Failing to prepare is preparing to fail as I was once told! Ok so obviously you don’t need to prepare for every worst case scenario but it is a good idea to use the back to school deadline as an opportunity to check your supplies and assess your child’s health! This is just a short little list of things to think about at this time of year no matter how old your little one is! I won’t lie I got a little carried away with myself thinking about my own household so not everything on the list is related to health…but useful none the less!
- Are you up to date with vaccinations?
- Are you up to date with public health nurse assessments for younger kids or those in ongoing care?
- Head lice Prevention – Are you ready? Check out my guide here! Start telling little ladies who like to wear their hair down that in school they really do have to wear it up – I tell mine it’s so that they can hear and play better but in reality it’s a vain attempt to stop little critters hopping onto their luscious locks! My princesses need plenty of warning and negotiations on these sort of matters so planting the seed early on that there’s a new rule coming is no harm!!
- Keep everyone fighting fit by checking out the best of children’s multivitamins in my simple free comparison chart by clicking here!
- Does your little one have to bring in a small wash bag to school with liquid soap and a face cloth? Not all schools require this but some do!
- Is your child’s current bedtime routine suitable for term time? Many kids will have been staying up later and rising later during the summer so now is the time to start to move things back to normal – even ten minutes a day can be a lot less noticeable for pre-schoolers and infants than a dramatic change on August 29th! Being ready can stop a lot of the arguments nearer the time!
- Do you have a suitable lunch box and drinking bottle? Make sure the bottle doesn’t leak if upside down!
- Can your child open the little containers or boxes you will be giving them by themselves – if not now is a good time to practice! Also help them to learn to peel their own mandarins, bananas and that sort of thing! Lids on yogurts and custards can also take practice!
- If you have been letting your child watch tv in the morning and this will no longer be possible during the back to school rush then get them used to the idea that mornings will be more structured. I’m not a fan of morning TV for my own crew as it drives them demented (I’m not saying it never happens!!) for the day but for those of you who have little ones who behave well after short TV sessions in the morning, you may want to get them used to the idea of that being a holiday only thing!
- Do you need to book your child into any activities or clubs? Exercise is so important for little ones and fresh air is great for them so try to ensure they will have enough outside play time once term time begins again!
- Does your child need vitamin D3 supplementation? If we have another long winter it may we worth considering a supplement – read more about this here!
- Have you all of the body washes, shampoo etc you need for the swim bag? I love the child’s farm 3 in 1 swim as it does hair and body for everyone in our sensitive house – even my own hair and I’d be fussy about shampoo! Smells delicious and leaves a great shine!
- Check toothbrushes aren’t too worn and that you’ve enough toothpaste in to get you through the first chaotic weeks!
- Teach kids about coughing into the crook of their elbows so as not to spread germs. Teach them to sneeze into tissues and bin them to minimise risk of spreading infection. Some mums like to give their kids an antibacterial hand gel. I’m not that emphatic about it – but maybe I will be by the time October comes around!!
- Make sure all of their shoes and uniform are fitting correctly. Shoes which are too tight or badly fitting socks can cause ingrown toenails and worse. Remember they will be running around having great fun so comfort is paramount! Don’t forget to pop on name tags!
- Finally – I wish someone would tell first time junior infant parents (like me last year) that their school bag needs to fit a full A4 file. Loads of the bags marketed at this age group are not big enough for their folder and you end up having to buy a new one!! Ok clearly that point is more a personal rant than medical information but I do like to cover the practical aspects also!!!!
- If you have a child due back to the doctor at some point for a routine appointment, for example for a review of asthma etc, it’s a good idea to book in now whilst its quiet instead of chasing like a headless chicken during term time!
Speaking of respiratory health I’m running my first ever WonderBaba webinar later this year on ‘Respiratory Health & Wellness for your Baby and Child this winter’. This will be a 20 minute webinar on the causes of coughs and colds, the different types and the best treatments for the different age groups. I’ll focus particularly on croup, bronchiolitis and asthma as well as how to protect your baby and child’s respiratory health every day. There will also be a 20 minute Q&A sessions at the end.
If you are interested in signing up for this free webinar please register your interest here and I’ll send you on further details in September:
Ok I think that covers most things! Remember to factor in lots of quiet down for them time in the early weeks after they go back ( in the morning for you!!!) because they will be wrecked from the change in pace in their routines! Doing things like making jigsaws, threading beads, reading stories and playing lego can all help unwind them.
I hope you have found this article helpful and if you have any questions at all please don’t hesitate to contact me by sending a private message to the WonderBaba facebook page or my website contact page or by calling me (Sheena) at Milltown totalhealth Pharmacy in Dublin 6 on 012600262.