When Should You Keep Sick Children Home From School?

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One of the most difficult decisions that a parent or care giver needs to make is to decide when a sick child needs to stay home. For many parents this decision may be made worse by the fact that their child may frequently complain of ailments just to skip school. Here some ScannerDoc tips that should help you make a decision.

Find the Answers

When should you keep sick children home from school? This question can be answered by first considering three simple questions. Firstly, you need to think about your child’s symptoms. Is it possible that they will keep her from participating in school activities? Next, if your child is contagious, then your decision is already made for you. Finally, consider if your child may need more care and supervision than the school can provide.

Doctor Speak

One of the most common ailments that afflict children is the flu. In fact, when it comes to the flu, school children are the most affected. The disease is contagious and easily spread in the classroom environment where children frequently come in contact with a sick child.  This is why pediatricians recommend the flu vaccine. Though many parents worry about the effectiveness of the vaccination, better vaccines that match the flu virus in circulation are being developed.

Some of the common symptoms associated with the flu include runny nose, cough and fever. ScannerDoc recommends that parents keep their children home from school if they have a fever of over 100. In addition, symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea are indications of the contagious phase of the illness.

In other words, if the child has a temperature of over 100, is vomiting or has a tummy upset, then it is best for her not to go to school. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the CDC recommends that children stay away from school at least 24 hours after the fever subsides.

If a child suffers from an ailment that is not contagious, such as an injury, it is best to consider how comfortable she may be at school. If medication may resolve the situation then it would be quite alright to continue with the usual routine. If you still find it difficult to make a decision, we recommend that you speak to your pediatrician.

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One response to “When Should You Keep Sick Children Home From School?

  1. Although I do not view the flu shot with your optimism based on the CDC’s records showing best levels of protection within the last 4 years at 51% and the worst levels at 13%, I do agree with your recommendations about when to keep children home from school. The criteria you base your recommendations on is very sound. I believe this will help parents who question their responsibilities and help decide what is in the best interest of their child.

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