Pug in a blanket
Top 10 Things to Have on Hand for Sick Kids

Are your kids feeling like the pug in this photo here- under the weather? My kids have been home sick SO MUCH! Just this week, I picked up my preschooler who barfed at school before I even left the parking lot. Sound familiar? This cold and flu season has been brutal and I know I’m not the only mom feelin’ it! Recently oldest son hit almost every inch of carpet in his room with vomit during a bout with the flu. I had to scoop up the yuck with a spoon. Nasty! It took a few rounds of scrubbing to get the odor out. And then more scrubbing because the smell was so stubborn. He made it through the flu in about a week, with lots of sips and snuggles.

This cold and flu season doesn’t seem to be letting up in our house yet. Those sweet little faces… when they can’t tell you what’s wrong but they look and feel awful… this mama’s heart melts and I want to help them get through– one day at a time. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. It is literally one sip at a time.

Here’s 10 things I have stocked in my pantry for sick kids right now. This is based on recommendations from our pediatrician, an ER doctor who treated one of my kids for dehydration… and what works for me!

Top 10 Things to Have on Hand For Sick Kids

  1. G2 Gatorade. Did you know there at least 3 kinds of Gatorade? Gatorade Zero is sugar free and not ideal for a tummy bug. Regular Gatorade has too much sugar and can actually upset their tummy. G2 is in the middle- it has some sugar and my kids will drink it. Red and orange flavors are popular here. If you only have regular Gatorade or another electrolyte drink you could water it down a little. If your kids will drink Pedialyte, get that! Doctors always recommend it. My kids just don’t like it. Now for the rest of the list:
  2. Lower sugar fruit popsicles with NO seeds. For extra hydration.
  3. Jell-O
  4. Saltines- the salty ones.
  5. Applesauce pouches. Easy and good for little ones if they are past the really sick part.
  6. Potatoes. Zap it in the microwave to make a baked potato in 10 minutes. A baked potato with salt is bland and can fill a tummy that is hungry but is also gentle on digestion. Click here for recipe on how to zap a baked potato.
  7. Banana. Cut up in thin slices. Tastes so good on a wobbly tummy.
  8. Rice. Make it if they are keeping down liquids.
  9. Toast. A piece of bread to go with fluids.
  10. Low sugar juice boxes. Can give here and there when they are sick of Gatorade and water.

Stay away from dairy and greasy food like fries while sick. They do not go well with a fever or upset tummy. 3 More Must-Haves:

  1. Forehead scanner thermometer. Costco carries one by Exergen that I like and I have found consistently Costco has the lowest price.
  2. Fabric-soft ice packs. When fevers get bad, I give a tepid bath– but if they’re still hot some of my kids like small ice packs wrapped in a towel under their armpits or groin area for a few minutes at a time. It’s soothing and helps cool their core temp.
  3. Beach towels. I blanket these on beds, floors, couches and pillows around my child to catch vomit while they’re resting. It’s easier to throw a pile of towels in the laundry than to scrub carpet and couches.

If your child is sick you should contact your pediatrician. If they are vomiting or have diarrhea, they can dehydrate quickly or it could be something more serious so call and get help assessing if they need to be seen by a doctor. And try to call during the day so you can avoid dealing with after hours care. Stay well!