Got Asthma? A Yearly ' To Do' List1. Make an appointment with your student's doctor. Obtain an *Asthma Action Plan( request one from student's physician) Obtain and bring a *Metro Tech Chronic illness Packet (available through school nurse or registration department) to the Physician for consideration/completion.2. Share *Asthma Action Plan with School Nurse and return completed *Metro Tech Chronic Illness Packet3. Be sure to provide your school with an *Current Emergency Phone Number where you can be reached4. Provide student Medication and Supplies* (if indicated)5. Obtain a Yearly Flu shot for student when available*If you don't have a doctor or can't afford to fill prescriptions check with your school nurse or contact the Partnership for Prescription Assistance @1 888 477-2669 , Rx Outreach @ www.rxoutreach.com , Patient Services Incorporated@ http://uneedpsi.org/cms400min/index.aspx.
When Do I Keep My Child Home?
In general, a child should stay home if s/he is too uncomfortable to participate in all activities and stay in the classroom; if he needs more medical attention than the school can give; or if he might be spreading harmful diseases to others, according to Cynthia Devore, chairman of the American Academy of Pediatrics Council on School Health.
“If you think they’re not going to learn much or they will be miserable, it’s not worthwhile,” said Joseph Bresee of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Here is what experts said about some of the most common childhood symptoms.
1. Fever: A child with a temperature, taken orally, below 101 degrees who has no other symptoms and is acting normally can probably go to school, Devore said in an email. She notes that a child’s temperature might fluctuate throughout the day from overdressing, getting overheated at recess or other factors, so behavior, rather than temperature, is often a better indicator that a child is sick.Note: If the student's temp is over 101 and symptomatic s/he will be sent home.
2. Rash: Skin irritations are difficult because they can be a harmless allergic reaction or a sign of a serious illness. They are also tricky because with many diseases, such as chickenpox, they don’t materialize until after the child has been contagious for a few days. A rash with no accompanying fever, symptoms or change in behavior probably is not cause for concern, Devore said. The common cold: Stuffy noses, low-grade fevers and coughs are fine as long as the symptoms are mild, the student can do her work and she is not disturbing her classmates.
“By the time symptoms manifest, the child has likely already been contagious,” Devore said. “Most kids and teachers are exposed to common viruses, including cold viruses, regularly. There are enough viruses to have a fresh cold every week and still have a normal immune system.”Influenza
Signs that your child has the flu and not a common cold include higher fever, aches and pains, fatigue and severe cough.“With flu, the fever can be 102 or even higherEye discharge: Conjunctivitis, or pinkeye, is just that: eye discharge paired with pink or red in the whites of the eyes. It can be caused by a virus or bacteria, or by dust or allergens. The viral and bacterial versions are contagious.“It’s very hard to differentiate” between allergic eye irritation and an infection, Davis-Alldritt said. “If parents think it’s pinkeye, it’s a good idea to call their health care provider.”**Keep home if eyes are red, and draining thick mucus. Apply a wet clean cool washcloth frequently to eyes. If the drainage is thick and the eyes remain red seek medical treatment.
Sore throat: Sometimes it’s strep. Sometimes it’s just irritation from a cold or other respiratory infection. If it’s not severe and not accompanied by a significant fever, a child can go to school. If it is strep, she will need to stay home until after she has been on antibiotics for a full day and is feeling better, Devore said. For a viral sore throat, a child should stay home until she has been fever-free for 24 hours.Vomiting and diarrhea: If your child is throwing up uncontrollably or has constant diarrhea (loose-watery stools), s/he needs to stay home from school.*If the student is incontinent s/he should stay home until s/he is diarrhea free for 24 hours.
Prevention: Kids can prevent many common illnesses with a few simple steps: frequently washing hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water,coughing and sneezing into their elbows, keeping their hands away from their eyes and face, getting a flu shot yearly, and keeping other vaccines up-to-date.
Talk to your child about the importance of attending school and learning but encourage them to be honest and allow them to stay home if ill. It may protect them from a negative learning experience and you from a call at work.
#1 WASH YOUR HANDS!
Using hand and sanitizer is good also but get in the habit of washing hands well with soap and water after using the restroom and before meals.
#2 DON'T SHARE FOOD other students may have food allergies.
#4 VACCINATE When one kid gets the flu, a lot of kids get the flu! The flu vaccine is especially important and is recommended for anyone older than 6 months each year. Other *required school vaccines protect students from disease, suffering, and school absence.
#5 AVOID THE BACKPACK If a backpack is a necessity, choose a double-strap bag- the two straps will help disburse the burden evenly.
#6 GET Enough SLEEP! Students need to sleep 8-9 hours each night in a dark room without their computer and TV, and they need to be on a regular sleep schedule,
#7 TAKE A MULTIVITAMIN Daily! It's hard to have the perfect balanced diet every day of the week.
#8 PLAY FIRST, STUDY LATER Exercise before you do homework .The activity increases blood flow to the brain and helps you to think more clearly.
