Beat the back to school bugs10 September 2012, Welsh Government
Dr Payne said:
"Returning to school can be quite a shock to the system, for parents, teachers and of course children. Relaxing holiday time is replaced by the physical and mental demands of school life and kids soon get exhausted.
"Add to this a sudden increase in contact with other children and it’s little wonder they start coming home with sniffles, sore tummies, head lice and worse."
Dr Payne’s tips for keeping bugs at bay are:
- Ensure your child’s immunisations against all common infectious diseases are up to date.
- To avoid the spread of cold germs, get your children into the habit of blowing their noses into a tissue then disposing of it and washing their hands.
- Teach your child to wash their hands regularly, especially after going to the toilet, blowing their nose, handling rubbish, touching animals and before eating.
- Make sure their immune system is boosted with enough sleep, plenty of fruit and vegetables and enough fluid, preferably water.
- Make sure children exercise daily – in the fresh air where possible.
- Try to help your child through any stresses they encounter by talking and listening to them when you are both calm and relaxed.
- If your child does get ill, keep them at home until they have been symptom-free for 24 hours to prevent other children getting infected.
- Headlice are hard to avoid, and more than one in three kids will get them at some point during the year. Keep headlice at bay by regular wet combing the hair, using treatments if necessary.