4 Tips to Avoid School-Year Illnesses
It’s that time of year when school is in full swing, and it’s no secret that germs abound in the classroom setting. However, being proactive when it comes to your child’s health can greatly increase your student’s chances staying well. These four tips will help any age student – from kindergarten to high school – avoid some of those school-year illnesses.
Plan for a Healthy Diet
A healthy, well-balanced diet is crucial for your child’s overall health. School days often mean early mornings and rushed goodbyes as your child sprints to the bus stop, making sugar-filled, on-the-go breakfasts all too common.
However, a little planning goes a long way! A quick online search of healthy on-the-go breakfast ideas will provide you with a variety of recipes you can feel good about as you send your child off in the morning, breakfast in-hand.
If your child prefers a packed lunch to the cafeteria, even better! Be sure to include fruits and veggies in their lunch to ensure they aren’t loading up on “filler foods” which won’t nourish their physical or academic development the way well-balanced meals do.
Stock Up on Soap and Hand Sanitizer
Help your student make a habit of handwashing. Have them wash when they get home in the afternoon, and remind them of the importance of washing often at school.
Hand sanitizer has also been proven to reduce illnesses. A study of students in four states showed that regular use of hand sanitizer at school reduced absenteeism due to infection by almost 20 percent. Put a small hand sanitizer in backpacks and lunch boxes. Teach your children to no only wash or use sanitizer before meals and after going to the bathroom, but also after using shared school equipment like computer keyboards.
Exercise to Boost Your Immune System
Physical activity revs up your immune system, so make sure your children have plenty of exercise time. Playground or gym time during the school day may not be long enough or regular enough to provide enough exercise. Make sure children have time at home or in after-school care for physical activity.
Encourage Water Throughout the School Day
According to an article published on Healthline.com, even the mildest form of dehydration can impair brain function, affect mood, weaken concentration, and increase chances for headaches. Since your child spends much of the school day reading, writing, and looking at screens or whiteboards, mild dehydration in students does often result in headaches.
To encourage your child to drink water throughout the school day, try letting them pick out a water bottle they can fill and take to school daily. Remind them to drink from it often and refill as needed to ensure they stay hydrated and focused during their academic hours.
Request an Appointment for Your Child Today
Don’t wait for an illness to strike. Instead, focus on preventative health care for your student and make an appointment for a well-child visit. LeBauer’s family medicine providers see patients of all ages and put your child’s health as their top priority. Request an appointment today!