Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Help Ease Back to School Anxiety

Back to school time is just around the corner! We know that this time of year can bring with it a lot of excitement and anticipation (for both parents and children 😉), but it can also come with a lot of stress and anxiety for many children.

We want our children to have a positive experience as they begin the adventure of a new school year, so we asked our Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Helen Aoki, to give us some tips for parents to help their children feel confident going back to school:

1. Maintain good schedules with sleep and waking
     Don't wait until school starts to move bedtimes back. Most school-aged children need 9-11 hours
     of sleep per night, and older adolescents need 8-9 hours.

2. Normalize anxiety before school starts
     Help your children understand that it's normal to feel nervous before starting something new, and
     that many of their friends and classmates will be feeling the same way. Anxiety usually gets better
     after your child has had time to adjust and get used to the new school year.

3. Praise the ability to be brave and go to school despite feeling anxious
     Always praise the behavior you want to see in your children. Say things like "I'm so proud of you
     for going to school, even though it makes you anxious."

4. Teach basic relaxation skills
     Have your child try deep breathing 5 times or squeeze and relax hands 5 times before leaving for
     school; or when feeling anxious while at school. Focus on being calm and brave, and not on being

5. Focus on a positive thought
     Have your child repeat out loud, or in their mind, positive and encouraging thoughts like "I can
     do this" or "I won't always be this anxious for school." Do this instead of repeatedly having
     thoughts like "I hate school!"

6. Know when to seek additional help
     If your child experiences continually worsening anxiety, has frequent physical symptoms of
     anxiety or is regularly unable to stay at school, seek additional help. Contact your child's primary
     care physician or talk to a school counselor to get more help and resources to help you child feel
     comfortable and confident going to school.

For more information on getting your children's school year started off on the right foot, visit: The AAP's Back to School Tips

Wednesday, July 18, 2018


The AAP has created a short, informative video on protecting your child from the harmful effects of the suns' rays. We strongly recommend using sunscreen regularly! Watch below:

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Health Information Week: Chronic Illness

Cassie Crane, our Medical Home Coordinator, is here to help coordinate care and resources for our patients with chronic illness or other medical complexities!

What is Medical Home?

A Medical Home is a team-based healthcare delivery system for children. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) describes the ideal Medical Home as one that provides “accessible, continuous, comprehensive, family-centered, coordinated, compassionate and culturally-effective care.”

What can the Medical Home Coordinator do for children with chronic illnesses?

  1. Coordinate care with specialists
  2. Order supplies and services through home health agencies
  3. Provide social resources (transition planning, disability waiver information, Social Security, etc.)
  4. Provide community resources (therapy, support groups, local programs, Early Intervention, etc.)
  5. Give support and additional information about your child’s specific diagnosis
  6. Offer assistance with financial resources (navigating insurance, assistance programs, disability funds, etc.)
  7. Provide educational support (504/IEP letters, coordination with school services, special education, accommodation information, etc.)

Contact our Medical Home Coordinator, Cassie Crane, if you need help managing care or finding resources for your child with chronic illness or other special healthcare needs: 801-565-1162 ext. 1315

July Newsletter