Are you ready for those colds and viruses?

Are you ready to deal with viruses and bugs?

It’s inevitable that one day soon your new cute bundle of joy will get their first common cold or virus. Cue a few rough days and little sleep.

How can you make it easier and get through it I hear you say…stock up and be ready!

Often everything always feels worse at night and the last thing you want to have to do when you or your little one is ill is have to think about visiting a 24 hour pharmacy to get supplies.

We have listed a few items that are good to have on hand if a family member gets poorly including little ones too. Please do not feel like you need to get everything on the list and some may not be applicable to the age of your little ones.

Thermometer – There are a range of thermometers on the market as I write this blog. Dependant on who you ask everyone will tell you which one they like and which one they feel is best. But like most things it comes down to personal preference. NHS choices suggests using an underarm thermometer, this is because they are affordable and fairly easy to use. Prices range from £1 – 10, In ear thermometers can give false readings in young babies as they may not fit the ear properly. Do not use the strips that you hold on the forehead as they tend to give you a reading of the skin and not the core body temperature.

Paracetamol – Make sure you always read the manufactures instructions. You can use branded versions like Calpol or most supermarkets will offer their own brand version which is often cheaper but just as effective.

Ibuprofen – as above. Note, should you think your child has chicken pox do not use Ibuprofen unless directed to do so my your doctor. 

Rehydration Drinks (Dioralyte) – babies and young children – only to be used in guidance with your doctor. Buy an extra syringe for use with babies and young children, this may make it easier to administer.
Should you be struck down by a dreaded vomiting and diarrhoea bug you must try and stay hydrated. Having rehydration drinks on hand can replace important minerals and fluids to restore your body stores.
Throat sprays and/or lozenges (not applicable for children)

Oxygen Saturation Monitor – During the pandemic knowing what is happening with a patients oxygen levels really helps medical professionals determine the next step in treatment. Especially if the patient is being triaged remotely over the phone or video call. Therefore, having a monitor at home is a good idea if you are able to purchase one.

You can purchase a saturation monitor from around £20 but they go up to £hundreds. Saturation monitors maybe hard to use on babies and young children because of the size of their fingers. You may find a paediatric monitor slightly easier to use – but they are more expensive. If you only have an adult monitor you can try clipping on to their big toe if a finger is too small.

It’s best to use the monitor if asked do so by your doctor. So that they can interpret the results correctly.

Blood pressure monitor – (adults only) – A blood pressure monitor is another diagnostic tool that you can easily use at home to monitor yours or another adults blood pressure. Again, whilst we are in the middle of a pandemic having a monitor to hand that you can then feedback results to your doctor or medical professional remotely can help to determine the next steps of treatment. Please do not use on your child.

Extras for babies and young children

Saline drops – Saline drops can help to clear congested noses. If a baby is struggling to feed because of congestion, a drop or two into each nostril can help to loosen mucus and ease breathing.

Nasal syringe – to help to remove the loosened mucus – this does make me feel a little sick but we will do anything for our kids right?

Extra pack of nappies, wipes and milk as a back-up should you have to isolate or should you be too unwell to venture out (non Covid).

This list is meant as a guide and you do not need or have to purchase every item mentioned. But being prepared really can help should any of you become unwell.

Remember call 111 should you need medical advice or 999/112 in an emergency.

Written by Sam Mackay, KeepaBeat Founder

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