Help your child overcome fear of hair washing

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Help your child overcome fear of hair washing

Tantrums in the bathroom are a really difficult problem. You have to wash your kid´s hair and yet it is a nightmare for them. A lot of kids are sensitive to water in their eyes. And they feel like they can´t breathe when they have water dumped over the top of their head. So two alternate methods are to let them lay back in the bath in just a couple of inches of water so he can just swish his hair out. The other thing is you can buy a visor that blocks the water from coming onto his face when you are dumping over his head. Do these things first. After awhile, he will recognize that he is not going to get water in his face anymore. You are also going to bring his most favorite items into the bath so every time it comes to hairwashing time, you are going to give him a favorite item first as a distractor and then also as a reward. So when you do the dump, he is going to get a favorite item. After about a week of not having tantrums in the bath anymore, you can work back up to getting water on the face again. You can even put a favorite item as a surprise on top of his head and when you dump the water over, he catches it in his hand like this because eventually you may want to learn to swim and other things. He is going to need to learn to have water on his face.

See Nicole Hill, MA's video on Help your child overcome fear of hair washing...


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Nicole Hill, MA

Behaviorist & Swim Instructor

Nicole Hill, Director of Autism Services and CEO of Brightwork ABA Therapy is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA).  Nicole has been working in the field of ABA since 2005.  She has a Master of Arts in Applied Behavior Analysis, a BA in Speech Communication, and a minor in Spanish.

Nicole has a broad range of experience stemming from working with children from birth through high school in a variety of capacities for over 15 years.  Nicole specializes in working with young children on the autism spectrum and their families, with particular focus on  early intervention including FBA’s, BIP’s, verbal behavior, DTT, natural environment teaching, play skills, social skills, and parent training. 

Nicole originally began her work with special needs children in 1998 as a swim instructor for children who found learning to swim especially challenging.  With this experience, Nicole founded SwimFit Babies & Kids (, a program that uses techniques founded in ABA to teach swim techniques. 

She is an active member of Applied Behavior Analysis, International (ABAI) as well as California Association for Applied Behavior Analysis (CalABA).

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