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5 Tips for Combatting Germs This School Year

girl reading a bookAs a blogging ambassador for the CHPA Educational Foundation’s KnowYOurOTCs.org program, this is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own. Thank you for sponsoring City Girl Gone Mom! 

And so it begins. We’re five weeks into the school year, and on top of all their new vocabulary words and math homework, my kids have also started bringing home germs. A sneeze here, a sniffle there… it’s inevitable during this season of transition. With the changes in weather and in the kids’ routines, the chances that germs will find their way into the house are far greater now that school’s back in session.

When it comes to hot zones for germs at school, take a wild guess at where your kids will most likely pick up the season’s latest bacterium. Water fountains and cafeteria trays! Fun fact for my parenting friends: According to this article on CNN, water fountains are even germier than toilet seats, but they don’t get wiped down as much. Pretty much out of our control, right? That said, I’m a firm believer in focusing only on the things we as parents can control, and here’s my motivation.

We all know that when our little ones get sick, it affects more than just the sick child. The entire family feels the repercussions. Mom or Dad may have to miss work. Siblings are exposed to sickness. Parents, too…. the cycle continues. And holy hotbed, if you’ve got four kids like us, you might as well just put in your two-week’s notice, because someone’s going to be missing a lot of work this year! This scenario might ring true for some, but I’m going to do everything in my power to prevent and protect our family from taking home more germs than we need. To promote overall family health (and sanity) this school year, I’m sharing these five trusted tips with you:

  1. If your child has a fever and you are treating their symptoms with an over the counter pain reliever, remember that you always want to dose them based on their weight, not their age. Find additional helpful tips from KnowYourOTCs.org on how to safely treat a fever and be confident you are safely dosing your child. And if you find yourself wondering, “Should I send my child to school?” one morning, this is a helpful read from Today’s Parent, which can be a nice resource, in addition to school guidelines.
  2. As we are transitioning from summer into fall, seasonal allergies are starting to hit adults and kids alike. Often parents are left wondering, is that runny nose from allergies or a cold? It can be challenging to tell the difference. Find an expert article on how to learn the characteristics between the symptoms of a cold and the symptoms of allergies here. And make sure to never give a multi-symptom cough and cold product to children under 4 years old.
  3. Did you know that 8 out of 10 parents have given their child the wrong dosage of liquid medicine at some point? Getting in the habit of reading the Drug Facts label before administering an over-the-counter medicine is incredibly important, especially because some medicines are multi-symptom. If you are using liquid medicine, always use the dosing device that comes with the medicine…not a kitchen spoon! Be confident you are making smart, informed choices before treating your child’s symptoms, follow this link to an interactive tool on reading the Drug Facts label.
  4. What about vitamins and supplements? Our bodies need vitamins and supplements and it can be difficult to get the nutrients we need from the food we eat alone, especially if you have a picky eater living in the house. For more information about common vitamins and minerals, click here.
  5. And finally, prevention is the best medicine! This insight from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is a motivating reason to make sure your kids are washing their hands regularly:  “People, and kids in particular, touch their eyes, nose, and mouth frequently, transmitting the germs on their hands into their bodies. Washing your hands with soap and water is one of the best defenses against infections. It reduces the risk of respiratory infection by approximately 24 percent and gastrointestinal infections (e.g., diarrhea) by more than 30 percent.”kids at the diner brother and sisterkids playing on pole

In addition to focusing on the things within our control, we also want to focus on the fun! Between our after school activities like dance, soccer and lacrosse – and let’s not forget Baby Brody’s hip hop obsession – we have a lot of reasons to stay healthy. The thing we’re looking forward to most? Fall break in NYC! It’s been a few years since our last visit – and we’re ready for another epic adventure with family and friends in the city that never sleeps.

Thank you KnowYourOTCs.org for the great insight on how our brood can beat bacteria and other germs this school year.

girl reading book mom walking baby 

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9 comments

  1. Thanks for sharing these tips, a healthy child is an active( smart child). Parents should consider these tips in order to maintain the well-being of their child and make sure they don’t fall sick.

  2. Really helpful tips for parents, especially the school already started, and the weather is becoming chilly. And the infections/germs are inevitable.

  3. Not a parent yet but I can remember all the things my parent went through when we are kids. If one person in the classroom was sick, all of us will all be within a week! So those tips are super helpful for young parents!

  4. It’s always a struggle to tell the difference between colds and allergies. I have gotten both repeatedly and I still sometimes get it wrong.

  5. I think some germs are okay and a lot of parents overmedicate, but also have a fragile child and appreciate those who don’t put him at risk.

  6. These are great tips for back to school germ. Somanychildrencomehomefromschool sick and the entire house gets ill.

  7. These are very helpful tips for parents. I am not a parent yet. I will share this with my cousins.

  8. This is such helpful advice! Once one kid gets sick, it tends to make its way to every other family member. Avoiding it completely would be great, but I’d settle for minimizing.

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