At the moment, the news is filled with talks of pandemics and viruses, which can be a bit confronting. A parent's first instinct is to protect their children.
Here are 5 tips that will make a difference.
So, what can you do to protect your child from getting sick?
5 things that are worth your time:
Washing your hands.
The most common way in which we catch any virus is by getting the germs on our hands and then touching our nose or eyes. We all know just how much bubs love touching everything, and then putting their hands in their mouth!
Washing your hands is only effective if you wash with soap and water for at least 30 seconds. Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania found that kids who regularly use a hand sanitizer have 50% fewer absences from school than those who don't.
Please cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze.
This one really is common sense!
You may be a carrier and not even know, so it’s always best you cover up and make others in your house do the same.
Every time you cough or sneeze you are expelling millions of germs into the air.
These viruses don’t travel easily and unless someone sneezes in your face you’re unlikely to get sick.
Then what the problem? Well, they don’t just disappear.
These germs settle onto the surfaces around your home, where the probability of coming into contact with them is high, and this is where the problem is!
Make sure bub is eating well
It's important that your child eats well which will help keep their body strong and help fight off any infection before it can take hold.
If you’re able to nurse your baby, studies have shown that babies who are exclusively breastfed for six months are less likely than formula-fed babies to get colds and ear and throat infections.
The antibodies from your body are transported through your breast milk, which gives your little one an extra line of defence.
If you are unable to breastfeed, that is not an issue whatsoever. There are other things you can do on this list to protect your baby.
Keep your bub covered when in public spaces
This is especially important in high traffic places such as supermarkets and shopping centres.
Having your child in a covered pram is the way to go. It stops germs reaching them and hopefully, them touching infected surfaces.
The more people you are around the more likely it becomes that you’ll be exposed to any type of virus.
This doesn’t mean keep yourselves locked away but be wary and make sure to wash your hands when you get home!
Get yourself a good humidifier
A recent article in the Financial Times found that a portable humidifier in a bedroom can increase relative humidity from 30-50%, which corresponded to a 32% drop in influenza virus survival.
Not only will a humidifier reduce the spread of viruses, but it will also make breathing easier if you are sick. Setting up a humidifier is your best bet for improving indoor air quality and your breathing, says pulmonologist Kathrin Nicolacakis, MD.
“When the air is dry, your respiratory system just isn’t happy. Even if you have no medical problems at all, you can suffer,” she says. “Your skin and nasal passages get dry – all the way down to your lungs. You can wake up with a dry mouth and start coughing for no reason.”
The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention strongly recommends you use a humidifier if you are infected by a lung-based virus. It will ease sore throats and make breathing easier.
Using a humidifier can relieve:
- Chronic runny nose.
- Hay fever symptoms.
- Nose bleeds.
- Asthma and allergy flare-ups.
- Sinus congestion.
- Dry throat.
There’s lots of information out there at the moment, so make sure you’re getting your information from genuine reliable sources.