We are only technically coming up to the start of Winter and I am already desperate to see the sun again (although I didn’t see it that much before). The colds and bugs that come as the temperature drops really are a nightmare and if you have a child attending nursery or school then I really do share your pain. Unlike my husband who hardly ever seems to get ill (apart from man flu), if there is something doing the rounds I can guarantee I will get it. For this reason I am a bit of a germaphobe and I actually panic when I see the articles circulating on Facebook about these super viruses that last ages! I try to do some things to reduce my chances of getting ill and that starts with trying to prevent my son getting ill in the first place. I hate seeing him ill and the thought of catching whatever he has and then trying to be a parent to an ill child makes me want to cry a I am a rubbish ill person (I am sure it is the same for most of us mums and dads). You see some people who can just push on and load themselves up with paracetamol and various medication but I am just not one of those people. When I am ill I need to quietly die in a bed somewhere and be left alone (unless you have snacks or presents).
Here are some of the things I do to try and keep mine and my family’s health the best it can be:
Washing your hands regularly might seem like an obvious thing but there are times that we either never think about or forget to wash our hands after. An example of this is after going shopping and using a trolley or carrying a basket. The amount of germs on the handles is probably as bad, if not worse than a toilet seat! The reason it may be worse is usually toilets are cleaned every now and again with bleach and antibacterial spray however handles on trolleys and baskets are never cleaned. So just think about what is building up on there and what will be going on to your hands. I try very hard not to touch my face or mouth when out shopping and using one for this reason but it is easily done when you are tired and a bit of a zombie doing a boring food shop and you start rubbing your eyes. As soon as I am home I make sure to thoroughly wash my hands!
I practically live off Aloe Vera when I am trying to stay healthy. I always feel like I have more energy when I have it and it seems to help me get over any colds or bugs faster. I drink Aloe Vera gel every day to help me stay healthy and I seem to get a lot less bugs when I have it so I am definitely a big believer and fan of the stuff.
I drink a huge amount of green tea to help boost my immune system. I also find when I am ill that a cup of green tea really does help a little. It warms you up and it helps your body have that little bit more energy to fight back. I love the different flavoured ones you can get and I never actually drink normal tea and just stick to green or fruit teas.
Teaching children hygiene
This is another obvious one that links back to hand washing. At home you are always telling your little one to wash their hands after going to the toilet. However, when they are at nursery you have no idea whether they are doing this still and how well they are being monitored. It dawned on me that my son had no idea about how he can catch a bug and I had to have the conversation with him. I told him about germs and about how important it is to wash his hands with soap before lunch and after going to the toilet. I also spoke to the nursery and asked what they do as far as monitoring hand washing and I was pleased to hear that they actually ensure all children thoroughly wash hands before lunch and keep an eye on children using the toilet throughout the day. Some nurseries actually don ‘t monitor children quite as much in regards to this so it’s worth finding out and really teaching little ones. We actually play a game where he makes me smell his hands after nursery to see if I can smell the soap (his idea) and I try and guess how many times he washed his hands that day (FYI I am always wrong..). Its just one of those little things we do on the way home from nursery and it’s become part of our routine and he loves when I say his hands smell great!
I drink a huge amount of water and hardly ever drink fizzy drinks. I usually buy lots of different cordials with no added sugar and no artificial flavourings to mix up my water every now and again. I also drink a full glass of water, sometimes even two glasses right before bed also. Drinking lots of water tends to flush any germs and rubbish out of your system so it really helps your immune system and also helps you get over colds and bugs a lot faster.
This one is a bit of a joke but also slightly true. If I hear someone is ill with something nasty then I unapologetically send them hugs virtually via phone or Facebook. Obviously when it is your own child you are right there giving hugs and kisses, wishing you could take the bug from them but also praying you don’t catch it as well! If my son is ill and it is anything more than just a cold I will make sure to keep him off for the advised amount of time. I do find it very frustrating when parents send in their children to nursery with sickness and diarrhoea or tonsillitis. I know it isn’t easy when you are a working parent and can’t afford time off to look after children but by sending children in with these bugs it is just making the bug circulate for a lot longer and children are just passing them back and fourth constantly. So the more parent’s do this the more time parents will have to take off to look after their child with yet another virus!
Even when I do all of the above I still of course get ill as some of these bugs are just impossible to avoid. So when you are dying quietly in a bed somewhere and you need to still parent what do you do? You dose yourself up on all of the medication you can physically and legally take, cry a little, up your water intake along with vitamins and in my case Aloe Vera and count the hours until you can go to bed again. That is all you really can do to be honest! Probably the worst thing about it though is having to go and buy tablets or pick up a prescription and be around people in a noisy busy shop when you are ill. I usually pray that my husband can pick me up something on his way home and will avoid going to a shop if I can help it. If it’s a regular prescription you need there is also the option to get it delivered to your door next day for £4.95 from an online NHS approved pharmacy. They also do all other toiletries and medications so you could stock up on everything you need and get free delivery over a certain amount. I don’t know about you, but paying £4.95 (or £3.95 standard delivery) to have my stuff delivered to my house is way better than having to wait ages for a prescription that’s for sure!
What do you do to try and keep all of these horrible bugs away? Do you have any good tips I should know about? I welcome all suggestions as I am a big wimp when it comes to bugs and being ill and I will do whatever it takes to avoid them! Comment below with any suggestions!
This post is in collaboration with Pharmacy2u