Keep Your Kids Healthy This School Year: Teach them healthy habits

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September 12, 2019
 Teach them healthy habits
Your children have been in school for a few weeks and are back in their routine.  But there is nothing routine about keeping them healthy in school.  School helps them learn and grow.  It can also be a place to pick up germs and spread germs. 
Do your kids have healthy habits in class?  Are they eating the right things to stay alert and active?  Do you have a plan in place just in case you get a call from the school nurse?
These reminders will help young scholars, and you, stay healthy through another school year.
Sharing toys and interacting with other children helps your child’s social development, but sharing is not always a good idea.   Head lice and germs can spread easily in a classroom.  Teach your children about the health risks of sharing clothes, hairbrushes, hats, or food and drink with others. 
Teach them about germs and how germs spread.  Make sure your children know what to do when they need to cough or sneeze.  Make sure they carry tissues or, if necessary, sneeze into the inside of their elbow instead of in their hands.
Hand washing is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of illness in a classroom.  Teaching your children to wash their hands after they use the restroom, before they eat, and when they come home from school will help everyone remain healthy and happy.
Your young scholars need to be healthy and alert in order to do well in school, so they need to eat the right things at lunchtime.  How can you mix things up and pack the kids a healthy lunch they will like.  These healthy lunch box ideas will help you make it through the school year:
  • Variety is the spice of life – Do you enjoy the same thing for lunch every day? Neither do your children, so mix things up.Use different types of bread for a sandwich. Or, forget the typical sandwich bread and roll their meal into a wrap. Wraps are perfect for kids because they are easy to handle and can hold just about anything, including fresh vegetables.
  • Win the leftover lottery – Remember the great tasting dinner that your kids loved? They will love it for lunch, too. Forget using processed luncheon meat. Create a healthier lunch with leftovers from the night before.
  • Kid power – Get your children involved in planning and making their own mid-day meal.You can prepare the protein, veggies, and other ingredients, but let the kids put it together at school.Put a pita pocket in their lunch box, and let your little chefs assembly with own hand-held lunch.
  • Dipping power – Have you ever met a child who does not love dip?Turn that love into a healthy lunch by packing sliced vegetables and fruit with a container of dipping sauce.Low fat yogurt, hummus and tzatziki sauce are healthy choices.
Despite all of your efforts, the day may come when you get a call halfway through the day that your child is ill and needs to be picked up from school.  When is it safe for him or her to return to class?  These guidelines can help:
  • If your child is running a fever, he or she should stay home from school. A good rule of thumb is that a child should not return to school until at least the day after his or her temperature is normal without medication.
  • If your child seems too sluggish and lethargic to pay attention in school, odds are he or she is not taking much away from lessons, and should stay home.
  • If your child is experiencing a loud cough, frequent trips to the restroom, or any other symptoms that may be disruptive to both your child’s learning and classmates, he or she should be kept home until symptoms subside.
  • If your child is contagious with an illness such as pink eye, he or she should be kept home until a doctor deems it appropriate to return to school.
Patient First physicians are available to discuss school health issues.  Contact Brooke Waller at 571-340-1594 or email  for interviews.
(Note: Editors and reporters are permitted use of the attached graphics.)
About Patient First
All Patient First Medical Centers are open 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day of the year, including holidays.  Patient First provides non-appointment urgent care for routine injuries and illnesses, as well as primary care for patients who do not have a regular physician.  Each Patient First center has on-site digital x-ray, on-site laboratory, and on-site prescription drugs. Patient First currently operates medical centers in Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. 
Media Contact:  Brooke Waller
                          (703) 652-1572 (Office)
                          (571) 340-1594 (Mobile)
Brooke Waller, Community Relations Manager
(703) 652-1572