When you have a child with special health care needs, germs are one of your worst enemies. Most of us would love to put our kids in a bubble during cold and flu season and keep them there safe from harm. That’s not very realistic though. There are some ways to help reduce germs not only for your child but from your child, too.
Let’s start with that suction machine. You know that the stuff you pull out of your child can be kind of gross. Did you know that after you clean out the canister, you can put a cap full of mouthwash in the clean canister? If you use one that has antiseptic, you can reduce the germs and the smell coming from the canister.
Another simple thing is to keep Lysol (or something similar) wipes handy. When other kids would come over to play, I would use these bleach wipes to disinfect toys and other surfaces. I did that before they came and after they left. I still have tubs of wipes all over my house and I find tons of uses for them.
When you go to the clinic or have to spend time in any type of waiting room, you can always ask the staff for a mask. It would be great if all sick people wore them, but they don’t. That doesn’t mean you can’t put one on your child. If they don’t have masks, let the staff know that your child can’t be around sick germs. They can usually move you to a clean area to wait away from the crowd and away from the germs.
Shoes are another big one. Be sure to have people take off their shoe when they enter your home. Shoes track in so many germs!
Here’s how I see it: No one wants to be that nagging mom that always cleans the toys, reminds you to wash your hands, and take off your shoes. I get it. But, would you rather be the nagging mom or have your kid in the hospital with whatever nasty bug is going around? If there is a chance that my being the nag could have kept my daughter healthier, I was totally willing to wear that hat.
After making the difficult decision to medicate your child, with time and on occasions, old symptoms return or new ones appear. Once again, you’re faced with what felt like an already-made decision - to medicate higher or more, or not.