Got the flu? Get your kids feeling better sooner with these Best Tips to Treat Your Child’s Flu Symptoms at Home. This is a sponsored post. All pediatric nurse opinions are my own.
Best Tips to Treat Your Child’s Flu Symptoms at Home
In 2016 my son got really sick right before Christmas. It was the first time that we missed Christmas Eve service. But trying to keep up the holiday spirit, we made it through Christmas with smiles and festivities all the same.
Unfortunately, what seemed like then just a 24-hour flu rapidly started to take out our family one by one. It was one of the most miserable holiday seasons I could remember, especially when my kids had the flu not once…but twice that month.
Now you may be thinking that I’m a little late to the party, but today we’re talking about flu. Why? Because this flu season, the CDC is reporting a sharp increase in influenza activity with a projection of a 60% chance that the greatest incidence of flu is going to happen right now in late January (instead of the usual late February time).
That means it’s time to flex those mama muscles and prepare to treat your child’s flu symptoms at home now – right now. I’m sharing my best tips to get your kids feeling better sooner
Best Tips to Treat Your Child’s Flu Symptoms at Home
Got the flu? We have mom power for that. Treating our kids to feel better sooner, that’s in our job description. Here are some of my favorite and best tips to get your kids better quicker this flu season:
- Fluids – Pump your children with lots of drinking fluids when they have the flu. I tell my kids to drink enough to where they are going potty about every 15 minutes – with a funny toilet flushing analogy. Works every time. Liquids not only hydrate your kids (especially when there’s multiple flu symptoms affecting your child…and laundry), but helps to clean out your child’s system of the flu and treat fever.
- Steam Showers – Got aches and pains? There’s a hot shower for that. Let your kids soak in that good steam to soothe pains, clear nasal and throat passages and enjoy a little soothing comfort.
- Humidifier – Speaking of steam, humidity can be your friend. Wow do I have my humidifier on ALL of the time during flu season.
- Vapor Rubs/Plug-Ins – I always forget how small my kids’ nasal passages are. Easily clogged, stuffed up and runny, I rely on vapor rubs and plug ins to help soothe and open their airways.
- Saline Spray – Morning, noon and night. Rinsing, cleaning and soothing all at the same time, I go through tons of saline sprays for my kids’ noses. Have those tissues handy and consider a bulb syringe for those super sticky and clogged boogers.
- Flu Shot – Now I know the flu shot is a sensitive topic and it isn’t for every family’s set of ethics. But I will say that neither of our children (knock on wood) have gotten the flu this year. And this is AFTER they both had the flu the year before. The difference? They got flu shots back in October. Coincidence? Maybe. But avoiding another round of the whole family sick with the flu – that was completely worth the sanity.
- Nutrition – Your child’s immune system needs nutrients to fight the flu. That means giving them good nutrition to take care of their bodies, including a variety of proteins, carbs, vegetables and fruits.
- Home Remedies – When I polled my parenting friends, I got a HUGE response of home remedies that folks use on their children: essential oils, echinacea, elderberry syrup, homemade cough syrups, teas. And while I won’t sway anyone from doing what’s best for their kids, I will stress the importance of doing the research. Consult your pediatrician, check out the facts about how those ingredients work, and use cautiously.
- Prevention – Just because your child now has the flu, doesn’t mean we slack on the prevention. Get those germs out of the house faster by reinforcing good prevention skills with your kids: wash hands, cough into your elbow, stay home when you are sick, and stay up to date on immunizations.
- Snuggles – Never underestimate the power of parent snuggles. Ever.
Over-the-Counter Medicine Safety
One of the challenges in being sick is when you have multiple symptoms, be it congestion, fever, body aches, sore throat or cough. Many parents turn to multi-symptom medicines to treat all of their child’s symptoms, without realizing the ingredients inside. Here are some tips for administering OTC medicines to your child with the flu:
- Read the Drug Facts label before giving your child ANY over-the-counter medicines. Many OTC medicines have multiple ingredients (like acetaminophen) that could result in bigger doses for your child.
- Never give oral cough or cold medicines to children under the age of 4.
- Get more tips on over-the-counter medicine safety for your family during the cold and flu season at KnowYourOTCs.org.
Be on Guard
Don’t take flu symptoms lightly. While we all want to be able to take care of our sick children at home, the flu is a serious illness and can be dangerous for your child that might need further treatment outside of the home. It’s important to see a doctor if you have suspected influenza on day 1 or 2, especially if you are considered high risk. The following groups are considered high-risk:
- Children under 2
- Adults over 65
- Pregnant women
- Anyone with complicated/severe illness and those with underlying health problems (asthma, diabetes, heart problems, neurologic conditions, etc)
We’re not out of the woods yet. Be prepared to take care of your kids this flu season with these tips to treat your child’s flu symptoms at home. Grab more tips and facts about cold and flu at KnowyourOTCs.org.