Winter is Coming: Are the Kids Healthy?

Some tips to keep your kids happy well into semester two.

If you’re a parent to a child at school, you might be relieved that semester one is almost done. And whilst we can’t avoid the odd sick day, there are some tried and true ways to help protect your kids from the nasties of the playground.

Head lice

These tiny blood-sucking critters spread through casual contact with a person who has them. The lice are most commonly found on the scalp, often behind the ears. However, they can also infest eyelashes and eyebrows.

Even though they are quite common, head lice may come as a shock to some parents. But don’t fret, and don’t feel the need to jump into chemical treatments. While these can do the trick, wet combing the hair is actually just as effective.

What is wet combing?

Simply cover the entire head with a white conditioner and, using a fine-toothed comb, comb the hair from root to tip. After each stroke, wipe the comb clean onto a tissue or paper towel. Continue the combing until there is no conditioner left on the hair. Then, repeat this process every second day until no live lice are found for 10 days.

Your little one will be nit-free in no time.

Bullying

Every school child deserves fundamental respect, care and the feeling of being a valued member of the school community. These core features of school life can be eroded by bullying. While it can take many forms, bullying almost always involves the use of power by a person or group to intentionally cause physical or emotional harm to another person. This might include humiliation, or demeaning and threatening behaviour and can occur online, in the playground and even the classroom.

What to look for

  • Lost or destroyed clothing
  • Unexplained injuries
  • Skipping school
  • Progressively poorer grades
  • Unusual avoidance of social interaction
  • Self-harming or self-destructive behaviours

If you happen to notice any of these events, it’s important that you speak with your child. This can sometimes be a difficult conversation to have, but it’s crucial that your child know that you are there for them and that this isn’t their fault.

While it is important to teach children resilience and strategies for coping with bullies, it is equally as important that the school culture is understood at all levels of management. If you think your child’s school might have systemic issues with bullying, it might be worth contacting an education provider like Project Rockit to help improve the school’s awareness and approach to bullying. After all, every child deserves a right to safely learn.

Immunisations

Immunisation is the best way to protect our children from harmful diseases before they encounter them. And the more kids who are immunised, the safer your child is. This phenomenon is called Herd Immunity, where the immunised majority provides a measure of protection for those who aren’t immunised.

Keeping up-to-date on your child’s vaccinations is one of the best things you can do to ensure their continued wellbeing (and your own).

Immunisation schedules around the world normally follow a fairly standard path. Single vaccines can cover numerous, common infections that can be potentially serious.

It’s normal for parents to have safety concerns, so we have provided more information here to allay any fears you might have.

With Health&’s new dashboard, you’ll be able to record your child’s vaccination history and avoid missing or unnecessarily repeating any.

So there you have it — some handy hints to keep the kids in check next semester. And whilst we can’t guarantee a perfect report card, we will work together towards a clean bill of health for you and your family in 2016 and beyond.


Originally published at blog.healthand.com 08.01.2016.