April 06, 2010,
L.L. asks from Sandy, UT on April 05, 2010
Daycare Germs for Newborn
I am torn. I am expecting my second child the end of September. My first son will be 18 months old when I have the second one. My son currently attends daycare as I work FT. After my second child is born, I plan to be a SAHM. My first was a c-section, and the second one will be a c-section as well. My husband will be home with me the first week after giving birth and I hope to have my cousin come down to help me out (as I won't be able to lift anything too heavy, which unfortuantely will probably be my first son as well). My son has been at daycare for 3 months now and has been sick almost non-stop. I worry that if I send my son to daycare for a little bit after having my second child, that all the germs he brings home will make my newborn sick as well. I worry about having stuffy, runny noses in a newborn and my new baby not being able to breathe very well.
So What Happened?™
Thanks to all who take the time to help me with advice. YES, I plan on breastfeeding. I breastfed my son for about 8 months. He wasn't in daycare at the time so he never really had stuffy nose issues until he was old enough to learn to breathe through his mouth. That's my biggest worry with a newborn, since they are strictly nose-breathers.
M.W. answers from St. Cloud on April 05, 2010
Your baby will have your immune system still working for him/her so I wouldn't worry too much.
One thing you can do to be pro-active is take your newborn in for a chiropractic adjustment after birth. This will help his/her body be able fight things off as well. (Adjustments for babies are gentle. NOT the same as adults. My babies loved getting adjusted!)
And the best thing you could do is try to breastfeed! That alone is probably the best and biggest way to help him/her get a good HEALTHY start! Breastmilk contains wonderful things that help babies fight off germs, infections, etc. And they can digest it so much easier.
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K.P. answers from Boise on April 05, 2010
Here's just a quick thought. Why even send your son to daycare after the new baby is born? My son was 2 when my daughter was born, and I didn't see any reason to send him away. In fact I think it would have made him sad not to be able to help mommy with the baby. He got to pick out her clothes for the day, grab diapers for me, help swaddle her. We all took naps together, sat and read stories together, it went well. If he needed playtime outside I had the great help of my neighbor/gal pal, and of course daddy played when he got home from work. Sounds like you will have some help coming, so it might be worth keeping your son home so you don't have the worries of daycare germs. Congrats and good luck!
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E.F. answers from Casper on April 05, 2010
If you are planing on nursing( breastfeeding) that would be your best bet for protecting your baby from all the germs. You will have to just be very diligent with your oldest in hand washing and sanitizing after school and anytime before touching the baby.
If your baby does happen to get sick, your doctor will be able to help you know what you can give safely or not. Also there are plenty of natural remedies that can be helpful. The best one I know of is three drops of salt water in the nose, wait for one min and then use a bulb syringe to suck it all out. It is amazing how much gunk you will get out. And it very helpful before feedings.
It seams that after about three months at a daycare or school, the sickness starts to subside. Your oldest will be more immune to things and hopefully not be caring them home to the rest of the family.
But September is the start of cold and flu, your baby might just pick up something from anywhere. I had a very sick three week old, and we didn't go anywhere except for the doctors office. She must have picked it up there. :( We just stayed home forever until she was better, I didn't want her getting RSV on top of it all.
Think about nursing if you haven't already and wash lots of big and tiny hands:)
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D.W. answers from Indianapolis on April 05, 2010
The only way for our bodies to build immunities is to be exposed to germs. That's probably why your 18 month old is sick all the time - exposure to different things than his body is accustomed to.
That being said, our son was 2 when we put him into day care from in-home day care. Our daughter was 9 weeks old. He was barely sick and still isn't. 1 ear infection to date, and he's almost 4. Our daughter, on the other hand, has had 10 ear infections in 2 years (5 since getting tubes a year ago).
Different kids have different immunities.
Here's a hard lesson I learned when my kids were much younger. The day before my son's second birthday and a few days before my daughter turned 11 weeks old, I was diagnosed with cancer. 5 months of chemo basically knocked-out my immune system. I had no white cells for most of the time, and I had to be careful that my kids would give me an infection I couldn't fight. Plus, I worked the whole time going in and out of doctor's offices with sick people as a pharmaceutical representative.
One of the Oncologists I saw gave me this advice when I asked if I should take a leave of absence to protect against germs: "Have you ever heard of washing your hands? Then do it often".
I was only able to nurse my daughter for 3 months because of chemo. My son got the full year. Our pediatrician doesn't believe her being prone to ear infections has anything to do with the 9 month difference in breast milk availability.
I'd just advise having lots of hand sanitizer around. But, I'd also recommend having your older child in day care at least part time while you recover and bond with your new baby. I didn't, and I really wish I had. My kids were 21 months apart, and the older was still so needy which prevented me from focusing on my daughter as much as I wanted.
K.C. answers from Washington DC on April 05, 2010
I agree with the other answer. I had the same issues, 2 c-sections, older one in daycare. I breastfed, and the baby was fine. However, my older son had been at daycare longer, so he was past the sick all the time phase. Practice good handwashing with your oldest, first thing he does when he comes home, anytime before he touches the baby, before he eats. You will need the break when your oldest goes to daycare, and so will your oldest. That will be his time when it is not all about the baby. Plus it will be the same routine as before the baby. Good luck.
