Three Back to School Health Essentials More Important Than School Supplies
Getting prepared for school is more than just buying the right supplies.
In the rush to pick up pencils, notebooks, Kleenex and other school supplies,
make sure to check health matters off your list as well.
Here are three health essentials for back to school:
Wash Your Hands While Singing
Mayo Clinic, good hand washing prevents illness and spread of sickness. Mayo Clinic
recommends skipping antibacterial soaps containing triclosan, as that
can actually lead to the development of bacteria resistant to antibacterial
agents. Instead, have your child rub their palms together vigorously with
soap for at least 20 seconds, or the time it takes to sing Happy Birthday
twice, to kill germs.
Your child’s school requires certain vaccines before they can attend
classes to prevent the spread of contagious diseases. But each state pushes
different requirements. Delaware’s vaccine schedule can be accessed
The CDC recommends children receive a flu shot
every year. Although rare, CDC reported 171 deaths from flu since 2004 and 7,000
to 26,000 hospitalizations in kids younger than 5 since 2010. It’s
important to get your child vaccinated against the flu each year, because
the vaccine is seasonal, meaning it protects against flu virus strains
that the CDC estimates will be most common that year.
Schedule a Physical
The annual physical is the perfect time to make sure your child is virus-free
before heading back to classes. Have the doctor sign paperwork for sports
physicals, vaccines, and the like. Delaware Department of Education (DOE)
requires parents to have the following documents signed before beginning
Proof of Immunizations.
Proof of a physical exam – Call your Saint Francis doctor to schedule
a physical exam and obtain this document signed by the doctor.
Lead test/Tuberculosis test – Be sure to schedule these important
tests during your child's physical exam.
The Delaware DOE requires a second health examination before entering 9th grade. For more information, visit the DOE’s
Completing these health tasks are the best way to allow your child to feel
their best before returning to a learning environment. Call your child’s
Saint Francis physician to schedule a physical. For assistance choosing
a family doctor for your child(ren), click
here or visit our
Family Medicine page.