Family Time

How I Keep My Family Healthy

It seems like kids pick up every virus out there…maybe it’s because they plant their faces with tongues hanging out right onto anything that oozes with germs!  Inside, a mom is screaming.  Outside, she is trying to not look like a lunatic as she {calmy} removes said child from the floor of the store…or pries their face off a water fountain.

Now, before I start sounding like a germaphobic momma…I am not.  I know that kids will pick up germs and get sick and I know that it is good for the immune system.  But, really, what mom signs up for snotty noses 9 months out of the year?  Not this one!

My three kiddos are much bigger and older now, but I can recall with great tiredness, all the nights of Vicks and cool-mist humidifiers.  Not to mention the rocking of snotty faced, stuffy nosed, coughing little ones.  I also vividly remember making some basic changes to our lives that really reduced the amount of viral colds and stomach flu’s that affected my family.

{I am not a healthcare professional and am not dispensing medical advice.  I am purely writing from my own personal experience and suggest that you speak with your doctor regarding any issues or changes to your health.}

Here are the top 6 ways that I keep my family healthy:

1. “Wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands”

Did you catch that one?  In case you didn’t: wash your hands.  I found that this one simple change made a huge difference.  We all know to wash our hands after using the restroom and before we eat a meal, but how many times do we wash our hands in between?  Again, I’m not promoting that you become a hand-washing five-star general.  But, start with this one tip: Have everyone wash their hands immediately every single time you arrive home.  Home from the grocery store?  Wash your hands.  Home from school?  Wash your hands?  Home from a sports game?  Wash your hands.  I think you get it.  Simply wash your hands.  And no, you don’t need anti-bacterial hand soap, just any old plan soap is fine as it is the scrubbing that cleans your hands more than anything else.

2.  “Leave your shoes at the door, please.”

I grew up in a home where the rule was “no shoes in the house”.  It was quite normal to me growing up and it carried into my adult life too.  And now that I am the one responsible for a clean home, I have no desire for dirty shoes throughout my home.  There are many creative solutions for storing shoes at your door that this can easily become a fun little DIY project {enter: Pinterest!}.  Ok, so you get the “I don’t like mud tracked through my house” rational.  But, it goes further than this when it comes to germs.  Try this experiment and see if it changes your perspective: The next time you are in a public restroom, look down at the ground.  Yup, that is what is being tracked through your home if you keep your shoes on.  I use this little story with my kids when they feel like being lazy about shoes…it grosses them out every time!

3. “Get to bed!”

We all love sleep, right?!  Well, maybe not little children who would rather be up playing.  But, do you realize how important sleep is to your body?  When you are asleep, your body is busy making repairs and recovering from your day, as well as preparing for the next day.  We all feel better after a good night of sleep.  So get those kiddos to bed on time.  They really need their sleep and it will boost their immune system so that they can fight the virus’ that they pick up.  To the parents with a nightly battle from kids about going to bed: don’t give up!  You can do it!  Get those sweet babies off to dreamland…and then get yourself to sleep too!

4. “Do not.  I repeat: do not run to the doctor.”

I recall as a young momma thinking that my baby had to see a doctor if she was sick for a few days.  I remember many nights holding a feverish little one and cuddling them to sleep.  It seemed like it would not end.  But then, miraculously, they’d be all better.  Imagine that!  Viral colds really do last 7-10 days and the worst days are 2-4 of the cold.  Keep your kiddo comfortable and well-hydrated, but remember that the doctor cannot do anything for a viral infection.  The body has an incredible immune system that will fight off the germs as well as increase it’s effectiveness at warding off the next batch of germs.  Antibiotics are not meant for viral infections and are ineffective at curing the issue.  Time is the only thing that will rid their body of the infection.  Yup, 7-10 days.

5.  “Cut the sugar”

Ugh!  I know.  This one.  It’s not a fun one.  But, it works.  After severely reducing our family’s intake of sugar (in the form of obvious sweets, as well as carbs like breads and pasta) we feel so much better.  Our energy stays up during the day and we sleep well at night.  Plus, we aren’t feeding the bad bacteria in our intestinal system with one of their favorite things: sugar!  I guarantee that this may be the toughest tip yet, but beyond keeping yourself healthy, this one will improve every aspect of your health!

6. “Outside, kiddos!”

Fresh air.  It’s so good for kids…and adults.  I love how the outdoors boosts our physical body, but also how it improves our mental and emotional health.  Unless the weather is severely cold, wet, or brutal, my kids are outside each day.  It may only be for 30 minutes on a cold winter day, but that is better than no fresh air.  They may grumble a little, but they always come back inside feeling better than when they went out.  On extremely hot summer days, we get our outdoor time early in the morning or in the evening.  A bonus to outside time is tired children at bedtime!

{Again, I am not a medical professional and you should consult your own doctor with any concerns.}

So, what do you think of my families list?  Anything you would add to it?  I would love to hear from you!

Blessings,

Leigh

4 Comments

  1. Donna Borog

    Good morning Leigh! Good advice! Thank you for sharing! Have a blessed day! ♡♡♡

    1. Leigh

      Good-morning to you too, Donna! I so appreciate your sweet words! 🙂

  2. Bonnie

    Your advice is good for old folks like us also, but what do I do with peanut butter eggs I just bought.😊

    1. Leigh

      You are cute, Bonnie! Eat ’em up…I’d join ya if I could! 😉

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked*