Healthy Habits for a Successful School Year

August 27, 2019

Kelsey Cooper, FNP-C
Piedmont Internal Medicine

As you tackle your back-to-school to-do lists, we’ve got a few tips to help ensure that your family is ready for another successful and healthy school year.

Schedule Annual Physicals. The beginning of a new school year is an easy-to-remember time to schedule annual physical exams for your entire family. Annual wellness checkups provide the opportunity to confirm that vaccinations are up-to-date and answer any important questions you may have about your health.

Plan Weekday Meals. Thoughtfully planning out balanced meals for the week – and even pre-portioning out breakfasts and lunches – can ensure your family is following healthy eating habits.  It can also help avoid the nightly guessing game of, “What’s for dinner?” and free up evening hours for quality family time.

Sleep. Healthy sleeping habits are vital to your family’s overall health and ability to function optimally while in school or work. A lack of sleep can result in memory problems, difficulty focusing, weakening of the immune system, depression, and even obesity. The amount of sleep required nightly can vary depending on a number of factors, but The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends:

  • Teens 13 to 18 years of age get 8-10 hours per 24 hours
  • ​​Adults get at least 7 hours per 24 hours

Prevent the Spread of Germs. We all know that the school year can bring its share of colds, stomach viruses, and other unfavorable bugs. One of the easiest and best ways for you to help prevent the spread of germs is to promote hand-washing.  Teach your family members to wash their hands as soon as they arrive home, and always wash your hands before meals.

By establishing and encouraging responsible routines and habits, you’ll be helping to create a healthy and successful school year for your family and your community.

If your family needs a primary care physician, Fauquier Health can find the right care for you. Call 540-316-DOCS or visit the Find a Provider tab at FHDoctors.org to schedule an appointment online.