Top Ten Back to School Tips
This includes current students, new students and transfer students in both public and private schools. This is especially important for students with asthma, as whooping cough can be especially hard to diagnose in someone with asthma. For more information about the vaccine requirement, visit www.shotsforschool.org
And, follow these top ten back to school tips to keeps kids with asthma healthy and out of the hospital.
Each year, California students with asthma miss almost 1.5 million days of school due to asthma. And during the back to school season, asthma, accounts for a nearly 50 percent increase in emergency room visits. In most cases, these troubling realities can be prevented. For parents of children with asthma, the back-to-school season is a time to ensure that your child and his or her school is prepared for the year ahead. .
Following are some tips to help your child stay healthy and avoid missing school:
1. Get Involved. Many organizations like the American Lung Association have asthma support groups. These groups will help you learn more about asthma and connect your child with other children who have asthma. www.lungsusa.org
3. Schedule a back-to-school check-up. Meet with your child's pediatrician or allergist to make sure asthma symptoms are under control. Even if your child’s asthma is well managed, scheduling a check-up with your doctor is an important opportunity to evaluate medications, review physical activity restrictions, and ensure that your child has an up-to-date asthma action plan. personal hygiene. You can reduce your child’s risk of contracting any contagious illness by taking preventive measures. Good hygiene is the best defense against any type of cold or flu. Teach your child to wash his or her hands frequently and to cough or sneeze into the corner of his or her arm.
4. Get a flu vaccine. Remember to get your child an annual flu shot. Children with asthma are at increased risk for upper respiratory viral infections, including the flu.
5. Have an asthma action plan. All students with asthma should have a written Asthma Action Plan that details information about your child’s asthma symptoms, medications, physical activity limitations, and provides instructions about what to do if an asthma episode does not improve after taking prescribed medication. Make sure that the school nurse has a copy on file in an accessible location.
6. Meet with school staff about your child’s asthma. Plan a meeting with school staff before or during the beginning weeks of the school year. It is helpful to have and administrator, school nurse, health aide, teacher, P.E. teacher and coach at the meeting. Take your child’s up-to-date Asthma Action Plan to the meeting. Review the Asthma Action Plan, medicines, asthma triggers and symptoms so that school staff can be prepared to effectively assist your child should an asthma episode occur.
7. Provide extra medicines and equipment. Give your child’s school nurse, or other appointed staff-member, extra emergency medicines, inhalers, peak flow meters, and spacers.
8. Tour the school. Check your child’s classroom and school grounds to indentify substances that could trigger your child's allergy or asthma symptoms.
9. Know when your child should stay home due to asthma. Talk with your child's doctor about when it is appropriate to stay home from school because of asthma. Mild asthma symptoms can usually be handled at school but there are a number of factors - for example, what triggered the asthma episode, the stability of peak flows, the amount of medicine your child is taking, etc.) to consider when deciding whether to keep your child at home.
10. Practice taking medicine. In all 50 states, students have the legal right to self-carry asthma medications while at school. Check with your school nurse or administrator to learn your school's individual policy, and meet with your child's healthcare provider to complete the required paperwork. Also, help your child learn the proper way to take asthma medicines, and stress the importance of keeping the asthma medicine close by at all times. Also, make sure your child understands how important it is to keep the medicine close by at all times.
Note: Know About Prescription Assistance Services: No one should have to do without their asthma medications because of financial need. Three organizations are available to help: