Brooke Parker, DO, MBA

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3 ways to jumpstart the kids’ back-to-school routine

As published in the Federal Way Mirror

The summer sun is beginning to fade and it’s just about time for school to get back in session. Are your kids ready to hit the books again?

After a summer full of fun, it can be difficult to get back into the school year routine. Here are three things that you can do right now to get the kids prepared and ready to start the school year on a high note.

Re-establish a proper bedtime routine

After late summer nights watching movies, hanging out with friends and eating enough junk food to keep their eyes wide open all night, it’s time to get back into a proper bedtime routine. At least one week or so before school starts, it’s a good idea to get the kids used to an early bedtime again.

Along with physically getting into bed on time, engaging them in a pre-bedtime routine such as brushing their teeth and reading a book before crawling under the covers will instill good habits and set them up for a great rest.

Serve healthy meals and snacks

It can be very easy in the summer to spoil the kids with treats and goodies that lack the nutrition that they need to excel at school. As the new school year approaches, healthy meals and snacks will play a key role in preparing your children for the busy year ahead and keep them focused and energized as they take on homework, school sports and activities.

If you’re not sure what kind of diet will be best for your children this school year, there are some great resources here.

Get on top of check-ups and immunizations

Further to plenty of sleep and a healthy diet, a visit to the doctor will help to prepare students for the school year. A general check-up can pinpoint health concerns and staying up to date on immunizations will help to prevent illness during those busy school days.

“If a patient is due for their annual well-child exam, then we do a full physical exam and make sure they are growing and developing well and then talk about returning to school and immunizations,” explained Dr. Brooke Parker of the Federal Way Clinic. “I encourage patients to stay up to date on all immunizations.”

To help prepare both students and parents for the upcoming school year, Pacific Medical Centers’ Federal Way Clinic will be hosting a Back to School Bash event on Aug. 8. You can expect great giveaways, healthy lunch ideas, an inflatable obstacle course and refreshments at this free event, taking place from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Federal Way Clinic. And, the first 100 kids will receive a free backpack with school supplies!

Getting the kids back into a routine will make the back-to-school transition easier for them and for you. If you have any questions on how to keep your kids strong and healthy heading into the new school year, you can set up a well-child exam at Pacific Medical Centers’ Federal Way Clinic.