Friday, May 26, 2023

All About Ice Packs for The School Nurse

Ice, Ice Baby

This post contains affiliate links. 

Hopefully Helpful School Nurse Tip:  Believe it or not the topic of ice packs is one of the most talked about topics within The School Nurse Fb groups!  My best advice is for you to have a consistent routine that works best with your school nurse office and your students. Let's explore some popular opinions on ice!

Can I have an ice pack?
It's important to remember that students will come to your office and request an ice pack for a variety of reasons. Some of these reasons require ice, some do not. As the school nurse, use the information gathered during your assessment to decide whether or not an ice pack is needed. Then start writing down these complaints in your "Common Complaints" journal. You think you'll remember, but you won't and you'll have this journal as a a great reminder! 

Ice Protocol

Every school nurse's office should have protocols to follow for certain situations; even when and how to use ice packs. There might be exceptions to protocols at times, but remember to be consistent- this will help your students know what their options and expectations are when they come to your office.

Typically, ice is used for minor injuries to decrease circulation which decreases pain, swelling and inflammation. 

Using an ice pack for 10-20 minutes every hour is usually appropriate. Do not apply ice directly on the skin; considering wrapping the ice pack in a paper towel. The student can sit in your office rest, elevate and hold ice to the injury, or (if allowed) take the ice pack with them back to class.  


Ice Pack Options

There are a variety of ice pack options to fit the budget of any school nurse. What option is best for your office?  Here are a few things to consider:
  • What age range are your students?
  • Are students allowed to only use ice packs in your office?
  • Can students take ice packs back to class with them?
  • Do you expect students to return ice packs?
  • Will your ice packs be single use only?
  • Will you or your student call/notify home every time they use an ice pack?
  • Can students who are "hot" request an ice pack to help them cool off?
  • Is eating the ice allowed?
  • Do you have the assessment skills & confidence to say "No" to the request for an ice pack?
Depending on how you answered these questions, will depend on what ice packs are best for your office.  For my office, we prefer a countertop ice maker with single use ice packs. In fact THIS is the exact countertop ice maker we have. and it works great. 

We make ice and add to gallon size bags. Then, we fill sandwich size bags about 1/2 full and keep those stocked in the freezer to use as needed & repeat the 'ice cyle' (see what I did there) as needed too!

Are countertop ice makers worth all of the pennies?

This is the countertop ice maker used in my office.

This poll is from the public Fb group for school nurses HERE.
Request to join by answering all of the membership questions.

Over the years, I've learned there are many creative ways to make ice packs.  Here are a few options:

  1. Reusable ice packs wrapped in a dry paper towel.
  2. Frozen paper towel in a bag wrapped with a dry paper towel.
  3. Frozen sponge inside a bag and wrapped with a dry paper towel.
What do you use?


Friday, April 28, 2023

National School Nurse Day

Happy National School Nurse Day

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 Compensation is received when purchases are made after clicking one of the links. 
There is no additional cost to the buyer. + 

Hopefully Helpful School Nurse Tip:  National School Day is right around the corner. Use one of these free digital or printable cards to celebrate with your favorite school nurse co-workers and friends!

Click on any of the images below to digitally share or print a card!
Thank you for all of your support :)




Sunday, February 26, 2023

Period Poverty & Products

Purchasing Period Products

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Compensation is received when purchases are made after clicking one of the links. 
 There is no additional cost to the buyer. + 

Hopefully Helpful School Nurse Tip:  One of the most common questions asked is "How do I get the funds to purchase needed period products for the students at my school". My answer was DonorsChoose and maybe (I hope) it can be your answer too?

Period Poverty will be a project I complete every school year!

Period Poverty is a real thing; period products are an expensive necessity. 

According to state board of education, 53% of the student population at my high school are considered low income students. They state also states school need to supply period products free of charge those who need them. Get all of the details HERE Illinois Public Act 102-0340
However, I did not receive an increase in my yearly budget to help cover the additional costs for such needed items. 

DonorsChoose to the rescue! 

The kindness of donors helped me help my students

Period Poverty DonorsChoose Project


start your very own project HERE

Read about all of my completed projects here!