Now is the time of year when all the stomach bugs are floating around. When you have a large family like we have it can get very stressful. So how do we handle the stomach bug or nasty bug as my little ones call it?
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Keep everything as clean as possible
First, I try to keep the bathrooms and kitchen cleaned every day to prevent the nasty bugs from declaring war on us. This includes sanitizing the doorknobs, light switches, remotes, and anything that we might touch with our hands. I think this helps cut down on the number of germs that are passed back-and-forth.
We have ditched a lot of our cleaners and replaced them with Norwex products as they seem to do a much better job without all the nasty chemicals.
Second, when someone starts to show signs of being sick they are ‘quarantined’. This doesn’t mean that they have no contact at all with anyone I just try to limit the contact as much as possible.
We try to make sure and keep some fun activities like coloring books, audiobooks, and/or some special tablet time to watch Youtube videos so they won’t get too bored. Many times, if they are truly sick they just want to sleep and need a little bit of sleep so they don’t mind being ‘quarantined’.
Third, we have a puke bucket and some old beach towels. The puke bucket is just an old sand bucket that is lined with a grocery bag for easy cleanup. This bag also has a couple of scrunched up paper towels in the bottom of it to help absorb anything that gets deposited. The bucket is small enough that even the little ones can keep a hold of it. (Old ice cream pails work as well.)
I keep some old beach towels on hand because sometimes the littles can’t be or don’t want to be left in their bedrooms so we let them sit on a beach towel. If they throw up then it usually is confined to the towel are which helps with the cleanup.
Another way we like to stay prepared and ahead of the game is with Elderberry gummies… they really have helped to minimize the number of times we’ve had a stomach bug epidemic in our household since we began taking them a couple of years ago. You can find our favorite ones on Amazon or add them to your Walmart Grocery Pickup order.
Fourth, we keep plenty of Gatorade on hand. The green Lemon-lime Gatorade seems to work best here. Of course, we try to keep plenty of crackers and ginger ale also. You may also want to check out this post: Homemade Pedialyte and the BRAT/BOAT Diet.
When the kids are sick, whether they are vomiting or have diarrhea, we try to keep to a simple diet. They can have homemade broths, bananas, toast, crackers, applesauce, or other bland foods. We also keep Jell-O on hand for when they feel up to it.
**Not sure how to make homemade broth? Check out this informative video HERE.
As their strength and appetite come back they will start to eat more soups and other foods. We generally try to stay away from dairy products when they’re sick.
Stay on top of cleanup
Lastly, it is important to keep up with the overall cleanliness of the house. Sometimes it is possible to catch the nasty bug early enough that it doesn’t go through the whole family.
We try to keep the laundry done up. Sometimes that is easier said than done when you have littles that are sick. We also try to make sure we disinfect and clean up any accidents that may occur.
And the bathrooms may get cleaned several times a day during periods of illness. I do recommend that you keep disinfecting wipes (preferably homemade – see instructions below) on hand for these emergencies.
Being prepared goes a long way as the nasty bug can hit at any time without warning. If you find your house under siege from nasty bugs just remember that this too shall pass!
Diy Reusable Wipes
- 5-6 tea towels cut into fourths **see note below
- 20-30 drops essential oils (can use one or combination of tea tree, lavender, lemon, and/or eucalyptus essential oils) Use code: KIRBYSKORNERFREE at Simply Earth
- 3 cups water
- 3/4 c. rubbing alcohol, optional
- 1 1/2 c. white vinegar
- Airtight container(s) for storage
Combine the water, vinegar, and rubbing alcohol in the container.
Add essential oils and mix well.
Add cut-up towels to the container, and pack down to allow them to soak up all the solution.
Cover the container, and flip it upside down to ensure that every towel is saturated.
Use these as needed for quick cleanings.
- Wash the towels when dirty and repeat the steps to keep a supply of wipes handy.
**You could use old t-shirts, baby blankets, or just about anything else instead of the tea towels.
DO NOT use these wipes on granite as the vinegar may damage them.