We're participating in the myWalgreens donation program!
You can donate your myWalgreens cash rewards to The Achieve Center thru 2/28/23. At Walgreens, you’ll earn unlimited 1% Walgreens Cash rewards when you shop and you can choose how much to donate. It’s that easy. Whether you’d like to contribute $1, $5, or more of your Walgreens Cash rewards you’ll be making a big difference. It really adds up!
*Walgreens Cash rewards can be redeemed as a donation to designated charities as shown in your myWalgreensTM account in app or on Walgreens.com. Once Walgreens Cash rewards are redeemed for a donation, the exchange is not reversible and cannot be canceled once submitted. Donation is not tax deductible, and additional terms and conditions may apply. Walgreens reserves the right to change the charities that are eligible to participate at any time without notice
Have kids wash their hands frequently at home and school.
Since kids often touch their mouths, noses, and faces, parents should make sure their kids’ hands are washed with soap and water to remove germs before eating, after using the bathroom, when they come inside from playing, and after coughing or sneezing. Hand sanitizer can be used for times it’s not possible to wash with soap and water but handwashing still reigns supreme.
Get active indoors and outdoors.
Kids should get regular, moderate exercise to boost their immune systems. Being active can help reduce cold and flu episodes.
Get plenty of sleep.
Children require between 9 and 14 hours of sleep a day depending on their age. Sleep deprivation can weaken the immune system and increase the risk of getting sick.
Maintain a well-balanced diet.
Provide meals with plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables to help boost children’s immune systems. Prepare and plan to eat foods rich in vitamin C and vitamin D, and avoid foods high in additives, colors, preservatives, and sugars.
Drink plenty of fluids like water or electrolyte drinks. Avoid sugary choices.
Elevated stress hormones can lead to decreased immunity. Give kids plenty of down time for rest and creative play to help lower their stress levels and prevent illness.
Avoid germy sharing.
Sharing is good for kids, but many commonly shared items can be breeding grounds for germs. Teach children to never share straws and cups, caps and scarves, or anything that comes in contact with their mouths, noses, and faces.
Stay home when ill.
When kids do get sick, it’s important for parents to keep them home and take steps to prevent germs from spreading to others. While recovering at home, keep sick family members together, separate from those who are well. Ideally, designate a separate sleeping and living area as well as a bathroom for those who are ill. If families are unable to separate, wearing a mask will help limit exposure to other members of the household.
Ways to stop the spread at home.
Regularly wipe down common areas or high-touch areas with antibacterial disinfectant. This includes surfaces such as countertops, door handles, cabinet pulls, light switches, refrigerator, microwave, bathroom faucets, and toilet seats. Don’t forget about frequently touched surfaces in your family vehicle as well.
If a doctor’s visit is necessary, virtual appointments make it easy to see a provider from the comforts of your home. If you’re unsure whether an illness requires a doctor’s visit, it’s best to err on the side of caution.
Rebecca Lindner MSN, RN
October 23-29 marks National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week
During National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week (October 23-29), the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) is encouraging all Wisconsinites take steps to prevent and detect childhood lead exposure by getting the facts, helping children get tested for lead exposure, and checking homes for lead hazards.
“During National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week, we urge awareness and action to prevent the life-long impact of lead exposure,” said Paula Tran, State Health Officer. “In Wisconsin, we have made continued progress in preventing childhood lead poisoning. However, lead hazards remain, and pose risks to children, in communities all across our state. Working together, we can reduce childhood lead exposure, eliminate lead hazards, and build a healthier future for all Wisconsin children.”
Childhood lead poisoning remains a serious public health crisis. Primarily caused by swallowing or breathing in dust from deteriorating lead-based paint, lead poisoning can cause learning and behavior problems, slowed growth and development, and hearing and speech problems. There are an estimated 350,000 homes in Wisconsin with lead-based paint hazards; homes built before 1978 are especially likely to contain lead paint. Other common sources of lead can be contaminated drinking water from corroded lead service lines or household plumbing; imported candy, spices, makeup, or toys; and adults bringing lead into the home due to exposure from some jobs and hobbies.
Over the past two decades, more than 230,000 Wisconsin children under the age of 6 have been poisoned by lead. Every county in Wisconsin has reported a child with lead poisoning over this time period.
“No amount of lead exposure is safe. While lead exposure can impact anyone, children under the age of 6 are especially vulnerable to lead exposure,” said Brian Weaver, DHS Lead Policy Advisor. “The most important way to prevent childhood lead poisoning is to protect children from exposure to lead hazards, and it’s important to detect exposure early by getting a blood lead test.”
DHS encourages parents, guardians, and caregivers to take action by:
Listening to children squabble gets old fast. Afterall, they are supposed to love one another and be kind. Their fighting disrupts the peace in the household and does not reflect our beliefs about how family members treat each other. So why do they do it? The answer is not complex and actually makes a lot of sense.
