There’s no germier combination than dozens of little grabby hands, runny noses and the irresistible urge to taste everything. No matter what precautions your childcare service takes, daycares and preschools are loaded with potential colds, flus and fevers. Here are some tips to help fight off those bugs:
1. An apple a day…
You know the saying. But it’s true! Healthy eating habits help keep children’s immune systems strong. Make sure they maintain a well-balanced diet. The USDA recommends kids ages 2 to 3 should eat a cup of fruit and a cup of vegetables daily.
2. Catch those zzzs.
In addition to the proper nutrients, enough sleep is also essential for a strong immune system. Here are the total hours of sleep children should get, depending on age:
3. Wash hands!
Remind your kiddo about the importance of washing his or her hands. Make sure they understand that the job needs to get done after using the bathroom and before they eat. You can monitor them at home to make sure they’re being diligent with their hygiene.
4. Be courteous to other families.
Read up on your daycare or preschool’s guidelines about when to keep a child home. If your child is super sick, save other families the trouble of going through the same thing. We all know bugs spread like wildfire with little ones so keep your kid at home until he or she is no longer contagious.
5. But remember: things will only get better.
As time passes, your child’s immune system will adjust to its new germy world. If it’s their first time in daycare or preschool, they’re likely to be sick a lot more in the beginning. As their little bodies adjust to the new surroundings, they’ll build the ability to fight off germs, keeping them happy and healthy.
-Austin, Elizabeth. “8 Tips for a Healthy School Year.” Parenting.com.
-“Healthy Kids Diets Guidelines.” Eating Well.
-Gelman, Lauren. “Baby and Children Sleep Chart.” Parents.