School is a place for kids to learn and grow while developing social skills and becoming independent individuals. It's also a petri dish of germs and illnesses they can bring home with them.
Classroom activities promote sharing and collaboration in which make it easy for kids to transfer infections to one another. By teaching kids important health habits at home, parents can help to keep the spread at bay, as best as possible! Here are some great tips towards a healthy home and classroom. Remember it starts at home, be that role model.
Teach Kids About Proper Hand Washing
When kids come into contact with germs, they can become infected just by touching their eyes, nose, or mouth. And once they're infected, it's usually just a matter of time before the whole family comes down with the same illness. Don't underestimate the power of hand washing! The time you spend at the sink could save you trips to the doctor's office. Use this four step approach to proper hand washing.
Wet your hands - with clean, running water (warm or cold). Make sure the water isn't too hot for little hands.
Use soap and lather up for about 20 seconds. Antibacterial soap isn't a must — any soap will do. How do you count 20 seconds with your child? Hint: It's about the same time to say the alphabet slowly.
Make sure you get in between your fingers, on the backs of hands, and under the nails where germs like to hang out. And don't forget the wrists!
Rinse and dry well with a clean towel.
Pump Up The Family Immune System
An important part of staying healthy and away from illnesses during the school year is to have a strong immune system. Preach exercise, get enough sleep, manage stress (laughter helps) and maintain a healthy diet. Don't forget your vitamins too!
Have The Right Backpack
Today's backpacks are heavier than every and your child could be using the wrong type or wearing it incorrectly. This could lead to back pain in kids. To prevent this follow these tips on how to choose the right backpack for your child.
Avoid Germ Sharing
Sharing is good for kids, but many commonly shared items can be breeding grounds for germs. Teach children to never share straws and water bottles, food and scarves, or anything that comes in contact with their mouths and faces.
Parents, when you kid is sick, it's important to keep them home and take steps to prevent germs from spreading to others.
Cover The Cough/Sneeze
Always cover coughs and sneezes. Fail to do so can spread diseases. Teach kids to “cover” their coughs and sneezes by coughing into the crook of their arm if they don’t have a tissue. This way the germs don't get caught in their hands and spread to surfaces and other kids by their hands.
It is hard to spend so much time caring for and worrying about sick kids. As spring rolls around, you can expect that the April showers and May flowers will also bring healthier kids to your home and to the classroom.