How to teach a child to blow their nose

child and blow-ball image by Renata Osinska from

At some point every parent has to teach her child to blow his nose. It is a fact of life. The sooner you do it, the better it will be for your child. The trouble is, blowing through the nose does not come naturally for a child, so the task of teaching your child to blow his nose looks easier on the surface than it is. While the learning curve varies from one child to the next, there are a few tricks you can use to help teach your child the fundamentally important concept of blowing his own nose.

Establish the concept of blowing. Your child probably blows with his mouth all the time without realising what blowing is. Use birthday candles in cupcakes. Light a candle and ask your child to blow the candle out. Emphasise the word "blow" and demonstrate it to your child by taking his hand and holding it to your mouth to blow against your child's hand. Offer the cupcake as a reward if your child successfully blows the candle out three times in a row.

Take your child outside on a warm day and find the parachute balls (clock of seeds produced by the dandelion flower). These parachute balls are white and fluffy. Have your child blow on these parachute balls to disperse the white dandelion seeds. This is a fun activity that many children enjoy. It helps reiterate the concept of blowing.

Blow your own nose in front of your child and take the time to explain what you are doing and why. Again, emphasise the blowing aspect. Hold a clean tissue to your child's nose and ask her to blow into the tissue. She will most likely try blowing with her mouth. Remove the tissue and place one finger lightly over your child's mouth horizontally, then return the tissue to her nose and ask her to blow through her nose. With your finger lightly over her mouth, she may attempt to blow through her nose.

Be persistent and continue to work with your child. It may take some time, so invent new ways to reinforce the concept of blowing. Having your child attempt to blow up balloons is a good method. Continue to block your child's mouth when instructing him to blow into a tissue. Try letting him blow bubbles with his nose while your finger is over his lips. Continue to let him watch you blow your nose and explain the process each time. With a little effort and patience, your child will get the concept of blowing his nose.

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