sniffles and coughs: When Is It Okay To Come Back?

This winter (2020) the advice is clear: stay home if you are sick. This applies equally to adults and children. It applies whether it is a simple cold, flu or the dreaded corona virus.

How long do you need to stay away from playgroup, playschool or scouts though?

We have sought advice from our resident doctor and infectious diseases expert to help us all clarify when children with sniffles or coughs can return to their groups.  His advice is paraphrased here:

The short answer is that people can be infectious while they have symptoms. … In most cases, children will be infectious for around 5-7 days (but perhaps up to 2 weeks). Even after people have recovered, some may have a persistent cough for quite a while. This is usually not because they are still in any way infectious, more a reflex to the damage done to the airways that causes them to be extremely susceptible to any kind of irritation. More information about catching and caring for colds can be found here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/common-cold/

So, the rule at Spielwelt is this:

Stay home if you are sick. You can return when you are symptom-free. The only exception is for a lingering dry unproductive cough IF it has been 14 days since your cold started AND all the other cold/flu symptoms have cleared up.

There is no requirement from Spielwelt to present evidence that you have been tested for corona virus and returned a negative results in order to start attending sessions again. (Obviously, you should stay home and get tested if you suspect you might have the virus, though!)

Children who have an asthmatic cough can attend, and are likely to have their puffer with them. Asthma is not contagious.

Sorry to make you stay home when you are busting to join us, folks. We know it is hard, especially for our GAP families needing to get back to work after so long – but you are doing your bit to help protect everyone else and we all appreciate that.