5 safety tips for illness for kids caused due to the season change.
5 safety tips for illness for kids caused due to the season change.
Changing seasons is a beautiful experience, to witness the beauty of nature and to see the multitude of changes happening throughout our surroundings. The beautiful transformation and metamorphosis of changing seasons are almost poetic. However, Season change is also every parent’s worst nightmare! As we are constantly trying our level best to keep our children away from sickness and illness, and season change is one of the major causes for this.
According to research, adults mostly suffer from colds 2 to 3 times per year and children between 5 to 7 times every year, which is roughly coincidental with the number of seasonal changes that happen within a year.
Most people tend to come down with the flu or cold when seasonal changes happen, and the dramatic temperature changes aren’t really the direct cause of these illnesses, according to many experts. It’s rather the temperature shift which permits a different group of viruses entirely to flourish, which is what actually makes people sick, according to Dr Benjamin Kaplan.
So with every season change, the count of allergens in the environment spikes up to nearly 200 viruses in the air, which are the obvious factors for getting people under the weather. As the shift in temperature is basically providing a favourable condition for these viruses to flourish and then spread contagious diseases with common symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, coughing, itchy or sore throat, watery eyes, muscle aches, fever, runny nose, et cetera.
Our blog today will be your ultimate guide for keeping your children safe and healthy during changing seasons. All you have to do is follow these simple tips:
1. Test Allergies:
Falling sick does not really have to be an illness and can be caused by allergies too. So, the first and foremost thing you can do if your child suffers cold-like symptoms constantly during certain times around the year is to check for seasonal allergies or asthma.
If you see a pattern of your children falling sick and not recovering after several consultations with your doctor, speak to your doctor and get a referral to an allergist. These are medical professionals who can test and figure out if constant seasonal symptoms can be due to allergies and not because of illness.
Keeping your children up to date on their vaccination tracker is one way to help protect children from most diseases and to also boost their overall immunity. Vaccinations help lower severity of many illnesses and help children recover faster.
Regular vaccinations that are required for your children need to be administered at their appropriate ages, so make sure you do not miss any vaccination.
3. Practice good hygiene:
Good hygiene is among the most important lessons you can teach your children. Most viruses such as rhinoviruses survive for three hours outside the body, but can sometimes live up to 48 hours on surfaces that are touchable such as doorknobs, tables, chairs, switches, et cetera.
So it is extremely important to make sure our children wash their hands in regular intervals and avoid touching their faces, eyes, nose, et cetera when they’re in a public place to keep off potential risk of catching any infections.
Constantly remind them to develop the habit of frequently washing hands especially after visiting the washroom, or playing in dirty surroundings, or after being outdoors along with emphasising the importance of learning good toilet habits.
4. Improve nutrition:
There can never be any substitute for the nutritive needs of a growing child. Nutrients from vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, protein, and fat are all essential in building a healthy immune system in order to prevent illnesses.
- The importance of vitamins: As you all know, there are various kinds of cells in our immune system responsible for fighting infections and keeping illnesses at bay. So these cells require an abundant supply of vitamins to perform their functions effectively. Eating a bit of extra vitamin C during changing seasons can act as a booster dose and help your children boost their immunity. Some foods that are rich in vitamin C are oranges , pineapples, strawberries, kiwi, papaya, etc. Other vitamins, like vitamin A, are important in promoting strong development. Give your children a lot of yellow and orange vegetables, along with milk, eggs, and cheese. Vitamin B is essential to help energy levels and metabolism, so foods such as chicken, milk, nuts, fish can be given. The importance of vitamin D goes hand in hand with the calcium needs in our bodies, and the best source of vitamin D is exposure to sunlight.
- The importance of getting enough dietary fibre: Many children often catch what we call the stomach bug or the stomach flu causing typical symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, diarrhoea, stomachache, abdominal pain, fatigue and so on. When children eat food outside or even home-cooked meals, no matter how carefully prepared, can be a major source of pathogens and disease-causing germs. In order to defend their bodies against such pathogens, it is crucial that we help them consume a good amount of fibre. Therefore, it is crucial to make sure we feed our children fibre rich food such as black beans, peas, lentils, broccoli, oatmeal, Chia seeds, pears, carrots and so on.
- Importance of eating protein rich food: Children grow and develop at a quick pace and in order to keep their developing bodies strong, especially their muscles, it is important we provide them with a good amount of protein. In fact, all germ-fighting antibodies are actually complex protein structures that need to be built. So make it a point to include eggs, chicken, fish and other such protein-rich food in your children’s diet.
- Apart from these, you can give your children dried fruits and nuts for energy and make sure they consume almonds, raisins, walnuts, dates, figs, and apricots regularly. Yoghurt and curd contain a lot of good microorganisms. They have a lot of added benefits apart from being calcium rich and act as probiotics. Also, the use of everyday ingredients such as ginger, turmeric, tulsi, cardamom, cinnamon can also be helpful to keep seasonal illnesses away. Probably all Indian mothers know that there are no better substitutes for turmeric milk, tulsi water, pepper with honey and ginger candies.
5. Make sure your children get enough physical exercise and rest:
Exercise, rest and good sleep are all as important to growth and healing as is our diet. Many parents may want to keep children indoors because of the season changes outside. This reduces their physical activity to a great extent. Make sure your children get at least 30 minutes of basic exercise when they are indoors even if the weather is not good enough to venture outside for physical play.
Similarly, sleep is the time for our bodies to rest, repair, and rejuvenate. According to many paediatricians, children aged 6 to 12 lead 9 to 12 hours of uninterrupted sleep and teenagers require 8 to 10 hours of sleep every night. Adequate sleep is essential to help your child have a healthier immune system to fight illnesses better.
Along with exercise, good rest, and proper sleep, natural light and staying outdoors can also boost mood and Immunity in children.
Being well hydrated and proactive in itself can save you and your child a lot of discomfort and anxiety. So inculcate these simple habits and practices early in your child’s life to help them build better mechanisms to fight diseases and to lead a strong and healthy lifestyle. As it is said, good health is often the result of good sense!
Do let us know if you follow any special tips or if there are any unique tricks we can follow to keep our family and our little ones safe from sickness caused by seasonal changes by commenting below.