19 answers

Not Sure How I Should Feel About This

I recently returned to work after a nearly 9 month leave of absence due to having my baby in February. During that time, he has been home with me and has one minor cold (runny nose/congestion) that lasted only 2 days.

My son has been in daycare now for 2 weeks. On the second day, he came home with a runny nose and the cold has progressively gotten worse. It started with a runny nose, then stuffy nose, congestion, hoarse, coughing, and now diarrhea (which has given him a nasty diaper rash even with frequent changes and layers of diaper rash cream). Despite our best efforts, along with Tylenol, humidifier, nightly steam showers, and extra fluids, he's still sick. We kept him out of day care today and probably will tomorrow too.

Here's my dilemma - just how upset about this should I be? I'm new to the whole concept of 'group child care' and this is also my first experience with a sick baby. Part of me completely acknowledges the fact that whenever kids are around each other germs spread like crazy, therefore it's no surprise kids tend to get more colds at daycare. I also realize it is cold and flu season. However, despite knowing that he'd get sick from being around kids I didn't expect that it would happen so soon. And, as a first time mom I'm surprised that he's been sick for 2 weeks - that seems so long to me.

Does any of this seem normal to you? Am I just being a first-time daycare mom who needs to calm down and expect this sort of thing? Or should I investigate a little more as to what is going on at the center to find out why he isn't recovering sooner?

Remember ladies - the question I am asking is "Is this normal?" not "Tell me why private daycares are better".

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks to all of you who actually have children in daycare and could answer candidly and speak from experience. While I recognize the potential merits of a private in-home care, the daycare we have chosen is the most appropriate for our child's social, emotional, physical, and intellectual development and far superior to any in-home or simple babysitting option that was presented to us. We visited the pediatrician today and found out he has an ear infection, a sinus infection, and likely a viral infection, and he'll be sitting out of daycare for another 24-48 hours. I did ask her the same question I posed here and she said it was totally normal, and that unfortunately our son started daycare right in the midst of the cold, flu, and allergy season. We'll keep our fingers crossed and keep giving him the TLC he needs so hopefully he is on the road to recovery soon.

More Answers

Hi - I'm glad you asked your question directly (the last line you wrote in your question), so those moms who are always anxious to wag their tongue at questions like this can keep their tongues tied!!!!

I just begun my toddler in a full time daycare a month ago. She has been home babysat since she was born. But b/c my babysitter went out of town for 3 months, we had no choice.

She got her first cold the first week! Now, she's on her second cold. It's only been a month.

This place is very good about sanitizing, etc, but u can't help it when a bunch of toddlers are together, getting on each other. We see it as a way to build up her immunity.

So yes, this is normal, and gathering from the other responses I've read, I'm also relieved to know that others go through the same thing!!!

Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

I am sorry you had to go back to work after being home so long. That must be so hard.....

When a child goes to daycare (or preschool or school) for the first time he is being exposed to a lot more germs than he is used to. Since he hasn't been exposed to many things he has not yet build an immune system up for it. It is fairly normal for kids to get any and every bug that goes around. I really don't think you can blame your daycare for that.

I don't have much solutions for this other than private childcare in your home or becoming a stay- or work- at-home mom.

1 mom found this helpful

I'd go to doc and see if your baby doesn't need antibiodics. It could be just cold after cold hwoever. My son got sick nonstop for over 2 mo when he started daycare! good luck, sounds normal.

This is absolutely normal...I have an 8 year old that was never in daycare when she was little and I think that besides checkups I took her to the dr. probably twice for actually being sick..now I have a 15 month old son who has been in a daycare since he was six weeks old and is constantly getting a cold or something else. I take him actually to an in home daycare and I love and trust his two babysitters totally. They are always so clean but having so many little ones in the same place they are bound to pass things to one and other. I absolutely feel your frustration though because with my son just when I think he is over his cold only a week or so will go by and then another one will come...hope this helps, good luck!

Unfortunately, it seems to be the case and just with any place you bring a child to (gyms, daycares, parks, etc). Gotta love fall/winter. They say it helps build up immune systems but I was just reading that "building up immune systems" doesn't really happen. Who knows. I just started MOPS and it seems like since we started my kids have been constantly sick. My son was just diagnosed with pneumonia yesterday (if your childs cough hasn't subsided... you should have him checked out). But what else can you do... never bring the kids out? We can't do that either. It's hard. Hang in there! Maybe if you continue to experience issues you should try a different daycare or look into personalized daycare. Good luck.


Sorry to hear that your little one is sick. I am a SAHM and I have a 3 year old and what you described your little one having sounds like the smae thing mine is going through. She was on medication for 2 weekes only to end up back at the doctor. He then told me that she just has allgries. She has been on on clartin now since last wed and she does not seem better. She too has the same symptoms. I wish I could tell you that it was one or the other but I am also at a loss on this one. I just want her better and it seems everything I do does not help and we do not go to any group child care. So I also will be seeking advice here as well!

I sure hope your little one gets better soon!

Unfortunately, this sounds pretty typical. MOST kids I know who start daycare get sick the second week they're there. It's just the exposure to so many kids all in one place. I would check the daycare center's Parent Handbook and see what their policy about bringing in sick kids is. It should be clearly outlined and enforced. They should also have a policy about hand washing for staff and babies (especially once they're old enough for finger food). Assuming they have policies and the policies are actually followed, I think the place is probably OK if you feel OK about it.

My kids went to the same home daycare (about 7 kids are there each day, plus the owner's two) but started at different ages. My first child started when he was 3 months old, the second one at 11 months old. Long story short, as soon as they start daycare they get sick more often. If they stay at home with mom, they get sick in preschool or school more often. There's been a lot of little bugs going around (even at work where there are no kids!) this fall, so I say get your flu shots and hope for the best. As long as the daycare is following basic hygiene rules, I don't think that can be improved on all that much - kids who are together are exposed to more stuff. Their immune systems have to go through this at some point, it's just a matter of now or later.

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