You asked

My child regularly laughs at his own bodily functions in public. What can I do?

To your child, his bodily functions are probably hilarious. They’re less so to you, and it’s bad enough when he does it at home, but it’s down right mortifying when he does it in public!

Nose picking is one of the most common causes of parental embarrassment. The simplest course of action is to remind your child that no one wants to see him picking his nose, and offering him a tissue instead. Tell your child that it’s okay if he must pick his nose, but to do it when he’s alone, and to wash his hands afterwards.

Burping and farting are a little trickier to handle. Children aged four and under can’t control them anyway, but if your child does burp or fart, and you encourage it by laughing, then your child is likely to find it even more amusing – even at times that you don’t.

It’s virtually impossible to convince a child that burping and farting aren’t funny. What you can do is teach your child to say excuse me when he does, and explain that all those noises are is the air that’s trapped in his body escaping. You could even try training your child to go outside, or to the bathroom, when he feels the need to pass gas.

Of course, if your child does have gas when you’re in public, stay calm. Reminding your child to say excuse me is all that you need to do – there’s nothing to be embarrassed about – after all, everyone has gas sometimes.

More questions

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