There are three ways to use the new PKR:

  1. Browse and click on color-coded boxes that appear as if by magic as you scroll down.
  2. Click on a category for all the ParenTips under that particular category.
  3. Go to the Site Map (link) for an:
    • a) alphabetical list of all ParenTips.
    • b) A list of all 8 categories with every ParenTip in that category listed alphabetically.

Or mix and match! Have fun as you get the information you need!

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Wash Your Hands!

The most effective way of protecting you and your children from infections, especially respiratory and intestinal infections, is to WASH YOUR HANDS!

When school starts every year your child is at risk of catching several respiratory infections before the school year ends. This year they are at risk for the influenza caused by the H1N1 virus, a new virus that has spread worldwide and attained pandemic status. Unlike previous flu epidemics that are most dangerous for the elderly with higher rates of complications, hospitalizations and death, the H1N1 virus tends to be more serious in the young. Then reason for this is that H1N1 is an influenza A virus that has mutated but is close enough to other influenza A strains of the past that older people have likely been exposed and have some immunity.

All influenza is spread via droplets that are expelled by speaking, sneezing or coughing. Ways to avoid infection are:

• Avoid close contact with sick people who show symptoms of influenza. The WHO suggests maintaining a distance of about 1 yard.

• Avoid touching your mouth and nose.

• Reduce the time spent in crowded settings if possible.

• Improve airflow in your living space by opening windows (my grandmother swore this kept her family healthy, cold but healthy!)

• Practice good health hygiene by getting enough sleep and eating healthy.

• Use a mask if you are ill or caring for a person who is ill.

• If you are coughing or sneezing cover your mouth with a tissue; throw tissue away immediately and wash your hands. If you do not have a tissue cover your mouth and nose with the crook of your arm

• Clean hands protect against infection so wash your hands with soap and water (washing your hands properly takes about as long as singing the “Happy Birthday” song twice) and dry them thoroughly. Use alcohol-based hand cleaner if you don’t have immediate access to soap and water. See a picture of the correct way to wash your hands (most of us don’t know how although we’ve been doing it all our lives) at: