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To be furious that local mums take their children out to play when they have chickenpox?

(31 Posts)
HomeIsWhereTheGinIs Sun 09-Mar-14 16:11:10

I've just heard a woman in our local asking her friend whether or not it'd be OK to take her DD (currently suffering from full-blown chicken pox) out to play in the park. Despite her friend looking shocked and saying no, that the reason children are sent home is so they won't infect others, she responded that her child was bored at home so she was going to do it anyway. I'm heavily pregnant and actively trying to avoid the pox (several nurseries around us have full-blown epidemics) but thinking about it, there are people worse off than me. Anyone immunosuppressed and some of the elderly really shouldn't be exposed. AIBU to think that this woman is incredibly selfish to take her child out and about because it's bored when it's sick?

HomeIsWhereTheGinIs Sun 09-Mar-14 16:14:48

FWIW, I do actually believe that it's good for children to have germs to practice on, so I'm not advocating being one of those anti-bac parents that keeps their child in a bubble. But when it has the pox? Surely a different story?

formerbabe Sun 09-Mar-14 16:17:04

Very irresponsible IMO. I have never had chicken pox and was terrified I was going to catch it when pregnant.

Many countries vaccinate against it and I wish we did in the UK.

elliejjtiny Sun 09-Mar-14 16:21:29

YANBU. My older 2 children had the pox one after the other. They weren't that bad with it thankfully but it lasted ages and we had to stay in for a month. We were all going stir crazy but we stayed in as I'd have felt awful if one of my boys had infected someone. Dreading my younger 3 getting it as I will still have to get my older ones to school somehow.

Northernlurker Sun 09-Mar-14 16:22:24

If you've HAD chicken pox and are pregnant you shouldn't have anything to worry about. If you're thinking of TTC and haven't had it you could look in to paying for a private vaccination. If you're in neither position then yes it is a worry however very few parents will take poxed kids in to close contact with others - and that's how it's spread. I would take poxy children to an empty park in the middle of the day when others are at school for example. Not at a weekend.
Given the chicken pox is infectious before it's apparent the behaviour of parents AFTER the spots appear is almost irrelevant. CP is endemic in our community and puts a lot of people at risk of a serious infection they cannot avoid. Which is why we should vaccinate.

HomeIsWhereTheGinIs Sun 09-Mar-14 16:26:19

Couldn't agree more than we should vaccinate. Actually I'm in favour of vaccinations generally, and think that children shouldn't be allowed to start school until it's done. But until basic statistics is taught at school and people learn how to ignore sensationalist stories in the media, I doubt that will happen.

In the meantime, I'm left worrying every time I leave the house. For the record I'm not a pregnant neurotic, but this is so easily preventable. Gah. Really cross.

Damnautocorrect Sun 09-Mar-14 16:27:15

I was rediculously paranoid when ds had chicken pox, you just don't know what affect it can have on the person next to you. It's just not worth risking it

phantomnamechanger Sun 09-Mar-14 16:29:55

YABU you do know that they are infectious before they even have any signs, right? and you do know you could catch it from anyone in tescos or on the bus who seem to be perfectly well? not just kids in the park? no one would ever go anywhere at all if they were worried about catching/passing something on. the park is hardly a packed soft play centre and if the child is feeling well enough to go out they are probably well past the worst of it and possibly not even infectious any more. how do you think people manage taking their other DC to school, or doing their shopping? not everyone has childcare. sometimes sick kids go out. its only BU if you deliberately take them visiting without telling the host, or deliberately go visit a hospital etc.

elliejj - how do you know who/how many your Dc infected before you even knew they were ill?

phantomnamechanger Sun 09-Mar-14 16:31:09

I'm also all for vaccination.

lessthanBeau Sun 09-Mar-14 16:32:33

YABU as above the pox is infectious for 10 days before the spots even appear, and when they are pus filled pustules the child is usually too ill to go out to play anyway, once they start feeling better however I see no reason to stay in, how many kids at the park at any given time are incubating the pox? you would have to be extremely unlucky to be in close enough proximity to a child in a park who has the pox to get it yourself. Adults very rarely contract pox from random kids, usually they would get it from their own children or a close friends child. I would however not ever take a child in an aeroplane that may well have immuno suppressed travellers on board or an indoor play area, but to my mind if you are in the park in a public area you are fair game.

formerbabe Sun 09-Mar-14 16:32:57

I have thought abput having it done privately for my dcs...this thread has reminded me I need to look into it.

