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For a Healthy School Year, Focus on These

Summer is officially over for students and now we are back to school routines. The everyday challenge is on, getting your kids ready, preparing breakfast, lunch, homework and getting to bed early.

Keeping them healthy (and in school) all school year long is the goal. So, here are some tips to maximize their health:

Prioritize Sleep

Your Preschooler child (3-5 years) should get 10 to 13 hours including naps. Your grade-schoolers 6 to 12 years should have 9 to 12 hours and teens (13 to 18 years) need 8-10 according to The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) . Sleep is very important. Children who get enough sleep have a healthier immune system and do better with school performance, behavior, memory, and mental health.

Screen Time

Parents are encouraged to develop personalized media plans for their children. Media plans should take into account each child’s age, health, personality, and developmental stage. You can learn how to create your Family Media Use Plan here and remember to communicate your plan to other caregivers, such as babysitters or grandparents so that media rules are followed consistently.

Get Moving

Make sure your kids get physical activities and fresh air. Take a family walk, go bicycle riding take a swim, or go biking. Just move it.

Reduce Stress, Don’t Overbook

Getting the balance right is not easy. Create a healthy and productive schedule for your kids is a big challenge when you have to manage home life, school, social activities, sports, and extracurricular activities.  Always remember, to schedule the healthy sleep your kid needs.

Practice Good Hand Washing

Teach your children good hand washing habits. Have them scrub up for 20 seconds before eating, after using the bathroom, and after coming in from the outdoors.

Don’t Skip Breakfast

No matter how rushed your morning’s routine is, have your kids eat something. They will need it.

Breakfast will make your child better:

  • Better memory.
  • Better test scores.
  • Better attention span to decrease irritability.
  • Healthier body weight.
  • Improve overall nutrition.

Vaccines Matter

Make sure your child is up to date on vaccines and get the seasonal flu shot/mist. Vaccines save lives and protect against the spread of disease.  Use them and protect your family from lost days of school and work.

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