HFMD is very contagious among younger kids. Find out some of the ways preschools ensure that their children are kept safe and healthy.
With the recent bouts of Hand Foot Mouth Disease (HFMD) in Singapore over the past few years, many parents, caretakers and schools understand that it is highly contagious especially among young children under the age of 10. However, many are still unsure on the various ways to prevent children from getting HFMD. Here are some ideas from parents and preschools:
What preschools can do:
1. Instead of making it seem like a chore for the children, schools like Kinderland make it fun to learn about HFMD for the kids through innovative song and drama acted out by the teachers. Children are taught hygiene practices such as staying home when ill, using a face mask and learning not to share utensils. Proper hand washing techniques are also practiced diligently as advised by the Health Promotion Board through posters.
2. Practice very strict hygiene routines and conduct health checks before admitting the children into the school’s vicinity every morning.
3. In order to create a safe environment for the children to play and study in, schools like Learning Vision wash their toys twice a week to once a day.
4. Send out email notifications or circulars to update parents on the steps the school is taking towards preventing HFMD and educate them on the different symptoms of HFMD they can look out for.
What parents can do:
1. Always read the notices and circulars the school sends out to keep yourself updated on the situation in your children’s schools.
2. Take the time to engage teachers and other parents from the school in conversation about the HFMD situation in addition to reading the newspapers to keep updated.
3. At home, parents should be role models to children and practice the hygiene routines children are taught in school such as washing your hands often, sneezing into a piece of tissue paper and to keep the house clean.
4. Monitor your children carefully,try to spot abnormalities such as ulcers, spot and rash as well as any change in behavior such as loss of appetite, listlessness which are all symptoms of HFMD.