Has anyone ever warned you about the inherent he alth risks of eating fast food?
Yes, of course! But has anyone ever warned you of the infectious risks of frequenting fast food restaurants with games? Ah yes, there are risks?
Friday evening, 6:00 p.m., the fast-food restaurants are filled to the brim with teeming little beings who play in the games while waiting for their supper which they will eat with appetite. Dinner is coming, quickly we eat! Oops, we forgot to wash our hands… ah, it doesn't matter, we'll wash them afterwards! Going to a restaurant is a real party for children, but a real party for germs too!
What can my child contract in these establishments?
In fact, since the majority of infections are transmitted by the hands, your children can catch the majority of infections in early childhood: from gastroenteritis to the common cold and flu, streptococcal infections, chickenpox, etc. The list is long!
In fast-food restaurants whose "service" is games to amuse children, everything is there to catch an infection:
- Children drool, spit, spit, sneeze, cough, sometimes vomit or havediarrheal accidents in these games.
- Games, even if disinfected once a day, are a vehicle for transmission.
- Parents very often forget to wash their toddlers' hands just before eating. On the menu of course, everything that is eaten with your hands!
- The children are tired of their week. They are then more likely to catch an infection.
What happens next?
Saturday or Sunday the child has a fever and we grumble after daycare! He caught this at daycare! What if he caught this infection while playing games at your favorite fast food restaurant? Did you insist that your child wash their hands just before eating their burger and fries?
What shall we do then?
Avoid fast food restaurants with games? Stay home?
No! No need to hide at home, go to the drive-thru or have our food delivered… But we must respect certain hygiene rules since these places constitute a risk for your children.
First, you have to ask yourself: am I demanding about hand washing? Is it a well-established habit in our family routine? Do not answer too quickly and take the time to think.
Without thinking, 95% of people will answer yes to this question. On the other hand, according to studies, less than 50% of people wash their hands regularly! And half of them don'tdo not wash their hands properly! In my experience (I frequent these fast-food restaurants from time to time), only one to two out of ten families require hand washing before eating in these places… Parents, we have a long way to go to protect the he alth of our children! The first action you should take is to REQUIRE hand washing when visiting public places!
Second, look at your favorite fast food restaurant: do the games even look clean? Is there dust in the corners of the games? If so, chances are the games are not being cleaned frequently! On the other hand, some fast-food restaurants have regular cleaning AND disinfection routines, find out, it could give them the idea to protect their young clientele!
Alcohol-based hand sanitizers, is that a solution?
Yes and no. You should know that hand sanitizers are effective and fast, but lose effectiveness when children's hands are visibly dirty and sticky. When sinks are available, there is no substitute for good hand washing with soap and water. For adults, hand sanitizer is a good solution. Remember that these products should be kept out of the reach of children!
Bon appetit at your favorite fast food restaurant! Remember to wash your hands before eating. Infections don't come by magic. A very small gesture, almost harmless or useless to oureyes, but so effective.