Your Guide to a Happy & Healthy Monsoon
The rainy season is a welcome respite from the harsh summer but brings along with it an onslaught of illness and a generally unhygienic environment. Germs and bacteria thrive in the warm, damp conditions of this season, which makes it all the more necessary to take certain precautions, particularly for young children who are more susceptible to infections. Here are five of our favourite hacks that will help you and your children enjoy the rains without risking your health.
Wash, wash, wash
Children’s hands and feet are magnets for germs and it’s important to cultivate good washing habits from an early age. Teach your child to wash their hands with soap and water whenever they come in from outside and especially before and after having meals. Use a good antibacterial hand wash but avoid using sanitisers with harsh chemicals as they may be harmful to your children’s delicate skin. Explain to children the importance of keeping their feet clean and make sure they dry them well too. Also take more frequent showers whenever possible as the humidity in the air can cause an unhealthy build-up of sweat and dirt. An easy natural hack is to add a few drops of neem oil or some neem leaves to bath water for some extra antibacterial protection. Remember that you too can pass on germs to your children, so make frequent washing up a practice for the entire family.
Say no to eating out
During the monsoon, be extremely cautious about what your children have to eat and drink. Do not buy pre-cut fruits and vegetables and avoid juices or water at restaurants. Carry your own filtered or boiled water with you and ensure that children drink often to prevent dehydration. Include more immunity-boosting foods in their diet such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, broccoli, strawberries, dairy, and eggs which are all great sources of Vitamins C and B12. If your child doesn’t enjoy these, try preparing a hot soup or fresh homemade juice/smoothie that they might be more happy to have. Avoid leafy greens as they may have worms and larvae which cause infections. If you absolutely cannot avoid eating out, opt for hot, cooked food at clean and hygienic places only. You can also encourage children to sip on basil (tulsi) water that is a great immunity booster.
Get the right gear
Invest in a sturdy and comfortable raincoat that your child can wear, along with waterproof shoes or sandals that cover their feet well. Make sure your child likes the gear so that they are enthusiastic about wearing it. Keep their head covered when it’s pouring to avoid catching chills. It is a great idea to keep a towel and spare pair of clothes in your bag or car for any emergency situations when you need to put your child into clean and dry and clothes.\
Ensure a clean and dry home environment
Prevent damp corners in your house by airing out rooms as much as possible and wiping down surfaces daily with anti-bacterial solution. Add some to your mopping bucket too to keep the floors hygienic. Don’t let any water accumulate as this can attract bacteria, mosquitos and other bugs.
Keep the critters away
Stagnant puddles and pools of water are unavoidable in the monsoon and are dangerous breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Keep children well-protected by making them apply an appropriate mosquito repellent as per your doctor’s advice. At home, you can burn citronella, camphor or lemongrass to ward off the buzzing critters. These natural alternatives are better for overall health than the chemical-ridden insecticides and coils available in the market.
Stay safe and have a wonderfully playful wet season!