People of all ages get sick with the flu or flu-like viruses in a number of ways each year. But school age children are at high risk to developing these illnesses and when those children come to school, the situation can get rather nasty. Here is how you can reduce the likelihood of your child and you getting sick and what to do if it does happen.
- The number one way to avoid getting sick is to wash your hands. This needs to be done before school, after each bathroom visit (yes, every single one) and right before touching any food. While teachers and staff remind kids to wash their hands, a healthy fear via a talk from mom and dad can go a long way. Better safe, than sorry.
- Vaccinate. All local pediatricians and many pharmacies offer flu vaccines this time of year.
- No food sharing, at all, especially at school. Again, staff do their best to enforce this rule, but many kids don’t understand the importance and could use a reminder from home.
- Teach your child how to Cover Their Cough. A sneeze or cough into the crook of the elbow is best, unless your child has a tissue in hand.
- Keep hands away from the face, nose and eyes. An uptick in pink-eye is also common during flu season.
- Clean, clean, clean. Donating extra tubs of disinfectant wipes to your child’s classroom or volunteering in the classroom to give it an extra wipedown this month wouldn’t be a bad idea.
- If it happens that your child does end up feeling like a sour sack of potatoes and has a fever, you have our deepest sympathy… but your child does not have a spot at school those days. Should the symptoms begin in the morning, please do not bring your child to school hoping the illness will disappear once your child enters our campus. Our staff is pretty incredible, but they are not highly trained nurses.
- If your child has vomiting or diarrhea, we ask that they remain home for 48 HOURS AFTER those symptoms have subsided. Give them time to regain their strength, get fully hydrated and prove that bug is gone.
- Hydrate! One should never underestimate the body’s need to replenish all the fluid that is lost when ill.
- Know flu symptoms and notify your doctor immediately if you or your child show any signs of being infected. Quick action could result in a shorter or less severe illness.