Labor Day has passed, and now it’s time to go back to school… and back to strep throat, colds, stomach viruses, pink eye and any other bug that your child can pick up in a classroom the equivalent of a petri dish. One of the big questions for parents is if my child has strep or pink eye or just fever, when can they go back to school.
Here are some basic guidelines for sick kids at school
Strep Throat – An article recently published this August in the journal Pediatric Infectious Disease, suggests that you can send your child back to school 12 hours after their first dose of antibiotic. This is assuming they feel well and have no fever. Schools may still require the full 24 hours of treatment, but it’s worth a shot.
Pink Eye – If your child has goopy, red eyes and was diagnosed with conjunctivitis, most schools will require 24 hours at home after treatment with eye drops has started. Theoretically, your child should stay home until their symptoms have cleared, but 24 hours with drops at home will suffice for most places.
Fever – 24 hours at home fever free is what I tell parents.
Diarrhea – Especially if you have a little one who attends day care, please don’t take your child to day care while they still have diarrhea.
If your child wakes up with a fever, please don’t given them motrin or tylenol and then send them off to school. You and I both know that you will get a phone call from the school nurse a few hours later, and you will be responsible for infecting a classroom full of kids.
Write to the Doc
Looking for something specific? Write to Dr. Audrey Paul and let her know what topic you're interested in learning more about.