School started and with it, the British Hospital makes available to all its members and users a series of activities about health, eating habits and other aspects about our kids’ well-being and health care.
Coinciding with the return to school, the British Hospital makes available to members and users a series of tips and reminders regarding health care and health promotion of children and teenagers.
At this time of the year the typical yearly paediatric check is usually done, to which must be added the ophthalmological and dental check, when required, as well as to verify that the vaccinations are up to date, recalled Dr. Teresita Sabat, the Hospital’s Paediatric Department coordinator.
It’s important to keep in mind that there are some mandatory vaccinations, but there are also others that are necessary in case of, for example, travelling.
Children must get ophthalmological controls at least once a year. Regarding dental care, teeth brushing using toothpaste is recommended from two years’ old and they need to have two dental checks per year. Derivation and interdisciplinary work is essential in order to achieve a correct preventive medicine.
Health prevention also includes aspects like the type and weight of backpacks and the behaviour of children on school transportation. “It’s not necessary to take everything to school every day” commented Sabat.
Backpacks shouldn’t be hanging from only one shoulder as this can cause injuries, and those with wheels may be more appropriate, especially if carrying a lot of weight.
Eating habits is another of the main areas on which to focus, as it’s an everyday task.
It’s recommended to plan a varied menu that includes high proportions of vegetables and fruits, to remember that the best drink is water and afternoon snacks must be supervised by an adult so to make sure they include dairy products, cereals, fruits and bread, avoiding biscuits, “alfajores” and candy.
“Afternoon snacks should be healthy, not great meals” pointed out the specialist and highlighted the importance of breakfast as “the day’s most important meal”. Regarding the lunch that children take to school, she said that it’s a parent’s job to manage “the quality and quantity of what they eat”.
Sabat also recalled that specially at the beginning of the school year when temperatures may be high, it’s recommendable to dress the kids with light clothes, and make them wear repellent and sunscreen if they’re going to be outdoors.
Homework should be supervised by an adult and it’s wise to limit the computer and Internet access, as well as to have the television turned off while the child is at it.
This initiative is part of the British Hospital’s permanent policy on health prevention, involving professionals and staff from all areas and developing proposals and activities that contribute to a better life quality to its members.