We are frequently asked how families can keep their entire household from catching an illness from a sick child. As we approach the fall, keeping germs contained is an increasing concern. This time of the year brings cold and flu season as well as the start of school, where respiratory viruses can spread quickly.
You can do several things to keep the rest of the family as healthy as possible. For the sick child, ensure that they are using tissues and that those tissues are being disposed of promptly. It is also important to make sure that your child isn’t sharing cups or utensils with other family members. If you have multiple children that are very young, ensure they are not sharing pacifiers or toothbrushes with each other. For easily replaceable items, it is best to simply get new items once your child is no longer ill.
Wiping down household surfaces has been shown to be hugely beneficial in preventing the spread of germs. Make sure not to miss surfaces your sick child may have been in contact with while symptomatic. This includes things like changing tables, countertops, and bathtubs. While you have a sick child in the home, try to ensure that the rest of the household is staying healthy. Make sure they’re eating well, getting enough sleep, and washing their hands frequently. As hard as it is, try to limit close contact with the sick child.
While none of this is foolproof, these are all ways to reduce your risk of getting sick and making it through the respiratory virus season as healthily as possible.