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When Should I Send My Sick Kid Back to School?

When a child comes down with an illness, the immediate reaction of parents, schools and daycare providers is to keep them home so as to prevent spreading germs to others. While the decision to keep a child home sick is normally pretty easy, it is often difficult for parents to decide when their child is healthy enough to return to school.

The amount of time a child should stay home can vary greatly depending on the illness, so it is best that you consult with a pediatrician in Anthem AZ or a pediatrician nearest you. However, to give you an idea of approximate exclusion times for illnesses commonly contracted by children, consider the following guideline:

  • Common Cold. The common cold virus can be spread during all stages of symptoms; before, during and even after. Therefore, staying home rarely prevents others from contracting the illness. For this reason, you should only keep your child home if he or she feels too ill to participate in their normal activities.
  • Fever. Children with a fever can continue to attend school and other activities unless the fever is paired with behavioral changes and other symptoms. If the fever includes other symptoms, it is best to keep your child home, and visit with your pediatrician in Anthem AZ or a pediatrician in another location for diagnoses and treatment.
  • Vomiting. If your child has vomited two or more times in the past 24 hours, it is highly recommended that you keep them at home. After vomiting has ceased, don’t automatically assume they are safe to return to school. Instead, visit with Glendale child care pediatricians to ensure they are not contagious.
  • Chicken Pox. This illness is highly contagious, meaning children should be pulled from school immediately upon development of symptoms. Children with chicken pox can return to school once all sores have dried out and crusted over. This typically occurs in about a week’s time.
  • Lice. Children with lice can usually return to school immediately following treatment with a medicated shampoo. Keep in mind, however, that many schools and daycares have a no-nit policy, meaning every nit (egg) must be removed prior to a child’s return. For this reason, it is essential that you thoroughly examine your child’s hair for lice and nits before allowing them to return to their normal routine.

While the above does give you an estimated timeline for common illnesses, it is, once again, best that you visit with a qualified pediatrician to ensure that your child is healthy and no longer contagious after contraction of any illness.

If you are in need of treatment and medical advice for your sick child, visit the friendly, compassionate pediatricians of Pediatrix. Our talented team offers expert medical care to children of all ages in a warm, welcoming environment. In addition to diagnoses and treatment, we also offer preventative care, such as immunization screenings, to help keep your child healthy. To schedule an appointment with one of our top pediatricians, call Pediatrix at (602) 866-0550 or contact us online.

Posted in Blog on May 16th, 2014