Thursday, September 11

FAIRMONT FIVE tips for keeping kids healthy

Simply said, transitioning from summer to the school year seldom goes by without a hitch. During this busy time, it’s easy even for the most organized parent to overlook simple steps to protect your child from colds and the flu. Despite your best efforts, cold symptoms can suddenly appear at the worse possible times.

The following practical health tips will go far in keeping your child healthy. This is especially helpful when your child is getting settled with a new school schedule and on a different campus setting.

Wash Your Hands
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) points out that improved hand hygiene is one of the most important steps for avoiding illnesses and spreading germs to others. Children need to be reminded on how important it is to wash their hands. Below is an outline on proper hand washing provided by the CDC.

Using Soap and Water
Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.

Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.

Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the "Happy Birthday" song from beginning to end twice.
Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

Using Hand Sanitizers

Apply the product to the palm of one hand.

Rub your hands together.

Rub the product over all surfaces of your hands and fingers until your hands are dry.

Calling in Sick
Even with your best efforts in keeping hands clean, catching a cold is still a possibility. Have a plan ready in advance for times when you need to keep your child home to recovery from a cold or the flu. Keep them hydrated with water and always discuss any medical concerns with your doctor. Medical experts recommend that a child with a fever needs to stay home for 24 hours after the fever ends.

Getting Enough Sleep
Elementary school-age children need 10 to 11 hours of sleep. This can be a challenge during the school year. Taking an afterschool nap, having quiet reading times with no television (30 to 35 minutes each day) and going to bed early will help your child receive the rest he or she needs to effectively manage a busy school schedule.

Exercising as a Family
Make time for walks, bike rides or other outings involving the family. Everyone will enjoy this well-deserved break especially during the school year. Laughter, exercise and having good times also relieve stress and keep immune systems strong. This is a good opportunity to talk with your child and discuss ways to reduce stress.

Eating Right
Eating plenty of healthy food and frequently drinking water are essential for good health for children and adults. Maintaining a balanced diet of fresh fruit, vegetables and meats in the home sets a good example for children to follow for the rest of their lives. Having your child contribute to meal preparations is another way to enjoy quality time together. Point out at an early age the importance of eating a well-balanced diet to sustain good health.

Image Credit:  World’s Children Blog
Contributed by Doug, Fairmont Private Schools

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