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How to Amuse Your Sick Child During Flu Season

by Tania Cowling | December 3rd, 2014 | Elementary, Social

child smiling (400x400)You know how you feel when ill and how a little pampering makes you feel so much better. Well, this works with kids too. Although reading aloud, playing cards, and serving a bowl of ice cream may not actually speed up the convalescence, it does provide the chance to spend time with your child, who will remember your acts of kindness years after you’ve forgotten those bittersweet days. Here are a few tips on making those bedridden days of the flu more enjoyable for your child.

Most sick kids have tender appetites, so the choice and presentation of food are important. Try serving meals on a fancy bed tray (or even a cookie sheet with a pretty towel draped on top) and remember to add a special token, such as a get well note, a small wrapped gift, a cheerful napkin, or one of those crazy bendable straws. A colorful cup and those straws are a good way to entice your youngster to drink more fluids, which is so important when fighting an illness. As far as the meal itself, small portions throughout the day are better than a big meal all at once. Along with soup, toast, and ginger ale, try offering a frozen fruit pop, pudding, sherbet or lemonade to raise his/her spirits.

Yes, an icy fresh-fruit Popsicle can be just what your ailing child needs to cool a fever and soothe a sore throat. For a fun pop with a surprise try this recipe. Press one piece of fresh fruit onto the top of a wooden Popsicle stick. This could be a chunk of banana, pineapple, or a strawberry. Put this stick, fruit-side down, into a three-ounce paper cup. Fill the cup with a favorite juice and cover it with aluminum foil (making a slit for the stick). Freeze the pops for about four hours or until solid. Peel away the paper cup and voila – a soothing, but healthy ice pop.

Comfortable and clean surroundings are a necessity for ailing children. A refreshing bath or even a sponge bath can be quite soothing. Brush your child’s hair and a fresh pair of pajamas daily is a must. Whether your child is resting on the couch or in bed, the bedding, blankets, and pillowcases should be changed every day. Keep a bedside basket to organize your child’s books, toys, crayons and activity books – they are handy but tidy.

Provide a phone for special calls to friends after school hours. This chat can relieve the sense of being stuck indoors and it can also update on the news of the outside world. This is good medicine for the soul.

No matter who is caring for your child, make sure to set up time for a little one-on-one attention with Mom or Dad. This could include a game of Old Maid, checkers, craft, or any activity that is special to you both. Your child will look forward to this memorable meeting all day and it takes their mind off the sniffles and sore throat.

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