An Ounce of Prevention | Fit Pregnancy

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An Ounce of Prevention

Is there anything I can do to help keep my baby healthy during flu season?

A: 

Because the influenza virus can be dangerous, the American Academy of Pediatrics and virtually all other official medical groups recommend the flu shot every fall or winter for children 6 months of age and older. I almost never recommend getting the shot; I just don’t think it’s that effective. (Each year, the vaccine is formulated for the particular strains of influenza virus health experts think will strike that season, and it often misses the mark.) Instead, I believe the more important approach is to keep people from getting sick in the first place by staying healthy.

So how do you do this? Well, I’ve always thought the simplest answers are best: Keep your baby hydrated and well rested; feed her a healthy, low-sugar diet; keep her away from crowds; wash your own hands and your child’s often; and don’t let anyone within 50 yards of your baby unless they wash theirs!

Expert name: 

Jay Gordon, M.D.