No one wants to get the flu, and no parent wants their child to get the flu either. Thankfully, there are ways that you can help your kids avoid the flu this season, especially if you follow the tips below. Remember that if your child starts exhibiting symptoms, don’t waste time in a waiting room; instead, you can use a service like PlushCare to get immediate assistance over the phone. Start by taking your child’s temperature with a thermometer like the Exergen Temporal Scanner Infrared Thermometer ($34.99). We love this particular thermometer because of it’s super-accurate readings for newborns, infants, children and adults. It works by capturing naturally emitted heat from the skin over the temporal artery on the head. A softly-lit display easily shows you the reading in any light, making it perfect for the temperature of a sleeping infant or adult in a dark room.
1. Teach Your Kids About How Germs Spread
Teach your children that the germs that cause the flu can actually spread as far as 6 feet when someone who is infected with the virus sneezes or coughs. If your child learns to cough or sneeze into a tissue and then they throw out that tissue, it will help keep things sanitary. In the same way, your child should be taught to cover their mouth when a sneeze or a cough is about to occur, and they should use the inside of their elbow to avoid getting germs on their hands that can then spread to others.
2. Teach Your Kids to Wash Their Hands
Another thing you need to teach your kids is how to properly wash their hands so that they can remove any germs and bacteria that they pick up from interactions with others. They should wash their hands after using a tissue while they are ill, and they should also wash their hands whenever they get home so that they don’t spread the germs that they collected while they were in public.
3. Teach Your Kids to Avoid Touching Their Mouth
Germs can easily enter the body when you touch your hands to your eyes, nose, or mouth. Therefore, teaching your kids to avoid touching their face, especially while they’re out in public, is another way to help them avoid contracting the flu.
4. Teach Your Kids to Stay Away from Other Sick Kids
Not all parents will keep their kids home from school when they are sick, and that is unfortunate because it increases the risk of the germs spreading to healthy classmates. But if you teach your child to keep their distance from kids that are sick, you can decrease the odds that they will get sick too. Also teach your child that they shouldn’t share foods or drinks, and that they should wash their hands after sharing school supplies and toys with other kids who are showing signs of a cold or flu.
5. Get the Flu Shot
While we personally do not recommend or advocate for getting the flu shot, some doctors will recommend it and tell you that it could help prevent your child from becoming infected. We urge you to research flu shots before making a decision though.
By teaching your children the right lessons on basic hygiene and how germs and bacteria are spread from one person to another, they will be able to avoid getting the flu, and that will help prevent the rest of your family from falling ill as well. In the event that your kids do get sick, though, get them medical treatment right away and keep them home from school so that they don’t end up getting other kids sick.