The new school year is in swing, which means cold and flu season is on the way. Keeping your family healthy is always a battle, and never more so than when the colder months arrive. Seasonal viruses have a way of finding your family at the least opportune times.
At Abdow Friendship Pediatrics in Rockville, Maryland, our team is standing by to help you and your children navigate the season when viral respiratory infections tend to hit hardest. We’re here when you need vaccinations or help managing conditions that may be more troublesome, including asthma. Here are seven ways you can reduce the count of this winter’s sick days.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the best way to reduce your risk and severity of seasonal influenza is through an annual vaccination. The flu shot protects against four separate viruses calculated to be the most common infectors for the upcoming flu season. Even if you catch the flu after receiving a shot, you won’t suffer as severely as you would without it.
We all learned the value of diligent hand washing thanks to COVID-19, and when it comes to stopping cold and flu viruses, it’s still a good practice.
It’s thought that one of the more common ways viruses infect someone is the transfer of a virus from a surface, via the hands, to the mouth or tear ducts due to eye rubbing. Frequent hand washing at home or at school can break this transfer cycle.
A diet that’s heavy with fruits and vegetables while light on highly processed foods high in sugar, preservatives, and other additives helps immune system function. Vitamins C and D provide the boost to fight off seasonal pathogens before infections start.
Staying rested is always a key part of general health. It’s another immune system booster. Depending on your child’s age, they need between 9-14 hours of sleep for optimal health.
Keep your child active, inside or outside, to keep natural immunity on high alert. Winter exercise is as important as in the summer, perhaps even more crucial in the face of seasonal illnesses. Exercise reduces respiratory illness for most.
Kids can be as vulnerable to stress as adults. Their bodies react to stress by producing hormones meant to act for short periods. Chronic stress interrupts immune system activity. Downtime from schoolwork and chores gives your child time to decompress.
You can protect your entire family with frequent disinfection of surfaces that everyone in the family touches. This boosts the effectiveness of handwashing, since there’s less to transfer, inside your home at least. If someone in your family does get ill, wiping down common areas prevents the spread within your household.
Whether it’s for a flu shot or to treat heavy symptoms related to cold or flu, you can schedule a consultation at Abdow Friendship Pediatrics by phone or online today. We’re ready to help you and your family throughout the cold and flu season.