How to Decrease Spread of Germs at School

It’s that time of year again – back to school. Kids all over America are converging on cramped classrooms just as the seasons change, making schools prime germ-incubators. Colds, the flu, sore throats, fevers, and stomach aches will all be par for the course, along with less common conditions found in schools like whooping cough, head lice, pink eye, and ringworm.

Child sneezing into his arm at school 300x199 How to Decrease Spread of Germs at School Photo

The days of teaching kids to cover their mouths with their hands are over. Experts advise us to cough and sneeze into the crooks of our arms now.

And while experts say your school-aged child will develop six or more relatively mild infections this year, there are some easy and proven steps you and your child can take to curb the spread of germs at school. Dr. Susan Rehm, vice chair of the department of infectious disease and executive director of physician health at Cleveland Clinic, shared these tips in an article for ABC News:

Hand washing – Teach your child to make a habit of washing his hands before eating and after using the restroom.

Hand sanitizer – Your child can keep hand sanitizer in her desk or book bag, preferably with at least 60% alcohol.

Anti-bacterial wipes – Kids can wipe down their desks at the beginning or end of everyday.

Covering coughs and sneezes – If a tissue isn’t handy, kids should cough into their arms rather than their hands.

Of course, even with taking all of these precautions, your child may still catch something at school this year. To find a trusted pediatrician near you, use the Vitals Doctor Finder.