The winter season is in full swing, and along with the seasonal tidings and warm treats comes the potential for sickness. The cold and flu tend to overrun the unprepared during the final months of the year and the first few months of the new year; however, there are precautions you can take to protect the little ones. With naturally weaker immune systems, they are more susceptible to the various bugs that are about. The following are some tried and true tips to help stave off illness.
Sanitation & Cleanliness
This starts with washing your hands frequently, because you’d be surprised how often your hands touch your face on any given day. Impress upon your children the need to use soap and water to wash their hands immediately after using the bathroom, as well as after sneezing and wiping their noses. Don’t get caught up in the hand sanitizer craze; it’s simply not as effective as a good old-fashioned washing.
Although adults can benefit from this, too, putting the kids to bed early has tremendous effects on their overall health, as well as their ability to stave off colds. This has actually been proven in multiple studies; it ensures that they receive a full night’s rest. There’s a direct correlation with the strength of their immune system and the amount of sleep they get. If you’ve got especially young children, an 8pm bedtime through the winter months works wonders.
Vitamins & Probiotics
Although vitamin C gets a lot of attention during the winter months, vitamin D is even more important—or at least just as important. Get gummies if necessary to encourage your kids to take (and enjoy!) these daily. Echinacea, a natural herb, is also very helpful in supporting a strong immune system.
Just as important are probiotics. You can get these from Greek yogurt and other types of dairy that are not full of processed sugar. The billions of cultures in yogurt are key to good health, and they also contain vitamins C and D.
Less Processed Sugar
The primary problem with sugar—at least, insofar as children are concerned—is the inflammation that comes with taking in too much. For adults, this is also a problem, but the potential for diabetes, heart disease, and related illnesses are typically higher than they are in children. Nonetheless, avoid the refined carbs and sugar during the winter months. Treat them to sweets occasionally to emphasize the importance of moderation in their diet.
Raw honey with lemon and green tea are known to have beneficial effects in warding off colds. In fact, they can help a great deal even during the course of a cold. Give your kids some before bedtime (for best results) or early in the morning with breakfast. Add fish oil tablets to their diet, too, if they aren’t getting enough omega-3 fatty acids from other sources.
Visit a Walk-In Clinic in Silver Spring & Kensington, MD
If you reside in the Silver Spring or Kensington, Maryland areas, then Fast Track Urgent Care’s walk-in clinics are just a stone’s throw away from you. Our licensed healthcare professionals can treat a range of illnesses for you and your children this flu season.