How to make your child’s health a top priority this school year

Child Health
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It might be hard to believe, but another school year is here. Maybe your child has started already, or maybe it’s just around the corner for you. Either way, as kids head back to the classroom, it’s important to prioritize health and wellness. 

While most schools are “getting back to normal” in a post-COVID world, it’s still important to keep your child as safe as possible from germs and potential viruses. It’s also essential to prepare them for normal bodily changes, including losing teeth and growth spurts. 

So, what can you do to make your child’s health a top priority this school year? 

Prepare for common conditions

Germs are everywhere, and you might not be able to prevent your child from getting the common cold or flu. However, you can prepare them from some notable conditions, like head lice. 

Unfortunately, lice can run rampant in school environments. If one child has it, it can quickly spread, and you can’t control that. However, you can remedy the issue quickly and keep your child from spreading it by identifying head lice symptoms. Some of the most common include: 

  • Itching
  • Sores on the head
  • Feeling something moving on the head
  • Sleeplessness

Have a lice comb at home, and be sure to wash all linens, towels, and clothing quickly if your child is exposed. 

Keep up with appointments

One of the best ways to keep your child healthy is to make sure they attend wellness visits regularly. Skipping regular doctor’s appointments can cause your child to miss out on important screenings designed to keep them healthy and monitor their well-being. If you’re busy trying to juggle work, child care, and other aspects of a busy schedule, you might not think you have time for your child’s doctor’s appointment. However, it’s essential to prioritize them and keep track of their medical appointments and needs. 

Write down appointment information upon scheduling. Opt-in for reminders from the office. Put the appointment in your phone or on any other calendars you frequently lose. By staying organized and keeping appointments, you’ll be able to closely keep an eye on your child’s health and growth progress. 

Educate your child

Depending on your child’s age, simply talking to them about the importance of staying healthy can make a big difference. Everything is a learning opportunity, and your kids will take that knowledge with them in and out of the classroom. 

For example, let your child know what you’re packing them for lunch each day, and why each ingredient is good for them. That shiny red apple? It’s great for their teeth. A peanut butter sandwich on whole-wheat bread? It will give them energy and the protein from the peanuts will make them strong. They’ll love learning how to keep their body healthy, and they’re more likely to make better choices.  

You should also serve as a role model for staying healthy by doing things like: 

It might not always seem like your child is watching, but they look up to you and want to model their behaviors after you more than you realize. By modeling healthy habits, your child is more likely to adopt those habits when they’re in school and other places away from home. 

While you can’t protect your child from every potential germ and virus, you can do your part to make their health a priority this school year with some of these suggestions. 

By Charlie Fletcher