What are germs? Are they all bad? Kids want to know.
Germs are bacteria and viruses. But not all are bad.
Human beings live with and are surrounded by billions of bacteria and viruses. Some are good and help our bodies, but some do make us sick. I want you to know and remember, the human body does not want to be sick and has many ways to prevent the “bad” germs into our body.
Lucky for us — and not so lucky for the bad bugs — getting into the human body is not easy. These bug invaders will try to get through in many ways: through the skin, nose, mouth, ears or eyes. However, the body’s immune system has incredible defense mechanisms designed to keep the invaders out. The skin is thick and hard to penetrate; the nose has cilia (fine little hairs) and goopy mucus that trap dirt and bugs; the eyes have tears that wash them away, and the mouth produces saliva and other chemicals the bugs do not like. These are the immune system’s first line of defense.
What are bacteria?
Bacteria are living organisms that are super tiny, so small that you need a microscope to see them. They can live in a variety of places like the soil, the ocean and inside the human digestive system. They function to help humans turn milk into yogurt and help out digesting food.
However, they can also make us sick. They can cause ear infections, sore throats like tonsillitis or strep throat, and lung infections like pneumonia.
What are viruses?
Viruses are typically even smaller than bacteria. They are unable to live to their full potential without a host and therefore can infect humans, animals, and even plants. Viruses are protected with an outer protein layer and are made up of genetic materials like DNA and RNA.
They will not live very long unless in a host. However, they can hang out for a short time on door handles, countertops, clothes and other items. Viruses cause chickenpox, measles, flu, cold sores, and warts.
What are the best ways to protect yourself against germs?
Hygiene! Plus, good nourishing food and laughing and d support your immune system.
- Wash your hands
- Try your best not to touch your face ( the nose, mouth, and ears are good ways for germs to get into the body)
- Cover your cough and sneeze with a tissue or inside of your elbow
- Eat a lot of whole colorful foods
- Drink plenty of water
- Move your body exercise
To learn more, click here and receive a PDF ebook copy of Human Body Detectives: Battle with the Bugs. It’s an educational yet entertaining journey through the immune system. It will help explain to children how their immune system works and how they can support it.