Back to School, Back to Germs
Our pencils are sharpened and yellow school buses are back on the road. That’s right – it’s back to school time. Unfortunately, that also means that school-aged children get sick more often. Nurse Rose Melendez shares her advice to ward off the back-to-school sniffles.
How often do most kids get sick during the school year?
Nurse Rose: It’s completely normal, especially for young children, to get the sniffles a few times a year as their immune systems develop.
- Younger children get an average about five to eight colds per year
- Teenagers get about four colds per year
Why do children get sick more often?
Nurse Rose: Children generally get sick more often for a few key reasons.
- They’re immune systems are less mature and are constantly being exposed to new germs
- Children are in close contact with one another at school and daycare
- Kids, especially young ones, have “germy” habits like putting their hands in their mouths or forgetting to cover their mouths when they sneeze
How can we help prevent our kids ?
Nurse Rose: Help keep your kids healthy this school year with these simple tips.
- Get your child vaccinated
- Teach proper hand-washing (about 20 seconds in warm, soapy water)
- Provide hand sanitizer
- Teach your child germ etiquette like covering their mouths when coughing or sneezing
- Set a bedtime that allows for adequate sleep
- Encourage exercise and health eating