Children often get sick. In fact, the average child gets up to 10 colds each year, while teens and adults typically get four or fewer.
There are several reasons why children get sick more often than adults. From developing immune systems to being around lots of other children at daycare or school, their bodies can’t protect them from illnesses as effectively.
No parent likes seeing their child sick, whether they have a common cold, strep throat, or something more serious. There’s no surefire way to prevent every illness, but did you know that there’s plenty you can do to help your child stay as healthy as possible?
Sudha Challa, MD, and our team at Lenox Medical Clinic, located in Chamblee and Johns Creek, Georgia, provide comprehensive pediatric care for kids of all ages. We partner with families to promote healthy habits to ward off illnesses all year long.
Here are some of our favorite tips to keep kids healthy, no matter the season.
Make a habit of healthy choices
Healthy habits often start in childhood and watching parents live healthy lives can serve children well into adulthood. Teach your child the importance of eating a balanced and nutritious diet. Offer healthy snacks and monitor their portion sizes at mealtimes.
Ensure your child gets regular exercise each day. Try participating in activities as a family, such as taking walks or riding bikes to get moving and spend time together.
Along with healthy eating and regular exercise, quality sleep is essential for children. Consider establishing routines before bed and enforcing a consistent bedtime to ensure your child gets enough restful sleep each night.
Teach good personal hygiene habits
One of the best ways to protect your child and your family is by teaching proper handwashing. Always use soap and wash hands for at least 20 seconds or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Always supervise young children while they wash their hands.
Other hygiene habits can help cut down on illnesses, too. Teach your child to cough and sneeze into a tissue or their elbow and remind them to wash their hands afterward. Never share cups, utensils, or other personal items between family members or friends.
Stay up on current vaccinations
Vaccination is the best way to protect your child from many preventable diseases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a vaccination schedule that includes recommendations for children based on their age, and everyone over the age of six months should get a flu vaccination each year.
COVID-19 vaccination recommendations are evolving, so talk to Dr. Challa to find out if your child is eligible. If they are, COVID-19 vaccination can help protect them and lower their risk of spreading the disease to others.
Schedule regular pediatric wellness checks
Finally, remember to schedule regular wellness checks to keep your child enjoying their best health as they grow. These routine exams give Dr. Challa the opportunity to check in with you and your child, even when they aren’t sick.
We check your child’s height, weight, and vital signs, then perform a physical exam. We ask questions about their lifestyle, including diet, exercise, and sleep habits, and we can recommend ways to improve their health as needed.
These exams are a great time for you to ask any questions you have about your child’s health, and we encourage children to get involved in their health care, too. Learn more about our pediatric care by calling our offices in Chamblee and Johns Creek, Georgia, or contacting us online today.