JohnCusacksWife Sun 09-Mar-14 16:39:31

There seems to be much more concern about chicken pox now than there ever was in the past. I kept my children apart from others as much as I reasonably could when they had it but I wouldn't have been overly concerned about taking them to a park if it was quiet and they stayed away from others. And they each still had to come with me to the school playground to collect their sibling etc. I certainly don't remember spending my pregnancies in fear of the pox.

mathsmum Sun 09-Mar-14 16:45:07

i also kept my kids with chickenpox in - you may avoid stir-craziness if you have a garden and friends who would like their kids to catch it before school age (my dd's bf was round every day but little so-and-so waited til they were due to fly ome on a family holiday in canada 7 years later to succumb!!)

almost all illnesses are catchable before symptons apprear (am also in favour of vaccn for cp) but that's no reason to take them out and about once they're spotty and shedding viruses like mad. if you congregate with folk you don't know, you increase the risk of nfecting (1) pregnant women - can have horrible consequences (2) other small children - parents not aware (if it's running thro a nursery, they'll know - a stranger in the park - straight roulette)

(3) elderly folk - possibly in unsuspecting other family - if they've already had cp, this can bring on shingles, which can be a devastating disease for the elderly

when desperate - an off-peak train to anywhere, where you can sit away from others and look out of the window

put them ina buggy to a bridge and watch the trains/traffic (ok - we're near the M1 - it helps)

check if any of your friends would like their kids to catch it

remember al those sermons about kids not watching too much tv - forget them - and get yourself onto t'internet to at least make virtual contact

get dh to buy gorgeous, expensive, time-consuming toys - you're worth it

and as to the park - is there a time of day it's practically empty - that's your time!!

good luck!!!!!

goldenlula Sun 09-Mar-14 17:05:24

Ds1 has just had chicken pox. We spent a week indoors with the exception of the school run, which ds1 had to come on so I put a scarf around his mouth and made him stand out of the way. Once he was scanned over (Thurs) I let him scoot with me to the local shop but because he still looked bad image him wait outside. It is boring but once you know they have it you keep them away from others as much as possible.

ilovepowerhoop Sun 09-Mar-14 17:10:24

chicken pox is only infectious for 1-2 days before the spots come out (NOT 10 days) and until the scabs crust over (normally 5-7days after the first spot appears). I think its irresponsible to knowingly expose others to it once you know it is there.

Exposure to chicken pox does not bring on shingles and it is even thought that exposure to chicken pox can help prevent shingles (shingles is a reactivation of the chicken pox virus and is activated when run down, stressed, etc)

kilmuir Sun 09-Mar-14 17:12:48

If the child has gone crusty then can't see the problem

brettgirl2 Sun 09-Mar-14 17:25:28

I just don't understand if it's such a big deal why we don't vaccinate. As long as they aren't near others I don't see the problem.

CoteDAzur Sun 09-Mar-14 17:28:02

"I have never had chicken pox and was terrified I was going to catch it when pregnant. Many countries vaccinate against it and I wish we did in the UK."

Why didn't you, then?

lljkk Sun 09-Mar-14 17:29:59

Well indeed, BrettG. MN has such a schizophrenic attitude towards wild CP & vaccination. so glad mine have had it & such decisions behind me.

I know mums who take their kids out with known active CP & it doesn't bother me in the slightest that they do.

foreverondiet Sun 09-Mar-14 17:39:06

A few misconceptions here:

1. Elderly: Coming into contact with the CP virus again acts like a vaccination for shingles. Actually when children are vaccinated against CP the rate of shingles in the eldery goes up.

2. When infectious: Children are most infectious BEFORE any spots come (it honk 1-3 days before). Once the spots are starting to dry out they are much less infectious. FWIW my DS spend the entire day 5 (12 HOURS) of his CP with his cousins and neither of them caught it, (most crusted over, one or two active ones) SIL assumed they were BOTH immune, but they both caught it from a child at school (and obviously no one would be at school WITH spots) around 2 months later.

3. Adults and vaccination: If you are an adult (esp a female) and you haven't had CP then you can get on NHS.

I have a friend who is a consultant pediatrician, and he said fine to go to park (ie a big open space) with active CP.

mostlysinging Sun 09-Mar-14 17:46:53

foreveronadiet - have you got any info about being able to get the vaccine on the NHS as an adult? I only ask because I've not had CP and have enquired on more than one occasion at my GPs and was told they couldn't give me the vaccine either on the NHS or if I paid.

I was told that if you were in 'vulnerable' group you might be eligible but as a healthy adult I wasn't. Thanks

formerbabe Sun 09-Mar-14 18:03:02

Cotedazur...when I was pregnant with my first, I never even knew chickenpox was a danger to pregnant women because I never came into contact with kids or those who might have it.

When I was pg with my second, again I never knew until my ds was at nursery and a child there had it and I researched it.

It can be very dangerous to the mother and unborn baby if the mother has never had it before.

No one ever tells women of this at ante natal appointments.

I am not planning to have any more children but if I was, I would take myself off for the vaccine.

TabithaMcKitten Sun 09-Mar-14 18:12:07

lljkk I am so glad for you that you aren't bothered about children with chickenpox being taken out and about. Unfortunately it does bother me and many others. Not because we could do without the inconvenience that chickenpox brings, but because we have children who having treatment for cancer and a chickenpox infection could kill them. It is bad enough living with the fear that the cancer or the treatment could kill them, but the thought that an infection that has been passed on to them all because someone else was too selfish to stay at home for a week is frankly terrifying.

Damnautocorrect Mon 10-Mar-14 16:48:17

It was the elderly, cancer patients and pregnant women risk that was enough to keep us inside for a week. No hardship for us compared to what it could do. It's one thing taking them out pre spots so you don't know, but when you do. Is it worth risking?

Only1scoop Mon 10-Mar-14 16:54:49

Selfish attitude yanbu

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