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Experts encourage parents to use “back-to-school” time to review health & safety with kids

From alarm clocks to packing lunches, the start of a new school year is a time when children and families revisit old routines and start new ones. The transition from summer vacation to the classroom can be challenging for families, but instead of dreading the back-to-school period, experts encourage families to use this time as an opportunity to discuss health and safety with their kids.

This month’s issue of JAMA Pediatrics includes a Back-to-School Checklist to Review Health and Safety, asking parents to check-in with their children about safety, nutrition, and healthy habits at the beginning of the school year. This checklist gives a helpful bulleted list of topics and conversation parents should have with their kids – from the dangers of texting while driving to creating a household media plan to manage screen time.

Last month, the annual National Poll on Children’s Health Top 10 Report was released, showing the top 10 concerns adults have about the health of children in their communities and across the country. The top 10 report provides another list of topics parents might consider discussing with their children:

Top 10 U.S. Children's Health Concerns Rated as a "Big Problem" by Adults in 2014

Have you had a “back-to-school” chat with your kids? What topics were most important for you to discuss? Share your thoughts in the comments or on Facebook and Twitter @MottNPCH.