#9 GET Regular EXERCISE Schedule it into your day- It's that important!#10 SIT and Stand UP STRAIGHT Posture makes a difference in how you feel as well as look!
#11 EAT HEALTHY Food Natural is better (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and a small amount of lean protein eg. chicken and fish)
#12 SURROUND YOURSELF WITH POSITIVE INFLUENCES Being around those who love and care about you can help you to maintain a happy mood. Your mental state affects your physical state.
Mom, Can I get Contacts This Year?.
There are some good reasons to say "yes," and there are also reasons to say "no."
According to Bernard Lepri, O.D., M.S., M.Ed., an optometrist at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), contact lenses have benefits. "They can be better for sports activities, because they don't break as frames and the lenses of glasses can, and they provide better peripheral vision for sports, or driving, if your teen is of driving age,” Lepri says. Moreover, in some cases, contact lenses improve the quality of vision in comparison to eyeglasses, especially when a child is very nearsighted, says Lepri.
Contact lenses can provide benefits beyond improving vision. A three-year study conducted at the Ohio State University College of Optometry (October, 2007) on children between the ages of 8 and 11 showed a definite improvement in a child's self perception when wearing contact lenses as opposed to glasses, especially for girls.
On the other hand, "You have to remember that contact lenses are medical devices, not cosmetics," Lepri says. "Like any medical device, contact lenses should be used only if they can be used safely and responsibly. And only under the supervision of your eye care professional." Serious injury to the eye can result particularly if the contact lenses are not removed at the first hint of a problem.
No One Wants a Visit to the E.R.
Kids and contact lenses are not always the best fit.
According to a 2010 study published in Pediatrics, about 13,500 or one fourth of the roughly more than 70,000 children who go to the emergency room each year for injuries and complications from medical devices are related to contact lenses. The problems from contact lenses include infections and eye abrasions.
The reasons? Hygiene and responsibility. Or rather, Lepri says, the lack thereof.
He adds that it’s essential for all people who wear contact lenses to follow their eye care professional's advice "to the letter." That means observing basic hygienic precautions, such as:
- Always wash your hands before cleaning or inserting lenses, and carefully dry your hands with a clean, lint-free cloth.
- Rub, rinse, and disinfect rinse your contact lenses as directed and only with the products and solutions recommended by your eye care professional.
- Avoid keeping lenses in too long.
- Never put a contact lens into an eye that is red.
- Never wear someone else’s lenses.
- Don’t ignore eye itching, burning, irritation or redness that could signal potentially dangerous infection. Remove the lenses and contact your eye care professional.
- Apply cosmetics after inserting lenses, and remove your lenses before removing makeup.
Not taking the necessary safety precautions can result in ulcers of the cornea (the front of the eye that shields it from germs, dust, and other harmful material) and even blindness. "Even an experienced lens wearer can scratch a cornea while putting in or taking out a lens," Lepri says.
What About Young Kids and Contacts?
"Eye care professionals typically don't recommend contacts for kids until they are 12 or 13, because the risks are often greater than the benefits for younger children," Lepri says.
But, he adds, age isn't the only issue—it's also a question of maturity. Lepri suggests that parents who are considering contacts for their kids take a look at how well they handle other responsibilities, especially personal hygiene. "It takes vigilance on the part of the parents," he says. "You need to constantly be looking over your child’s shoulder."
As many an eye care professional can attest, kids find all sorts of ways to be less than hygienic. Common behaviors include wearing another child's lens, using saliva to moisten a lens, and wearing decorative lenses purchased from flea markets, beauty supply stores, the Internet and other sources. Even a lens without corrective power is still a medical device and has all the risks other contact lenses do, says Lepri.
Extended wear lenses are generally not recommended by eye care professionals for kids and teens and can increase the incidence of corneal ulcers, which can lead to permanent loss of vision. Although a bit more expensive, daily disposable lenses can reduce some of the risks since the wearer is using a new pair of lenses every day.
Students with seasonal allergies are usually not good candidates for wearing contact lenses. The lenses may only increase the itching and burning caused by their allergies.
More Tips for Safe Lens Wearing
- Don't sleep with your contact lenses in unless they are specifically approved for overnight Overnight use of daily wear lenses dramatically increases the risk of corneal ulcer, even with just one night's wear.
- When playing sports, wear safety goggles or glasses over your lenses.
- Always have a pair of back-up glasses handy.
"It's easy to impress upon kids the dangers of unsafe driving," Lepri says. But the potential perils of contact lens wearing are harder to get across. "Kids think they're invincible," he adds. "They just don't think anything bad is going to happen to them."
R U Listening 2 Your Body?
All of us have signs that indicate stress, fatigue, and overload. For example, many people get a headache after a long day. When stress symptoms are already a problem, it is too late to reverse the symptoms by resting. Headaches, back aches, stomach problems, heart palpitations, memory problems, and other symptoms often take time to subside, and when stress is high, the symptoms quite easily come back.
Prevention is the most effective remedy for stress symptoms, that is, stopping the symptoms before they reach their peak. To prevent stress overload and fatigue it is necessary to listen to the body. Just like we have signs of overload, we also have early warning signs that suggest we need a break.
