Friday, August 24, 2012

TIPS on staying healthy this fall & winter!

I am research fanatic. I probably research things, overboard. But through my studies, I have found very useful information on various things in health, cleaning, and vaccines. I get my information from medical websites and doctors/nurses. Not just from random "google" or wikipedia searches. Here's a few tips and pointers...
Maybe you'll care and maybe you won't...But I thought I'd share!

(Just so you know, through all my research, I have learned that getting sick especially with the stomach bug, doesn't make your immune system stronger, it's still best to not get sick because you do not ever become immune to the stomach bug.)

When it comes to cleaning:

*Clorox Anywhere spray
*Lysol disinfectant spray(only if necessary, like sick)

I have toned down my cleaning a lot. Mostly because I don't have time for it now being a mama of two and I have other things i'd rather do during glorious naptime. We don't wear shoes in our house for various reasons, not just because we feel it's gross after knowing all the stuff people track in on their nasty shoes(E.Coli, vomit, dog poop, spit, etc.) but also because we have carpet and it will mean less professional carpet cleaning. Eliminating wearing shoes in doors can fix a lot of unwanted bugs. I found a cute sign on Etsy that I can't wait to buy to hang on our front door..Just a polite way of asking others without having to tell them.

1.)I use to use bleach often...Why? I have no idea. But I have turned away from bleach and started using regular ol' Hydrogen Peroxide from the grocery store, Target, whatever. I have also turned to Vinegar, safe alternative to bleach even though Vinegar has a terrible smell, I just open up windows and don't worry about my babes smelling obnoxious fumes like bleach has. Plus they are both SO cheap.
 2.)Key is keeping the peroxide in it's original DARK BROWN container. So what I do is after my Clorox Anywhere spray(in my opinion, BEST TOY CLEANING PRODUCT) is done, I use that sprayer to put on top of the peroxide bottle. With peroxide and vinegar, the longer they sit, the better it cleans and more bag guys it kills. So don't be so quick to wipe it up with a paper towel, let it sit a while, maybe even over night in bathroom and kitchen counters. 
3.)Vinegar, you need to dilute 50/50...good thing is, once it drys, the smell goes away :)
4.)About twice a month I clean Tynlee's toys if she's the only one playing with them. Especially the ones she always puts in her mouth. I spray them with Clorox Anywhere spray. Totally safe for kids. Just spray it on after they go to bed and it will be dry in the morning. Love that stuff!

When it comes to Vitamins:

*Vitamin C
*Vitamin D
*Elderberry & Echinancea in fall and winter

1.) Around here, we are STRONG believers in probiotics. It's estimated that 75% of your immune system is in your gut and what better way to protect your gut than a probiotic supplement? SAFE FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY by the way! 
What is a probiotic: It's the GOOD bacteria that lives in your gut so therefor, the more good bacteria you have in your gut, the better you are to not get sick with a tummy bug. You get a tummy bug when your bad bacteria outnumber the good. So taking a daily probiotic(BEST IS THE REFRIGERATED KIND) helps with that. Not a guarentee that you won't get sick, but it definitely helps.
-Last summer before my husband took probiotics, he came down with a tummy bug that he got from a birthday party where like 17 people got it. I was taking probiotics like crazy as well as giving them to Tynlee(6 months old) and we didn't get sick! So I really think the probiotics HELPED.
-Tynlee gets a powdered kind in her milk in the morning and another powdered kind in her milk at night. The reason I do two different kinds is they have different strains in them so it just gives her more good. I order ours from Amazon. I've found they are the best priced. 

Tynlee uses these kinds....

We use this kind....

Also, live cultures(probiotics) are in yogurt as well, but definitely not nearly as much as you will receive from a probiotic. 

-Probiotics are suppose to help with asthma, eczema, and prevent yeast/bladder infections. 
-I took when pregnant with both my babies to help build up there immune systems as well

2.) We also take Vitamin C daily...Stephen and I take 1000 mg and Tynlee takes 200 mg(in liquid form).
I know she gets PLENTY of Vitamin C from all the fruit and juice but it's just an extra boost, ecsepcially for cold and flu season.

