Friday, July 30, 2010

The Dreaded Hair Washing Ordeal

Oh..the dreaded hair washing time! I don't know about you, but I have 3 kids that just HATE getting their hair washed. They cannot stand the water running down their faces. No matter what I tried, it was always a fight and cry fest.

As most of you know, I have 2 Autistic children. These 2 children, as well as most children, need to have a stable, comfortable routine in their lives. That is the main goal and key factor to their survival. When any change or new entity threatens them, they act out to the extreme. Once it gets to that point, it takes hours to calm them down. This was the scene with the hair washing incidents.

Even though they knew they were going to take their showers each night, they still would freak out with the hair washing. They felt a loss of control thereby causing the dreaded meltdown. Now, even children with no disabilities, like my 5 year old, can be deathly afraid of the hair washing. It seems to be pretty common among young children.

I have found a wonderful solution to this problem.

When you have your child in the shower, or even the bath, simply have them tilt their head back to look up at the ceiling, place a small face towel in THEIR hands and have them hold it over their face. Let them know you are going to be running the water over their hair and have them..and you..count to 5 out loud. Let them know that when they get to 5, you will stop the water flow and they can take the towel away from their face. Let them take a break, and repeat the steps. Trust me, it will work! If it takes a few times that is fine. Eventually, they will accept it as it gives them a little control during this most chaotic time.

I have used this idea on all of my children and I have shared this with many mothers with the same problem. It is such a simple thing to do, but believe me, it will take the stress of that dreaded hair washing time!

Please remember, when it comes to calming the fears of any child, patience is the way to go! Let them know you are there for them and you love them. There will be many fearful things in their lives, but you will be there to listen and help them overcome anything.

Stop by Jewelry by Christopher to find something pretty to reward yourself for all of your hard work as a Mother, Grandmother, Sister, Aunt, Cousin or Caregiver. A percentage of proceeds will be donated to help children with Autism.


kornkountrytreasures said...

Thank you for the tip! This will help many a child get used to that old shampoo! Any ideas for the ones who are 11-12 who just don't want to??? hehe!! I have one grandchild who simply doesn't want to!!! Like pulling teeth!

bedding4me said...

LOL..I would say you would have to somehow make it fun! What does your grandchild like to do? Bribery works wonders also! Let them know that each time they take a bath/shower without any complaints..they earn points or stars or something..then at the end of the week..or two weeks they can cash those points or stars in for a toy or game they really want..during this time also try to instill that grooming is a major part of them pics of celebrities that they like..tell them that these people are "well groomed" for a can't be successful dirty..LOL..eventually, they will do the bathing without the points or just takes time, patience and consistency..they will get it! Good Luck Hon!