It comes on quick, and it comes out of nowhere. Illness plagues every family. Ever since my children were kindergarten age, we have been hit with multiple viruses throughout the year. Most are annoying colds, but some have been more severe. We did get some reprieve during the pandemic, a time when we were separated from the rest of the world. This isolation time was beneficial for decreasing illnesses. Our family did not get one single cold during the lockdown! As we all know, isolation is not healthy for the mind. Unfortunately, we cannot have it all. There is no way to engage with other humans while avoiding viruses. They go hand-in-hand.
Here are some tips that can help mitigate the frequency and severity of viruses:
I feel like this topic has been crammed down our throats ever since COVID struck.
But, the basis is true.
No matter the amount of liquids you typically consume in an average day, be sure to increase that amount when you are sick. Stick with water, teas, and broths. If your body yearns for some ginger ale or juice, listen to it. If nothing sounds appealing, try taking small sips regularly throughout the day of SOME liquid. Dehydration is your biggest enemy.
One of my biggest pet peeves is hearing a nasty cough in a setting with other patrons or visualizing a child or adult with a drippy nose. Most adults will say, “Oh, I have allergies.” But do they? Are they just saying that so I don’t freak out? I wish everyone would abide by the unspoken Courtesy Rule of AVOIDANCE when sick. If you are not feeling well, please do not share this with those around you. It is 100% okay to stay home from work or school to heal up. Most people would prefer to be short-staffed than exposed to nasty viruses.
And, if you must be around people and are at a stage of uncertainty with how contagious you truly are, please mask up. We are now at a point where judgment is not passed with masks. If you want to mask-up, mask-up. If you don’t, don’t. Most people will appreciate your concern of transmission.
Parents should teach children at any early age how to cover their mouths when they cough.
And please, please, PLEASE do not teach them to cover their mouth with their hands. The best is the “vampire”: cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow. Teach your children how to mask-up, or keep them home. I love children, but they are carrier monkeys!
I hate illnesses. I am writing this just after recovering from the stomach flu. It was brutal and I contracted it despite the steps listed above. Sometimes that happens in life. But I know that if I didn’t practice good hygiene and mental and physical steps to promote a healthy lifestyle, I’d likely be contracting even more nasty viruses. I can’t stop my children from bringing crud home with them from school and I can’t stop strangers from coughing in public, but if we all take small steps, we can help mitigate some of the spread.
Stay healthy, be healthy, and be positive.