How long should parents expect kids to keep their face masks on?

Posted at 6:04 AM, Jul 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-29 17:40:25-04

If your child is under age two, the Centers for Disease Control and The American Academy of Pediatrics don't recommend a mask.

Jessica Dean says her 8-year-old son is getting used to face coverings. She believes it has to become a habit.

"I don't even think it's an age thing," said Dean.

"I think once they see that it's something humans have to do right now, I think they will be willing to do it," she continued.

Bregetta Wilson's 12-year-old daughter is doing well with wearing masks. The face coverings though are not as comfortable for her 10-year-old son.

"He has sensitive skin. He doesn't like it on for too long, but he'll wear it for a little bit of time," Wilson said.

As a mother of two boys, ages 4 and 6, I decided to see how they would do with wearing masks indoors.

How long should parents expect kids to keep their face masks on?

We also asked parents on ourTMJ4 News Facebook page, "Would your kids keep a face mask on all day if their school required it?"

Out of more than 2,000 votes, 33 percent said "yes" and 67 percent said "no."

Dr. Christen Mcalpine-Tesfai, a pediatrician at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin says it's really important to explain to kids why we keep a mask on, which is to keep ourselves and others safe.

"If they can try and practice during the summer period that will help them be a little more prepared for when school resumes in fall in person," said Mcalpine-Tesfai.

On a stuffed animal, she showed us how the mask needs to cover a child's nose and under their chin. She encourages families to lead by example.

How long should parents expect kids to keep their masks on?

"If they see mommy and daddy wearing masks I think it helps to normalize it," she continued.

If your child is intimated by the mask-wearing look, she explains how to ease that anxiety.

"Kids can see that you're smiling through your eyes, and there are other gestures that can make a child feel more comfortable," she said.

"Many times, the kids are just fine when they realize, I recognize that voice, or I remember those eyes."

Dr. Christen Mcalpine-Tesfai recently wrote a blog about kids and face masks for Children's Hospital. Click here to read.

Report a typo or error // Submit a news tip