It’s back to school time! An exciting, yet stressful occasion for all. Kids get new school supplies, clothes and teachers. Parents get their quiet time back. The hustle and bustle soon subsides, and things run as scheduled. Many other factors come in to play with new environments and routines. You may wonder, will my child be safe at school? Will the stress and pressure take a toll? Here are some things to keep in mind.
Immunizations are usually required by ISDs before kids can attend their classes. There are multiple vaccinations for ages 2 months to 17 years. Some may argue that they cause side effects. If your child is healthy, most will make it through the sneezing and coughing from other students but the more serious diseases like Polio, Hepatitis and Measles require extra protection. To protect your child, make sure they get their immunizations and take plenty of Vitamin C.
Backpacks and back pain
Once you pile all of the technical gadgets and a few books into that new backpack, it can weight up to 15+ lbs. Carrying that around all day can take a toll on your child’s back, neck and joints.
Watch for signs of overexertion such as:
- Muscle spasms
- Spine injury
- Strain leading to headaches
KidsHealh suggests looking for the following when choosing a backpack:
- A lightweight pack: get one that doesn’t add a lot of weight to your child’s load; for example, leather packs look cool, but they weigh more than canvas backpacks
- Two wide, padded shoulder straps: straps that are too narrow can dig into shoulders
- A padded back: it not only provides increased comfort, but also protects kids from being poked by sharp objects or edges (pencils, rulers, notebooks, etc.) inside the pack
- A waist belt: this helps to distribute the weight more evenly across the body
- Multiple compartments: to help distribute the weight throughout the pack
Bullying has gone on for decades but in today’s society with cameras, social media and adult involvement, its more publicized and has greater consequences. Kids can be cruel, even at a young age. If your child was bullied last year, they are more likely to be bullied this year if they are at the same school. You must let their teachers and the principal know so they can watch and protect them during the day. Talk to your child. Are they happy when they come home? Do they resist going to school, other than the normal dread of homework? If you suspect your child is being bullied, contact the teachers and principal immediately. If they don’t act, contact the police. Bulling can lead to suicide as we have all seen in past news, so it’s better to overreact than underreact. StopBullying.gov has some good resources to help you as well.
This type of tragedy has become more prominent, especially with the recent shootings in the last two weeks. Not only in schools, but in any public place. The best way to protect your child is to get involved with the school and its leaders. Help get policies passed for check points, cameras, door locks and anything else to keep your child safe. Teach your child what to do in a crisis situation so that they are prepared. Training, just like you would with a home fire or tornado drill, will help them in these situations. You don’t want them to be afraid to go to school, but you definitely want them to be prepared and aware of their surroundings.
Back to school brings learning, fun dances, football games and family memories. Surepoint Emergency Center and Surepoint Family Medicine are here for you and your children to help make this school year a safe and exceptional time for all!
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