Child care centers can be breeding grounds for bacteria, especially during cold and flu season. After all, many young children know very little about germs and how to avoid spreading germs from one child to the next. Consequently, it is not uncommon for a toddler to wipe their running nose while simultaneously picking up a toy that will played with by dozens of other children throughout the course of the day.
With the odds stacked against you, it may feel as though there is nothing you can do to help keep your child healthy when dropping them off to daycare each morning. However, the truth is, there are several steps you can take to help ensure your child doesn't bring home a host of new germs with them at dismissal time.
Teach Your Child Good Hand Washing Habits
The most effective way to prevent the spread of germs is through good hand washing habits. While all of the children at your child's daycare may not practice these good habits, the fact that your child does can be enough to help significantly reduce their chances of becoming ill.
The problem that most children encounter when it comes to hand washing is that they simply do not wash long enough to effectively kill all of the germs on their skin. In order to help your child overcome this problem, teach them to sing a song in their hand as they wash. For instance, tell your child to sing Happy Birthday to themselves each time they wash their hand. If they continue scrubbing until the song is over, they can be sure that their hands are truly clean.
Discourage The Sharing Of Food
It is not uncommon for children to share food with one another, especially when one food is favored by a particular child. The problem is, your child's friend may be passing them more than just an extra cookie when attempting to share at meal time.
If you provide food for your child during daycare hours, consider sending enough for your child to share with their classmates. For instance, rather than sending a few cookies in a storage bag, consider sending the entire package of cookies. This will allow the staff to safely distribute the treat to each child in the class rather than leaving your child to be responsible for distributing food products to their friends.
If your child's food is provided by the child care center, be sure to check with the staff regarding the rules they have in place for meal time. If the staff have not prohibited the sharing of food between children, you will need to take the initiative to teach your child why this practice is unacceptable.
Child care centers, like A Karrasel Child Care Centers, usually do a great job protecting children. But in peak cold and flu season, keeping germs at bay becomes especially difficult with children. Take your own precautions to keep your child safe.