3.) Tynlee takes Vitamin D drops as well...just a drop or 2 on her pacifier at night!

Elderberry, which we take in the winter protects you from the actual FLU. 
When I say FLU, I mean the fever, body aches, coughing, flu cause the stomach flu isn't really a flu. It's a virus. and the FLU SHOT DOES NOT PROTECT YOU FROM THE STOMACH BUG, it protects you from FLU! For your information.
Back to Elderberry, it it suppose to ward off 8 different flu virus strains and the flu vaccine is only 2 or 3. So therefor, no, we don't get flu shot. Never have my entire life. I think it's fine for immune system depressed people and the elderly. But that's my opinion. 

Echinacea, is wonderful for your immune for everyone as well.
I personally love Echinacea tea!

Facts about sickness:

I don't mind colds...yeah, they suck but you can barrel through them. But stomach flu, boy oh boy, I hate. But who doesn't??? So not looking forward to that around here...That's why I'm careful about trying to keep it away as best as possible.
1.) You sometimes are contagious before symptoms...but there's nothing you can do about that, because you can't put your kid in a bubble!
2.) Once they start showing any symptoms, they are for sure contagious.
3.) The least amount of time you should send them back to school or daycare is 72 hours AFTER symptoms have COMPLETELY stopped. But usually, you shed the virus in your stool and nasal secretions for 2 whole weeks. So be sure proper hand washing is taking place.
4.) Hands aren't properly washed unless you scrubbed for 20 seconds...That's singing "Happy Birthday" TWICE.
(Common sense, always always always wash before eating anything)
-You don't need antibacterial soap unless you've handled raw meat or a dirty diaper, regular soap will do the trick ;)
5.) Stomach bugs and colds are transferred when someone sneezes, wipes their nose, coughs or doesn't wash hands properly after using the restroom then touches door handles, light switches, shopping carts, ATM machines, gas pumps, etc. and then you touch it and don't wash your hands. They are sneaky. Stomach flu usually isn't "airborne" unless someone vomits right in front of you. It's mostly transferred just how I explained. Touching something the infected person touched.
6.) We use a WetOne to wipe off cell phones, car keys, and debit car every single day. Those are the germiest things you own!

7.) One of the germiest places are playgrounds because there isn't rule that you can't take your kid to the playground sick. And little diaper booties rub all over everything. Make sure you wipe off hands with WetOne or hand sanitizer(I like GERM-X best cause the B. chloride kills the best) after playing in public playgrounds. 

-Second, grocery stores...90% of shopping cart handles contain E.Coli which causes stomach upset and diarrhea. I always use a shopping cart cover before the babes goes in there. High chairs at a restaurant have the same problem as shopping carts. So I'm happy the cart cover fits that too!

8.)If your child has had diarrhea, no public pool for 2 weeks because their little bottles can and will shed off their sickness into the water for other little ones or big ones ;)

9.)Viruses live on hard surfaces for weeks, so after your sick, be sure to disinfect everything you or your child touched because that sickness will just make it's rounds once again if not. 

10.)If you've had the stomach virus, you should let guest come over to at least 2 weeks after your well again because again, your still contagious and so is your house if it's not scrubbed down. 

No, I don't chase Tynlee around the house with hand sanitizer LOL but I do watch her because she's always sticking her hands and things from the ground in her mouth(at home, I don't care). I do my best to protect her but I can't from everything. But I do wash her hands before she eats every single time!

Hopefully, I helped you in some way. Maybe your rolling your eyes...But I did this to share what we do at the Howard house in hopes of staying healthy in hopes that it can help you too..Some don't care about sickness while others do. Some are inconsiderate and take their sick or recently sick children to public places but I don't ever want to be 'that person'. But we should always be respectful of others and think about their feelings as well. We all are mothers and we all can raise and protect our children the way we want. So again, this is just some facts from the months of research I've done in hopes of keeping my family healthy...

Even doesn't work 100% of the time :)

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