Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Surviving the Doctor’s Office with your Kids

Cold and flu season is upon us (NOT AGAIN!), and one of the worst places to pick up germs is the waiting room at the doctor’s office. Both of my kids have well visits coming up, and it makes me want to cringe at the thought of taking them into the lion’s den (aka- the doctor’s office.)

I admit it. I can be somewhat of a germaphobe. What can I say? Besides, when the American Academy of Pediatrics states, “An office waiting room often presents opportunities for transmission of infectious diseases among patients,” well, I am going to listen and try my best to keep those germs at bay!

Here are some tips on how to reduce your child’s chances at catching an infection at your next well visit.

- If there is a “well section” at your doctor’s office, utilize it.

- Wash your children’s hands often during your well appointment with hand sanitizer. If you know your doctor’s office doesn’t have hand sanitizer available, carry your own hand sanitizer with you. When you get home, wash your child’s hands thoroughly with soap and water. This tip goes for parents, too! You could pick up germs while taking your kid to the doctor's office, too.

- Bring your own toys to occupy your kids in the waiting room. The toys in the waiting room are a germ cesspool. Also avoid toys and books once you are back in the exam room, too.

- If your child is compliant, have them hang out in their stroller while you wait to be called back to the exam room. This will help them to avoid germs on waiting room chairs.

- Try to get at least two chairs between you and someone who is coughing and sneezing. Flu droplets can travel!

- Avoid using bathrooms at the doctor’s office if possible. These bathrooms are packed full of germs.

I know germs are everywhere and your kids can pick up illnesses anywhere you go, but these tips will help you protect your kids as much as you can.

Here’s to a safe and healthy winter!

No comments: