Whether your child is starting Kindergarten or beginning their Senior Year, here are some tips to help them get back to school healthy, happy and safe.
Focus on Your Child’s Nutrition
- Statistics show that on average 19% of children ages 5-19 are considered obese. Childhood obesity is more common among certain populations.
- Children ages 2-18 often get too many EMPTY CALORIES from sugary and fatty foods.
- Picky eaters should be encouraged to try new foods, and remember be a role model for your children, children follow by example.
Know the Age-Related Risks your Child may be Facing
- Head Lice – children usually come into contact with Head Lice during play, sports and sleepovers.
- Bullying – only a small percentage of children report being bullied. Parents should be aware of common early signs: changes in behavior, academic problems, anxiety, depression and self-harm.
- Vision and Hearing Problems
- Teens Drivers: vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death for teens. Continue to practice safe driving with your children even after they are able to drive on their own.
- Distracted Walking: remind children to be aware of their surroundings when walking. They should not be distracted by talking/texting on phones or walking with headphones. Children should be reminded to look both ways when crossing the street and use the designated cross walk.
- Backpack safety: Backpacks should weigh no more than 10% of the child’s weight. Help your child determine what is absolutely necessary to carry and what can be left at home.
Sleep is Important for Everyone
- Overuse of digital devices causes loss of sleep in children and adults – encourage children to read a book before bedtime
- Sleep is just as important as diet and exercise – most children need between 8-10 hours of sleep each night
- Children should avoid caffeine and sugary foods/drinks before bed
Finally, Be Involved…
- Have conversations with your child’s teachers and before/after school providers. Know what your child’s likes, dislikes, strengths, struggles, preferred learning styles and any other issues that may affect the general health, wellness and safety.
Here is to another great school year with happy, healthy children.