Back to school time is one of the most hectic parts of the year for most parents. Along with the mountains of school supplies, stacks of first-week paperwork, and readjustment to the school-day schedule, there’s also the nagging knowledge that you’re entrusting your child to someone else’s care for the majority of their days. What if they have a playground accident? Or get strep throat? You’ve heard horror stories about the new school lunches—are they getting enough to eat? It can all be a little scary, especially when your kids are small.  However, there are some simple things you can do as a parent to keep your kids healthy throughout the school year.

Pack a Lunch

Are your kids making healthy food choices?  Lunchroom meals are not always the healthiest choice for your child.  School food can often be full of excess sugar and processed foods.  If you want to insure that your child eats well at school you should take your child’s nutrition into your own hands and pack a lunch each day. This ensures that your child is getting a truly healthy meal that meets his or her nutritional needs.

Choose the Right Backpack

Back pain and injuries are an increasingly common complaint among school children of all ages, and the main cause of these complaints is backpacks. Middle-schoolers and high school students often carry heavy packs of books through the entire day. Choosing the right backpack and carrying it properly can reduce joint strain and decrease the likelihood of pain or injuries.

A good backpack is lightweight, has multiple compartments so weight can be more evenly distributed, and has two straps. Wide, padded straps are more comfortable and compress muscles less than narrow ones. Backpacks should be worn, not carried, and both straps should be used. Carrying a pack on one shoulder puts unnecessary strain on your child’s body.

Keep Their Immune Systems Strong

Schools are hotbeds of germs, and a strong immune system is the key to making it through the year without catching anything. First and foremost make sure your child gets enough sleep.  Being well rested is the best defense against germs. Second, Proper hygiene is important, especially for the younger members of your family who still like to put things in their mouths. Make hand washing a habit by making it fun. While washing their hands, teach your children to sing Happy Birthday twice. We want them to get used to washing for at least 20 seconds. Use kid friendly soaps and scents, and make sure they can comfortably reach the sink, soaps and towels. Third Exercise! Regular exercise helps boost your child’s immune system.

Just because they’re out of your sight doesn’t mean you’re not watching over them. When you build a firm foundation for health, even the upheaval of school can’t shake it.

The practitioners at Active Health in Park Ridge, IL believe that prevention is one of your most important weapons to staying healthy. We ask our clients to take an active role in our integrative approach to wellness. Our office offers chiropractic care,  acupuncture, and weight loss counseling for your whole family. Call us at 847-739-3120 for an appointment today.