The Covid-19 Pandemic has caused infants, toddlers, school-age children, and teenagers as well as Mothers to be on lockdown more than others. Since schools have been shut down for a while and nothing has been said about reopening, for now, mothers have to keep engaging their younger children in different ways and ensuring that they are doing okay despite this lockdown.
Here are 3 health matters that mothers of toddlers and school-age children should focus on during this continuous lockdown. They apply to everyone in lockdown.
- Getting enough Vitamin D
Vitamin D is also called the sunshine vitamin because the body can make it from exposure to sunlight. During school days, many children in this part of the world often get the opportunity to be out in the open especially during the break hours. Playing in the fields or doing outdoor activities allow them to get some vitamin D.
However, these days, because of COVID-19, not many children get to play outside to get this vitamin. However, hope is not lost. Vitamin D can also be gotten from some specific foods.
These foods are:
Fish (fatty fish like Atlantic Mackerel popularly called Titus; horse mackerel – Kote, sardines)
fortified foods like Milk, Cereals.
Ensuring these foods are part of their diet daily is essential. Vitamin D works with calcium to strengthen our bones. Vitamin D is also important for the functioning of our immune systems. They help to fight diseases and reduce depression.
- Engaging in Physical Activity
It is hard to keep children very active when they are locked down at home. Many of their activities are scheduled around school and sports activities. In the absence of these, television watching takes its place. If you have a compound where children are not exposed to COVID-19, you need to schedule some outdoor play and exercise time. You can also engage in this to help you get your body moving also. This activity is also tied somehow to getting more vitamin D, so you can kill a bird with two stones.
In the house, encourage them to engage in other indoor activities such as musical chairs, jumping ropes, bowling, crab walks, tape games, and so on.
- Engaging their minds
The extended lockdown for children is no joke. Those who are engaged in online classes at schools are not finding it funny anymore. If colouring and like activities do not do the trick, try things like scavenger hunts, straw building, origami, and other crafts. For those that can read, encourage them to read storybooks. Also, give them time to play by themselves because mummies and daddies have to rest.
In a Nutshell
This lockdown is hard on children and it is important to keep their spirits up. Vitamin D is a vitamin that is good for that. It also builds their immunity. Feed your families with Fatty fish, eggs, liver, milk and fortified cereals to be nourished by the vitamin D in the absence of sunlight.
Get them into the morning sun when you can and keep their bodies and minds engaged. These are not easy tasks to do every day but if you start a routine, everyone may fall into the habit and they become automatic.
Every day, eat better, live better.
Please don’t forget to share. Also, subscribe to our website and follow us on our social media platforms @behealthyafrica.