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Choosing a Nanny Over Daycare

By Charles Hopkins Published 04/24/2006 | Kids & Teens
In a society where it is common for both parents to work parents must take great care when deciding who, and under what circumstances, their children will be cared for. Often families can no longer rely on relatives or friends to provide care for their children and so they must decide: should we send our child to daycare or hire a nanny?

For individuals who want to maintain an environment as similar as possible to the traditional care provided at home the idea of sending their child to a center for care can be unappealing. Why might parents consider hiring a nanny instead?


In a report by BBC News it was indicated that daycare centers can become breeding grounds for antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria - superbugs - that can cause repeated respiratory infections.

Daycare centers have been linked to high rates of respiratory infections - mix that with the use of antibiotics to counteract these infections and the lack of hygiene common to young children and you have an ideal environment for creating resistant bacteria.

Children in daycare are also more likely to develop ear infections and suffer from bouts of diarrhea. While proper cleaning of toys and common areas can improve the spread of infections the constant interactions of young children will still lead to a spreading of infection.

Children raised in their home, or the home of a nanny, will have less exposure to these common ailments.


Parents may be required to pay a premium for after hours care at their daycare. Many daycares simply cannot provide for extended hours and parents must make other arrangements for childcare if they are working late or their shift overlaps the daycare hours available.

Hiring a nanny can be more suitable for parents who leave early or arrive home late and do not want their child to be shuffled from one caregiver to another. A nanny can also take care of a child who is ill whereas daycares often, for the health of other children, refuse care to children who are sick.

Every parent dislikes leaving their sick child in someone else's care but many do not have the luxury of taking days off for colds, chicken pox or other non-serious illness. Having a nanny permits parents to continue working while knowing their child is being cared for in the comfort of home.


While licensed daycares must maintain a balanced ratio of caregivers to children, hiring a nanny ensures that your child will have the personal attention they need.

This is especially true of babies and preschoolers who require extra care and attention. Hiring a nanny also allows the parent to make their own decisions on the food, activities and entertainment they want for their children rather than accommodating the daycare program established.

For parents who desire the special service that nannies can provide it is well worth the time required to review the cost and available services in your area.