When Is an Illness Contagious?
How do you know when a child's illness is in the contagious stage? I run a daycare and would like to take the right precautions at the right time when kids get sick.
Most viral illnesses are contagious before a person has any symptoms. So an infected child can spread a virus before feeling sick. This makes it almost impossible to stop the spread of infections.
Some childhood rashes — such as hand, foot, and mouth disease, chickenpox, and ringworm — spread through skin-to-skin contact. So kids with a rash should avoid contact with others until the spots crust over.
- after playing outside
- before eating
- after going to the bathroom
- after coughing or sneezing
Also, teach the kids in your daycare to cover their coughs and sneezes. If they don't have a tissue handy, they should cough or sneeze into an elbow, not their hands.