It’s a new year and that means 12 more calendar months that you and your kids will be experiencing those familiar cold and flu symptoms. Children get sick, there’s no way around it. In fact, children can get sick up to 3 times more than adults in a year due to their developing immune systems and exposure to other sick children. Does that mean you should simply prepare for a long year of sickness and misery? Absolutely not! Here are 5 surprising ways your kids could be making themselves more susceptible to illness and 5 ways you could be enjoying a healthier year.
Not Enough Hand-Washing
Regular hand washing could be the difference between those unpleasant cold and flu symptoms and a happy kid playing in the backyard. Encourage your child to wash her hands by creating a game or chart. Also, make sure she is washing those little digits at the most important parts of the day: before every meal.
Not Enough Physical Activity
Several studies have shown that a little bit if daily exercise could reduce the amount of cold and flu episodes in a year by up to 50% in some cases. Most experts say that exercise boosts your circulation, and thus helps you fight off infection more effectively. So let those kids do what they do best: play, play, play!
Not Enough Sleep
Did you know that poor sleeping habits can nearly double your risk of getting a cold? You already know the other negative ways that poor sleep habits effect your child’s mood and energy, but the damage to their immune system should be your greatest motivation for ensuring your little ones catch some good Z’s. Small amounts of melatonin, found in Zarbee’s All-Natural Children’s Nighttime Drink, is a great way to help your kids get better sleep, especially when they’re struggling with a cold.
Not Enough Facial Boundaries
This one might sound funny, but it’s no laughing matter. Kids who touch their face more often also get sick more often. Help your child get in the habit of not touching his face, especially if he hasn’t been big on hand washing. It’s best to work a little on on both habits, actually.
Not Enough Healthy Foods
Foods rich in vitamin C and D are especially good for your young ones and their fragile, developing immune systems. Make sure your children are getting a healthy dosage of the good stuff everyday: fruits and vegetables.
Although kids get sick about as often as they say the darndest things, implementing these steps could drastically decrease the amount of sickness they get in a year. If they do get sick, these tips can also decrease the severity of any illness.