4 Back to School Health Tips You Need to Know

September is always a hectic month for families with children. Back to school season can turn into a flurry of activity, which even for kids can mean stress, lack of sleep, and poor nutrition. Additionally, being back in schools with other kids can mean nasty viruses spreading from students to families. 
Want to keep your children healthy as they head back to class this season? Read on for four tips to keep your kids healthy this school year: 
Exercise 
When children go back back to school, it can be easy to get wrapped up in daily routines and forget about basic things like fitness. However, if you make exercise a part of everyone’s schedule early on in the year, you’ll avoid the back-to-school slump. For reference, remember that children and adolescents need about an hour of physical activity each day, and they’re only active for about 25 minutes throughout their school week in physical education classes! This means that exercise at home is absolutely necessary. Statistics show that childhood obesity has more than doubled while adolescent obesity has quadrupled over the last 30 years. Making exercise a family event can make it easier to get everyone motivated. 
Hygiene 
One of the number one ways to fight germs and preventing sickness this season is for everyone to practice good hygiene. As colds and flus make their way through schools this year, good hygiene gives you the ability to keep those illnesses out of your home. With everyone in the home, be sure to encourage handwashing with soap and hot water, as it can keep everyone healthy. Keeping up this habit can even prevent the common cold, which causes 22 million lost days each school year, along with more serious issues such as the flu, meningitis, and hepatitis A. 
Sleep 
All kids need proper rest each night, no matter what their age. Each age group does have its own recommended hours of sleep per night, though. For example, toddlers and young children ages three to five should be getting 10 to 13 hours of sleep. Those ages six to 13 should aim for nine to 11 hours, and 10- to 19-year-olds need between 8.5 and 9.5 hours of sleep. Poor sleeping habits can cause lower grades, make kids irritable, and even contribute to illnesses, so be sure to set bedtimes -- and alarm clocks -- this school year. 
Vaccines 
Vaccines are incredibly important no matter what school your children go to. Even though it is optional, you should definitely consider the flu shot for kids every year. Last season, more that 140 deaths linked to the flu were reported. Anyone over the age of six months is eligible for the shot, which is highly recommended by the Centers for Disease Control. Keep in mind that children under the age of eight may actually need two doses of the vaccine for it to work! 
Are you prepared for the upcoming school year and implementing these health and hygiene tips in your home? Let us know your thoughts and comments!

4 ways to keep kids healthy Infographic