Baby comes out. Genitals are inspected.
Here’s your kid. Now what?
“How do you manage hygiene
while urine and feces are all lodged in there with a diaper?”
“What do you teach your kid about body care for their privates?”
“Do you go up inside with a cotton swab?”
“Dose the foreskin need to be pulled back?”
“Can kids get yeast infections?”
“Is it sexual abuse to clean a child’s genitals?”
This is tough staff.
You likely live in a society where genitals are associated with sex.
And sex and kids aren’t supposed to be discussed at the same time.
We have to learn though, and take care of children
their whole bodies and their sexual health.
First, genital hygiene for anyone who isn’t able to care for themselves
is designated to very specific parties,
typically guardians, caregivers and medical providers.
So, just because kiddo has a stinky penis,
dosen’t mean that you are the party responsible for that penis’s hygiene.
If you are, here is a guide.
If you aren’t, stay curious, keep watching,
then share this video and give a gentle nudge
to the person who is appropriate.
There are three main types:
penis and scrotum, vulva, intersex.
阴茎和阴囊 外阴 二者兼有
For intersex babies, I suggest asking a medical provider for guidance.
Learn what’s ideal for the kiddo’s unique anatomy
and talk with members of the intersex community who can share their personal experiences.
If baby has a penis and scrotum,
wipe them clean during diaper changes,
then wash the genitals like the rest of the body during bath time.
Warm washcloth, mild soap.
Do not pull back the foreskin.
The foreskin or previous can slide back in some infants,
but it’s usually fused to the head of the penis until age 3, 4, or 5.
Leave it alone. Let it do its thing.
The foreskin has many important functions
and retracting it before it’s ready can lead to serious infections.
For real, leave it alone!
It should move fluidly back and forth
as the kiddo ages and masturbates.
Now, if the newborns foreskin is cut off
from the head of the penis called circumcision,
penis hygiene is slightly more complicated.
After the operation, appointment and bandages should be put on the wound.
手术过后 要进行复诊 给伤口缠上绷带
A care team will likely give you follow up instructions,
extra Praetorian jelly, and gauze
so that you can replace the treatment regularly,
especially after messy diapers.
You may notice that the tip of the penis looks
bloody or crusty or has a white or yellow discharge.
有血 有硬皮 或者有白色或黄色的排出物
This is part of the healing process and
you’ll probably be advised to leave the crusties etc in place.
Just simply add more ointment.
In around ten days, the tip of the penis will be less raw
and you’ll be able to clean it with soap and water
like the rest of the body.
I say vulva because I’m referring to the folds
on the outside of the baby’s body.
The vagina is internal.
It does not need to be cleaned.
Her diaper changes use a baby wipe or cloth
and light pressure to clean from the front of baby’s body
backward toward the anus.
It’s just like cleaning poop out of the inner thigh folds.
You’re trying to get that stuff out.
You don’t want to drag it into the vulva.
You want to wipe it out and away from the vulva.
Note! Babies with vulvas may bleed vaginally
in the first week or so,
sometimes accompanied by a cloudy fluid.
This is due to withdrawal from the hormones in the womb
and it’s completely normal.
In fact, it’s an indicator that the vaginal canal is open.
Sometimes the labia, the lips of the vulva will fuse together.
This is only partial. You can keep an eye on it
and it should dissipate with age and the increase in estrogen.
If the adhesion blocks urine from getting out,
this is a hygiene concern and needs medical attention.
If your kiddo is able to communicate or even just understand you,
it’s useful to explain the practice and value of genital hygiene.
Just like you would narrate washing their hair, bellybutton
and in between their toes, narrate:
Opening communication with your kiddo about hygiene
can mean that they push back and say,
“No! You can’t wet my butthole.”
Try to listen to their objection and reason things out.
I love how my dad friend puts it,
“My daughter says ‘no’, she doesn’t want me to clean her up.
I say ‘Okay’ and explain that her bottom might get itchy.
She changes her mind.”
Not only is consent important we want kids to want hygiene
to understand why they clean themselves
so that they grow up more likely
to choose those behaviors for themselves rather than neglect them.
Verbalize how you’re wiping their bodies clean
so that they understand and they do it the same way.
Here are some more tips for toddler hygiene.
Avoid scented wipes, soaps, detergents, and creams.
避免使用带有香味的湿巾 肥皂 洗涤剂和面霜
Avoid dryer sheets. Avoid deodorizers.
