23 May 2022

ME TO YOU: Atishoo!

I know life can be hard with a sickly child, I know how much we need that break sometimes but please, please keep your bugs at home.

ME TO YOU: Atishoo!

ME TO YOU: Atishoo!

Well this week I’m full of cold, atishoo!

I got this cold off all the little two and three year olds in nursery, not that I actually wanted it you understand.

Of course I understand we can’t keep our children off nursery because of a sniffle, but if they’ve a proper cold with coughs, sneezes and that yucky green stuff it means they are not well - not well enough to be in nursery.

For just as I didn’t want this cold neither did they, but because a few decided to come in with their nasty cold germs, with the yucky green stuff, we’ve now all had it - thanks.

Of course, I understand this is not the children’s fault but, and sorry to say, it is down to those few parents who think ‘go to nursery however snotty and yucky you may be’.

So I’m writing this article, for a few reasons, the first to say please do keep your child off nursery (playgroup etc and don’t go to parent and toddler class either!) if they aren’t well, it’s no fun for them and no fun for anyone else when they get the bug too.

I know life can be hard with a sickly child, I know how much we need that break sometimes but please, please keep your bugs at home.

My next reason is to share with you some tips, ideas and thoughts that I’ve heard and used over the years to help with coughs, cold’s and sneezes, please do remember though I am not a doctor so if you decide to use one of these ideas that I’m passing along to you then do check with a pharmacist or doctor that is is okay to do this with your baby, toddler and /or child.

1. DO make your child wear a vest or t-shirt under their jumper. Believe me I have met a few children this winter who just wear t-shirts, and always look and feel cold, winter clothes are for winter and summer clothes for summe.! (You do not have to check this with a doctor.)

2. TEACH your toddler how to blow through their nose, yes literally show them how to blow, this makes runny noses so much easier to manage. Yes of course you have to hold the tissue for them, but if they can blow then that means less of the runny stuff. (No pharmacist needed here!)

3. DO put a little vaseline around their noses when your little one has a cold - this stops their nose getting sore, but also makes it sooo much easier to wipe. (I’ve used vaseline many, many times over the years but please check with a pharmacist if you feel this is necessary). Do keep this little pot of vaseline just for their nose though.

4. TREAT, some people do use medicines, paracetamol, baby Sudafed etc and this is a personal choice, it’s up to you as parents. But as my mum said, ‘with medicine the cold will be there a week, without medicine it’ll be there for a week’. The medicines are designed to make your little one feel better, they won’t necessarily cure the cold. Remember you know your child best, whether this be they need a little something, or an appointment at the doctor. (Please do seek advice from your pharmacist before giving any medicines etc to your baby, toddler or child.)

5. WHEN your little one goes to nursery do pack a spare outfit including socks, shoes or wellies and trousers - not for toilet accidents but because it is till nice to play outside but it can be wet or muddy and it is not nice to sit about later in damp clothes. (You do not need to contact the doctor to clarify this!)

6. HELP your two and three year olds learn how to blow their nose AND put the tissue in the bin not back in the box (!) - it is a skill and does need practise but the sooner they learn the more comfortable they feel.

7. TEMPERATURE, a normal temperature in babies and children is about 36.4C but this can vary slightly. A fever is usually considered to be a temperature of 38C or above’ (taken directly from NHS website). It is handy to have a thermometer at home for these worrying times - do ask for advice from a pharmacist about which is best to buy and easiest to use. But always be mindful of your little one’s temperature if they are poorly - and especially mindful with babies. (Any concerns at all DO phone your doctor IMMEDIATELY.)

8. PLEASE don’t wipe their nose with kitchen roll - this can make it sore, use tissues with balm in them - yes I know they can be more expensive but bargain shops do great deals. (You don’t have to check this out with the Doctor unless you want to!) Be careful wiping noses with wet wipes as some can sting - soft tissues and vaseline don’t!

9. EXTRA, sometimes people use a vapour, like Vicks, to rub onto their baby, toddler or child’s chest, or feet, these can be soothing when applied to the body but you can also get them as a humidifier, or as an oil to pop in the bath - it’s up to you to choose what is right for your little one. Please do be aware that there are age restrictions on them and not all are suitable for all ages. (DO speak to your pharmacist before using.)

10. DO make your child wear a coat and a hat for very cold weather and maybe (and I do remember how cold Derry can be) a scarf and gloves if it’s very chilly. (Don’t worry about checking this with a pharmacist either!)

11. DON’T force your child to eat too much if they are poorly, little and often is best, snotty noses can often lead to sickly tummy’s, but do make sure they are getting plenty of fluids so they do not become dehydrated, water, water and more water or failing that juice. (If you are concerned that your little one is not drinking enough do see the pharmacist or doctor as soon as possible).

12. EVEN though it’s cold outside and your little may be full of cold sometimes a walk in the fresh air for a short time can help - fresh air can make you feel better and help your little one sleep better too - just remember to wrap up warm. (Don’t think you need to ask a doctor this!)

13. DO encourage your little one to eat lots of vegetables and fruit, all the time not just when they have a cold, these are full of vitamins that will help them to develop a good immune system. (No doctors appointment needed to confirm this!)
Fingers crossed these few little things help, good luck fighting the cold bug. Atishooooo!

Written by on Facebook, Me & You @meandyoubyjenni to support the Greater Shantallow Talking To Our Babies, Greater Shantallow Area Partnership. Tel; 028 71358787/Facebook; Talking To Our Babies/

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