy duty moisture cream and wear cotton gloves.  It took quite a while to clear it up and it prone to flair-ups when my hands were unprotected in water.

              1. AsherKade profile image58
                AsherKadeposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                I know my older son can't wash his hands enough....(groan)

            2. Misha profile image66
              Mishaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              just     stop    it

              I am serious. smile I am scaling down on my soap usage significantly, and seeing my skin improving along the way smile

  3. kmackey32 profile image68
    kmackey32posted 10 years ago

    LOL my son is the same way...

    1. profile image0
      mdawson17posted 10 years agoin reply to this

      My 2 year old daughter throws a fit if you take her from the sink after washing her hands! She could stay there for an hour if we let her!!

      1. Jane@CM profile image61
        Jane@CMposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        She is two!  Goes with the territory.  My oldest loved playing in the water, so washing hands was fun & she wanted to continue to stay and play.  2nd child....couldn't get out of the bathtub, but he hated washing his hands (still does).

  4. relache profile image80
    relacheposted 10 years ago

    People overuse anti-bacterial and otherwise chemicalized soaps.  They ruin the skin's own protective and nurturing bacteria and strip off too many oils.

    BTW, in answer to the OP's question, yes, you can wash your hands too much.  It's one of the main symptoms of the more debilitating levels of obsessive compulsive disorder.  The person will wash their hands so much, they can't function in their daily lives and their hands become physically damaged by it.

    1. Misha profile image66
      Mishaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      LOL Relache, both my younger kids spent half a day in the sink when they were around 2. I guess it is just a development stage. smile

  5. Lisa HW profile image59
    Lisa HWposted 10 years ago

    With children, I'd pay more attention to whether or not it seemed like behavior associated with OCD than to how much their hands were in water or even how much soap they used.   Water alone doesn't usually do much (unless it's cold out or unless someone uses a scratchy towel to dry their hands).  Soap can be changed.

    I'd look up a reputable source that describes Obsessive Compulsive Behavior (particularly handwashing) and judge from there whether I thought my child was leaning in that direction.   What would be considered "normal" can depend on the child's age too.  That's something else I'd factor in.

  6. Lady_E profile image68
    Lady_Eposted 10 years ago

    No, its a good habit to get into. Its so easy to pick up germs.


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