Are you getting ready to place your kids into child care? While you try to keep them safe and healthy at home, day care is another story. The last thing you want is to have a sick child with a bad cold or flu this winter. Because of this risk, many parents feel a bit scared about day care safety.
While you can’t stay at the child care centre all day, you can take a few extra steps once your little one is home. Take a look at the below 9 tips to help keep your child healthy and happy in child care.
All it takes is a little bit of effort for big results. Most of all, these tips will ensure even better day care safety.
Tip 1: Wash your hands and their hands before and after day care
As you surely know, one of the most common ways to spread disease is by contact. That’s why you should make sure to wash your child’s hands before they leave the house and also when they come home.
You never know when germs, bacteria or pathogens can get onto the hands. As a result, taking a few moments for hand washing can greatly reduce the risk of diseases.
By washing your child’s hands, you’re also protecting other kids at day care from the cold, flu, and other ailments. This type of routine hygiene is a win-win for everyone. It’s also one of the best weapons you have in preventing illness.
Once your children are old enough, you can also begin to teach them how to wash their hands themselves for even better day care safety. Of course, this step may be a little way away if you’re just sending your child into day care for the first time.
Tip 2: Teach your child the big 3 “no-nos”
Much like washing your hands, you can also decrease your child’s chance of disease with a little bit of planning. Is your child old enough to learn a few lessons from his mum or dad? If so, you should start teaching them the so-called big 3 no-nos for where they put their hands:
- No touching the eyes
- Don’t touch the nose
- Stay away from the mouth.
Disease transmission usually occurs from the hands to one of these three spots. Because of this, teaching your child to avoid all three is a great way to lower the chance of catching a cold, flu, or other illness. You can even make a game out of teaching the big 3 – and encourage your child to teach others at day care, too!
Tip 3: Help your child learn the elbow sneeze
Another common way diseases are spread is when a child sneezes into her hands. We all are guilty of covering our mouths with our hands after a sneeze sometimes. However, getting into the habit of sneezing into your elbow is one way to reduce the risk of spreading disease this way.
Learning the habit of sneezing into your elbow may take you a few tries to get right. So, take the time to practice – both yourself and with your child! Like teaching other hygiene habits, you can make it into a game. Even better you can teach your child so that she can teach others in day care.
Tip 4: Apply sunscreen for outside days
Many child care centers bring the kids outside on nice days. While the winter season is coming, there are still a few sunny days left. As a result, make sure to apply sunscreen before your little one heads to the center. This will prevent a potentially painful sunburn. Furthermore, it will help them feel great during and after their day in child care.
Tip 5: Dress your kids for the weather
Speaking of cold weather, your child needs to wear clothes that reflect the current temperature outside. While catching a cold from getting cold is probably an old wives' tale, you also don’t want your kid to get too cold.
All it takes is a few seconds to check the weather forecast. You can simply step outside to see what the weather is like. Then you can ensure your child is wearing the proper gear to stay comfortable all day and improve day care safety.
Tip 6: Get your child’s sleep habits in order
How much can you say about the value of a good night’s sleep? As a parent, you probably already cherish the nights where you used to be able to sleep through until the morning! However, there’s much more to sleep than feeling good. Effective sleep can help keep your child’s immune system strong and robust.
As you well know, establishing sleep habits is often much easier said than done. It may take some vigilance, but keep at it. Adequate sleep will help keep your child’s immune system strong. It will also provide some added protection against the disease risks from heading into a new child care environment.
Tip 7: Monitor your family’s diet
Another important tip to overall health and wellness is eating a proper diet. Nutrition is a critical aspect of overall wellness. A robust combination of macro and micronutrients all comes together to help support immune system function.
Remember, the best defense your child can bring into a day care scenario is a strong and healthy immune system. Both nutrition and sleep are incredibly important aspects of the immune system equation.
Tip 8: Keep up with your child's immunisations
Most day care centers will require an up-to-date immunisation record. The federal government has continued to place a stronger emphasis on vaccinations in these facilities. However, you still may have a very real risk of diseases if your child is not properly immunised.
Before your child even steps foot in a child care center, speak with your doctor. You can verify that all the proper vaccinations are administered. That way, your kid won’t have to worry about the added risk of diseases like measles, mumps, whooping cough, and others.
Tip 9: Keep an eye on fever and monitor temperature
Are you worried that your child may be getting sick? If so, you can also monitor their temperature using a thermometer or stick on fever indicators. Stick on fever indicators are easy to use stickers that let you quickly see your child’s temperature with no need for a thermometer.
All you have to do is place the sticker on your child (preferably on the forehead). From there, you can simply read the temperature levels to make sure your child is not developing a fever. With many fun shapes available, your kids will love to wear the fun stickers.