Does attending daycare make kids sicker? have more GI infections?

All working parents who have sent their child to daycare wonder about the infections that seem to swarm around the daycare center.  There is a new study out, published by Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine that dispels many myths.

Snot.  Drool.  Lots of dirty diapers.  These negative visions (and smells) come to mind when thinking about large daycare centers.   But this recent study shows that children who attended a large day-care program before age 2 1/2 had higher rates of respiratory and ear infections around enrollment time compared to small daycare programs.   Day care was not associated with gastrointestinal infections at any developmental period.

These children who attended large daycare centers had fewer respiratory and ear infections once in elementary schools.   From birth to age 8, there was no difference in overall number of infections between children who attended home care and those who attended day care of any size before elementary school.

It seems like (from an infectious standpoint) home-cared versus large daycare center is “a wash.”

Hope this helps.

About drlesliegreenberg

I have been practicing as a family physician for over 20 years--as both an educator of physicians and clinician. From infancy to the elderly, I perform obstetrics and general medicine. I love my career and am passionate about my field of knowledge and my patients. Follow me on Facebook at Leslie Md Greenberg Medical Disclaimer The content of this website is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended as, nor should it be considered a substitute for, professional medical advice. Do not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating any medical or health condition. If you have or suspect you have a medical problem, promptly contact your professional healthcare provider.
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