10 Disgusting Things Kids Can Catch At Daycare (And 5 Things That Can Help)

A lot of parents rely on daycare. Maternity leave policies around the world do not always allow for a parent to stay home with their child. They have to go back to work to make sure they can financially support their children. Then there are some parents who want to go back to work. Having time away from their children and a chance at interacting with other adults helps them be a better parent.

Daycares are great, but they are also home to a lot of germs. Children come in and out of daycares like they have a revolving door, and they are not coming alone. They are bringing in all kinds of germs and illnesses. Even if they are not showing symptoms themselves, they could have enough germs on them to make other children sick.

We have found 10 very contagious things that can be lurking in daycares, and five ways mom and dad can help protect their child.

15 Colds


The common cold is probably the most common illness that is picked up at daycare. Experts say that if a parent has a child in daycare, they can expect them to get five to six colds a year.

This may be one of the more common illnesses, but it is the mildest of them all.

14 RSV


RSV stands for Respiratory Syncytial which represents itself a lot in children under the age of two and appears to be just like a cold.

However, RSV has the ability to grow into a more dangerous illness such as bronchiolitis and pneumonia. It will present itself mostly as a young infant who is having a hard time breathing.

13 Gastroenteritis


This is probably the messiest of the illnesses, and every parent dreads when it comes to their house. Gastroenteritis is more commonly known as the stomach flu. This is something that can easily be passed around at daycare.

There is not much a parent can do to help this pass, other than to keep their little one hydrated with a lot of fluids.

12 Hand, Foot, And Mouth


Hand, Foot, and Mouth is very contagious and can be spread very quickly. It is caused by the Coxsackie virus and it shows up as sores in the mouth and throat, and a rash on their hands, feet, or legs.

This illness may not be serious, but it can last 7-10 days. It is just important to make sure your little one doesn’t get dehydrated.

11 Pink Eye


Pink eye is something we all want to avoid, but it can be very common in daycare because it spreads so quickly and easily. Pink eye is a bacterial infection of the eye, and it requires antibiotic eye drops to clear it up.

It can be cleared quickly, but a child is still considered contagious for 24 hours after treatment has been applied.

10 Lice


Lice is something a lot of parents dread, but a lot of them have to deal with at some point in their child’s life in daycare and school. Lice are the little bugs that can become attached to the little one’s hair and scalp, making it very itchy.

Lice can spread quickly so it is important that mom and dad treat their child’s lice thoroughly before letting them return to daycare.

9 Chickenpox


The chickenpox is something that kids used to get all the time, and no one really thought it was a big deal. Now, there are vaccines for the chicken pox. Daycares do not always require children to be immunized before attending, so chicken pox can be spread at the daycare.

Chickenpox is mostly recognized due to its red bumps that are incredibly itchy.

8 Scabies Just Sounds Wrong


Scabies is something that doesn’t even sound like it should still be around. Scabies is an itchy skin condition that is very contagious and can spread from little foot to little foot.

Scabies spreads very quickly in daycares, and it is caused by tiny mites that attach themselves to the skin. This condition requires treatment in order for it to improve.

7 Scarlet Fever


Scarlet fever is another one that sounds like it is something that only pirates had to deal with. Scarlet fever is an infection caused by bacteria. It causes a throat infection as well as releases a toxin that causes the rash.

This condition is incredibly contagious, and anyone who is in close contact with someone who has it is at risk.

6 Ringworm


Ringworm is one of the more disturbing conditions on this list, and it is something that your little one may get when at daycare.

Ringworm is a mild infection of the scalp and hair and it is caused by a fungus. It is mostly seen in children and it is passed through direct contact.

5 Ways To Help: Education


The best way to help protect your child from any of these illnesses is to teach them about germs. Make sure they know that germs can make them very sick and show them how they can make sure they are clean.

By educating them, you are making sure that they are watching out for germs when you are not around.

4 Hand Washing


This one may seem obvious, but the best way to make sure that your little one is protected is to make sure they are capable of washing their hands.

It is important to make sure they know to wash their hands multiple times throughout the day, especially after going to the bathroom. As soon as they come home, have them wash their hands and use hand sanitizer.

3 No Sharing Policy


When it comes to conditions like lice and ringworm, the best way to make sure your little one stays safe is to make sure they do not share anything.

Make sure they know that their hats, jackets, scarves, and hairbrushes are for their use only. They are also not to use anyone else’s products either.

2 Keeping Your Child Home


This is something a lot of parents and daycares wish parents would do. If your child is sick or has lice or ringworm, keep them home.

This one can be hard because sometimes it is hard to take a day off work. However, it is important to make sure nothing is spread to other children.

1 Looking For A Smaller Daycare


The best preventative measure is to look for a small daycare. In-home daycares are normally smaller and may be a better option for a mom who is worried about all the germs.

The fewer number of children in one place, the less likelihood there is of having excess germs hanging around.

References: sunrisechildrenshospital.com, skinsight.com

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