Health Tip: When to Keep Your Child Home

Prevent the spread of illness at day care

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(HealthDay News) -- Child-care centers are often breeding grounds for germs.

Frequent hand washing -- especially after your child has used the bathroom -- is a way to reduce the spread of disease. But parents can do more by keeping sick children home when the youngsters are sick.

Here are suggestions, courtesy of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, on when to keep your child home:

  • If your child has a fever of 100 degrees or higher, you should not send him to day care. He should stay home until he has not had a fever for at least 24 hours.
  • If other children at the day-care center have contagious illnesses such as strep throat, chickenpox or pinkeye, keep him home to avoid exposing him to these germs.
  • Keep your child home for one to two days if he has been prescribed antibiotics.
  • Don't send your child to day care if he is vomiting or has diarrhea.
  • If your child won't eat or drink, has a dry mouth, sunken eyes, unusual crying, weakness or fatigue, take him to a doctor to see if he has a contagious illness or infection.

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