Early warning signs can vary, but some common signs include:
- muscle tension
- slight irritability
- slight tiredness
- yawningThese early warning signs are subtle, which is why it is necessary to really listen to the body to notice them!
If these signs go unnoticed, they worsen. Your body is trying to tell you that a break is needed, and the signals will increase until you listen to the body and take a break. If you let things go to far, you will likely experience fatigue, stress overload, or other problematic symptoms.
Training yourself to listen to the body can be challenging because the early warning signs of fa tigue and stress are so subtle. Until you are accustomed to noticing them, the warning signs can easily go undetected.
The best way to learn to listen to your body is to set up simple reminders that help you remember to take note of how you are feeling and what your body is saying. Ideally, take a moment every hour throughout the day to pay attention to how your body feels and observe any signals your body is giving that tell you to take a break. You will probably need an external reminder at first, for example, setting a watch alarm to ring every hour to remind you to do a body awareness exercise.Eventually you can create a habit of being more aware of your body. You will learn to listen to your body, not only to be aware of the early warning signs of stress and fatigue, but also to then deal with the problems before they start, by resting. Find more information and relaxation exercises here: http://www.innerhealthstudio.com
Peanut allergy is one of the most common food allergies and is the leading cause of deadly food allergy reactions. Shaking hands with someone who has handled peanuts, or even smelling peanuts, can produce an allergic reaction in some people. For some people, the reaction is so severe that it causes fatal anaphylaxis.
**Students who have this type of allergic reaction should carry an epi pen with them at all times and inform their school nurse .
Peanuts are used in a variety of processed foods like ice cream (as a flavoring), marinades, snack foods, biscuits, baked goods, and candy. Certain ethnic dishes also contain peanuts or peanut oil: African, Chinese, Indonesian, Mexican (enchilada sauce), Thai, and Vietnamese cuisines all contain dishes that use peanuts as an ingredient. Some flavorings are nut-based. Peanuts are also used as a thickener in prepared foods. Many roasted and fried foods (including roasted chicken) contain peanut oil.
*If you have a peanut allergy, be careful with other types of nuts. Although peanuts are technically a legume (a bean) that grows underground, you may be allergic to nuts grown on trees -- especially almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, Brazil nuts, and cashews.If you have a peanut allergy, you likely need to avoid tree nuts, too -- cashews, almonds, pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, pine nuts, Brazil nuts, and macadamia nuts. Also, be careful with coconut, chestnut, ginkgo nuts, and lychee (lichee) nuts as they are also considered tree nuts. Like peanuts, tree nuts are dangerous because they are hidden in so many foods -- even nonfood products like lotions and shampoos.Don't share food brought from home!
Cool Weather : Worsening of Eczema: R U Prepared?
Prevention of Eczema
Pinpoint the source of irritation. If your face is itchy and irritated, suspect a cosmetic. If your hands are cracked and itchy, suspect some chemical you handle (dish detergent, for example). Some people become allergic to nickel after having their ears pierced, and any form of nickel that touches the body produces intense itching and sometimes a rash that looks like poison ivy. The rash may appear anywhere on the body, not necessarily on the ear lobes.
Avoid irritants. Stay away from substances to which you are hypersensitive. If soap or detergent or other chemicals cause problems, wear rubber gloves. Make sure any jewelry is nickel-free. If you have your ears pierced, make sure it’s done with a stainless-steel needle, and be sure that your first pair of earrings are stainless steel or high-quality 18-carat gold studs. Let your doctor or dentist know if you're allergic to latex, since gloves, surgical tubing, elastic bandages, and many other medical supplies contain latex.
Moisturize. After bathing, apply unscented moisturizer on damp skin immediately to seal in the moisture. If you develop dermatitis on your hands in cold weather, apply moisturizer regularly to keep your hands soft. If you live in a dry climate, or are experiencing dry weather, moisten indoor air with a cool-mist humidifier.
When washing or bathing, avoid harsh soaps or detergents. Use your automatic dishwasher and clothes washer as much as possible to avoid contact with detergents.
Relax. Some dermatitis is triggered by stress. If that appears to be true for you, try to maintain emotional stability. Stress reduction techniques such as yoga or meditation can help.
Avoid swimming in chlorinated pools. Chlorine is an irritant. However, you may find that swimming in saltwater bays and the ocean isn’t a problem.
If you are having an outbreak...
1.Try to identify the substance that’s causing your symptoms and stay away from it!
2. Scratching worsens it so don't do it. Keep your fingernails clean and short to prevent infection.
3. Use creams or ointments on dry rashes. If a lesion is oozing, use lotion or liquids. Oral antihistamines may also help relieve the itching. Be wary of “-caine” preparations, such as benzocaine. These deaden the itching, which may feel good momentarily, but they can cause secondary allergic reactions.
4. Try a cold compress and calamine lotion. Some people have also found temporary relief with milk compresses: pour very cold milk onto a washcloth and leave it on the affected area for three minutes or so; apply another wet cloth for three minutes; repeat several times throughout the day as needed.