For diaper rash and other genital irritations,
do a warm water Epsom salt soak twice a day for a few days.
Bubble baths I know are so fun.
Those cute little baby Mohawks made of suds.
They’re not good for delicate genital tissue.
This goes for shampoo too.
If the kiddo plays in the tub,
don’t shampoo them until the very end,
especially with vulvas.
This way you can wash them again nothing in the vagina,
then rinse the genitals with clean water
and get them out of the tub to pat dry.
You don’t want to soak your kids
in a soup of dirt and soap
or leave their genitals damp and hospitable for germs.
It’s goes for swimming,
spilling drinks on their laps, wetting themselves etc.
Remove the wet clothing as soon as you can.
Do a clean up especially of sugary, drinks, chlorine and urine
清理干净 尤其是含糖 饮料 氯和尿液
that can dry out the tissue or instigate a yeast infection.
Then drive them off.
I know it’s a lot to do,
but this kiddo’s genital hygiene matters.
And as they age they can take over a lot of hygiene tasking themselves.
For example, around age 5 the kiddo may start showering by themselves
and you can gently guide from outside:
If they go to masturbate, you can remind them:
Explain that exploring their bodies as an adventure,
but it’s important for them to talk to you
before putting anything in their bodies.
Kids put stuff in their mouths, nostrils,
vaginas, anuses, up their urethras.
I put a roly-poly bug in my brother’s ear when we were kids.
You don’t know if your little one is going to be curious in this way.
So you have to cover all of your bases,
teach them so that they know.
Don’t withhold information because you’re afraid they’ll use.
It will be okay, really.
They’ll present something to you like a toothbrush
as a potential object of insertion
and you’ll be able to coach them on the pros and cons.
You don’t need to supervise their playtime,
but certainly make sure that they aren’t harming their genitals
with bacteria-laden doll parts or ingredients you intended for stir fried dinner.
不如用你的手指 我帮你把指甲剪掉 这样你就不会抓伤自己
Offer loops so kiddo isn’t using
harsh products to stroke in private.
Then schedule their regular doctor’s appointments
where they can ask someone besides you their genital health questions.
The period between childhood and adulthood is often marked by puberty.
At this time kids will need a lot of reassurance
that their bodies are normal and that hygiene is important
and that they aren’t gross, they’re messed up
because they’re still smells, fluids,
feelings, lumps, wobbly bits, and hair.
感觉 结块 渣滓以及毛发
Communicate that they have say over their bodies,
and that masturbation and or self-examination
are great ways to know what’s what.
The same way that they’re familiar with their faces.
Prepare them for wet dreams, erections, menstruation, ejaculation
告诉他们遗精 勃起 月经 射精是怎么回事
by telling them what’s happening.
West dream mostly at night but sometimes in the day,
the body becomes aroused and produces more fluid than usual.
It’s not gross or bad.
You can wipe up the wetness
and I’ll teach you how to use the washing machine
so that you can clean up any stains on your own.
Erections. Most bodies have tissue in the genitals
that gets hard when they’re excited or scared.
It’s usually connected to thinking about someone or something that you like.
Having an erection isn’t dangerous unless it goes on for hours.
So if you get one or dozens, it’s no big deal.
It’s a very common part of puberty
and they’ll start to decrease in frequency as you age.
Menstruation. That’s where blood comes out of the vagina
for about a week each month.
Everyone has different timing and amounts,
so here’s the calendar to track yours and some pads to get you started.
Just don’t leave any period products
on your vulva or in your vagina for more than 12 hours.
Smells. People tend to become more oily during puberty
and this oil collects dead skin cells dirt and pathogens
that build up as acne smegma and smells. Washee-washee.
就会长痘痘 也会有气味 多洗洗
But not with products marketed to freshen you up and clean you out.
Many of those actually increase the harmful bacteria
that can make your genitals sick.
So if you’re unsure or insecure,
talk to me or let’s set up a doctor’s appointment.
Here’s a playlist of sexplanations videos
that will help explain what’s what.
Not all children are the same.
They don’t all have the same bodies or timelines or experiences.
Some will go through sexual abuse that alters their hygiene,
others will feel dysphoric about their genitals.
And this may change their approach as well.
Start with the basics and work from there to talk it out and identify better ideas.
Hygiene is imperative!
Kids needed as much as adults
and there’s ways to help.
You can do it. I’ve taught you: stay curious.
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Baby comes out. Genitals are inspected.