For parents of young children, the term “Crèche Syndrome” will most likely be both very familiar and utterly dreaded. Familiar, because the phenomenon – which involves crèche-attending children coming down with repeated episodes of illness – is both very real and very common; and dreaded, because it is something both hugely disruptive and largely out of parents’ hands.
According to Cape Town-based paediatrician Dr Willem Smit, Crèche Syndrome is not a condition that features in medical literature, yet it is “probably the most common chronic condition seen by paediatricians in private practice”.
Dr Smit explains, “Crèche Syndrome is a condition of recurring wet cough and excessive upper respiratory snottiness and secretions in a [day care or crèche] setting in the age group of 0-3 years.”
He says crèche-attending children can get as many as 10 -20 upper airway infections per year, mainly common colds caused by viruses. “During each episode they could have 10-20 days of a runny nose and a cough as well as fever for the first three days (72hours).”
This is not taking into account the often serious secondary infections and complications that can occur from viral infections, Smit points out.
Multiple days away from work to look after a sick child is something no working parent can afford, nor is the trauma of seeing little ones in distress something any parent ever wants to have to endure.
Tried and tested – research confirms results
The good news is that, by taking one simple step, crèches and day care centres can protect the children they are trusted custodians over, and break the ongoing cycle of viruses and infections that afflict them – especially at this time of year. That step is investing in an air purifier.
Studies have shown that using an air purifier in a crèche or day care environment is an effective means of removing and preventing the airborne germs and pollutants that cause children’s ongoing health issues.
According to Healthy But Smart, a social enterprise dedicated to helping people make evidence-based decisions regarding their health, there is a good amount of research that has been done on the effectiveness of air purifiers.
“Recent studies…showed that air purifiers are efficient not only as a protection to the more obvious allergies, but also to cardio vascular health and other hazards.”
The organisation adds that, aside from general health benefits, studies show improvement in asthma management and the health of allergy sufferers when a good quality air purifier – such as those that utilise high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters – is used.
All of PBSA’s air purifiers work by way of HEPA filters that clean and purify the air that is circulated and inhaled indoors. HEPA filters physically trap the tiny germs and particles that are merely recirculated into the air – and exacerbated – by cleaning agents.
In a nutshell, an air purifier’s job is three-fold: kill germs, filter particles and remove volatile organic compounds (hazardous air pollutants that can cause eye, nose and throat irritation, headaches, nausea, and even damage to the liver, kidney and central nervous system).
When it is children’s health that is at stake, cleaning the air they breathe with a proven solution – air purification – should be at the top of schools’ priority lists.
For information on pbOffice’s (a PBSA division) range of air purification systems, visit our Air Purifiers web page, or call 010 300 4893.
- Dr Willem Smit – https://www.facebook.com/drwillemsmit/posts/1061171520655407
- Wikipedia: Volatile Organic Compounds – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volatile_organic_compound
- Healthy But Smart: Are Air Purifiers Helpful? The Research Reviewed – https://healthybutsmart.com/air-purifiers/