TOMS RIVER, NJ, August 17, 2010 – It is the time of year when parents trek to the store to stock up on notebooks, pencils, backpacks and lunchboxes. It should also be the time parents take a moment to assure their children’s health is in order, before heading back to school.
The Center for Kids & Family at Community Medical Center urges parents to make children’s health just as important as that new outfit for the first day of school, and offers the following back-to-school health checklist with important information.
Have your child’s vision screened. A visit to the eye doctor for a comprehensive eye exam is an important part of overall health. According to an American Optometric Association survey of K-12 teachers, 81 percent believe vision and learning are interdependent. And don’t forget to invest in one-piece wrap-around polycarbonate sports frames for all contact sports.
Immunizations up-to-date? Be sure to schedule an annual checkup and review any missed or new immunizations. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) website explains childhood vaccinations, advising what is needed at what age. If you have recently moved from another state, check with a pediatrician to see if your child meets the state’s regulations.
Does your child receive medication on a regular basis for a chronic problem? Any health problems should be made known to the school. School nurses and teachers should be informed, especially if they are the ones to administer the medicine. Speak with them before school begins and work out an emergency action plan.
Have your child’s hearing tested. If your child is listening to the television or music at a loud volume, or tends to favor one ear over the other when listening, it may be a sign of hearing loss.
Update emergency contacts. Make sure your child's emergency telephone number card is accurate and current. If you move or change a number, correct it the next day. The child's physician and dentist need to be listed.
With a little effort before school starts, children will sail back to school healthier, happier, and ready to learn.
To find a pediatrician affiliated with Community Medical Center, call our free physician referral service at 1-888-724-7123 or visit www.barnabashealth.org and click “Find a Physician” on the home page.
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