May 24, 2014

Sick Kiddos: Always be Prepared

I have to admit that I have been pretty lucky over the last six years as my family has always managed to stay pretty healthy, even when the cold and flu season was in full-swing. Sure, there have been a few times over the past several years when one of us has been “down” due to a 24-hour bug, but we haven’t had anything major (knocking on wood now).
However, last night at around 11:30 p.m., my 6 year old got up, went to the bathroom and then came out to tell me he was sick. The thermometer confirmed his conclusion as he had a 99.8° temperature. The poor little guy was up and down several times between 11:30p.m. and 3:00 a.m. when his fever finally broke and the stomach cramps subsided. Although he woke up this morning without a temperature and his happy-go-lucky attitude had returned, I could not send him off to school without knowing for sure if he was really back to normal.
Having sick kiddos at home is definitely no fun and for whatever reason, it always seems to start when we are least expecting it. I mean, my son had been in bed asleep for 4 ½ hours before he got up and suddenly got sick. Thankfully, I was prepared and didn’t have to rush out in the middle of the night (or first thing this morning) to get anything. While it can be miserable to have sick kiddos, it’s definitely worse when we aren’t prepared. Below are a few things that you should always have on hand so you’re prepared when the sickness strikes.

Working Thermometer: There have been many times when I’ve thought that my son has had a fever when in fact he didn’t. And, there have been other times when I’ve thought that he just wasn’t feeling that great but discovered that he was running a 101+ temperature! In order to accurately gauge our children’s temperature we all need to have a working thermometer in our medicine cabinet so we can get to the bottom of the temperature mystery as soon as possible.

Pedialyte: Those of us with young children, need to keep at least one bottle of pedialyte in our fridge ready to go when the diarrhea and vomiting start. Since children are so much smaller than we and many eat/drink less than we do, it’s important that we stay on top of their vomiting and diarrhea to ensure that they don’t get dehydrated and begin to lose the nutrients they need to fight the sickness. Pedialyte is the way to do this as the “medicine” tastes like flavored juice but is packed full of nutrients that our bodies need to function and fight off illnesses. 

Soup and Sprite: Most doctors recommend that those with stomach bug or flu-like symptoms stick to clear liquids such as sprite, as well as, wholesome soups such as chicken noodle soup until their bodies are able to handle regular foods again. But, the last thing you are going to want to do is head to the store when you’re kids come down with something. I always keep a 6-pack of sprite in the pantry as well as a few cans of chicken noodle soup.  

New Toothbrushes: It is recommended that you change out the toothbrush of the person who has been sick each time he/she recovers from an illness such as the flu or a stomach bug. The reason is because our toothbrushes collect a lot of germs when we brush our teeth and if some of the flu, stomach bug, etc. germs remain on the toothbrush, then it is possible to catch it again a couple weeks later. Therefore, keep a couple extra toothbrushes on hand so you are ready to switch them out when needed!