Don’t Just Check the Box: Awareness of SCA in Youths

What if your child collapsed on the playing field from an instance of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA)? What if you found out afterward that there were steps you could have taken to prevent this occurrence?  Well, you can. Here are the steps you can take.

 

Don’t just check the box.

When filling out the health history forms required by your school, don’t just check the box that says your child is fine. Make sure the forms are properly completed with your child’s involvement and give detailed explanations of symptoms that your child has experienced regarding exercise that could be categorized as warning signs. Often times, we are unaware of potential risk factors for sudden cardiac death. In pre-examination physicals for youth sports teams, heart-related screenings are not typical unless there is an apparent predisposition to heart problems as stated by a physician. Here’s where you, as a parent, are the gamechanger.

 

Schedule a heart screening for your child.

Many conditions that put kids at risk can only be seen, not heard. Common sports physicals do not include an EKG, which is essential in a complete cardiac assessment.

 

Be your child’s advocate.

If your child becomes winded easily, suffers from fainting spells, or feels chest pain or discomfort following physical exertion, these could be signs of an underlying heart condition. While completing the health history forms, discuss these symptoms with your child. Consult your physician regarding next steps in preventing SCA. Your persistence could just begin a much-needed revolution in child health screenings.

 

To understand the importance of proper screenings and more details about warning signs and how you can help your child avoid SCA, please watch our Emmy-nominated video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wC8lWNKLbts&t=2s

 

Do not be afraid to speak up. Sudden cardiac arrest is a scary subject, but it must be discussed. For more information about SCA, visit parentheartwatch.org

 

Don’t Just Check the Box: Awareness of SCA in Youths
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