Cold and flu season is here, ready to put a damper on even the best laid holiday plans.
It’s almost impossible to keep your kids from getting sick, regardless of the wellness regimen you keep them on.
Their classroom is like a petri dish during the winter months, and sniffs and sneezes almost always turn into something more.
A sick child is certainly a handful, but nothing is worse than caring for your sick child when you are sick as well.
That’s a recipe for a seriously miserable house.
But it can be quite easy to fall prey to your own cold or flu when wading through your baby’s used tissues and hacking coughs.
So follow these five tips to stay healthy even when your kids are sick hopefully.
5 Tips for Staying Healthy When Your Kids Are Sick
One of the most important things you can do to remain healthy during this time is making sure you get enough sleep.
That’s often the first thing to go when you have kids, and you’re probably used to getting by on far fewer restful hours than you would prefer.
But when you are around your sick little ones all day your immune system is under attack.
You’ve got to take care of yourself better than usual, and that starts with eight hours of sleep a night.
Do whatever you must to get as close to that as possible, and you’ll increase the chances of staying healthy.
Wash Your Hands
You should also make sure you wash your hands, even more often than usual.
Germs spread through contact, not just person to person, but also through all the things you touch each day.
That’s usually why your kids get sick in the first place.
After all, children aren’t known for diligently washing up.
Keep hand sanitizer in your pocket for when you can’t get to the bathroom, but always wash your hands after being in public or dealing with your sick child.
And when you are stuck at home with a feverish little one, try to avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose as much as you can.
Drink Plenty of Fluids
It’s sometimes hard to discern the flu from a common cold, so you won’t always be able to figure out whether to eat a lot or very little to help stave off symptoms.
But one rule that consistently holds true is to drink a lot of fluids.
The better hydrated you stay, the faster germs will flush through your system and hopefully leave you in peace.
Stick with water more than anything else, and balance it out with high-quality orange juice for a great infusion of vitamin C.
On top of getting regular fluids, you also must make sure you eat a healthy, balanced diet.
Your body needs quality fuel in the form of nutrient-rich foods all the time, but especially when you are combating a sickness.
Your immune system will just work better when you are receiving an optimal diet.
Also, take the time to seek out foods that specifically help boost the immune system.
Healthy food choices won’t guarantee you don’t get sick, but will certainly stack the deck in your favor.
Finally, try to add in some more exercise.
This is often the activity most quickly forgotten or tossed aside due to a busy schedule, especially when your kids are sick.
But several recent studies have found regular exercise (something like five times each week) will reduce the chance you get sick by more than 40%.
Part of it may be sweating out the impurities that can slow down your immune system.
Part of it may be improving circulation and keeping everything moving.
But exercise is a powerful tool and should keep you from sharing that sick bed with your child.