Cold and flu season is harder to avoid now that my daughter goes to preschool. We cannot hibernate indoors to avoid germs and my daughter has already come down with one little cold last month that was not severe as much as it was drawn out. She only felt under the weather for a couple of days and then there was a lingering cough and runny nose for what seemed like weeks. This was a reminder to me that I need to make a more conscious effort to prevent my family from getting sick.
One of the things I slack on is hand washing. Of course I help my kids wash their hands when it comes to food or after using the bathroom, but I do not always think to remind them to wash their hands after they have come home from the park, store or supermarket unless their hands are dirty. I also remember when I was young a pharmacist in Japan who recommend gargling water after interacting with others (school, store, work), which is harder for young children to do but is something that is worth a try for older kids and adults.
During the weeks my daughter had a runny nose she had a stack of handkerchiefs as well as box of tissues by her bed. I will confess that although I have a large collection of handkerchiefs I grew up using them to dry my hands (they are an essential in your purse if you live in Japan), not to blow my nose. I am teaching my kids that they are a good option for both and it does not bother me to wash their snot, but I am still hesitant to use them for myself. My father is a veteran handkerchief user and was a good role model for using his, but it seems I still have a ways to go in my greener living aspirations!
Healthful eating is always something we strive for to keep our immune systems and bodies at their best and I do my best to maintain a clean home to avoid unnecessary germs. What are other things have you found helpful in keeping your family healthy during cold and flu season?
Below is a cute craft project from Seventh Generation you can try with your kids using an empty tissue box:
Samples were provided, but no monetary compensation was received. The views and opinions are my own.
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