8 SUGGESTIONS FOR PROTECTING CHILDREN FROM DISEASES
Keep children away from foods containing sugar, make sure they get regular sleep and eat plenty of fruit
During the winter months when the weather gets colder kids tend to be healthy one day and sick the next. Upper respiratory infections that start with a cough, a sneeze and a runny nose continue with a fever and become a nightmare for both kids and parents. The recovery period for such illnesses can also drag on if the proper care is not given. Therefore it is important to do things to prevent the illness from starting in the first place. Acibadem Göktürk Medical Center Pediatrics Specialist Dr. Duygu Gür Ünal, gave some pointers on preventing illnesses in kids while going to the winter season.
- Establish correct eating habits: Eating healthy food plays an important part in preventing infections. The times when they eat all together at school can serve as an incentive for kids. But the same habits need to be continued at home. Eat breakfast all together. Always get together for the evening meal.
- Provide vitamin and mineral supplements: Vitamin and mineral supplements may be necessary for kids who do not get proper nutrition. Also serious health problems can be encountered by kids who eat too much or become obese. Children with this problem also need to shed their extra weight with diet and exercise programs.
- Keep them away from food that is high in sugar: Food with high sugar content creates an environment in the body that is easy for germs to develop in. Therefore you should keep this kind of food away from your children. Feed them plenty of vegetables and fruit. Increase the intake of vitamin C, a good protector.
- Help them develop good sleeping habits: Healthy sleeping habits play an important role in protecting from illnesses. A child that has had a good sleep not only does better in school but is more resistant to illness. This is why you should make sure your child gets between 8 and 10 hours of sleep.
- Teach them to close their mouths: Teach your child to close his/her mouth with a tissue or their forearm when sneezing or coughing. Covering their mouth with their hand spreads germs to their palm which makes it easier to spread germs all around. Especially when they forget to wash their hands, diseases spread quickly.
- Make sure they wash their hands: Teach your child to always wash their hands with soap. Check to make sure their hands are clean especially after using the restroom.
- Do not dress them with clothes that are too thick or too thin: Dressing appropriately for the weather also plays an important role in preventing illness. The sudden changes in weather that are experienced in the transition from summer to winter can make children get sick a lot faster. In this season dress your child in layers so they can adjust to the temperature. If the weather gets hotter they can take some layers off. Make sure they don’t remain sweaty and they do not get cold.
- Never smoke in the presence of children: Cigarettes are harmful not just to the person smoking but to everyone around them. Even if smokers stay far away from babies and children when they smoke and then change their clothes, the smell is still on their breath and their body even after the cigarette is gone. Staying in a place where people are smoking can cause children and babies to be more susceptible to respiratory diseases.