• Ashley Cummins, RN, INHC

How to Boost Your Kid's Immunity for School

Updated: Aug 11

It's that time of year again...SCHOOL STARTS SOON!!! Is everyone else as excited as I am?!

One of the unfortunate things associated with the start of school is the inevitable return of the illness.

We may not be able to protect our kids from all the illnesses they will be exposed to, but we can help their immune systems function at their best. A healthy functioning immune system is imperative to help protect and heal their bodies. Here are 4 things you can do to prepare your child's immune system for the restart of school.


She just had to make a heart with her fingers!

1. Start school sleep schedule at least a week early.


The immune system protects against both infection and malignancy and enables immunization against disease. Sleep is a vital part of the immune system. Our bodies, including the immune system, function at their optimal levels when we get a good night's sleep. When kids go back to school, they usually end up short in the sleep department because they are used to the later bedtimes during the summer and have earlier mornings associated with school. This lack of sleep means their bodies are already not functioning at their peak performance. Now, add to that a bacteria soup they will be exposed to at school and BAM! Your child is sick. By starting the school sleep cycle a week before they start school, your child will be well-rested for the start of school and their body's immune system can now focus on protecting them from bacterial invaders.


2. Improve nutrition


It's no secret a well-balanced diet leads to a healthier immune system. Foods such as fresh fish (Omega's), vegetables, mushrooms, medicinal herbs, herbal teas, kefir, bone broth, and seaweed have been shown to stimulate the production of immune cells. Try and find fresh and local ingredients whenever possible. Since its still summer, farmer's markets are still happening! The week prior to school starting I try and provide mostly whole food meals while minimizing the sugar intake. Sugar is known for wreaking havoc on the immune system so minimize it as much as possible. Out with the sugars and in with the fruit! Berries are the preferred fruit due to their higher levels of antioxidants


3. Supplement where needed.


There are some great supplements out there for your littles to improve their immune function. I am always intentional with these at least the week prior to school to give my child an extra boost in the cold-fighting category. I recommend supplementing with *Vitamin D3, Fish oils (omegas), *Vitamin C, *probiotics, *elderberry, in conjunction with a *good multivitamin.


Should your child become sick with an upper respiratory infection, I use these holistic or herbal treatments for my family:

-*Old Indian Wild Cherry Bark Syrup

-*V Clear EPs 7630

-*Oscillococcinum

-*Children's Coldcalm *For a significant discount, order these products through my Wellevate account here. Click the link and then click "Create New Account"


4. Oils, oils, oils!


I LOVE ESSENTIAL OILS! I have a couple of oil rituals I do to improve my daughter's chance of not catching whatever she is exposed to.


First, I use several od doTerra's OnGuard products regularly.

- I diffuse OnGuard oil to boost immunity through inhalation. Diffuse before or after school for an added immune boost.

- I keep the OnGuard hand sanitizer on me to sanitize hands and surfaces when out and about and give my daughters hands a pump before and after school.

- The OnGuard beadlets or lozenges are great when I feel a cold coming on or know I'm about to be exposed to illness and I give my daughter these for the same reasons.

- One more great product from doTerra is their OnGuard laundry soap! I can wash my daughter's school clothes and get all the great benefits of OnGuard as well!

The second oil routine I do for my daughter is using a FLOOM roller along her spine and on the bottoms of her feet. I keep this roller in her backpack so we always have it. I apply this before she enters school or any place she comes in contact with lots of kids (church, gym daycare, play centers, etc.).

FLOOM is an acronym for 5 different oils: Frankincense, Lemon, OnGuard, Oregano, Melaleuca. I add 5 drops of each to a 10ml rolle ball and top with fractionated coconut oil. These oils are a powerhouse against bacteria and viruses.

DoTerra recently came out with its own kid line of essential oil rollers. Ann has her own stash she keeps in her room. The Stronger roller is the immune roller. My daughter applies this nightly. She loves the ability to have control here!

The immune system protects against both infection and malignancy and enables immunization against disease. Sleep is a vital part of the immune system. Our bodies, including the immune system, function at their optimal levels when we get a good night's sleep. When kids go back to school, they usually end up short in the sleep department because they are used to the later bedtimes during the summer and have earlier mornings associated with school. This lack of sleep means their bodies are already not functioning at their peak performance. Now, add to that a bacteria soup they will be exposed to at school and BAM! Your child is sick. By starting the school sleep cycle a week before they start school, your child will be well-rested for the start of school and their body's immune system can now focus on protecting them from bacterial invaders.

The human body is an amazing vessel whose intricate systems work in a harmonious symphony of balance. When our bodies are fueled with the proper nutrition, they thrive. When we take proper care of our bodies, they in return take care of us! I hope these recommendations are helpful in keeping your kids healthier this school season.



Disclaimer:

I am an RN, not an MD. This information is not intended to be taken as medical advice. The statements here have not been evaluated by the FDA. Please consult your physician before making any changes to you or your child's supplements.



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