Children for Health’s 10 Messages for Children on Diarrhoea
Children for Health has developed its top 10 Diarrhoea Messages for children to learn and share. Do you work with children? Do you work with any programmes who do? Please share these messages with them. We would love to hear feedback from practitioners and others who might use or adapt such messages.
- Diarrhoea is watery poo that come out of the body lots of times in one day.
- Diarrhoea is caused by germs from dirt getting into the body from food or drink , fingers touching the mouth, or using dirty spoons and cups.
- The loss of water and salts makes the body weak. Give water and salts or diarrhoea can kill young children quickly from dehydration.
- Prevent dehydration from diarrhoea by giving children lots of safe drinks (water, coconut milk, rice water). Babies need breast milk most.
- A child with diarrhoea may have a dry mouth and tongue, sunken eyes, no tears, loose skin, cool hands and feet and in babies a sunken soft spot on the head.
- Children doing more than 5 watery poos/day or bloody poo or who become sick MUST be seen by a health worker.
- ORS stands for ‘Oral Rehydration Salts’. Find ORS at clinics & shops. Mix it right with clean safe water to make the best drink for diarrhoea.
- Most medicines do not work but zinc pills stops diarrhoea sooner for children over 6 months. ORS drinks MUST be given as well.
- Young children with diarrhoea need tasty, mashed food as often as possible to make their body stronger.
- Diarrhoea can be prevented by breastfeeding babies, good hygiene habits, immunisation (especially against rotavirus and measles) and by making sure food is safe.
The messages can be used by educators to use with children, as SMS text messages for older children or for households or ideas for campaigns, quizzes or games and on the social media.
At Children for Health we are developing further resources to help teachers, parents, youth workers and others mobilise children to help prevent and reduce deaths because of diarrhoeal disease. Many of these deaths are preventable.
When children learn and share the messages (or your list of messages), do you give them a prize? How about getting children to make a rainbow stick to record the messages they learn? Read more about the Rainbow Stick idea by clicking here!