Friday, August 23, 2013

August Health Observances

Two month-long reminders about children's health take place in August, both intended to coincide with the start of the school year.

National Immunization Awareness Month

First, this month marks the annual National Immunization Awareness Month, and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) reminds parents that "August is an ideal time to make sure everyone is up-to-date on vaccines before heading back to school and to plan ahead to receive flu vaccines." The AAP notes that some parents have concerns or questions about immunizations, and their website includes information on every aspect of immunization from school vaccination requirements in all 50 states to vaccine safety. They recognize the importance of getting accurate information about immunizations and note that the "AAP Immunization Web site was assessed by the World Health Organization (WHO) and passed their credibility and good information criteria."

Children's Vision and Learning Month

Ano Lobb
August is also Children’s Vision and Learning Month. As the New Jersey Society of Optometric Physicians states, "Children with undiagnosed, untreated vision problems ... can experience trouble focusing between a book or electronic device and the blackboard, or controlling or coordinating eye movements. In today’s digital classroom, a student must see well to not only keep up but to excel." We could not agree more -- and it is because of these important connections between eyesight and learning that vision screening is a routine component of a comprehensive educational evaluation at The Yellin Center. Further, we believe that regular exams with a pediatric ophthalmologist (a medical doctor who specializes in the eye issues of children) should be a part of your child's medical care.

Here's to a healthy start of school for all!

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