During the winter months we have a higher number of students staying home ill with the common cold, flu, strep throat or other respiratory illness. Too often, however, very ill students come to school and unwittingly expose their classmates and teachers to their illnesses. Exposure can occur by inhaling germs released during a sneeze or cough or by touching doorknobs, pencils, other items or other surfaces contaminated by the infected person and then by touching the eyes or nostrils, allowing the germs to enter the respiratory system. Sometimes exposure is inevitable. But we do have several ways to protect ourselves:
Frequent hand washing, with soap and warm water, scrubbing for about 10 seconds is most important.
Keep your hands away from your eyes and nose.
Avoid people who are ill.
Don’t share food, beverages or eating utensils with someone who is ill.
If you are ill you can avoid spreading your infection to others.
Stay home during the most severe phase of you illness and especially if you have a fever. Don’t be a hero! You’ll recover faster and your friends won’t resent exposure to your germs.
If your doctor prescribes medication, take it as directed. Take antibiotics until the prescription is gone.
Wash your hands every time you sneeze, cough or blow your nose in addition to those other times (see number 1, first section).
Use paper tissues instead of cloth handkerchiefs and dispose of them in a lined container.
Parents, please pass these tips on to your children. The cold you prevent may be your own!
NURSE’S NOTES by Rosanne Cramer, RN School Nurse
The potentially deadly “Choking Game” is making a come back. Also called by other names, including “Blackout”, the choking game is popular among pre-teens and younger teens. RSD middle schoolers have told me they know about this game. Kids use their hands, arms, ropes, belts, pet collars, leashes, etc, to cut off oxygen to each other’s brains to induce light-headedness, or a ‘high’. Kids often try this with friends and then experiment secretly alone. They risk brain damage, heart attack, and death. A child experimenting alone can lose consciousness within a minute. The child’s body weight falling against a rope or belt can cause it to tighten so that death by asphyxiation occurs in about 4 minutes. Several young people across the state have died from this game recently.
Parents concerned about their children experimenting with self-asphyxiation should:
Be on the look out for telltale warning signs, including marks around the neck, bloodshot eyes and frequent headaches.
Talk with their children about the dangers of “pass out games”.
This information was taken from recent articles in the Seattle PI (Sept. 30, ’05) and Tacoma’s The New Tribune (Oct. 31, ’05 and Nov. 2, ’05).
UP-COMING SEPAC MEETINGS The Special Education Parent/Professional Advisory Council (SEPAC) meets the 1st Thursday of the following months at the Richland School District Boardroom located at 615 Snow Avenue at 7:00 p.m.
Feb. 2, 2006 Transitions within Special Education
May 4, 2006 Planning Meeting
JOIN OUR RHS PTSA………….! For only $12, you will receive the following:
A PTSA "2 for 1" card worth over $290 in discounts from local merchants, including Bluewood, Dairy Queen, Cinnabon, Domino's Pizza, Papa John's Pizza, Rollarena, Chuck E Cheese, Tastee Freeze, Indulgences, Arby's, and Barracuda Coffee.
A National PTA membership card
Opportunities for providing support of our faculty and staff, enriching student life, and meeting other similarly motivated parents, teachers, and students
Check out http://www.rsd.edu/schools/rhs/ptsa/index.html for information.