Conflict management is an important life skill children need to learn to get along with others throughout their lives. The place they develop these skills is at home with their siblings. The squabbling is functional. Through it they learn about conflict and how to respond to it. They learn to read body positioning, facial expression, and tone of voice and to understand boundaries and the different meanings of conflict words. They also learn how they can affect the outcome of a conflict and the different strategies for managing it. All this is learned through trial and error. Even though it is hard to listen to, parents are best to stay out of it unless there is a threat of harm. A strategy is to tell the warring children that you don’t want to listen to it and to take the conflict our side. It is amazing how quickly a solution will be found, especially in winter! Look for opportunities to mentor your children in conflict management strategies such as negotiating or creative problem solving. Don’t try and provide solutions or tell them not to have the conflict. Remember that your children are experiencing on-the-job training which will be of great benefit to them in the future. When conflict erupts, tell yourself it is better to learn about conflict at home with people who care than somewhere else with others who don’t.
Beware of the Pacifier!
Beware of the pacifier! A pacifier provides a sucking motion that can be calming to a child. However, a pacifier interferes with the free movement of the tongue, lips, and mouths, all of which play an essential role in speech development. Children need to explore and practice the positioning of their tongues, lips, and mouths to make different sounds which are important for learning to produce words. Children who frequently use pacifiers may have more incredible difficulty developing speech skills. Choose specific times and circumstances that you allow your child to use a pacifier. Less is better.
What happens when you get tired?
Parents and children can all agree that we get crabby when tired. Do you know why this happens? It is because we filter everything through a negative lens when we are tired. When we are fatigued, our brain senses an increased need to be on alert for threats that it fears our fatigue will cause us to miss. So, we are more likely to react negatively to events because our positive lens is turned way down. When caring for your tired, crabby child, keep things simple and low-key, following the child’s expected routine. Recognize your fatigue and how you may be crabby yourself. Choose not to react to your child’s mood and behavior. Being calm and nurturing will assist your child to a place beneficial to both of you, asleep.
Parenting is teaching children how to survive and thrive. How to meet life’s challenges, learn from them, and incorporate the lessons into their life tool boxes. Survival training begins early and continues throughout our life. Every developmental stage we enter is part of that training. So, when a young child is learning to walk, they are also learning to pick themselves up when they fall. There is a case to be made that this skill may be more important than walking. Learning to navigate through the ups and downs of life is fundamental for surviving. Picking yourself up following difficulty keeps people moving forward, putting one foot in front of the other.
We parents want to protect our children from struggling and smooth their paths. To intervene so that they are assured of a happy and carefree childhood. But what does it mean to protect? Does it mean our children should not experience unpleasant emotions or struggle with a challenge? Or does it mean to allow them to have difficult experiences appropriate for their age and to mentor them through it, providing a learning opportunity for them and a teaching opportunity for us ? If a person does not learn skills to survive during childhood when parents are there to guide them, they are less likely to learn them in adulthood when they are on their own. This is particularly true when a child has a developmental, health, or physical challenge.
When children learn to confront and work through difficulties, they build self-confidence and a sense of competence and autonomy. Research regarding self-determination shows that children who have obstacles cleared away are more likely to experience high levels of anxiety and depression, lower school grades, and less satisfaction with their lives. Parents need to adjust their level of involvement based on what is developmentally appropriate as their children age. As too much parent involvement is not good, not enough is not good either. Finding the balance is dependent upon knowing and understanding your children and making a conscious decision about how and when to provide assistance. Don’t be afraid to allow your children to experience discomfort. Teach problem-solving skills to help them confront and handle the challenges they are presented with. Don’t set them up with expectations that everything in life should be happy and easy. Be a teacher. You are parenting for the future, your children’s future, a future in which you cannot guarantee that you will always be there to fix the potholes in the roads they are traveling. In the end, your children need to be confident, secure, and independent, trusting that they have learned the necessary skills and abilities to survive.
The Achieve Center holds a special place in all of our hearts. Over the past 15 years, we have helped many children and families. We can't wait to see what the next 15 years will hold.
As a non-profit, we rely on the community's generosity to support our current programs, such as Treatment Focused Childcare and the ADHD summer camp. We are running a fundraising campaign to celebrate our 15th anniversary so we can continue to support children and their families.
Our goal is to reach $15,000. Every little bit helps! Can we count on your support of $15? Maybe consider more or $15 a month?
We know some big fundraising organizations offer a stuffed animal or t-shirt as a thank you. In this fundraiser, all the money you donate is going right to the programs. We promise a thank you, but will ensure the money goes where its genuinely needed—helping families in Marathon County.
Please consider donating today at https://www.uachievecenter.com/donation
Does the individual have difficulty with?
Examples of phrases to use when praising your child.
Some Verbal Rewards:
Some Physical Ways to Reward:
The Achieve Center blog is written by the professionals who are focused on children's mental health.