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11/02/2017 | Diario EL PAÍS 11.02.17

Returning to school: a responsibility that involves the whole family

The start of the school year is getting closer and the previous days are essential to take a look and take notes of some suggestions related to health, food, accidents´ prevention and other aspects related to the care of our children.
Together with the classes return at the beginning of March the British Hospital will carry out a workshop making available to members and users a series of suggestions and tips to facilitate them in the transition of the school year holidays.
"Parents should act calmy, low the expectations during the beginning of classes, planning and go back to the family active routine related to the beginning and development of classes," mentioned Dr. Gonzalo Etcheverry, Head of the British Hospital Pediatrics Department.
He insisted "that parents should agree on the rules that are going to be fulfilled during the year", for instance in terms of schedules, habits, the use of technologies, permissions, etc.
The pediatrician Teresita Sabat, who is the Polyclinic Pediatrics coordinator, also agreed that "parents are responsible for reducing stress and said that it is about making the transition” from holidays to the school year instead of a sudden change.

The workshops aim to parents and children working together and facing the beginning of classes.

According to this, she suggested "to involve children when buying school materials, when buying food and in the planning of snacks, as well as in the revision of schedules according to new activities."
The psychologist Laura Bachetta, coordinator of the Recreation area of the British Hospital, added the possibility of doing with children and adolescents a "balance" of the materials and other items, “taking a look at the things of the past year that may be useful", as a way of getting them involved and carry out together this experience.
"They have been going to bed late, they have been eating at the wrong time, so the change must be gradual and in a progressive way, adjusting them to school and high school routine," she ilustrated.
Sabat said that is essential "going back to the sleep routine, bearing in mind that a child should sleep at least 8 hours a day, to mealtimes and sleep time and to a diet settled by adults.
She highlighted the importance of breakfast. "They can not leave home without having breakfast, without eating at least some fruit, some dairy and bread."
At this time of the year the typical annual pediatric control can be done, to which the ocular and dental control should be added, when appropriate, as well as checking that vaccines are up to date.
Depending on the child's age the periodicity of controls will vary. From the first year to the second year of age 4 annual checks are recommended; between the age of 2 and 3, 3 annual controls, and from 5 years old, 1 annual control.
The child should have ophthalmological controls between 3 and 5 years old, at the moment of school admission at the age of 6 and when leaving school at the age of 12, respectively.
Regarding dental health, from the two years of age it is recommended to brush the teeth with toothpaste after each meal besides doing 2 annual controls with the dentist.
The workshop will work on oral health guidelines, healthy eating, for instance for food and afternoon snacks, and also to return to routines and study habits and other activities.
This initiative is part of the British Hospital permanent health prevention policy, involving professionals and staff from all areas of the institution and developing ideas and activities that contribute to a better life quality of its members.