5. Bathe less frequently -two baths or showers per weekin lukewarm (not hot)water can help keep your skin from drying out.
Encourage your student to be successful!
In partnership with Arizona State University, the American Dream Academy is held at Metro Tech .
This free, 9-week course is offered to all parents of Metro Tech High School. Classes, which are in both English and Spanish, cover topics such as being a partner with your school, understanding the high school system, and how to motivate your teen.Attending the American Dream Academy can help create a home learning environment, encourage college attendance, and create a socially and emotionally supportive atmosphere.
Please consider this worthwhile opportunity for the benefit of your student's success.
Do you have bed bugs in your home?
What can you do?
Get rid of clutter in your house (serves as hiding grounds for insects)
Employ high heat -washing clothing and bedding at high temperatures for 20 minutes
Use zipped mattress covers to protect your bedding from infestation
Vacuum baseboards, mattress /box springs. Empty vacuum and dispose of bag in secured plastic bag. Make house repairs (caulk and seal holes).**If these efforts fail you will need to call a pest control service.Alpha
How Can I Deal with My Anger?
When Tempers Flare
Do you lose your temper and wonder why? Are there days when you feel like you just wake up angry?
Some of it may be the changes your body's going through: All those hormones you hear so much about can cause mood swings and confused emotions. Some of it may be stress: People who are under a lot of pressure tend to get angry more easily. Part of it may be your personality: You may be someone who feels your emotions intensely or tends to act impulsively or lose control. And part of it may be your role models: Maybe you've seen other people in your family blow a fuse when they're mad.
No matter what pushes your buttons, one thing is certain — you're sure to get angry sometimes. Everyone does. Anger is a normal emotion, and there's nothing wrong with feeling mad. What counts is how we handle it (and ourselves) when we're angry.
Tools to Tame a Temper: Self-Awareness & Self-Control
Because anger can be powerful, managing it is sometimes challenging. It takes plenty of self-awareness and self-control to manage angry feelings. And these skills take time to develop.
Self-awareness is the ability to notice what you're feeling and thinking, and why. Little kids aren't very aware of what they feel, they just act it out in their behavior. That's why you see them having tantrums when they're mad. But teens have the mental ability to be self-aware. When you get angry, take a moment to notice what you're feeling and thinking.
Self-control is all about thinking before you act. It puts some precious seconds or minutes between feeling a strong emotion and taking an action you'll regret.
Together, self-awareness and self-control allow you to have more choice about how to act when you're feeling an intense emotion like anger.
Getting Ready to Make a Change
Deciding to get control of your anger — rather than letting it control you — means taking a good hard look at the ways you've been reacting when you get mad. Do you tend to yell and scream or say hurtful, mean, disrespectful things? Do you throw things, kick or punch walls, break stuff? Hit someone, hurt yourself, or push and shove others around?
For most people who have trouble harnessing a hot temper, reacting like this is not what they want. They feel ashamed by their behavior and don't think it reflects the real them, their best selves.
Everyone can change — but only when they want to. If you want to make a big change in how you're handling your anger, think about what you'll gain from that change. More self-respect? More respect from other people? Less time feeling annoyed and frustrated? A more relaxed approach to life? Remembering why you want to make the change can help.
It can also help to remind yourself that making a change takes time, practice, and patience. It won't happen all at once. Managing anger is about developing new skills and new responses. As with any skill, like playing basketball or learning the piano, it helps to practice over and over again.
The Five-Step Approach to Managing Anger
If something happens that makes you feel angry, this approach can help you manage your reaction. It's called a problem-solving approach because you start with the problem you're mad about. Then you weigh your choices and decide what you'll do.
Each step involves asking yourself a couple of questions, then answering them based on your particular situation.
Let's take this example: There's a party you're planning to go to, but your mom just told you to clean your room or stay home. The red-hot anger starts building.
Here's what to do:
1) Identify the problem (self-awareness). Start by noticing what you're angry about and why. Put into words what's making you upset so you can act rather than react.
Ask yourself: What's got me angry? What am I feeling and why? You can do this either in your mind or out loud, but it needs to be clear and specific. For example: "I'm really angry at Mom because she won't let me go to the party until I clean my room. It's not fair!" Your feeling is anger, and you're feeling angry because you might not get to go to the party.
Notice that this is not the same as saying, "Mom's so unfair to me." That statement doesn't identify the specific problem (that you can't go to the party until you clean your room) and it doesn't say how you're feeling (angry).
2) Think of potential solutions before responding (self-control). This is where you stop for a minute to give yourself time to manage your anger. It's also where you start thinking of how you might react — but without reacting yet.
Ask yourself: What can I do? Think of at least three things. For example, in this situation you might think:
(a) I could yell at Mom and throw a fit.
(b) I could clean my room and then ask if I could go to the party.
(c) I could sneak out to the party anyway.
3) Consider the consequences of each solution (think it through). This is where you think about what is likely to result from each of the different reactions you came up with.
