Sunday, March 4, 2012

Middle Childhood: Colds, Pinkeye, Germs...OH MY! - Ashleigh Sayles

              For most scientists, middle childhood is children between 6 and 11.  During these years a lot of changes happen for children.  This is normally when children first begin school and start a social relationship with peers.  Middle childhood is when children although still extremely dependent on their parents began to branch out and become social individuals of their own.  Physically children at this age are going through changes; the still developing immune system is still pretty weak.  Immunizations become vital around this age, providing your children with protection from diseases like: chicken pox and measles.  Illnesses such as asthma and pneumonia are also environmental conditions that can be onset by cold weather and infections. The first few years of school for most children is the time when they are most likely to contract illnesses. During play and being around other children who may be sick, your children are exposed to various germs and viruses daily.  Illnesses like cold, stomach virus, pinkeye, ear infections, and flu are common among middle childhood aged children.  Most of which, are contagious and can be passed through sneezing, coughing, or any type of physical contact making it easy for children to contract and pass on these diseases.  To help with containing the spread of these illnesses there are a few things that parents can do and remind their children to do to keep them healthy. 
1      1.       Ensure that your child is up to date on immunizations.
2      2.       Reminder: wash your hands after using the bathroom.
3      3.       Reminder: cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze.
4      4.       Reminder: keep dirty hands away from your eyes and mouth.
5      5.       Reminder: don’t share foods and drinks with your friends.


  1. Children do have weak immune systems and the catch almost anything they are exposed to. Try to keep your child home as much as possible when they are sick. Develop a plan for someone to watch them on sick days if you work or go to school. Don't forget that adults can spread there germs too. so stay away from your friends and co-workers if you are sick. Terry Begley

  2. I like to watch the interactions between children. They do form special relationships when they start school. They are still dependent on parents but they do want to be seen as an individual. They want to start branching out on their own. With that interaction comes the colds, flu and other illnesses. Immunizations are important. Most children cannot start school without being current on their immunizations. Children share toys, school supplies and play equipment. Germs are going to spread and kids are going to get sick. It is inevitable. As parents, we need to teach our kids proper handwashing techniques. We also need to teach them to keep their hands away from their mouth, ears and nose. Immunizations help stop the childhood diseases but they do not stop the everyday germs.
    Susan Davis

  3. (PLEASE FIRST CHECK WITH YOUR DOCTOR IF YOU WANT TO DO THE FOLLOWING)- When my first son was little he was sick alot. I did not know why, but we were using antibiotics left and right. Then one night while sitting in the emergency room I read in a medical book one of the doctors had left on the not give any fever reducer to children UNLESS the fever is more than 103 and you use an antibiotic. I ask the doctor about this when we went in and he said this was accurate. If you closely monitor a fever and allow it ot run its course it seems this is what BUILDS your immune system, assuming it does not go over 103 and NO antibiotics are used. It seems doctors do error on the side of caution and give anitibotics more often than they probably should, but from that point on I monitored my kids fevers and sure enough, without tylenol or ibprophen, etc., their fever rarely reached 103. They started NOT getting colds, rarely became sick when everyone was out of school because of the flue, etc. I am not a doctor, so DO NOT take my word, just ask YOUR doctor and see if they agree. It has made my whole household healthier. - Sam Dillé ps. I agree immunizations are a good thing.