I get a lot of calls from moms who are unsure of whether or not their child is too sick to come to school. After all, if a child stayed home with every sniffle, some would spend all allergy season at home. My first question is usually “What color is coming out of their nose?” Their nose? Indeed, the color of the mucus coming out of the nose can be a good indicator (for us non-medical folk) of sickness levels.
Clear: If the mucus is clear, that is a good! Mucus in its normal state is clear. Allergies can cause an excess of mucus. That is why your nose runs when the pollen is high. Runny noses from allergies are not contagious and are no reason to stay home from school.
Yellow: Now, yellow mucus, on the other hand, lets you know that something is going on! Your nose is telling you that there is an infection of some sort, whether bacterial or viral, but that your immune system is fighting. Yellow mucus is a warning to be aware of your body. If the body is successful at fighting the infection, the yellow mucus will go away on its own. Thick yellow mucus that doesn’t go away after a week or so may need to be seen by the doctor.
Green: Green is the enemy! Green mucus is an indication that infection is winning the battle for your body. A doctor’s visit is needed to determine if the infection is bacterial or viral. Antibiotics can take care of a bacterial infection. A virus must run its course. Your doctor can let you know when your child will be able to return to school.
So the nose can help you know! Or at least give you some clues on how to best protect your child and preserve the health of your school.
By Lenora Cooper of mybabyclothes.com, where the customer service strives to bring you the highest quality service. You will find the most unique baby clothes, stylish baby hats, gorgeous baby headbands and twirly baby tutus.
Photo courtesy of DimitryRabkin