The school year is fast approaching and many of you might already be gathering new school clothes and supplies. But, how are you doing with your child’s back-to-school health checklist?
We tend to overlook these things when getting our children back to school but each item on this list is so important for keeping your children healthy.
- School Lunch Ideas: Packing your child’s lunch can be a great way to ensure that they are getting the nutrients they need. Think about making your child’s lunch as colorful as possible with different fruits and vegetables. Switch juices and sodas with water and substitute white bread for whole grain to increase fiber.
- Sleep Schedule: Chances are, your child has not been maintaining a school sleep schedule all summer. The weeks before school starts are a great time for you to practice getting your child ready for bed earlier and waking them up closer to the time they would need to get ready for school each morning. This will ensure that they are not exhausted when the first day comes around.
- Immunizations: If your child is not up-to-date on vaccinations, schedule an appointment with his/her pediatrician to ensure that your child is as protected as possible from preventable diseases. It’s also not too early to get your child’s flu vaccine. Flu season begins in October so getting the vaccine before then is advisable.
- Exercise: When children are in school, physical activity is generally required through P.E. classes or organized sports. Make sure to keep your child active throughout the summer. Limiting screen time is one way to get your child outside and active.
- Practice Road Safety: Especially if your child is walking or biking to school, make sure you practice proper road safety (looking both ways and walking on the sidewalk when available). Children aged 5-14 are the most likely pedestrians to be injured car accidents.
- Make a Sick Day Plan: Do you have a plan set if your child wakes up sick? Have a list of contacts for childcare during the day if you are unable to stay home.
- Prepare for Emergency Medication: If your child has allergies or medical conditions that may require the urgent administration of medication, make sure that the school nurse has that medication on hand and a note from you with your consent to administer it to your child.
- Be “Visual:” If your child has not gotten an eye exam this year, before school is a great time to get that done.
We hope this checklist is useful to you and that your child’s transition back-to-school is seamless!
Article adapted from: https://www.onhealth.com/content/1/back_to_school_vaccine_health_checklist