Ask yourself: What will happen for each one of these options? For example:
(a) Yelling at your mom may get you in worse trouble or even grounded.
(b) Cleaning your room takes work and you may get to the party late (but maybe that adds to your mystique). With this option, you get to go to the party and your room's clean so you don't have to worry about it for a while.
(c) Sneaking out may seem like a real option in the heat of anger. But when you really think it through, it's pretty unlikely you'd get away with being gone for hours with no one noticing. And when you do get caught — look out!
4) Make a decision (pick one of your options). This is where you take action by choosing one of the three things you could do. Look at the list and pick the one that is likely to be most effective.
Ask yourself: What's my best choice? By the time you've thought it through, you're probably past yelling at your mom, which is a knee-jerk response. You may have also decided that sneaking out is too risky. Neither of these options is likely to get you to the party. So option (b) probably seems like the best choice.
Once you choose your solution, then it's time to act.
5) Check your progress. After you've acted and the situation is over, spend some time thinking about how it went.
Ask yourself: How did I do? Did things work out as I expected? If not, why not? Am I satisfied with the choice I made? Taking some time to reflect on how things worked out after it's all over is a very important step. It helps you learn about yourself and it allows you to test which problem-solving approaches work best in different situations.
Give yourself a pat on the back if the solution you chose worked out well. If it didn't, go back through the five steps and see if you can figure out why.
These five steps are pretty simple when you're calm, but are much tougher to work through when you're angry or sad (kind of like in basketball practice when making baskets is much easier than in a real game when the pressure is on!). So it helps to practice over and over again.
Other Ways to Manage Anger
The five-step approach is good when you're in a particular situation that's got you mad and you need to decide what action to take. But other things can help you manage anger too.
Try these things even if you're not mad right now to help prevent angry feelings from building up inside.
- Exercise. Go for a walk/run, work out, or go play a sport. Lots of research has shown that exercise is a great way to improve your mood and decrease negative feelings.
- Listen to music (with your headphones on). Music has also been shown to change a person's mood pretty quickly. And if you dance, then you're exercising and it's a two-for-one.
- Write down your thoughts and emotions. You can write things in lots of ways; for example, in a journal or as your own poetry or song lyrics. After you've written it down, you can keep it or throw it away — it doesn't matter. The important thing is, writing down your thoughts and feelings can improve how you feel. When you notice, label, and release feelings as they show up in smaller portions, they don't have a chance to build up inside.
- Draw. Scribbling, doodling, or sketching your thoughts or feelings might help too.
- Meditate or practice deep breathing. This one works best if you do it regularly, as it's more of an overall stress management technique that can help you use self-control when you're mad. If you do this regularly, you'll find that anger is less likely to build up.
- Talk about your feelings with someone you trust.Lots of times there are other emotions, such as fear or sadness, beneath anger. Talking about them can help.
- Distract yourself. If you find yourself stewing about something and just can't seem to let go, it can help to do something that will get your mind past what's bugging you — watch TV, read, or go to the movies.
These ideas can be helpful for two reasons:
- They help you cool down when you feel like your anger might explode. When you need to cool down, do one or more of the activities in the list above. Think of these as alternatives to taking an action you'll regret, such as yelling at someone. Some of them, like writing down feelings, can help you release tension and begin the thinking process at the same time.
- They help you manage anger in general. What if there's no immediate problem to solve — you simply need to shift into a better mood? Sometimes when you're angry, you just need to stop dwelling on how mad you are.
When to Ask for Extra Help
Sometimes anger is a sign that more is going on. People who have frequent trouble with anger, who get in fights or arguments, who get punished, who have life situations that give them reason to often be angry may need special help to get a problem with anger under control.
Tell your parents, a teacher, a counselor, or another adult you trust if any of these things have been happening:
- You have a lasting feeling of anger over things that have either happened to you in the past or are going on now.
- You feel irritable, grumpy, or in a bad mood more often than not.
- You feel consistent anger or rage at yourself.
- You feel anger that lasts for days or makes you want to hurt yourself or someone else.
- You're often getting into fights or arguments.
These could be signs of depression or something else — and you shouldn't have to handle that alone.
Anger is a strong emotion. It can feel overwhelming at times. Learning how to deal with strong emotions — without losing control — is part of becoming more mature. It takes a little effort, a little practice, and a little patience, but you can get there if you want to.
Reviewed by: D'Arcy Lyness, PhD
Date reviewed: October 2012
Originally reviewed by: Matthew K. Nock, PhD
Note: All information on TeensHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
© 1995-2013 The Nemours Foundation. All rights reserved.
Pack Your Lunch
Caution: Please do not share your lunch or snack food. Another student may have a food allergy .
Most schools are trying hard to upgrade their lunch programs and offer the best food they can. But not every school cafeteria provides appealing, healthy lunch choices. Educate yourself when it comes to what your cafeteria has to offer. For example, did you know chicken nuggets have more fat and calories than a plain burger?
Even if your school provides healthy options, it can be too easy to give in to temptation and pick a less healthy choice when you're feeling really hungry. How do you take control? Take a packed lunch to school!
