“Come Aakash, I will take you to the doctor. Finally, we got the appointment”, said his mom Priya. Aakash was 5 years old and often fell sick and going to their family doctor became a regular affair. This has bothered Priya a lot and is also hampering her regular schedule. But what can a 5 year old do about it, not his mistake.
Kids in the present time have less immunity to most of the conditions. Sudden change in climatic behaviour calls for the doctor’s clinic. We at their age were stronger internally. But today’s kids in spite of receiving vaccines at the double rate than us are found to have lesser immunity. Is there something wrong within us that we need to care about? Ummm….. Few points came to my mind!
– Today’s kids cannot survive without AC. But who designed their minds to stay in ac most of the times. Its us, we show them the way. We prepare them to become like “Touch me not”, or else we shall fall sick.
– Kids at younger age get specs, the reason is clear and most of the times it is “Kya kare, saara din mobile aur tv pe hi lage rehte hain”. We show them this route.
– Don’t shout at the kids or else they might become rebellious in nature. Who said that? If they commit something wrong, we ought to stop them, sometimes with love, affection and sometimes with scolding, the degree of which varies as per the nature of the crime.
It is necessary to raise the child under normal circumstances like how we lived our childhood. Not saying that we should leave them in the sun the entire day, even that’s harmful but there has to be a midway wherein we teach them to survive even in the extreme conditions. Sometimes, allow them to do a rain dance, trust me its fun. They might catch slight cold but then its ok to let them loose sometimes.
One can put a timer for both AC and TV. Beyond that, not allowed. Allow them to develop their own immunity.
We parents have the habit of over-sterilizing the environment for our kids. For example, if the kid was playing in mud in the garden, its ok for him/her to have the dust in the tiny hands, need not run for the sanitizer immediately.
I read an article in which Prof Gilbert, the director of the Microbiome Centre at the University of Chicago said, “Sterilizing your home like a hospital could lead your child to have a severely hyper sensitized immune system leaving them open to allergies and asthma, even neurodevelopmental problems.”
Certain tips to help them develop a strong immunity:
1. Allow them to take a good Rest- Make the child sleep well. They must be in the habit of going to bed early, taking a sleep of at least 10 hours so that they feel rejuvenated and strong enough to carry on with the daily routine work.
2. Teach them Hygiene- Teach them the right way of maintaining hygiene. Like wash hands before and after meals, wash them once back from outside, after using washing room etc.
3. Offer them foods that boost immunity- Certain vegetables like carrots, cucumbers, sweet corn should be introduced in a fun way so that they may eat them happily.
4. Sugar to be replaced with honey, jaggery or raisins.
5. Instead of giving calcium syrups, try to make them drink milk twice a day with Horlicks/Bournvita added to it that would enhance the taste as well.
6. Try to serve them curd and cheese frequently. In summers, curd should be a must serving during lunch.
In winters too we must take care of not keeping them under the wrap of heaters and blankets every time. We need to help them come out of this weak immune program so that they are able to survive the extremes.
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