Tips for a happy and healthy school year
Here are some tips from the National Association of School Nurses to help your student have a healthy and happpy school year.
- Take your child to the doctor for a check-up before school starts: A physical exam may be needed to enter the next grade level or to take part in a school sports program. While you're there, be sure to ask your doctor if your child should receive any shots.
- Keep emergency contact information current: If there is an emergency, the school staff and the school nurse need your most up-to-date contact information to reach you quickly.
- Talk to your school nurse about the recommended and required shots for your child: Your child may need shots before attending school. Some of the shots your child received as a baby and young child may wear off by the time they become preteens/teens, leaving them at risk for catching and spreading certain diseases. A booster shot is recommended to continue to protect your preteen/teen from tetanus and diphtheria as well as whooping cough, which can cause them to miss school. If you do not have insurance, your school nurse can provide information on low cost or public vaccine clinics.
- Keep your child active: Activity is an important part of overall health. Not getting enough exercise can cause weight gain which can lead to other potentially serious health problems.
- Make sure your child gets enough sleep: Sleep will help your child achieve a healthy lifestyle and stay focused in the classroom.
- Ask about school safety: Talk to your school nurse about how the school prepares for disasters and prevents violence and bullying.
- Pay attention to your child's eating habits: Diet affects your child's health and learning potential. Teaching children to eat healthy by setting an example will help them to make good food choices.
- Share your child's mental health needs with your school nurse: School nurses can recommend services that provide prevention, early identification, intervention and treatment of mental illness to help children be successful in school.
- Tell the school if you think your child has a serious or contagious disease: Some diseases, such as whooping cough, can easily spread to others. The school nurse can work with the health department, school staff and other families to help control the spread of disease.
- Have a plan: If your child has a learning disability or a health condition that may impact learning, ask your school nurse about formal health/education plans.