January School Health News

    EJ Patten Elementary School


    Cold, Flu, or Allergy?

    Treatment depends on which you have. A health professional can help you choose the best therapy.

    Common Cold

    • Symptoms last up to 2 weeks
    • Stuffy, runny nose; sore throat; cough
    • Treated with rest, fluids, over-the-counter (OTC) medicines to ease symptoms

    Seasonal Flu

    • Symptoms usually last 1-2 weeks
    • High fever (100-102 °F, or higher in youngsters), headache, aches and pains, weakness, exhaustion, cough, chest discomfort
    • Treated with rest, fluids, OTC medicines, prescription antiviral drugs

    Airborne Allergy

    • Lasts as long as allergens (such as pollen, pet dander) are present
    • Stuffy, runny nose; itchy, watery eyes
    • Treated with antihistamines, decongestants, nasal steroids



    There are a lot of fun things to do outside in the winter.

    However, it is important to consider safety. It’s always a good time to review the American Academy of Pediatrics winter health and safety tips.


    If your child suffers from winter nosebleeds, try using a cold air humidifier in the child’s room at night. Saline nose drops or petroleum jelly may also help. If severe, consult your pediatrician.


    When it gets cold outside, remember to set reasonable time limit on outdoor play and have children come inside periodically to warm up. Dressing in layers is best.

    Outdoor Winter Activities

    Ice skating and sledding are great ways to get exercise on a cold winter day. Children should be supervised. Advise your child to: Sled feet first or sitting up, instead of lying down head-first. Sled on slopes free of obstructions (like trees or fences), not too steep, that ends with a flat runoff. Skate only on approved surfaces. Skate in one direction with the crowd. Never skate alone. Do not chew gum or eat candy. Wear a helmet. Stay away from crowded areas.


    This time of year we often get a few cases of lice. Adult head lice or their eggs (nits) are found in the hair, most often behind the ears and at the base of the neck. Head lice are most commonly spread by direct head-to-head contact with hair of other people who have head lice. Head lice are less commonly spread through contact with an infested person’s personal items, such as hair brushes and combs, hats, unwashed clothing, bedding or towels. Head lice are commonly spread within households. There are a number of effective treatments for head lice. Treatment for head lice usually consists of shampooing the hair with a medicated shampoo. Consult with your pediatrician for treatment of head lice. Head lice are certainly a nuisance, but they are not generally considered a health hazard. Head lice are not a health hazard or a sign of poor hygiene and are not responsible for the spread of any disease.

    **For a fun family winter activity, see the website below to learn how to make cool decorative snowflakes** http://www.origamiway.com/how-to-make-paper-snowflakes.shtml


    Vision and height/weight screenings have been started at EJ Patten School. A note was sent home for students that had difficulty with the vision screening. Please let us know if your child was seen by the eye doctor and the results of the exam. Because vision can affect learning, it is important that students who need glasses wear them while in school. If you need assistance in finding an eye doctor or financial assistance for glasses please let us know. The EJ Patten School is in the process of vision, hearing, blood pressure, and height/weight screenings. A note will be sent home if your child has difficulty with the screenings.


    If your child has outgrown their uniforms, please consider sending them to the school. Extra clothes come in handy for when students fall in a puddle at recess or spill water or milk on themselves at lunch. Thank you.

    Judy Amorosa BSN RN CSN