Wearing a mask during the pandemic helps keep children and their families safe by blocking respiratory droplets. Health experts recommend we keep wearing masks in public to keep the virus from reaching others. Here are a few tips that can help increase your child’s tolerance for mask wearing.
- Adults wear masks too, even if vaccinated, to be good models.
- Have a rule that whenever you leave your house, you wear a mask. This way there are no exceptions or negotiations to navigate.
- Take a visual picture of your child wearing the mask to show as a prompt.
- Use extenders or head bands with buttons to eliminate pressure behind the ears.
- Consider the smell of the mask - laundry detergent and disposable masks have distinct smells that may be overwhelming or not appealing.
- Experiment to see what works for your child. Consider adding essential oil spray.
- Create a social story about why, where, and how to put on and wear a mask.
- Use a visual cue instead of a verbal cue to help decrease reliance on an adult to prompt (This could be a special agreed upon gesture between you and your child or a picture you hold up. Try putting an arrow on your mask to cue your child to keep it over their nose).
Do your glasses fog up when wearing a mask? Assure it’s a proper fit. A mask should cover your nose and mouth at all times, and fit snuggly along the cheeks. Also try coating the glasses with foam shaving cream. Wipe, not wash, the shaving cream off. This can help prevent fogging.