The start of a new school term presents a good opportunity to have conversations with your children about important topics regarding health and safety. With summer on the way we recommend using the following checklist to guide you and your family towards good health and injury prevention.
• For children to be safe at home it’s important that harmful medications are placed in a locked cupboard and that access to basic first aid information including emergencies numbers are readily available.
• Key emergency numbers include 000 plus the numbers of friends or relatives to call if parents are unavailable in an emergency.
• It’s also a good time to discuss stranger safety and ensure your child knows what to do if approached by a stranger who is acting abnormally.
• Remind your child to always wear a seatbelt and when riding a bike, using a skateboard or roller blading to wear a helmet.
• Review your family’s emergency plans if there is a weather emergency or fire and check fire alarms and fire extinguishers at home to ensure they are working.
• Talk to your children about what they would like to eat from their lunchbox. Discuss healthy food options for food and drink choices.
• During this time it’s important to review your child’s intake of processed foods, carbonated beverages, junk food and fruit juices and check that alternative healthy snacks and drinks are available.
• Food is usually stored in lunchboxes for several hours. It’s important to keep the lunchbox cool so that the food stays fresh. Choose an insulated lunchbox or use a freeze pack to help food stay cool.
• One in four Australian children is overweight. Current evidence demonstrates that overweight children are more likely to carry this weight into their adult life and suffer from chronic diseases associated with excess weight.
• Regular exercise and engaging in physical activity has immediate health benefits like improving fitness, motor skills and self-confidence. It also prevents disease, promoting health and wellbeing into adulthood.
• You can give your child a lifelong love of exercise and movement by being active yourself, and encouraging school-based and weekend activities.
• This is a good time to review your child’s use of electronic machines like computers, phones and iPads.
• To help them get to sleep, limit their screen time before bed and discuss healthy habits of balancing electronic use with other forms of activities.
• This is also a good time to review your child’s social media use and inform them on how to handle common situations (for example if your child sees information that seems inappropriate or scary).
• It’s also important to discuss with your child about what types of information are unsafe or inappropriate to post online.
If your child is unwell and you need to speak with a doctor after hours, download the My Emergency Dr App today to speak with a qualified specialist within minutes.