As the summer winds down, parents everywhere begin the annual tradition of checking off back-to-school shopping lists and preparing their kids for a new academic year. An important part of back-to-school preparation is focusing on school health. Here are some tips for making your child’s health a priority this upcoming school year.
- Annual Check-Up
Before beginning the school year, each child should have seen a pediatrician recently. That way, all prescriptions, doctor’s orders and school health forms can be submitted to the school or school nurse before or on the first day of school.
At the annual check-up, immunization records should be updated. Vaccinations will keep both your child and the community healthy, as they prevent a number of very serious, sometimes deadly, diseases.
- Hand Washing
While it is easy to let this simple chore fall on the priority list, it is one of the most important ways to prevent the spread of germs. Make sure your child is in the habit of washing his hands regularly. If your child is sick, keep him home until he is fever-free for 24 hours.
One way to fight disease and stay focused at school is to make sure your child has a balanced diet. She should have breakfast every morning and either bring a lunch or buy one at school. Parents should work with their children to be mindful of food labels, which list both beneficial and detrimental food ingredients.
If your child has an allergy, make sure his teacher and school nurse are made aware of his condition. Leave all necessary medications and doctor’s orders for treatment with the school nurse. If your child does not have an allergy but knows other students who do, explain the condition and have your child be mindful of that child’s medical needs.
- Road Safety
Many children walk or ride their bikes to school. Discuss road safety with your child and have him wear a bike helmet each time he gets on his bike. Have children walk to school in groups and add reflection tape to school backpacks so they are easily seen by cars.
- Sports Safety
If your child participates in sports, make sure she has the right protective gear and that it fits correctly. Be sure to discuss the importance of staying hydrated. Also, if she thinks that she is injured, make sure that she stops playing and speaks to the coach.
Medical Center Arlington is committed to the health and well-being of our community this school year. If we can answer any questions about annual check-ups, immunizations, nutrition, or cold and flu season, please call (817) 465-3241. For more information about the services we offer, please visit the Medical Center Arlington website.
School Health (CDC)
School Health (NIH)