Freeman Medical Focus — Back to school and illnesses

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JOPLIN, Mo. — The start of the school year often marks a jump in illnesses for students.

Dr. Paula Hartzell, Urgent Care, said, “Typically we would see strep, we would see flu and regular viruses. Sometimes a sinus infection, other illnesses that they can pass around when people are in closer contact.”

That could come from spending more time inside the classroom.

“Sometimes when there’s heat outside and we’re closed up in air conditioning. So that just like in the winter months, tends to have, expose us to more germs, bacteria and viruses that we can spread around.”

On top of the risk this year of covid 19.

Precautions include what we’ve been hearing for months.

“Hand washing, keeping social distance as best we can and just hygiene is very very important now.”

Also reminding kids not to share, especially food at lunchtime.

It’s a good idea to create a new after school routine to prevent carrying potential health risks home.

“Leave their backpacks by the door – to have that be an off limits area for small children, to do hand washing – even to change their school clothes before interacting more with the family.”

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