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If the pandemic and virtual schooling has meant more screen time than you would like for your kids, then now is the perfect time to get them off the couch and outside. July 19-23 is National Youth Sports week and the perfect time to find a new sport or activity for your child to enjoy both this summer and back at school in the fall.

It’s also the perfect time to get moving and get healthy as a family. Getting healthy as a family doesn’t have to be complicated. Take a dance or karate class together, go swimming or rollerblading, sign up for a family fun run, or battle it out in a family game of laser tag. There are plenty of cost-free options, too! You can play kickball in your yard or at the local park, play tag or practice cartwheels, throw a ball around, pull up a kid-friendly yoga video on your phone, or just take advantage of warm weather and extra sunlight by going on an after dinner walk around the neighborhood. Modeling healthy behavior will help teach your kids the importance of physical health. And being involved in a family activity helps reduce screen time and social media use, which have been shown to increase the risk of mental health issues in children and teens.

While you are focusing on family health, don’t forget to schedule annual check-ups for the family. Unfortunately, many pediatricians have reported parents opting out of having their children and teens seen for an annual well-child check during the pandemic.

Regular check-ups for children and teens are critical for pediatricians to monitor for any signs of emotional, developmental, or mental health difficulties. Regular visits to the doctor also help make sure they are up-to-date on recommended vaccinations. If you have a child who will be participating in school sports in the fall, an annual physical may be a requirement for participation, and a check-up now will ensure they are in tip-top shape mentally and physically before the school year starts.

To schedule an appointment for yourself or for your family members, please call us at 1-800-859-0085 or access the Patient Portal.