Before Everett started daycare, he had never been ill. So many moms had warned me about the inevitable cycle of colds, coughs and fevers we were about to experience as he began his daycare journey. I was secretly hopeful that my little E would be different. But the truth is, they were right. Their little immune systems are just not strong enough, and after the first two weeks, he caught a cold, a few weeks after, Roseola, and then another cold coupled with a fever a couple weeks after that.
For any parent, first time or not, it’s worrisome and heartbreaking to see your own child congested, uncomfortable and having trouble getting a good night’s sleep. But when coupled with the complexity of COVID-19, it adds an entire unexpected level of stress and anxiety for the entire family. In the last four months, Everett’s missed daycare four separate weeks and been COVID-19 tested three times (poor little guy!). We’ve had to adjust our work schedules dramatically when he was sent home, and like many families, we simply didn’t have any alternative childcare options.
I’ve accepted that colds, coughs and fevers are going to be a part of our lives over the next couple of years, but it doesn’t mean I can’t proactively try to combat them, or at the least be better prepared. Now that I’ve experienced this several times, I’d love to share with you a few tools and tips that have really helped us along the way.
Sending Everett to daycare during the pandemic was the right decision for our family. But it certainly comes with its own set of challenges. To ensure he’s healthy and well to attend, we are required to complete a screening survey daily which includes a temperature reading below 37.8 degrees Celsius.
If you’ve ever attempted to take a child’s temperature, you’ll know that the trick is to be quick and still in order to obtain an accurate reading. The Braun ThermoScan®7 Thermometer has been such a handy tool. We use this thermometer every morning and it’s the only thermometer that pre-warms the tip to 34 degrees Celsius to provide professional accuracy and comfort. Alongside the built-in patented ExacTemp™ technology, the thermometer will light-up and beep, alerting you when it is ready to use. Plus – Braun thermometers are the number one brand used by pediatricians among pediatricians who recommend a type of thermometer and is the most trusted children’s thermometer brand by Canadian shoppers.
Being a first time mom, it was quite a learning experience to figure out what is considered as a ‘fever’ for different ages. It can be confusing! I love that this thermometer also features the Braun’s Age Precision™ technology which offers an accurate definition of fever according to the child’s specific age. It’s so simple to use by selecting the age range and a colour-coded indicator will notify you if your child has a fever. Green means their temperature is normal, yellow means fever and red means high fever.
Congestion is such a culprit to frequent wakings and disruptive sleep. To relieve congestion and other cold symptoms, we’ve added the Vicks® FilterFree Cool Mist Humidifier to Everett’s bedroom. We turn it on nightly even when he’s not sick to add moisture and regulate the humidity levels, especially during the dry winter months.
Did you know that by using a humidifier and maintaining levels between 40-60% regularly, you will not only relieve cold/flu symptoms but also help fight against viruses (they tend to survive in lower humidity), dry skin, poor sleep, and nosebleeds?!
I’ve tried several humidifiers in the past but I most prefer the Vicks® FilterFree Cool Mist Humidifier primarily for a few reasons. Firstly, the water tank is large so that I don’t have to refill it nightly and because it is transparent, I can also see when it is time to refill it. This humidifier also doesn’t require the use of a filter, therefore no replacements are needed.
But the one feature that I love the most is that it can be used with the Vicks® VapoPads®. I remember, when I was a child, my mom would apply Vicks® VapoRub on my chest for extra relief when I was sick. But then my clothes and bedsheets would smell like menthol for days! With the use of the Vicks® VapoPads® (inserted into the humidifier), soothing menthol, rosemary, or lavender scented vapour is released into the air for up to 8 hours, providing extra comfort without the need for any topical cream application!
Boosting Immune System
In addition to these two products, I’ve also been working on boosting Everett’s immune system. I’ve begun to offer him an age appropriate dose of Vitamin D daily, adding an immune tonic to his beverage, offering him organic elderberry syrup at the first sign of symptoms, and a probiotic to regulate and maintain his gut bacteria.
I truly believe a healthy diet can also go a long way. I’ve been incorporating foods rich in Vitamin C and making my own bone broth to serve him with his favourite rice and noodles.
These few changes have really helped our family better prepare for unexpected setbacks due to illnesses. I definitely feel more equipped and less stressed about the cold and flu season. If you’re interested in trying the two products featured here, they are available for purchase online and in-stores at Walmart across Canada.
I’d love to hear what’s helped you and your child! Feel free to leave me a comment below.
Disclaimer: This post was produced in partnership with Braun and Vicks but all experiences and opinions are my own.