Overcast   76.0F  |  Forecast »

Prevent Childhood Illness

Little proactive steps are still the best family health medicine; here are seven

Achoo! Are sniffles, sneezes and sore throats afflicting your little angel? You're not alone. Colds and bouts of stomach flu are the most common reasons kids miss school, according to the renowned Mayo Clinic. Pink eye and strep throat are close behind.

Put mother's wisdom to work: Dole out a healthy dose of prevention. We've compiled seven top tips to prevent childhood illnesses, based on facts from the World Health Organization, National Institutes of Health and doc-approved KidsHealth website.

1. Get immunized. Simple shots halt many childhood diseases, from measles and mumps to influenza and chicken pox. Most inoculations start at birth and continue through 24 months, according to the Every Child By Two campaign. Boosters and vaccines can continue throughout life.

2. Keep it clean. Turn on the faucet and get the soap sudsy after dirty tasks like nose wiping, diapering and toileting. Wash up before and after eating, too. Don't forget instant hand sanitizers! They kill up to 99.99 percent of germs, and the antiseptic sorts don't allow resistance to build up.

3. Breastfeed. Mother's milk protects against respiratory tract infections – even years after nursing is done. At least six months is recommended. Kids that breastfeed are five times less susceptible to ear infections.

4. Yogurt and water. Fluids are vital to keeping the immune system functioning properly and avoiding breakdown through dehydration. Beneficial bacteria in yogurt could beef up resistance to gastrointestinal infection and even cancer, according to the National Yogurt Association.

5. Hit the sack. Ample sleep leaves kids refreshed and helps their bodies fight sickness. The recommended amount varies by age, KidsHealth notes. Preschoolers need 10 to 12 hours per night, for instance, while teens should get eight to nine-and-a-half hours. Late bedtimes and poor sleep habits foster vulnerability to illness.

6. Antibiotic caution. These powerful drugs zap most bacteria behind strep throat and ear, sinus and urinary tract infections. They have zero power over viruses that cause colds, flu and most coughs and sore throats, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. Children who often take antibiotics can develop resistance and get sick longer. Use only when necessary and exactly as prescribed.

7. Get engaged. Good mental and social development is critical to kids' overall health and well-being. On top of addressing those basic needs, be sure to talk, play and provide a stimulating environment for your child.

Add your comment:
Advertisement

More »Latest Articles & Blog Posts

Capturing Memories with Project Life by Stampin' Up

Capturing Memories with Project Life by Stampin' Up

Looking for an easier way to save and display your family memories and keepsakes? This kit has what you need to make scrapbook journaling lots of fun.

Local Sixth Grader Sings National Anthem For Tiger Fans

Local Sixth Grader Sings National Anthem For Tiger Fans

On Sunday, Aug. 3, 2014, a Northville tween will show off her singing talents in front of a packed stadium at Comerica Park in Detroit.

Passport Rules for Kids

Passport Rules for Kids

If you're planning on traveling with your family outside of the country, they'll need a passport. Find out what you need and how to get passports for children.

Tips for Saving Cash on Flights

Tips for Saving Cash on Flights

Find out how your family can save money when flying abroad and in the country.

Tips for Traveling Internationally with Your Children

Tips for Traveling Internationally with Your Children

Thought about taking your kids for a trip abroad? You should! Here are tips to help make your cultural excursion easier – and cheaper – than you might think.

Staying Home Alone: How to Know When Your Child is Ready

Staying Home Alone: How to Know When Your Child is Ready

Whether you just want to run an errand or need to hit the gym for a break, it could be time to let your tween stay home alone. Here are a few ways to know your kid is prepared.

Craft Roundup: Get Ready for the Beach

Craft Roundup: Get Ready for the Beach

Whether you're hitting the pool or lake, southeast Michigan is packed with watery summer fun. These projects are inspired by (and ready for) this very topic!

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement