Saturday, March 1, 2008


I don't know what it is about studying for immunology that makes me want to wax philosophical, but there's something about the area that makes for good discussion. Everyone has different feelings about day care for kids. Some people say, absolutely not, no way not ever. Others have no choice but to use it, though they may rather not. Others wouldn't have it any other way. Everyone has good reasons for how they feel about it, and I'm not about to discredit anyone's opinion. However, one reason that I hear a lot about not doing day care with kids is the higher incidence of illness in those kids. I don't have any kids yet, so I can't really add a lot of insight into that, other than some science. It turns out that the more exposure children under the age of 6 months get to infection, the less likely they are to develop asthma in their lives. The studies show that 6 months is the magic age, after which the benefits go down. The same thing can be said about living in a crowded polluted city. Counterintuitive maybe, but interesting none-the-less.

Personally I don't have any problems with day care. I think that not only the exposure to microbes (which, it turns out, are our friends) but the exposure to other kids is a good thing. And I think that even when day care is not the route-of-choice, kids should get some exposure to our friends the bugs and other babies too. Oh, and the best news of all, early exposure to dogs (or other four legged pets, which will never be in our house) also leads to less allergies and athsma, cool.