6 Tips for Cold + Flu Season from a Pediatrician


If you are anything like our family, you are in serious ‘everyone please stay healthy’ mode. One cold can take our house a month to get over once it passes from person to person. And who has time for that?! No one. No one does. OC Mom Collective wanted to get an expert’s opinion on the best tips for handling cold + flu season, so we connected with Dr Malaika Graves from MemorialCare Medical Group and got some tips from her! Keep reading for 6 Tips for Cold + Flu Season from a Pediatrician.


Q: What are your top tips for parents as they navigate keeping their kids healthy (and staying healthy themselves!)?

A: “The first thing I usually explain to parents is that viruses have always been out there, you can’t protect your child from everything and most kids are generally resilient in fighting infections.  But we can all help prevent further transmission by washing our hands, considering wearing masks in public places and isolating your kid from others when they get sick.

I also like to talk about how your kid’s immune system is not fully developed which can put them at a greater risk for infection. Vaccines reduce your child’s risk of infection by working with the body’s natural defenses to help safely develop protection against disease. Talk to your pediatrician about how vaccines for things like the flu and COVID can keep your family healthy each winter.

Lastly, I encourage parents to have a plan before your child gets sick. Have your pediatrician’s phone number on hand at all times and upgrade your telehealth game with devices like the MemorialCare Virtual Exam Kit, powered by TytoCare.  A lot of viruses present the same symptoms and it’s hard to know if it’s flu, RSV, COVID, or just a cold. This new technology can give your doctor clinical confirmation without the hassle of heading to the doctor’s office and allows your doctor to make an accurate diagnosis, giving you the peace of mind you need.”

Q: Something else we would love for you to address is mental health during this time of year. What are some tips you have for parents when it comes to protecting their own mental health during cold + flu season?

A: “When your child is sick, it’s hard not to feel nervous and scared.  A lot of the news right now focuses on the worst case scenario but most kids are resilient and they will work through infections.

It is also really important to identify your support system. In addition to your pediatrician, identify friends and family that can give you some relief when your kid is sick so that you can make sure you’re taking regular breaks, eating well and getting enough sleep so you can be there when your little one depends on you the most.

A common stressor for many parents is having to figure out how to get their sick kids into the doctor’s office when they aren’t feeling well. Major upgrades in telehealth like the already mentioned MemorialCare Virtual Exam Kit, mean that stressful trips to the pediatrician, Urgent Care or ER can be a thing of the past. Through the MemorialCare Virtual Exam Kit, you can access enhanced video visits 24/7 via MemorialCare’s Virtual Urgent Care. Your doctor can check ears, nose, throat, heart and lungs and make an accurate diagnosis, as well as provide a prescription, if needed, giving you the peace of mind you need.”

I love how simple these tips area. And honestly, my favorite part is that we talked through some mental health tips. It is hard being a parent. It is even harder when your kid is sick and even harder when you aren’t feeling well yourself. Thinking ahead and putting together a plan and solid support system goes right alongside things like washing hands, eating less sugar, and getting enough rest. It all works together! Not to mention these new technologies that MemorialCare is pioneering to make mom life that much easier. At $299, their Virtual Exam Kit is an investment but the device pays for itself every time I don’t have to fight traffic and sit in a waiting room to see my doctor, plus it can be used by everyone in your household.

I hope that these tips reminded you of some simple things you can do to keep your family healthy. And don’t forget that your mental health matters, too! Thank you to Dr. Malaika Graves and MemorialCare Medical Group for working with us on this article!

You can learn more about MemorialCare here and learn about their virtual exam kit here!

*At the time of writing this article, there is a current deal to take advantage of : If you buy a Tytocare device now and set it up within two weeks of receiving it, you’ll receive a $50 Amazon card.  Hurry while stocks last!

Thanks to MemorialCare Medical Group for working with us on this content!