‘Tis the season. *cough cough* That is, ‘cold’ season. When the weather drops and the nights get WAY too cold for this Arizona gal, I’m always worried that my sweet family and I will get hit with a nasty bug that’s going around. I’d say that I live a pretty healthy lifestyle, but no matter what, my 2-year-old always seems to come down with something. So, each year, I am constantly asking myself how we as a family can stay healthy.
My first step is to frantically Google “How to Prevent From Getting Sick” (like any parent these days) and go from there. The prevention tips aren’t hard to do, it just takes a little time to do them. I mean all of us have seen the.. steam this ancient salt with this oil you can get at a speciality store and do it every hour. But most moms don’t have time for that, I like to make things as quick, simple, and effective as I can. So, today I’m sharing 5 ways to prevent illness for both you and your family that are realistic for your time and work!
Step 1: Keep the house clean and disinfected with natural cleaning products
Germs cause all the problems! So to help prevent getting sick, start at the source. Keeping a clean home is the best way to make sure those pesky things don’t get anyone sick. With my son being in school, there are a lot of germs that get passed around, so I like to make sure that I disinfect everything. When picking out cleaning supplies, make sure they don’t contain any harsh chemicals. Ingredients to stay away from are:
An easy, natural surface area disinfector is to add some water and vinegar to a spray bottle and wipe down with a clean cloth.
I also try to keep Diego’s bedroom clean from germs that he could’ve possibly picked up from school. I always change him out of his clothes into his pajamas before he takes a nap as well as wash his hands. This way, I know his bed is clean for nap time!
Step 2: Don’t share food or drink
Another way that germs get passed around is through the sharing of food and drinks. HealthLine makes this point indicating that things like toothbrushes and drinkware should not be shared. This can go for both kids and us as adults. Try teaching your kids the habit of only drinking and eating their food, especially if they spend a lot of time at school. A fun way of doing is to buy a colorful water bottle or a lunch box with their name on it. Encouraging them to eat and drink only from their lunch is not only cold prevention but a way to encourage a healthy lifestyle.
Step 3: Take Maty’s as a Preventative
Did you know that Maty’s Organic Children’s Mucus Cough Syrup is actually perfect to use as a cold prevention method? I love Maty’s for when Diego has a cough and isn’t feeling well, but it’s also good to mix in with his other foods during the time of the year when sickness roles around. Maty’s includes ingredients to help boost the immune system which is great when you’re preparing to NOT get sick. I also LOVE Maty’s because I can give it to Diego often without worrying that I am giving him too much, as I do with other medicines. I like to pair it with a whole-food based Vitamin C supplement like Camu Camu or Acerola Cherry which works great with the zinc in
Step 4: Wash hands
Again, this comes back to the fact of making sure germs don’t spread. Washing hands is so important, as you all know. The CDC recommends washing your hands for 20 seconds, or the amount of time it takes to sing ‘Happy Birthday’. This is a great way to get your kids involved. Sing the song with them or have them sing it so they know they are washing for the appropriate amount of time.
PRO TIP: When you’re washing hands all the time in the cold winter air, our hands can get SUPER dry and cracked. Keep lotion in your purse or diaper bag so that after you wash your hands of germs, you can lather on the moisture and continue with the day.
Step 5: Sleep!
Be honest: for how many of you sleep is the first thing to go? Whether it’s staying up late to work on a project, or waking up early, it’s easy to let the number of hours we slumber get really low. Well, Web MD indicates that getting enough rest is one way to avoid getting sick. And any excuse to sleep a little longer? I’ll take it! For me, I LOVE getting up early (I’m talking 4 a.m. early!) to answer emails and get other things done for work, but that means I go to bed earlier the night before. This is what works for me, but for some of you, it may be easier to stay up late and then sleep in a little later. Making sure your kids get enough sleep is important too. Set up a night time routine for kids. For example, if bedtime is at 7, start getting them ready for bed at 6:30 and let them pick out a bedtime story. This will give them something to look forward to, rather than dread.
PRO TIP: iPhones have a “Bedtime” feature in the ‘Clock’ app. It lets you set a time
All of these things are easy measures to take, which in my book is a “Mom Win!” They are practical, proactive steps at making sure your family stay healthy this cold and flu season and beyond! What are your tips for making sure you and your family don’t get sick? Let me know in the comments!