While there’s no guaranteed way to prevent your child from getting sick, there are some steps you can take as a parent to help lessen their chances. Here are some of the most effective ways to help keep your child healthy.
Teach Them to Wash Their Hands
Germs are everywhere. They can be on door handles, countertops, and even your hands because when you touch something contaminated with germs, you can transfer them to your hands. You can also spread germs when you shake someone’s hand or handle someone else’s food or utensils.
To help prevent the spread of germs, wash your or your child’s hands for 20 seconds with soap and water, and lather up nicely between the fingers and under the nails. It’s essential to do this after using the restroom, before eating, and after being in close contact with someone sick.
Hand-washing is vital in preventing the spread of illness, yet it’s often one of the first things people forget or neglect to do. Ensure your child knows the importance of washing their hands and how to do it properly.
Teach Them to Care for Their Teeth
Not only do teeth help with chewing and speaking, but they also play a role in the development of the jawbone. Furthermore, primary teeth can act as space savers for the permanent teeth that eventually come in. For all these reasons, taking good care of your child’s teeth is required.
That means brushing and flossing daily, and also making sure to take them to the dentist for regular checkups. Doing so can help prevent various dental problems, such as cavities, gum disease, and tooth decay. In addition, regular dental visits can also help to identify any potential issues early on, before they have a chance to cause severe damage.
Don’t Share Everything
Sharing is caring—except when it comes to germs. Especially during cold and flu season, it’s best to avoid sharing drinks, food, utensils, towels, clothes, and other personal items with others. If you must share something, wash it thoroughly with soap and water first.
It’s also important to avoid touching your face as much as possible since that’s a common and easy way people get sick. Teach your child not to touch their eyes, nose, or mouth unless they’ve just washed their hands.
Teach Them to Stay Home When Sick
This one might seem like a no-brainer, but it’s still worth mentioning. If your child is feeling under the weather, keep them home from school or daycare so they can rest and get better. Not only will this help them recover faster, but it also helps prevent them from spreading their illness to others. Children should generally stay home for at least 24 hours after their fever breaks without using fever-reducing medication like ibuprofen or Tylenol.
Check if Their School Promotes Good Hygiene
One of the most important things you can do as a parent is to ensure your children are in an environment that promotes good hygiene. Whether it’s their childcare facility or school, you should check to see if they are taking proper precautions to prevent the spread of illness. This includes ensuring that surfaces are regularly cleaned, that staff members wash their hands often, and that food is prepared cleanly and safely.
To reduce the spread of disease, you should also ask if the toilets and sinks are clean, toys or books are disinfected, doorknobs or drinking fountains are sanitized, and if staff and other children are vaccinated.
Get Them to Take Their Vitamins
One thing you can’t miss out on is ensuring that they take their vitamins every day. Vitamins are essential for maintaining a strong immune system, and they can help to prevent a wide range of illnesses. In addition, vitamins help fill in the gaps in your child’s diet, ensuring that they get all the nutrients they need.
The question now is, what vitamins should your child be taking? The best way to determine if your child needs vitamin supplements is to speak with a pediatrician. They can perform a physical exam and order blood tests to check for vitamin deficiencies and then recommend the best type and dosage for your child’s individual needs.
As a parent, you can help prevent your children from getting sick by getting them to take their vitamins, checking if their childcare facility or school promotes good hygiene, teaching them good hygiene and dental habits, avoiding sharing personal items with them, and teaching them to stay home when they are ill. These are all simple yet effective ways to help keep your family healthy this season!