5 Tips to Avoid Back-to-School Germs

If you’re a parent or are around school aged children, maybe at home or even at work then you’re well aware that when kids go back to school, they start bringing home more germs. This is especially noticeable in the beginning of the school year. Although seemingly concentrated at the beginning of the school year, it doesn’t stop there unfortunately. In fact, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine children get at least 6 to 8 colds per school year. Children who attend daycare will have even more.

Parents and teachers often refer to the many colds in the beginning of the school year as “the back-to-school plague”. It’s no wonder why they get so many colds, they are put in tighter quarters, are around more people, they’re sharing supplies, and they’re all repeatedly touching high traffic’ surfaces like door knobs, sink handles, cafeteria tables and trays and more. So, what can you do to minimize the spread of germs and what can you encourage the child or children in your life to do? Let’s find out!

Tips to Avoid Back-to-School Germs for Adults

  • Remember, healthy habits start at home. This means teaching and following through with hygiene procedures like hand washing, covering sneezes and coughs, use of hand sanitizer, etc.
  • Stay informed on school policy – Yet another school year shadowed by the COVID-19 pandemic, distinguishing between a regular cold or something more, like COVID or the Flu, still has everyone on their toes, so to speak. Be sure to know what is acceptable for attendance, when your child can return after illness and upon returning, do they need to provide a negative COVID result, or a Doctor’s note.

Make sure you and the kids get a good night’s sleep. Adults need sleep and school aged children need even more. For adults 8 hours per night is recommended and for children attending school, approximately 10-11 hours per night are recommended. Sleep helps keep your immune system working strongly, and your immune system is your body’s first line of defense against illness.

Tips to Avoid Back-to-School Germs for Children

  • 80% of infectious germs are spread by touch, so encouraging proper hand washing is of the utmost importance. Good times to ensure they wash their hands include before eating, after eating, after using the bathroom, after being in contact with someone who was sick and more.
  • Remind them that sharing is not always caring. Sharing is amazing, but to an extent… because in addition to sharing supplies, toys, and other personal items they are also sharing germs!

Cover Up a Sneeze or Cough. When you sneeze, you automatically want to pull your hands to your mouth. The urge to do this must be resisted, instead, a good practice is to advise that they hold their arm up and sneeze into the elbow. This method cuts down the number of droplets that can go into the air and on the desk for example. It also leaves hands much cleaner.

Another important tip for both adults and children is to stay up to date on vaccinations, including the flu and COVID-19 vaccine. You can make an appointment for vaccinations at Suntree Internal Medicine, our the office is conveniently located in the Viera/Melbourne area.

Schedule an Appointment at Suntree Internal Medicine

If you or your child isn’t feeling well and succumbed to the “back-to-school plague”, schedule an appointment with Suntree Internal Medicine today, our friendly staff cares for each patient and works to get your appointment scheduled, get you diagnosed and treated as soon as possible. Call us today at 321-259-9500 or fill out our book an appointment form. If you need antibiotics, then you don’t even have to travel to get them because we have an onsite pharmacy. Suntree Internal Medicine focuses on keeping Brevard County, FL healthy, see you soon!