The end of summer means back-to-school shopping lists and excitement. Your kids will be glad to pick out new outfits, notebooks, and backpacks. But going back-to-school also means scheduling annual check-ups for your children. Keep these tips in mind at your child’s doctor’s appointment and as you prepare for the upcoming school year.
Doctor’s office: Make your appointment early. You won’t be the only family trying to get into the office at the end of summer. Make sure there is ample time between the appointment and the first day of school in case you need to reschedule or have a second visit.
Get a list of required immunizations and paperwork from your school. Most schools will not allow students to begin classes without proof of immunization. Some of the necessary shots may include chickenpox, hepatitis B, and booster shots. Some immunizations must be given in a certain time period related to a child’s birthday, so make sure your appointment date will work for those requirements.
Current Information: Make sure all emergency information for your child is accurate and up-to-date. If you have had any changes in address, phone number, insurance, doctor, medication, allergies, health issues, or custody, be sure to inform the school and have the record updated. Medications taken at school must be in a clearly marked pharmacy bottle. Even medications taken only at home should be on file with the school nurse.
Vision Care: Many children struggle in school due to vision problems. They may not even realize this is the reason. Your child’s eyes should be checked each year to ensure he or she can see the classroom materials. One in every 20 children may have vision problems in at least one eye.
Hearing Tests: Your pediatrician should be able to conduct a hearing test. Many schools do yearly hearing screenings, but they may not occur at the very start of school. If you child has any problems with hearing, you want to resolve it right away. Your child could miss valuable instruction or even be in danger if he or she cannot hear well.
Sports: If your child will be involved in any school sports, let your pediatrician know before the visit. There may be additional forms or tests required by the school sports program.
Other Tips: Discuss proper nutrition with your child, and work together to prepare healthy lunches and snacks. Teach your child to make good choices in the lunchroom or at the vending machine. As you shop for a backpack, make sure it has wide padded straps. Help your child organize it to minimize weight and distribute heavy items evenly. You child can have serious side effects from a backpack that is too heavy.
Are you looking for a physician before the school year starts? We can help you find one either by calling 940-898-0629 or by going online here. For any questions about healthcare services at Denton Regional Medical Center please visit our website or contact us online.
Back To School Tips (American Academy of Pediatrics)