“Dirt is good for kids” as long as they can wash their hands properly…

“Dirt is good for kids” as long as they can wash their hands properly…

Parents can enable inadvertent triggering of allergies and asthma says report

Playing in the dirt can actually be a good thing for a child’s immune system – as long as they are taught to wash properly afterwards, according to a recent report on the CT Post website.

The article quotes from the University of Chicago scientist Jack Gilbert who wrote that modern emphasis on excessive hygiene and cleaning can cause immune systems to become hypersensitised.

He explained that “soldier cells in your body called neutrophils” do not thrive on inactivity and eventually become, as he puts it, “grumpy and pro-inflammatory”. Then when they do come into contact with something from outside the body – such as pollen – they become “explosively inflammatory”.

This is what triggers some food allergies as well as asthma and eczema concluded Gilbert.

Put aside the antibacs and use soap and water

The article quotes the American Academy of Pediatrics as warning that antibacterial products may “kill off normal bacteria and increase the chances that resistant bacteria may grow”.

They do however, emphasise the importance of effective hand washing techniques being taught to small children.

“Hand-washing may be the single most important act you and your child have for disease prevention…”

“The best solution is to wash your child’s hands with warm water and ordinary soap that does not contain antibacterial substances.”

Science says dirt is good for kids »


Make effective hand washing available to every child – wherever they’re having fun!

Hand washing is the most important lesson a child can learn and acquiring it is an essential lifelong skill. A Kiddiwash Xtra or KiddiSynk portable hand washing sink can be positioned right next to the sand pit – helping to ensure that children dramatically reduce the risk of infection as they finish play.

The Kiddiwash range of warm water hand wash units are perfect for smaller hands – and are ideal where a portable solution is required.

Whether you require a larger wheeled unit such as the KiddiSynk, or the ultra portable Kiddiwash Xtra, you can ensure that all children in your care are able to wash their hands whether inside or out.