This is the time of the year where coughs and colds and other viral miseries become inevitable.
KIDS: They are the best medium for spreading germs. And because of their developing immune system, they're the ones who get sick first themselves. You can't stop them from passing it on, else you might as well have them quarantined all season and of course that ain't happening! In fact, the general thought is for them to have at least 7-10 infections in a year in order for them to develop a "healthy" immune system!
Walk into playgroup, you'll see snot flying everywhere, nasty coughs being heard at different corners, little kiddies slobbering over bits of toys. Germs! Ah well, spread the love.
Having said all that, Lachlan and Lucas are both sick. They have snot running down from their nostrils like a leaky tap, they're both grumbly and grumpy, they're tired and lethargic, they have a cough that makes a mother with a shopping trolley full of kids cringe, and they're hot with fever. But, they're OK. They've just caught some love from our friendly playgroup.
Grandparents READ: They're FINE!
So apart from the obvious, rest well, eat and drink well and lots and lots of TLC, here are some tips and tricks from a SAHM and a once-upon-a-time-ago Doctor.
- Don't be afraid to use Paracetamol and/or Ibuprofen. Panadol and/or Nurofen. Whatever you like to call them. They both have analgesic (pain relieving) and antipyretic (fever relieving) properties, can be used on their own or in adjunct. Always use as directed, an appropriate dose for age and weight, and take note of the time interval.
- I steer clear of cough medicines because coughing is a defence mechanism. I want them to be able to bring out the gunk from their chest instead of suppressing it. Instead, try a humidifier or a vaporiser with a few drops of Eucalyptus Oil. It helps break down the phlegm and congestion.
- Almost always, these infections are caused by viruses. It does NOT need an antibiotic. But if in doubt, always see your GP. Trust your maternal instincts.
- Someone once told me to rub Vicks onto the soles of their little feet and then put socks on them. It works! Try it. Perhaps it's the soothing touch of a foot massage. Or the hot tingly feeling of menthol. Who knows? It's nice anyways, and whatever works right?
- A nice warm bath always calm my hysterical baby down. My boys have a love affair with their bath tub. Although, the Chinese ancient saying would probably forbid this, saying you might catch a "chill" or the wind will seep into your bones etc. Who knows? Whatever works right?
- Keep the fluids up! Your child may be off food, but just as long as they're properly hydrated, they'll be right. Trust me, they'll catch up on their calories later on when they're better.
- And lastly, stay calm. The last thing a hysterical child needs is a hysterical parent. They get your vibes.
Enjoy the rest of winter! And stay healthy.