It’s that time of year again, when kids go back to school and start sharing their germs! Each year at the start of school we see a spike in the number of sick families and kiddos. This year could be worse because of the Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68). Although it has not been confirmed in Washington, Seattle Children’s Hospital will get test results back from the CDC this week. If confirmed, there could already be as many as 15 cases in Washington State in kids spanning from 6 months to 14 years old.
EV-D68 is spread much like the common cold and has the same symptoms. If your child has existing respiratory problems, Seattle Children’s is highly suggesting keeping a closer eye on any symptoms that may occur as they are at a higher risk for EV-D68. Regardless of past conditions if your child is sick with cold-like symptoms keep a close eye, if they are not getting better with normal medication and time, Children’s suggests taking them into the doctor. At this point there have been no deaths caused by EV-D68, but several kids have been hospitalized in intensive care, and it does escalate quickly.
Now is a great time to remind your kids about proper hand washing – especially when they are at school! I would suggest sending a bottle of hand sanitizer with them to share with the class, and as always, teach them to sneeze into their elbows and not their hands!
CNN.com did a great brief synopsis of what to look for and EV-D68’s background. Make sure you watch the 90 second video as it has everything you need to know. I have also been watching KING 5 News to keep updated on the local front.
You can also visit our Pinterest page where I pinned fun ideas to teach kids how to wash their hands, what it looks like when they don’t, and how to properly blow their nose, and other fun hygiene games activities.
Good luck this cold and flu season, hope you and your family stays happy and healthy,