The flu season has arrived in full force this year. My family has already been through two rounds of sneezes, coughs and fevers – all before January too! But after having kids now for almost ten years, I have learned a few tips and tricks that have helped us when those sniffles start making their way back into our household. Note, I’m not a medical professional however these tricks have found to be helpful when all you want is a good night of sleep – because we all know there is only so much coffee can handle!
Keep Fluids Flowing
I know this one may seem like common sense, but keeping those kiddos as hydrated as possible is super important. When my family doesn’t feel well, drinking water is the last thing on their mind. So my trick to encourage them to drink is that I keep a water bottle by their bed or on the table at all times. Usually I make sure that it has a straw too because they will drink way more through a straw than a regular lid. And if there is a sore throat or a dry cough involved, the water will only help soothe their little throats that may be dry or scratchy.
Steam It Up
After spending the night with a toddler in a steamy bathroom, I quickly invested in hot steam humidifiers for all of my children’s rooms. And to be honest, this was hands down the best investment for cold and flu season! You simply fill it up with cool water, plug it in and let it go. I also found a liquid menthol solution that your pour into the humidifier that releases a eucalyptus vapor to help ease the coughing. Basically it’s like creating a steamy bubble in your child’s room, which really helps with coughing and with their breathing during the night or with naps.
If your kids are old enough to sleep with pillows, give them an extra one when they are all stuffed up. I find that when I can elevate their little heads, there is less of a chance for the extra drainage that causes the coughing and helps open up their noses a little better than when they are lying flat on their backs. If your baby has a stuffy nose, wearing them in a carrier is also a great choice to keep their heads elevated. And let’s be honest, the extra snuggles don’t hurt either!
Wash Those Hands!
One of the first things my kids do when walking in the door from school is they wash their hands. This is most likely the teacher engrained into my soul but nonetheless, washing your hands is an essential part of your family’s daily health. I also carry a mini hand sanitizer in my purse so we can wash up after places like the zoo, museum or park. Let’s stop and think of how many germs you encounter on a daily basis. Now double that thought when we are talking about cold and flu season. Next, watch your kid for just two minutes and make a mental note of what they touch or where they put their hands. Those germs are literally spreading as we speak! I’m a firm believer that there is no such thing as TOO much hand washing – especially when it comes to kids.
There is nothing worse than having a sick child let alone an entire sick family. I am sending you all the healthy vibes this cold and flu season, Mama. And hopefully you can stay in good health yourself too!
What are you tips for conquering cold and flu season with kids? Share with us! We’d love to hear them too!
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