It’s that time of year, when everyone is run down from the holiday season and finding themselves getting sick or not feeling well.
According to Beverly Anderson, Executive Director of Ebenezer Child Care Centers with locations on Milwaukee’s southside and in downtown Milwaukee, Oak Creek, and Wauwatosa, “Just because those around you are getting sick doesn’t mean your family needs to become part of the statistic. There are a number of things you can do to make sure your family stays healthy throughout winter.”
Below are some tips.
Get a Flu Shot
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), “An annual seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to reduce the chances that you will get the seasonal flu and spread it to others. When more people get vaccinated against the flu, less flu can spread throughout that community.”
Anderson agrees. “Prevention is the best medicine. Simply stated, each member of your family over six months of age should be getting an injectable flu vaccination.”
Wash Your Hands
Anderson says another important thing you can do to keep your family healthy is teach your children the importance of washing their hands.
“This is a skill that our teachers regularly work on at our child care centers. We teach children to thoroughly wash their hands, including between their fingers and under their nails, with soap and warm water. We even have them sing the ABC song while washing their hands, so their hands are lathered for a full 30 seconds to kills germs.
Another important thing to make sure of is that your family is eating well-balanced, healthy meals every day.
According to Anderson, “When you are nourishing your body with the proper fruits, vegetables and proteins, you are helping boost your immune system by making sure your body is getting all of the vitamins it needs to be operating at its best and fighting off any viruses it might come into contact with.”
Research has proven that stress can be harmful to a person’s immune system, so Anderson recommends that you continue exercising daily during the winter months. Despite the cold weather outside, your body will benefit from burning the unwanted stress and stay healthy.
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Slow Down and Get Plenty of Rest
Finally, Anderson says that as parents you should never discount the importance of getting a good night’s rest when it comes to staying healthy. Children under one year of age should be getting 14-15 hours of sleep per day; one- to three-year-olds should be getting 12-14 hours; three- to six-year-olds should be getting 10-12 hours; seven- to 13-year-olds should be getting 10-11 hours; and 12-year-olds up to adults should be getting eight to nine hours per day.
“If your family members aren’t getting the proper amount of rest, their immune systems will not be able to function at their best, and you could be putting your family in jeopardy of catching an unwanted virus. Embrace the shorter hours of daylight and get some sleep. This will help your bodies naturally restore themselves.”
Every Ebenezer Child Care Center focuses on all aspects of a child’s development: cognitive, physical, emotional, and social. In addition to providing quality care, the agency also offers other educational programming all aimed at helping parents.
The agency has locations on Milwaukee’s southside and in downtown Milwaukee, Oak Creek, and Wauwatosa. The agency’s main office is located at 1496 South 29th Street, Milwaukee. For more information, please call 414-643-5070.