By our Smarty friends at Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates, P.A.
Cold and flu season is almost upon us, and every parent will sooner or later face the dilemma of what to do if their child says they’re sick. Do you send them to school? Do you take the day off work and stay with them? Today we’re going to talk about what to look for if your child says they’re sick.
Does your child have a sore throat?
If your son or daughter complains of an irritated throat but doesn’t have a fever or seem run down, they are probably good to go to school. However, if they have swollen glands or a fever, they could have something more serious, like strep throat.
Does your child have a cold?
If your child just has a mild cough and runny nose – especially if their nasal discharge is clear – it may be okay to send them to school. However, germs are easily spread through coughing and sneezing, so extra care should be taken. Your child should be reminded to cover their mouth, wash their hands frequently, and avoid sharing drinks. Yellow nasal discharge is generally, but not exclusively, a sign of illness. If their nasal discharge is yellow, they have a constant cough, and seem run-down, keep them home and let them recover.
Does your child have a fever?
A temperature of 101 degrees is considered to be a fever, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. If your child has a temperature below 101 degrees, is drinking plenty of fluids, and doesn’t seem exhausted or miserable, they can go to school. If their temperature is higher, it is probably best to keep them home from school until their temperature has been below 101 degrees for 24 hours, CEENTA ENT doctor Jad Jabbour, MD, MPH, said.
Is your child coughing a lot?
A mild cough is probably nothing to worry about. A severe cough, on the other hand, could be the sign of an illness. Children pass illnesses back and forth between each other regularly by coughing. So, if they do have a severe cough, keep them home.
Does your child have a contagious illness?
If your child has something very contagious like the flu, chicken pox, or pink eye, keep them home from school. It’s the best way to make sure their classmates don’t catch what your child has.
Would you like a doctor to examine them?
If you’re concerned about your child’s health, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with your child’s physician.
Dr. Jabbour practices in CEENTA’s SouthPark office. To make an appointment with him or any of CEENTA’s ENT doctors, call 704-295-3000.