As children and teens begin a new school year and will spend many of their waking hours outside the home, it’s a great time for parents to check in with their children and children’s teachers about important health concerns.
When it comes to children’s health in school, it can seem like there is a lot of ground to cover. The annual NPCH Top 10 Report is a great place to start! Each year, we ask adults across the U.S. to tell us their biggest concerns about the health of children and teens and we compile a list of the top 10 concerns. If you’re not sure where to start a back-to-school conversation with kids and their schools, try working through this list:
Childhood obesity has been the leading children’s health concern for several years running. Are you familiar with the physical activity schedule and snacks and lunches available at your children’s school? This article from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers tips for parents to help their children maintain a healthy weight: cdc.gov/healthyweight/children.
Bullying has been the second biggest health concern for kids across the U.S. the past two years. What is the bullying policy at your children’s school? Are you aware of warning signs and intervention strategies? For more resources on bullying, visit stopbullying.gov.
For information and resources on the top 10 children’s health concerns, visit these links:
- Child abuse and neglect: National Parent Helpline
- Drug abuse: The Partnership for a Drug Free America
- Internet safety: CommonSenseMedia.org
- Smoking and tobacco use: Protecting Your Child from Tobacco Use (CDC)
- School violence: PTA.org
- Sexting: What Parents Need to Know (Kids Health)
- Stress: Helping Kids Cope with Stress (Kids Health)
- Teen pregnancy: The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy