Soon enough, summer vacation will draw to a close and the school year will be upon us. That means back to school shopping for clothes, backpacks and other school supplies, but it should also mean making a checklist for your child’s medical needs for this upcoming school year. Some items on your back to school checklist might include:
- Make sure your child is up to date with their vaccines prior to the first day of school.
- If your child takes medicine during the school day, make sure that you have an adequate supply for the school nurse. You should also check to see if the school needs a medication authorization form to administer the prescribed medicine.
- If your child has asthma, make sure that you have a copy of their asthma action plan to give to the school nurse.
- If they plan on playing a fall sport, make sure that they have an up to date physical and school health form prior to participation.
Additionally, you should consider changing your child’s sleep/wake schedule gradually over the 2-3 weeks before school starts. This can be done by having your child wake up 15 minutes earlier for 3-4 days and then repeating this until they are waking up when they would need to in order to be ready for the first day of school.
Remember, starting in a new classroom or school can be a very anxiety inducing experience for most children. It may be helpful to try to tour the school or meet with their upcoming teacher before classes start to help your child get more comfortable. If they seem nervous, asking what they are nervous about and helping them come up with solutions can help them feel more in control of the situation. Also, letting them know that many of their classmates are likely feeling the same nervousness about the new school year may be helpful.
While the start of school marks the end of the summer, it also means the beginning of another academic year full of opportunities and new possibilities.
As always, we here at ABC Pediatrics are always here if you have any questions or concerns about the upcoming school year.