15 Fun Family Game Night Ideas
For many families, game night is a big tradition. That’s because it can be a great way to make memories in a manner that’s largely inexpensive, easy — and most...Read more about 15 Fun Family Game Night Ideas
Schools, playgrounds and childcare facilities are full of energy and fun—but they’re also full of kids’ germs. Any place where lots of kids come in contact with one another is likely to have a high level of illnesses. You can’t shield your child from every cold that’s going around town. But you can do your best to fight sniffles, sore throats and tummy-aches by following these seven germ prevention tips.
It’s important to review the health and safety guidelines of any school or daycare before enrolling your child. Be sure kids are encouraged to wash their hands with soap and warm water throughout the day, especially before and after playing outside or eating food. Ask the staff how frequently they sanitize tables and toys. Make sure the area where sick kids rest is away from the rest of the group, and find out whether or not they tell all the other parents when a child is sent home sick.
Most states require childcare facilities to keep written records of kids’ vaccinations, so ask yours if it has these documents. Also, ask if your daycare accepts children who are on “catch-up” immunization schedules—these kids could potentially transmit illnesses to younger children who have not yet reached the vaccination age.
If anything ever seems amiss at school or daycare, address your concerns with the supervisors and explain your expectations for cleanliness. If the facility can’t change its policies, consider choosing an alternative.
You expect your daycare provider or school staff to keep things spic and span, right? So make sure you do the same at your own home. Regularly sanitize surfaces and frequently touched areas like doorknobs and light switches. Childproofing your home can also help avoid bumps and bruises that can become infected.
Washing your hands is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of germs, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Teach children to wash their hands with warm water and soap for at least as long as it takes to sing the ABC song.
Hand sanitizer is another good way to prevent germs, but be sure you sanitize safely! Only place a small amount of sanitizer in your child’s hands and have them rub until dry. Take the following precautions to avoid alcohol poisoning when using hand sanitizer:
Also show children how to cover coughs and sneeze into the crook of their elbows. While you’re at it, remind them not to use their sleeve to wipe anything, since it could spread those freshly-sneezed germs.
According to the CDC, kids shouldn’t go to school or daycare with any of these symptoms: vomiting, fever above 100°F, sore throat, white spots in the back of the throat, signs of pink eye or severe phlegm-producing cough. The same goes for grown-ups, too. Set a good example and stay home when you’re sick.
Remember that you can’t protect your kid from everything. And in fact, a little bacteria may actually be good for kids; the National Institutes of Health suggests that exposure to germs may ultimately help children build stronger immune systems.
If your child is already sick, you’ll want to step up your germ-fighting efforts to prevent you or a sibling from becoming sick. Here are some additional things you can do:
There’s no fool-proof way to prevent germs, but following the above tips can go a long way in helping your kids stay happy and healthy.