Practical Dad

Notes on a Home-bound Sick Kid

Disclaimer:  I'm not a physician and I don't play one on TV.  But that doesn't mean that I can't pass along some tips on handling a sick kid at home.

Yep, Middle is home for the second day with a recurrent fever after violent nausea two nights ago.  Some comments.

  • After a kid's been sick in bed with a fever, it will feel good to have fresh sheets to replace those dampened by sweat.  Having to change the sheets is more work but the kid will appreciate it.  Even if they don't mention it.
  • Keep the paper towels and disinfectant solution handy for the bathroom, light switches and doorknobs.  You may also want to wipe down electronic devices - phones, remotes - with a disinfectant dampened towel or wipe.
  • A kid with a fever is more prone to be sensitive to violent or scary imagery.  My new rule of thumb is that a kid with a fever will never again watch NCIS prior to bedtime.  Or any other "alphabet" show (SVU, CSI, etc.).
  • It pays to have a "sick supply" of carbonated non-cola available in the case of upset stomach.  In our case, we try to keep a bottle of Sprite or 7-Up available since it's easier on the stomach and can help keep a kid hydrated.  Always a good thing.  In today's case however, I had to make a quick run to the store since our supply had been used and not restocked.
  • Go to bed earlier since there's a higher likelihood of middle-of-the-night disruptions.  You can fold the laundry or watch TV later.
  • Clear your schedule for several days later if possible since you're likely to get sick as well.  In my case, a three day lag is pretty routine.

The workload with a sick child is heavier, especially if there's stomach or bowels involved.  But it doesn't have to be unbearable.  So good luck and stay healthy.

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