It’s fairly common knowledge that it’s important for kids to make it to class as often as possible. On sick days, kids can miss out on important information, as well as missing tests and quizzes that can impact their grades.
On top of that, when your child is home sick, it can impact your life; you might have to take time off of work to care for them, and caring for a sick child is no doubt stressful. Keeping your kid in school as regularly as possible can help both them and you. Here are just a few tips to keep your child from falling behind academically due to illness.
Schedule regular healthcare visits:
Regular visits to general practitioners for check-ups and preventive care can help keep your kids from coming down with illnesses, or at least they can help you catch them earlier. Don’t forget regular check-ups for specialty care too, such as eye care or dentistry. As many as 51 million school hours are lost each year due to dental-related illness, and these illnesses often go overlooked without proper dental screening.
Pay attention to symptoms:
If your child seems to be coughing or sneezing more than usual, it’s likely they have a cold and probably shouldn’t be going to school. These symptoms aren’t the only ones to look out for; pink-eye can be incredibly infectious and a reason to stay home. However, not all conditions are infectious, and it’s possible your child can still go to school in these cases.
Just because an illness isn’t going to spread by sending your child to school doesn’t mean it won’t impact their day-to-day activities. Compare this to adult chronic issues: one in 25 working-age adults face work limitations due to arthritis. If an adult has arthritis, they won’t be able to perform certain work-related tasks. Likewise, listen to your child if they start asking for help with limitations due to chronic issues.
Encourage healthy habits:
Obviously, habits like washing hands and preventing germs spreading are important to keeping your child healthy, but don’t forget longer-term health habits as well. Eating right and exercising regularly can prevent conditions from developing. Biking regularly, an activity most children enjoy, reduces the risk of developing cardiorespiratory diseases by up to 40%. Encourage your child to exercise with fun activities like these to help them stay healthy.
Don’t ignore mental health:
While it might be easy to write off mental health at young ages, kids can experience stress when it comes to school, and that can impact student performance significantly. Sometimes, taking a sick day isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Mental health days can even benefit students by giving them time to recover from regular school stress.
Have a plan for sick days:
Some sick days just can’t be avoided, and every now and then your child will come down with a cold they caught from a fellow student. Make sure your child talks to another student and has a plan in place to get any work they miss out on during sick days. Even if your student can’t get in touch with a friend, see if either you or your child can talk to a teacher. This may be easier in private schools due to the smaller sizes; 87% of private schools have fewer than 300 students, giving teachers more time per student. However, public school teachers should be able to help as well.
Make sure you give your child the best chance to succeed with these tips to keep them at their healthiest so they can get the most out of class. Staying in school as often as possible is important to academic success, but even if they do get sick, there are ways you can help as a parent.