Since September, the Bisson family has had three common colds, two coughs/croup outbursts and a vomiting episode. Not bad going for a 6 week period. Fortunately, we’ve managed to dodge a few other nasty bugs flying around – so I’m thanking my lucky stars. Why is it that as soon as the season changes and the days shorten the common cold and other ailments being their assault?
As much as I love this season of mists and that twinge of excitement as the bells of waiting Advent approach, it’s somewhat tainted by the trail of snot rags accumulating and the nagging worry as I go to bed hoping that my little ones will have restful nights and can kick their colds into touch.
Motherhood is tough enough on a day-to-day basis – if anyone says otherwise they’re bending the truth – but add a sick child into the mix and you’re running the Tough Mudder assault course of parenting! Chances are, just as everyone gets well, I’ll fall ill – that’s my favorite Christmas party (pooper) trick.
So after a not so great start to Autumn/Winter on the health front, I’ve been looking at ways of keeping my family healthy and happy.
Easier said than done – my daughters love to drink from the same cup, share toothbrushes and do just about everything together. I’ve probably not been diligent enough in trying to prevent their germs spreading, so pass the anti-bacterial spray!
Stop touching your nose
Big D has a rather unhealthy obsession with her nose and with thousands of germs living on our little unwashed paws it’s the perfect way in for these pesky particles to get straight into their bloodstream.
Making sure we all get into better habits of washing our hands regularly. A home is never going to be sterile, nor should it be, but a bit of cleanliness has got to help keep the bugs at bay!
Big D, Mummy B and Daddy are all going to get the flu jab. Little D isn’t quite old enough yet, but vaccinating us should mean she’s less likely to catch it. Poor little lamb had two prolonged stays in hospital with very nasty flu viruses last year so keeping her strong is paramount.
Naturally Boosting our Immunity
Doing what I can to give my family all the nutrients in their diet to stay healthy. Easier said than done with two fussy eaters. Getting enough exercise and fresh air – nothing beats a good run around in the great outdoors.
Getting enough Sleep
I’m a strong believer in establishing and maintaining a regular sleep routine. Getting enough sleep is so important to how they feel and thrive. I only have to look at myself after a bad night (not a pretty sight) to see the benefits of sound uninterrupted shut eye. When my little ones are poorly I try and keep everything restful and chilled so that all their energy can be used to get themselves better.
Invest in a Humidifier
This is especially important at night and during naps, when a persistent cough or difficulty breathing can prevent your child from getting the rest he needs. The moist air from a humidifier helps to calm a cough and relieve congestion. If you don’t have one to hand and your child is suffering, get a bowl of water and pop it by the radiator (a trick I learned during my ski season when I consistently had a sore throat from the dry air). If your child is starting to get really croupy (often seems to happen at 4am when the immune system takes a dip), boil a kettle and try to get as much steam in the room as possible – try to get them propped up slightly in bed. We’ve done this a few times but sometimes it’s been too much of an emergency and we’ve had to make the dash to A&E.
I still get told off by my own mother for not drinking enough, so when the girls are poorly I try to make sure they keep well watered as it’s so easy to become dehydrated when you’re running a fever or vomiting. When I spoke to my mother this evening to relay the daily news update on Big D’s chesty cough, she suggested I make her a fruit juice lolly pop to try and soothe the relentless barking and provide a little relief. Great tip Mummy – thank you!
Taking our Vitamins
The girls have tried taking so many brands of vitamins in the past and the habit never gets established because ‘they taste yukky, mummy‘! We’ve recently been trying out MyBaba multivitamin and multibiotic powder, which is working really well for us. Sprinkled over fruit like magic fairy dust or added to a smoothie means the girls are finally happy to take a supplement that helps keep them healthy.
Know when to call the doctor
I hold my hands up and admit I am a little quick handed to race up the doctors and have a better-safe-than-sorry attitude. But I’m getting a little less cautious now both children are a bit older and less fragile. I would say that if you’re unsure of anything or feel you need a bit of reassurance from a medical professional don’t hesitate to call the doctor. Trust your instincts!
I hope all your little ones stay healthy and happy this winter and if, like my two snuffly monkeys, you’re already feeling a bit run down by the Winter woes – try some of the above. Prevention is better than cure, after all.
Love Mummy B