Achieving Optimal Healing and Wellness Through Integrative Care

At Kirkland Health Institute in Kirkland, WA, we strive to educate our patients on chronic health conditions and the ways that natural healing can help them. Our blogs provide reliable information on how you can lead a more active lifestyle and take steps toward healthy living.

Strengthen Childs Immune System

March 10, 2020

How to Strengthen Your Child's Immune System

Your immune system is very complex, it's interconnected to other systems in your body, and actually changes as a person ages. Not only does it do such things as fight bacteria, parasites, and fungus, but is also a key "player" in healing wounds, eliminating dead cells as well as forming gut microbiota (the healthy bacteria that lives in your gut to help with digestion and help keep us healthy).

In babies, the immune system is developing for about the first 3 months of their life, (this is why breastfeeding is so good for your baby), and continues to mature until adulthood, and then as a person reaches old age, the immune system returns to a similar state to that of a baby.

It's quite obvious why we associate runny noses, coughs and colds with young children, because during infancy through childhood, the immune system is at it's most sensitive...so you can see why it's so important to strengthen your child's immune system and give them the most support possible.

But not all children always have, or need to have these illnesses, their immune systems can be boosted and made stronger...giving them better health and healing.

Strategies for strengthening your child's immune system:

  1. It all begins with a healthy diet. We have all heard it before, but a good diet can make all the difference:
    1. Serve them more vegetables and fruits. Teach them from their early life to like and eat these foods regularly. Especially good for immunity boosting are carrots, green beans, oranges and strawberries.
      1. One mother did such a good job doing this that when you asked her 3 year old son what his favorite ice cream was, he would tell you, "Vanilla, because it tastes like broccoli."
    2. Their diets should be rich in probiotics and prebiotics which lead to a healthy gut...
      1. Foods rich in probiotics are: Kombucha, sauerkraut, yogurt, pickles, kimche, buttermilk and some cheeses.
      2. Foods rich in prebiotics are: Cabbage, bananas, grapefruit, watermelon, almonds, onions, broccoli and kidney beans.
    3. Avoid processed foods whenever possible.
  2. Make sure your children get plenty of sleep. Many young kids can be seen running around late at night when they should be in bed. Small children should have between 10 and 13 hours of sleep each day...that's where a good afternoon nap comes in very helpful, but if that doesn't work for you, an earlier bedtime in the evening works just as well. Lack of sleep makes your child more susceptible to illness.
  3. Practice good toothbrush hygiene:
    1. Each child should have his/her own toothbrush and never share!
    2. If a child becomes ill, once they have recovered, throw their toothbrush away and give them a new one in order to avoid recycling the germs that caused the illness.
    3. Store the toothbrushes in a bathroom drawer or vanity cabinet to keep them away from the spread of the toilet's bacteria.
  4. Was, wash, wash! A child's hands touch so many bacteria ridden surfaces all day long...they need to wash throughout the day, and especially before eating, and after going to the bathroom. Teach them to thoroughly wash their hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds. When you're out and about, carry disposable wipes or hand sanitizer.
  5. Do not expose your children to 2nd hand smoke! The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) tells us that 2nd hand smoke makes your child a target for respiratory infections, asthma, ear infections and increases a baby's risk for SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome).
  6. Your child should get plenty of exercise. In today's world where kids are so connected to their electronic devices, it could be a challenge to get them off the couch and moving about...it's important that children do not live sedentary lives which works against strengthening their immune system, but it also leads to obesity and other health problems. Doing physical activities as a family is a great way to build family relationships, have fun and strengthen the immune system.
  7. Whenever possible, avoid giving your child antibiotics. Because antibiotics kill the good bacteria in the gut, your child stands at risk to develop IBS, (Inflammatory Bowel Syndrome). Also, keep in mind that most illnesses contracted by children are caused by viruses and not bacteria...antibiotics don't work on a viral illness.

Your child's nervous system impacts their immune system, falls, sport and other impacts that can create spinal nerve stress at any age. Gentle Chiropractic care can be part of your child's wellness plan.

If you're not happy with the health or the pain you're in... Contact Me to schedule your Free consultation - We specialize in functional medicine and treating chronic conditions.

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