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If there’s one thing that comes along with cooler weather that doesn’t put me in the holiday spirit, it’s a runny nose and sniffles. More so when it’s the kids that have them and right now both of my kids are sick. The past two days I’ve been in full on Dr. Mom mode and have been making time to send all these sick germs packing. Hopefully they kick the bucket soon (the germs, not my kids).
Here are eight tips that I use for managing a sick kid. I’m certainly no medical professional, but I’ve found these tips to work well for me when one or more of my kids get the common cold.
Giving your child medicine probably seems like a no brainer, but not all medicines actually heal the sickness. Rather, they help to make cold symptoms easier to withstand, while the cold runs its course. Pay attention to what symptoms manifest themselves (fever, runny nose, cough, sore throat, etc.) and choose a medicine that corresponds with those symptoms. Most kids don’t like taking medicine, including mine, so don’t make it worse for them by forcing a medicine that really isn’t going to help.
Are you a breastfeeding mom? When your child’s sick, continue to breastfeed because your body will help produce the antibodies needed to get over the cold. There’s nothing like homemade organic mommy medicine!
Just like when we get sick, kids need a lot of rest. Let them sleep whenever they want – morning, afternoon, evening, night. Besides, I’m sure you could use a nice break from all the ruckus they make on a daily basis. When sick, I let my kids sleep in and I don’t limit their rest at all. You want to sleep in the chair? Go right ahead and sleep in the chair.
Staying hydrated is typically hard for anyone who’s sick. I know all I want to do is sleep and that leaves no time for food or hydration. Still, I try my best to keep my kids hydrated when they’re under the weather. If I can’t get them to drink water or juice, I give them Pediasure and they’ll usually take a few sips here and there. I’ll take a few sips over none at all.
There’s nothing like taking a nice warm bath and washing away all those icky sick germs. When your child has a runny nose, chances are they’ve wiped their hand across their nose and then spread all the ickiness across their face, hair, hands, arms and clothes. Yuck!
Run a nice warm bath, clean them up and put them in some clean jammies. It may only be a little while before the germs are all over again, but a bath still helps kids feel better and gives you peace of mind that the sick germs have at least been washed away for the moment. Plus, the warm water will help clear up some congestion.
Keeping the germs at bay and giving your kids good, clean air to breathe is very important. How do I do this? With my Ozazzy “I Am Air” Cool Mist Humidifier. This thing has been running nonstop the past two days and is definitely helping. It releases cool, moist air, so if either of my kids happen to play in the mist (which they have been doing relentlessly) it isn’t going to burn their hands. I’ve had my Ozazzy at its highest setting so it’s pumping out a lot of great moisture to help clear up these little runny noses.
I also like to add some essential oils like eucalyptus and tree tea oil to the humidifier’s water. Just like using Vick’s in a vaporizer, the eucalyptus oil helps clear up my kids’ congestion and the tea tree oil helps disinfect the air. It’s nothing but easy breathing around here!
And if all else fails, get out of the house. This is a little harder considering most of the time you’re cooped up in the house when someone is sick, but getting some fresh air outdoors works wonders. Even opening the window will help.
Sanitizing kind of goes along with clean air. I use Lysol spray to sanitize my home and rid it of germs whenever anyone gets sick. Each night I spray around the house after the kids have gone to bed and I’ll admit, there have definitely been a few times I’ve had to open a window or two because I went a little Lysol crazy. But hey, the germs have got to go!
I can’t stress this one enough. No one likes to be sick and even though as adults we typically just want to be left alone, kids need all the love they can get. They don’t understand what’s going on with their body and some things may seem scary, especially if they’re vomiting. So just hold and cuddle your kids. It won’t last forever, so you might as well get it in while you can anyways. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever cuddled and loved on my kids as much as I have these past two days. Cuddles are comforting to them and you’ll enjoy it too.
When all is said and done, and the sniffles and runny noses are gone, it’s time for a clean sweep. Wash any and all blankets/bedding that were used while the kids were sick, and do a bleach/water soak of any plastic toys they played with. I also do a final sweep of the home with the Lysol spray, just to make sure I’m covering all my bases. Sick germs be gone!