Here are the top 5 reasons to pack your lunch — and snacks — at least twice a week: A word of caution: please don't share your food from home with your friends-they may have an allergy and you don't want to cause them harm. In this case it's ok to say no.
1. Control. Do you ever wait in the lunch line only to find when you get to the front that you don't like what they're serving? So you reach for pizza again. A healthy packed lunch lets you avoid the lunch line (and any temptations). Bringing your own lunch also lets you control exactly what goes into the food you eat.
2. Variety. It doesn't hurt to cave in and enjoy the occasional serving of pizza and hot dogs. But if you're eating these foods all the time, your body probably feels ready for a change. A packed lunch a couple of times a week means you can enjoy some favorites that you might not find at every school — like a piping hot thermos of your mom's chicken soup; hummus and pita bread; or some crisp, farm-stand apples.
3. Energy. If you have a big game or activity after school, plan a lunch and snacks that combine lean proteins with carbohydrates to give you lasting energy and keep you going through the late afternoon. Some ideas: your own "trail" mix of dried fruit and nuts or sunflower seeds, whole-grain pretzels and low-fat cheese, or a bagful of baby carrots and yogurt dip.
4. Cold hard cash. Pack healthy snacks so you don't feel tempted to step off campus for a fast-food lunch, or hit the vending machine or corner store for chocolate and a soda! Put the money you save on such snacks aside.
5. That warm and fuzzy feeling. Remember when your mom or dad used to pack your lunch?
Pack yourself a retro lunch featuring healthy versions of your old faves — such as PB&J on whole-wheat bread.
Whether you pack or eat in the cafeteria, what’s important is that you make healthy choices. If you're concerned that your cafeteria doesn't offer enough healthy choices, get involved in trying to make changes. Ask a teacher or someone in food service for advice on how to get started.
Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Flu Season is Coming!!!!
5 Ways to Fight the Flu
The flu is annoying enough on its own. So it doesn't help that flu season falls at one of the most exciting times of the year. To avoid missing out on sports events, Halloween parties, Thanksgiving feasts, and holiday fun, follow these tips:
- Get the flu vaccine. It's the best way to protect yourself against the flu. Hate shots? Most teens can get the flu vaccine as a nasal spray. Getting vaccinated doesn't just protect your own health. It also helps the people around you because there's less chance you'll catch the flu and pass it on.
- Wash your hands often. In addition to getting the flu vaccine, hand washing is an important line of defense against germs like flu viruses. Why? The body takes about 2 weeks to build immunity after a flu vaccine — and even a vaccine isn't foolproof if a new strain of virus starts making the rounds. Hand washing also helps protect against other germs and illnesses that there aren't vaccines for, like the common cold.
Wash your hands after using the bathroom; after coughing or sneezing; before putting in or removing contact lenses; before using makeup; and before eating, serving, or preparing food. The great thing about hand washing is it's easy protection. So get in the habit of washing your hands when you come home from school, the mall, a movie, or anywhere else where you're around a lot of people.
- Keep your distance if someone is sick (coughing, sneezing, etc.). Flu viruses travel through the air, so try to stay away from people who look sick. Of course, people who have the flu virus don't always look sick. That's where vaccines and hand washing come in.
It's also a good idea to avoid touching your nose, eyes, and mouth — three places flu viruses can easily enter the body.
- Cough or sneeze into a tissue or your elbow — not into your hands. That way, you're not spreading the virus when you touch surfaces that other people may touch too.
- Stay home if you have the flu. You don't want to pass your germs to someone else. Staying home is a great excuse to curl up and watch your favorite movie, play video games, or read.
- Rest can help the body recover faster.
You also can fight the flu on a daily basis by keeping your immune system strong. Some great immune boosters are getting enough sleep, eating healthy foods (including five or more servings of fruits and veggies a day!), drinking plenty of fluids, and getting regular exercise.
Don't let the flu mess with your fall and winter fun. Fight back!
Reviewed by: Elana Pearl Ben-Joseph, MD
Parents: Please Talk to Your Children about Sex By Barbara Huberman, RN, BSN, MEd, Director of Education and Outreach, Advocates for Youth
Even thinking about talking with teens about contraception sends many parents frantically running for the exit. In the United States today, about 60 percent of high school seniors and 85 percent of 20-year-old youth have had sex; 50 percent of all new HIV infections occur in 15- to 25-year-old youth; and about 750,000 teen girls experience a pregnancy each year. Parents cannot afford to remain silent about contraception when talking with teens.
Young Americans grow up in a society that uses sex to sell every product imaginable—from cars to cola. And the newest sex educator, the Internet, has perils as well as positives in what it offers related to sex.
So what's a parent to do? What are the important messages parents need to convey to their children so that teens will protect themselves and their partners against unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and will grow up to become sexually healthy adults? Here are some tips for talking with teens—female and male—about contraception and condoms.
- Assume that teens have had no instruction about contraceptive methods. Most schools don't teach this subject. Teens may say they know all about contraception, but much of their "knowledge" is myth and misinformation. If you feel that you just can't talk about contraception, then ask a health care provider, relative, or friend for help.
