Guest blog by Patient First
Your children are enjoying every second of summer vacation but you need to get ready to send them back to school next month. Don’t think your list stops with pencils, backpacks and clothes. You also need to prepare a back to school health checklist. Children need to be healthy and alert in order to do well in school. That means you need to prepare for everything from physicals to home schooling on germ warfare. Where should you start?
1. Call your child’s school and ask about required immunizations. Different schools have different requirements. Many school websites have a page of health-related requirements.
2. Your child’s doctor should perform a school physical. This physical can help identify health problems, including hearing and vision issues.
3. Talk with your children about germs and how they spread. Teach the kids when and how to wash their hands properly. Also, make sure your children know what to do when they need to cough or sneeze. They should carry tissues or, if necessary, sneeze into the inside of their elbow instead of in their hands.
4. Children fall out of their school day routine during vacation. Don’t wait until the night before school begins to get back into that routine. Ease your children back into their sleep schedule by gradually imposing an earlier bedtime a few weeks before school begins.
5. Have a plan for sick days. Pediatricians stress that you should not send your child to school with a fever. A fever means the immune system is trying to fight off something, and your child may be contagious to other children and adults. Have a plan in place for last minute sick child care. You will probably need it before the school year ends.