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Back to School Health Checklist

Posted by on August 16th, 2017

Now it’s mid-August, summer is winding down and it’s time to prepare the kids to go back to school. Alongside the backpacks, clothes, and other supplies, don’t forget your own Back To School Health Checklist:

  • Develop a plan in case of a family emergency
  • Schedule health and dental checkups before school starts
  • Practice bus safety – visible pick up and drop off, preferably in a group
  • Review the route to school with your child and explain potential hazards if they walk, bike, or drive to school
  • If your child has health issues, connect with the school nurse to establish action plans
  • Have your child’s medical history and emergency contact information organized

Nutrition, exercise, and sleep are equally important factors in academic performance. For tips on making healthy eating choices, the USDA has a wonderful webpage full of resources at https://www.choosemyplate.gov. For exercise, at least one hour of physical activity a day is recommended, but make it fun! Dance, sports, biking, rock climbing and the like can be fun as group activities. Children and teens also need at least 9 hours of sleep at night. According to a study funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), poor sleep in teens was linked to higher blood pressure. So, make sure the kids get to count their sheep and establish a sleep schedule with them. For more information, see the MedlinePlus magazine article at https://medlineplus.gov/magazine/issues/fall13/articles/fall13pg20.html.

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