- It's possible to talk with a teen about not having sexual intercourse while still fully educating him/her about contraception and condoms. Your teen will need this information, at some point in life. Just remember that talking about both abstinence and contraception does not send a mixed message. Parents need to empower teens to act responsibly, by saying, "When you decide to be sexually intimate with someone you care about, always, alwaysuse protection against pregnancy and STIs."
- Share your hopes and expectations with your teen, the hope that the teen will wait until he/she is older and more mature. At the same time, realize that most teens do not wait, especially not until marriage. Today, most young men are nearly 29 when they marry, and young women are nearly 27. Over 90 percent of American adults say they experienced sexual intercourse prior to marriage.
- Know that not all children are heterosexual. Regardless of sexual orientation, all teens need information about preventing pregnancy and STIs. During their teenage years, many teens experiment—regardless of their sexual orientation. Lesbian and bisexual teenage women may experience pregnancy. Gay and bisexual teenage men may father a pregnancy. Like all other teens, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender teens are vulnerable to STIs, including HIV.
- Emphasize that sexual health is not only about using condoms and birth control but also about staying healthy, lifelong. Teens need to know where they can go for health care and treatment before they are sexually active. Teenage women frequently say that fear of a pelvic exam (second only to fear of parental discovery) is their reason for waiting six to 18 months after initiating sex before they see a health care provider about contraception. Young men also delay talking with a physician about their sexual health. Teenage men may feel uncomfortable in family planning clinics because these are often geared mostly toward serving women, and they may be reluctant to go to a public health clinic, fearing that they will run into someone they know. Male teens need to know that many family planning clinics are eager to serve young men; female teens need to know that most family planning clinics do not require a pelvic exam before prescribing birth control.
- Share information about emergency contraception (EC) and encourage teenage women to have EC at hand in case of an emergency. EC is available over the counter for anyone ages 18 and over. If your teen is under the age of 18, call 1-888-NOT-2-LATE to find an EC provider.
- Talk about using condoms and hormonal methods of birth control . Using two methods at the same time allows young men and women to share the responsibility to be safe and healthy. Condoms are highly effective at preventing HIV and gonorrhea and also lower the risk for other STIs. They are also very effective at preventing pregnancy—compared to an 85 percent chance of experiencing pregnancy when a couple uses no method of protection.
- Talk with your teen about "being swept away." When interviewed about why they did not use condoms or contraception, many young people say, "I wasn't planning it. It just happened. We got swept away and didn't use anything." Make clear to your teen that this is not okay. Say, "You must be prepared, or else you simply don't have sex. This is the mature way to act." In the words of one wise teen, "using condoms is just not that difficult. You either use condoms and birth control, or you just don't do it."
- What do you do if you find condoms or birth control in your teen's room or pants pocket? Take a deep breath and remember that this is evidence of your teen's being responsible. Use this as an opportunity to open up a conversation with your teen. This is one of those times when you can share your feelings and values, support your teen in being responsible, and talk together about intimacy, love, responsibility, and committed relationships.
- Don't talk as though there is only one kind of sexual intercourse. Teens aren't sure what "having sex" means. Many today see oral and/or anal sex as ways to avoid "having sex." These teens often do not realize that oral sex and anal sex actually are sexual intercourse and that each involves high risk for STIs.
- Make sure that your teen has at least one other adult to whom she/he can go for help in an emergency. Give your teen permission to confide in someone else, a person the teen can trust for guidance and support. That other adult could be a relative, clergy person, teacher, counselor, health provider, or friend. Just make sure that you and your teen both know who the other adult is, rather than just assuming that your teen has "someone" to whom he/she can go. No young person should go through a difficult situation without help.
- Finally, remember that when parents express love and caring to their children, they teach them to love themselves. Then, parents are raising young people who will be likely to use condoms and effective contraception to protect themselves when, eventually, they choose to have sex.
Finish School B 4 U Start a Family
Tips to Stop the Harrassment
It is vital to stop harassment immediately! Bullying hurts the person targeted, the witnesses, and the bully. Act right away! Do not let harassment—verbal or physical—go on for even a minute. Make it clear that Harassment Is Never Okay!
1. Stop the Harassment!
- Interrupt the comment. Halt the physical harassment.
- Make sure everyone in the vicinity can hear you. You want everyone—all the youth and adults nearby—to know that all young people are safe in this place.
- Do NOT pull the bully aside for a confidential discussion—stopping the harassment should be as public as the harassment has been.
2. Identify the Harassment.
- "You just put someone down regarding (sex, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, health status, etc.)" Or, "You just shoved someone."
- Put the spotlight on the bully's behavior. Do NOT say anything to imply that the person being harassed belongs to the group just named. Everyone needs to understand that what was said or done is unacceptable.
3. Publicly Broaden the Response.
- Identify the offense and its consequences: "Name calling is hurtful to everyone who hears it." "Physical attacks on anyone are totally unacceptable and can result in the attacker being put out of the program."
