It can be upsetting when your kid comes down with the flu. Younger children are at a higher risk of developing the flu because their immune systems haven’t fully developed yet. The influenza vaccination can certainly give them a helping hand, but the fact is, they will come down with the flu at some point.
Your little ones will generally be miserable, and you will wish you could do more to make them feel better. Unfortunately, your little one is going to feel under the weather for about a week or so. The good news is, there are a few things you can do to make them feel more comfortable. So read on to find out five top flu-fighting tips for children.
Loads of Liquids
This is one thing you should stay on top of throughout their illness. Your child will have a fever, which will increase the risk of them becoming dehydrated. Water is the best thing to give them, but you could also offer them ice pops and blended soft fruits like watermelon or grapes. Going for the fruit option will also provide them with loads of extra nutrients, which will help to support their immune systems.
Lots of Rest
Rest is essential for your child so that they can save their energy. They should have loads of naps or chill-out time on the sofa. Even if they have a bit of energy, they should be encouraged to rest as much as possible. They could play with some toys, watch a movie, or lay in bed with some music on—whatever works for them.
If your little one complains that they are cold, it may be tempting to cover them up with warm clothing and blankets. But that can actually cause them to overheat. Pay attention to what your child is telling you, as they will probably fluctuate between feeling cold and feeling hot. Aim for light, loose-fitting clothing that can easily be removed or added to.
Choose Energy-Boosting Food
Choosing the right food and drink will help your little one feel a bit more human. If they have a sore throat or a cough, then warm water or decaf tea with a touch of lemon or honey will ease their symptoms.
In terms of food, the broth is an excellent source of nutrients. You can use chicken, fish, vegetables, or even bones to create the broth. For example, chicken broth or soup is full of anti-inflammatory properties and energy-boosting nutrients.
Also, try to make sure they are getting lots of protein because it is vital for a healthy immune system. Meats—such as beef and pork—are a great place to start, as are cashews and kidney beans.
Good Hygiene Habits
This last point is a great idea to start taking action on at any stage. This is because the flu is highly contagious and could easily spread to other members of the family or other children. Make sure that they know to wash their hands every time they blow their nose and to cough into their arms. This will help minimize the spread of the germs.
Also, make sure that you wash your hands after picking up used tissues and wipe down any surfaces or toys that your sick kid has touched. This will help to protect you and the other members of the family from getting sick yourselves.