Preschoolers usually get about nine colds a year, grade schoolers 12, and adolescents about four to five. The vast majority of these illnesses occur from September to March, so if each cold lasts about two weeks, that can seem like a constant bout of sniffles, coughing, and just plain yuckiness! Colds are not good for anyone, they make it tough for children to learn and add a general crankiness and difficulty to just about everything. Instead of just dealing with the cold after it happens, this year try to take some action to uninvite the cold from your house.
Most of the viruses that cause colds can live on surfaces for up to a few hours. Since kids are inevitably going to touch door handles, desks, and other surfaces that kids with colds have touched (especially if they go to school,) they will be exposed to these viruses and get a cold if they don’t wash their hands often. Educate kids about how colds are spread and let them know how washing their hands and using sanitizer often can help them stay cold free.
Discourage Face Touching
Cold viruses must enter the body through the nose or the eyes. This means that while colds can be transmitted through the air or good-night kisses, the most common way that colds are caught is by children touching a virus-laden surface and then touching their faces. Instead of harping on children for touching their faces, though, try positive reinforcement and pay attention to when they are not touching their face. It’s a tough habit to break, so make them aware and then help them remember.
Emphasize Good Health
A strong body and good nutrition are some of the best guards against sicknesses of all types. If children are very active and are fed well rounded diets, their body will be able to snuff out viruses faster. This can both prevent colds and help them to fight colds off if they do acquire them. Hearty soups with plenty of veggies, fresh fruits for snacks, balanced dinners, and a good variety of different foods offered daily can be great weapons against colds.