The Back to School Health Checklist: Grade Schoolers, Tweens and Teens

HPV vaccine? Lice check? Scoliosis? 15 ways to safeguard your child's health before school starts (16 Photos)

Linda Rodgers on Jul 29, 2011 at 3:30PM

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The Back to School Health Checklist: Grade Schoolers, Tweens and Teens

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Mind Your Child's Mouth

It’s a good idea to schedule a dental checkup within six months of the new school year. That’s because kids can get cavities (yes, even with sealants) and gum disease, which can affect school, says Rhea M. Haugseth, D.M.D., president of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. “If your child has an abscessed tooth or gets an infection from untreated decay, the constant pain can cause him to lose sleep and not eat as well, all of which can affect the school day.” Besides getting your child to the dentist at least once a year (every six months if he wears braces or is prone to cavities), keep those swigs of sodas and sports and energy drinks to a minimum. “They’re loaded with sugar and acid, and are terrible for kids’ teeth,” says Dr. Haugseth.

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