- Make it clear that the entire organization, agency, program, etc., is solidly opposed to such behavior: "In this program, we do not harass other people. Period." "In this organization, any physical attack, for any reason, on someone else is totally unacceptable. Any repetition will have serious consequences for you."
4. Request a Change in Future Behavior.
- Personalize the response for the bully: "Chris, please think about what you say. This language isn't what we would have expected of you." "Jaime, by pushing someone, you are being a bully. I thought you enjoyed participating in this program. But, by your action, you've put yourself on the sidelines for the rest of today. Any repetition and you are out forever."
- Quietly, check in with the person who was harassed: "Are you okay? Do you want to talk with me or someone else? Let's go find a quiet place to chat."
- Quietly reassure the person who was harassed: "Please let me know if this happens again, and I will take further action. Everyone should feel safe and be safe here. What happened was totally unacceptable, and you are very important to all of us."
Help make Metro Tech High School a great experience for everyone!
Does Your Son or Daughter Have a Severe Allergy?
Anaphylaxis is a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction resulting from exposure to *allergens
*25% of school-day reactions happen to children who didn’t know they had an allergy!
*It may result in death!*Peanuts, bee stings, and latex are all common allergens that can cause anaphylaxis.
The signs and symptoms of an anaphylactic reaction may include one or more of the following:
Trouble breathing or wheezing
Lip swellingWhat Can I Do?*#1 Avoidance of known allergens is most important!*If your child has been diagnosed with a severe allergy and has been prescribed an epinephrine auto-injector s/he should have one with him/her at all times!*Communicate this information to those who will be with your child and can help him or her ( school nurse, counselor, teachers, friends, etc.)*Notify EMS if the Epi pen is used - additional medical monitoring of your child is warranted.*Replace Epi pen so you will always be prepared****Remember * T riggers( what you are allergic to) : Know them, Avoid them, and Communicate this information to others who can help you in an emergency*E pi pen have it with you at all times and notify E MS( 911) if it is used*R eplace ( obtain a new Epi pen) so you will always be ready
Develop Habits Now That Will Make A Positive Difference In Your Life
*Headaches, stomachaches, and other annoying health problems are not medical emergencies and may be avoided by taking care of you.
*Eat a healthy diet and regular meals- (myplate.com) more vegetables, fruit, and whole grains and take a multivitamin daily.
*Engage in regular exercise- Find a fun activity (i.e. dance) and spend time (recommended 30- 60 min/day) doing it.
*Follow a regular sleep schedule* (8-9 hours of sleep per night is recommended)
*Wash your hands (use hand sanitizer) frequently and especially after using the bathroom and before eating
* Showering/bathing every day and wearing clean clothes each day, using deodorant, brushing /flossing your teeth, and keeping your fingernails clean
*Always wear your seat belt
*If there is a gun or dangerous tools or substances in your home keep them locked up or get rid of them.
*Avoid smoking any substance and avoid breathing second hand smoke
*Don’t take any drugs or medications unless they are prescribed by your doctor- for you
All medicines/drugs have side effects which may be harmful to you!
*Don’t drive if you don’t have a license or if taking any medications/ drugs. Don’t get in a car with someone who has taken drugs or alcohol.
*Choose your friends carefully. Only you can decide if you want to go along or not
*If you feel like hurting yourself of others, talk to a trusted adult. If you feel sad, worried, hopeless, or confused confide in a trusted adult.
Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem!
*Don’t swim, hike, run or walk alone. Wear and carry protective/safety gear
* If you choose to engage in sexual activity ~ protect yourself (If you fail to plan, you plan to fail)
*If you feel you shouldn’t be doing something or shouldn’t be somewhere
Pay attention. , Stop, and Leave!
*Experience may be the best teacher but not if it costs you your life!
*You are responsible for your decisions and behavior- Take accountability!
Fever treatment: Quick guide to treating a fever
A fever is a common sign of illness, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, fevers seem to play a key role in fighting infections. So should you treat a fever or let the fever run its course? Here's help making the call.
These recommendations are for otherwise healthy people — for instance, those who are not immunocompromised or taking chemotherapy drugs and haven't recently had surgery.
Up to 102 F (38.9 C) taken rectally for children age 3 and younger, or taken orally for children older than 3
Encourage your child to rest and drink plenty of fluids. Medication isn't needed. Call the doctor if your child seems unusually irritable or lethargic or complains of significant discomfort.
Above 102 F (38.9 C) taken rectally for children age 3 and younger, or taken orally for children older than 3
If your child seems uncomfortable, give your child acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others). Read the label carefully for proper dosage, and be careful not to give your child more than one medication containing acetaminophen, such as some cough and cold medicines. Avoid giving aspirin to children or teenagers. Call the doctor if the fever doesn't respond to the medication or lasts longer than three days.
18 years and up
Up to 102 F (38.9 C) taken orally
Rest and drink plenty of fluids. Medication isn't needed. Call the doctor if the fever is accompanied by a severe headache, stiff neck, shortness of breath, or other unusual signs or symptoms.