Stay ahead of the game
As the summer draws to a close, it's time to prepare our little ones for another exciting school year. The flu season is approaching, with many speculations of it coming earlier than usual, it's best to take proactive steps to keep our toddlers healthy and minimize the risk of infections. Here are some simple suggestions to parents and caregivers to hopefully ensure a smooth transition into the school routine while safeguarding the children’s well-being.
Encourage Good Hygiene Practices
Teaching toddlers good hygiene habits is crucial in keeping them healthy. After a few years of COVID experience, frequent handwashing was a regular part of our routine. But with life getting back to normality as the pandemic left us, our guard could be down again on maintaining personal hygiene. Now is a good time to give the kiddies a refresher course on the basics! Show them how to cover their mouth and nose with a tissue or their elbow when coughing or sneezing. Reinforce the concept of not touching their face, especially their eyes, nose, and mouth, to minimize the risk of infection. Encourage them to use their own water bottle and avoid sharing personal items to reduce exposure to germs. Regularly sanitizing the children’s frequently used items can also minimize germs and bacteria around them.
Keep the vitamins coming
A healthy diet plays a significant role in strengthening the immune system. Let’s make sure the little ones eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins so that they get enough essential vitamins and minerals that support their immune function. Healthy lunches and snacks can ensure they're getting the right nutrients throughout the day, avoiding excessive sugar which can weaken the immune system. Get the kids involved in meal planning and preparation, so we can raise their awareness of healthy eating habits from a young age.
Get enough sleep
It is common knowledge that our bodies heal and revitalize during sleep which can help fight off infections, therefore, sufficient sleep is essential for our children's overall health. It is important to establish a consistent bedtime routine that allows for the recommended 10-12 hours of sleep per night. Try to create a calm and soothing environment to promote quality sleep. and avoid screen time before bed as it can interfere with their sleep patterns.
Get them vaccinated
Check the vaccination record of your kids to ensure everything is up-to-date! The annual flu vaccine can be also a good way to minimize the chance of the little ones catching nasty cases of flu in the season. Then there are also the chicken pox (varicella) vaccinations that I personally think young school children would need because the chance of them being exposed to chicken pox at school or daycares is really high. Vaccinations are a critical preventive measure that protects against various illnesses and it is best to discuss this with your kids’ pediatrician to make the best decisions for them.
As we gear up for another school year, prioritizing the health of our little ones is of utmost importance. With good hygiene practices, a nutritious diet, adequate sleep, and staying on top of immunizations, we can help our kids stay healthy and resilient in the face of the upcoming flu season and school year.Stay Sparky!