K.M. answers from Tampa on April 06, 2010
If your son has been sick non stop why would you send HIM back there, you worry about the new baby- yikes- worry about your 18 month old! Sick non stop- get him out of there NOW. Please don't tell me you cannot- this is your son.
T.B. answers from Miami on April 06, 2010
I'm curious...if you are planning to be a SAHM mom after the new baby is born, why would you send your first born to day care? Of course your son will bring home the nasty germs he will be exposed to in daycare, why would anything change if you say he has been nearly sick non stop since starting day care? Day care is a breeding ground for germs as you are experiencing now. I'm a mother, full time SAHM since the birth of my first baby and I have 3 children. At no time have I worked outside the home with any of my children. It's what you sign up for when you decide to stay at home with your children and I just wonder why you would send your child away, even for a few hours a week to a germ infested place where he will not be loved or nurtured or even taken care of the way you as his mother can care for him. Maybe it's just me, but this makes no sense at all.
K.D. answers from Jacksonville on April 06, 2010
My situation is a little similar to yours. Last month, I had my second child via repeat c-section. My first child was 20 months old. I had some help at home for the first two weeks, then I was on my own during the day. Partially, because of the lifting issue, my first child is still going to daycare each day. She doesn't understand why I can't pick her up. I also didn't want to upset her routine too much. She will continue going to daycare for a few more weeks, then she will be home with me for the summer (I'm a teacher and will be returning to work in August). My first daughter has had the sniffles, but it hasn't affected the baby. We clean her hands frequently with baby wipes. I'm also breastfeeding, but I'm not sure that matters.
I remember that my first did get sick frequently when she first started daycare. But she soon built up her immunity. You aren't due until September, so there is still time for your child to build up immunity.
By the way, don't let others make you feel guilty about sending your first child to daycare while you are home with the new baby. I don't regret doing this. I am glad that I get to spend some alone time with the new baby. Plus, I know that my first child enjoys being at "school" (I don't consider it daycare because she is learning). She has her friends and routine. Plus, when she gets home, I make sure to spend time alone with her.
L.M. answers from Tallahassee on April 06, 2010
My 2nd son came home from the hospital with a cold. My OB and I both had one when I went into labor a month early. He really only had a problem/got angry, when I had to use the bulb to suck out his nose. That is a very important necessity, definitely before every feeding if your newborn becomes ill. Your baby won't be able to breathe through the mouth when feeding, so keeping his/her nose as clear as possible is in direct proportion with how well the child breathes.
As for daycare, I'm personally against it, but you may find it necessary if you can't get help after your DH goes back to work. Try not to feel guilty. Your newborn will be given your immunities if you breastfeed, and if your baby does catch colds, it could build the immune system for later in life.
Good luck, and congratulations on your new baby!
A.G. answers from Orlando on April 05, 2010
I would not worry about it, since you are going to breastfeed anything your son brings home you will be exposed to as well and your body will naturally protect the baby. I have 4 older children and they go to school full time and my newborn did not get sick. His first sniffles was when he went to daycare and I was not being exposed to the same germs as him.
That being said, as soon as my kids come home from school they know they have to wash their hands and face with *baby shampoo*. This was told to me by my pediatrician - that baby shampoo kills everything and was the best thing to keep germs from spreading. They are not allowed to touch/come near the baby until they wash up.
Another idea is to use the daycare money on a mommy's helper instead. You can advertise at nearby colleges and the person would come to help out a few hours a day with whatever you need - laundry or take your son out to play, etc. That way they could help you out with other things around the house as well you might not be able to do in the beginning.
K.G. answers from Sarasota on April 06, 2010
I am a SAHM mom and my oldest daughter went to daycare a couple of 1/2 days a week when my second was born and both of them went to daycare when my third was born (they are now 1, 2 and 4). First, do NOT feel guilty about sending your oldest to daycare/school when you have your baby. My oldest daughters both LOVE school/daycare. It gives them an outlet, kids to play with AND builds up their immunity so that when they start Kindergarden they will be less likely to miss days due to illness. I plan to send my youngest to school/daycare regularly when she hits 18 months (again just a couple 1/2 days). She is also very social and lights right up when we go to her sisters' school/daycare to drop them off or pick them up. She loves being around all the kids!
Neither my second or third had many problems with stuffy noses/colds as newborns. Anything they did get was easily treatable with saline solution and cleaning out their noses with suction. They hated both but lived to tell the tale! They both had breast milk exclusively at least for the first 6 months, which I think helped.
Remember, the sooner your children are introduced to the MANY viruses that are spread through schools, the sooner they build immunity to them. My oldest got through cold season this year without a single stuffy nose even when my two youngest got little colds. My second oldest ONLY got stuffy noses and minor coughs. She never got really sick. I expect my youngest will already have built quite an immunity to many of the little colds that go around and will fair even better when she gets to school/daycare this fall!
Hope this helps.