Staying healthy while out in public has never been more important. As a parent, it is crucial that you reinforce preventive actions with your children every day to help them stay healthy while at school. These preventative measures will help them avoid colds and the common flu plus other infections. Here are the tips you should tell your kids before going to school.
One of the most important things anyone can do to stay healthy is to wash your hands properly. If you haven’t already, teach your kids how to wash their hands properly with soap and water for 20 seconds. Remind them to wash their hands throughout the day and to keep up with proper handwashing technique. Give them a portable bottle of hand sanitizer for when they can’t wash their hands but need to clean them.
Cover Coughs and Sneezes
Remind your children to cover their coughs and sneezes with a tissue or by coughing and sneezing into the crook of their elbow. If they use a tissue, remind your kids to dispose of the tissue in the closest garbage can and then wash their hands properly.
If your children are wearing a facemask to protect themselves from COVID-19 during the school day, remind them of some important healthy habits regarding facemasks. Teach them how to properly put on, wear and take off their facemasks, including covering their nose and mouth and to not touch the cloth part of the mask when wearing them or taking them off. Remind them to not share their masks with anyone. Also, remind them that they should take off their mask when they get home for the day and immediately put it in the washer or laundry basket and then wash their hands. Remind them that handwashing is extremely important during this time.
Other Healthy Habits
Teach your children other healthy habits and remind them of those habits each morning before school. Remind them to not touch their face, especially their eyes. They should also not share cups, straws and utensils with friends and schoolmates.
Coping with Stress and Anxiety
This school year has been more stressful than past years. Stress and anxiety can have a negative impact on your health, including suppressing your immune system. Remind your children that stress and anxiety are normal but also remind them to reach out if they need help coping. Remind them that talking to their school counselor or their teacher can help them work through their feelings. Teach them coping mechanisms such as calming breathing techniques or writing in a journal, and remind them to use that technique when they feel stressed or upset. The key is to find a coping mechanism that is personalized to your child and then remind them to utilize that technique. Always speak to your child’s doctor about any stress and anxiety that you may not think is normal or is more than the usual stress.
Eat Healthy and Exercise
A healthy diet and exercise can help to boost your immune system. Teach your children healthy eating habits and encourage them to make good choices while at school, especially if they choose a school lunch. Remind them to also get some exercise during recess or their lunch break to keep their body healthy.