Child health

The Starting Life Well service hopes to bring you useful information on health and health related topics.

Poisonous plants

Giant Hogweed is a plant that produces phytotoxic sap. The sap contains photosensitizing furanocoumarins, which in contact with human skin and combined with UV radiation cause skin burnings. The intensity of the reaction depends on individual sensitivity. There is a fact sheet available as a download below which helps to identify this plant.

Best start for life

The pre-school years are an ideal time to establish healthy lifestyles and although parents have the main responsibility for their child's food, nutrition and physical activity, childcare providers also have an important role. Guidelines have been produced by Department of Health Northwest, for food, nutrition, play and physical activity for early years childcare and are available to download below.

Physical activity - babies and nursery

Being regularly physically active is vital and it is especially important for children. Being active from the earliest months, as a normal part of daily life, can establish a positive pattern for their whole life. Useful information and free resources are available from the British Heart Foundation babies and nursery page.

Giving medication to children in registered childcare

A factsheet is available from Ofsted that explains their interpretation of the legal requirements for the administration of medication to children in registered childcare.

Infection prevention and communicable disease control and childhood illness

Downloadable guidance is available below and the NHS have a visual guide to childhood illness which you will find useful.

Healthy eating

Ofsted's new Common Inspection Framework includes a judgement on personal development, behaviour and welfare. As part of reaching this judgement, inspectors will look at the extent to which early years settings successfully support and encourage children and their parents or carers to gain 'knowledge of how to keep themselves healthy', and 'evidence of a whole setting approach to healthy eating'.

Best practice guidance has been developed in partnership with 4children to help early years adopt and demonstrate a whole setting approach to healthy eating and is available to download below.

Toddler nutrition

The Infant and Toddler Forum, an independent group of experts in infant and child nutrition development, has launched a new website with a dedicated area for childcare professionals. The website now includes childcare information with factsheets, reports and advice.

Safer food, better business

The Food Standards Agency has produce a Safer food, better business (SFBB) pack for registered childminders or childcarers on domestic premises who provide meals and drinks for children in your care.

Emotional health for children and young people

Children and young people's emotional health is everyone's business. Good parenting, quality experiences in school, leisure, and social support all help.

If you work or volunteer with children and young people you are best placed to recognise problems. The Emotional Health Service Directory is designed for you. You can use it to refer children and young people to appropriate services and get support.

Sunscreen application

At present there is no standardised policy covering the responsibility of sunscreen re-application in nurseries and schools. The decision about re-applying sunscreen to children is made by individual schools and local authorities. The British Skin Foundation has launched a petition calling for a standardised sunscreen policy in nurseries and primary schools.

This page was last updated on 2 March 2017

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