Going back to school is always an exciting and equally crazy time while we settle into our new routines. Today, I'm sharing tips and products I use with my twins and myself to keep us all happy, healthy, and well rested during the school year.
Back to School Wellness
I hope that one day we will look back on 2020 and think, what a crazy time, I'm glad we made it past all of that. But for now, while we are in the thick of it, my focus is on doing all I can to keep my family as healthy, happy and well-rested as possible. Because everything is easier to tackle when we have those three areas under control. Am I right?
A Little Back Story
When the twins first started preschool, I was fighting runny noses, sore throats and low grade fevers constantly. One day I woke up with sick twins and thought to myself, this is ridiculous, I have to get our family well! That was just about the time when I started using Young Living Essential Oils, slowly ditching toxic products in our home, and created a better routine for wellness. You can read more about that in this post.
Creating a Healthy Routine
I have found that the best approach to wellness for my twins has been to work proactively to NOT get sick. You might be thinking, duh Leah, but that idea is actually the complete opposite of the western way thinking...treating illness after the fact. I believe that a balance of both is important but I do everything I can to support our immune systems in times of health as well as when we get sick.
Of course my family still get the occasional cold, and in no way is the information I'm sharing going to keep your kiddos from every coming down with something. But these tips and products have helped my kids in so many ways! I've found that being intentional and consistent our wellness routine has helped us all fight things off faster and come down with colds less frequently. It's all about consistency and good habits which we work to be better at every day.
How to Help Support Your Child's Immune System
Good health starts with gut health and so that is the place I focus on the most with my twins. There is so much to share in the ways of gut health but I'm going to touch on a few here in this post. I encourage you do also do your own research on the Gut Microbiome and what an amazingly complex system it is. Here are some everyday ways I support my children's immune system:
- SLEEP - According to John's Hopkins, "Studies have shown that kids who regularly get an adequate amount of sleep have improved attention, behavior, learning, memory, and overall mental and physical health. I will touch on ways I support really restful sleep next for my family, next!
- HEALTHY FOODS - Minimizing sugar is so tough with kids but it makes a huge difference. In fact: Studies have shown spikes in sugar intake suppress your immune system. When your immune system is compromised, you are more likely to get sick. Here is a list of our favorite healthy snacks ideas, perfect for after school or even lunchtime!
- PROBIOTICS - I try to work in probiotic rich foods into the twin's diet as much as I can. They love drinking Kombucha and eating pickles so that's a win! Also, Plain Whole Milk Yogurt topped with granola is a great breakfast. One day I'll try kimchi and sauerkraut, but we aren't there yet.
- SUPPLEMENTS & ESSENTIAL OILS - I will touch on both of these next!
How to Help Your Kids Sleep More Restfully
When it comes to being alert, happy, focused and healthy...sleep is a key factor. When the twins were young they were very restless sleepers, waking through the night and early to rise. It was rough on all of us! If you are the Mom who gets up with your kids through-out the night, you might agree with me on this.
I wrote an entire post on our sleep routine here, but these are the tools I use to promote a more restful night's sleep.
- Early Dessert - or sugar too close to bedtime. This is HUGE one for my twins and their ability to wind down. Jackson on chocolate is just a no-go for bedtime. Of course we occasionally have a treat but I try to only do that earlier in the daytime, as in after lunch!
- Bedtime Routine - setting a routine that you follow every night helps kids go through the process of unwinding and calming their bodies and minds down. They know what to expect.
- Unwind - this is a Young Living Magnesium supplement for kids that helps promote a state of calm. My kids don't love the watermelon flavor however it does help with more restful sleep!
- Diffuser - The first thing I do is get the twins diffuser going in their room with a mixture of Young Living Gentle Baby and Lavender essential oils. This helps set the tone and provides a relaxing environment. Soft music and low lights also help! We like this nightlight from Target.
- Sleepy Roller - I make a sleepy roller for the twins with 10 drops each of Roman Chamomile, Lavender and Cedarwood plus fractionated coconut oil which I roll on their chests, and spine at bedtime.
Of course all of these tips and tricks can be applied to adults too! This is about whole family wellness. I also use these same methods for myself and have noticed a huge difference in my overall wellbeing since starting to use Young Living. If you want more information on how to get started with oils, you can read this post!
Essential Oils for Kids
There is so, so much information I could share when it comes to the ways that essential oils have supported my kids but that would be a very long post. Just know that Young Living has oils that help support focus and emotions, sleep and wellness. Here are a few must-haves for the school year:
- Gentle Baby & Lavender - for sleep
- The KidScents Line - especially Snifflease, Tummygize, and Geneyus. These oils are pre-diluted for kids and help with the sniffles, nervous or upset tummies, and focus.
- Thieves - all the wellness support in this powerhouse oil blend! We use it daily.
- Valor - we call this oil, "the brave oil." Great for sending kids off into the world with emotional support.
Healthy Kiddo Essential Oil Roller Recipe
- 10 drops Frankincense
- 10 drops Thieves
- 10 drops Lemon
- 5 drops Oregano (optional)
- Fill with carrier oil of choice, we use this fractionated coconut oil.
- PM: Roll on spine and the bottoms of feet before bed.
- AM: Roll on spine and bottoms of feet before school.
My Favorite Kid's Supplements for Wellness
- Young Living Super-C Chewables - the twins love these and they are easy ways to get vitamin-c into their diet.
- Young Living MightyPro - this is a Prebiotic and Probiotic blend formulated for kids which tastes like a pixie stick and is great for gut health.
- Zinc - I buy this liquid zinc on Amazon and add it to juice or smoothies. This is sweet and tasteless which is great!
- Sufficient-C - the kids love the taste of this "lemonade" and I use it in my wellness gummies as well! You can get the recipe for those gummies here.
- Ningxia - my kids love this antioxidant and vitamin drink! It's also a great way to get them zinc and c because it mixes right.
- Homemade Vitamin-C Gummies - get the recipe here.
Critter Away Spray for School Hair
Anyone else shutter at the "L" word? Oils are a great way to naturally and safely deter pests from taking up residence in your kiddo's scalp. I spray this mixture on the twins before styling their hair for school. While we may not be going back into the classroom anytime soon, it's always a good recipe to keep on hand or pin for later.
Hand Washing & Hand Sanitizer for Kids
Last but certainly NOT least is a practice of good hand washing and sanitizing. TIP: Have your kids sing the alphabet while they lather the soap. This is how long they need to scrub between fingers and both sides of the hands to get them clean. We love Thieves Foaming Hand Soap as well as Thieves Hand Sanitizer because they are safe, non-toxic, and very effective! You get all the wellness boost from Thieves oil along with the cleaning and sanitizing power.
- Keep Thieves foaming soap at every sink.
- Keep Thieves hand sanitizer in every back back and purse.
- Create a routine of washing hands AS SOON as you come home from any outing. We take our shoes off first thing, and run to wash hands.
I hope this post was helpful in inspiring you to create new wellness routines for your kids this school year! If you are ready to bring essential oils into your home, check out this post on getting started with an Oils Starter Kit, I'd love to guide you. Here's a look at our daily wellness schedule, simplified:
AM: Breakfast + wellness roller + supplements
AFTERNOON: Diffused oils + rolled oils as needed + Ningxia drink with zinc and c.
PM: Sleepy roller + sleep oils in diffuser.