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Health and Safety for Preschoolers (4-5 Years)

mom and preschooler daughter painting

Health and Safety for Preschoolers (4-5 Years)

preschool girl outside reaching for bubbles

Your child is growing bigger and more independent now. They like to play in groups and play outside. With preschool, they are starting to live part of their lives away from home and in a learning environment. This is a time when it’s important to make sure you and your child are aware of the ways they need to stay safe. 

Health and Safety Tips

children playing jump rope

Safety for Preschoolers

  • Keep an eye on what your child is doing, especially when they are playing outdoors
  • Make sure your child doesn’t play in the street and always remembers to watch out for traffic 
  • Tell your child never to cross a street without an adult and do not chase a ball into the street
  • Check playground equipment to make sure it is safe and has no sharp edges or loose parts
  • Make sure your child knows how to be safe around strangers and never to go with strangers at any time, anywhere
  • Teach your child to swim safely, but always watch them near any water
  • Lock up medicines, cleaners and chemicals in cabinets with safety latches
  • Make sure your child is in a forward-facing care seat with a harness until they reach the top weight or height limit for that car seat
  • Use a booster seat with the seatbelt in the back seat of the car when your child outgrows their car seat
dad and daughter brushing teeth

Keeping Your Preschooler Healthy

  • Eat meals together often. Model healthy eating habits by serving fruits, vegetables, whole grains and other healthy foods for meals and snacks
  • Limit the amount of sugar, solid fats and salt in your child’s food and drinks
  • Limit screen time. Develop a media use plan for your family and keep TV sets out of your child’s bedroom
  • Encourage your preschooler to play and move throughout the day
  • Choose age-appropriate toys for your child to choose from, like balls and plastic bats 
  • Make sure your child brushes their teeth twice each day using a soft child’s toothbrush with a small amount of fluoride toothpaste
  • Make sure they get enough sleep – the recommend amount of sleep for preschoolers 3 – 5 years old is 10 – 13 hours per day (over a 24-hour period, including naps)

More Resources for Parents

Get Essentials for Parenting Preschoolers

Find expert advice on common parenting challenges, videos and “how-to’s” for positive parenting, interactive activities, and quick tips.

Get Positive Parenting Tips

Find positive things you can do as a parent broken out for every age group – in English and Spanish from the Center for Disease Control.

Get Nutrition Info

Get information on how to help your preschooler develop healthy eating and physical activity habits for life from

Get Healthy Weight Ideas

Get ideas from the Center for Disease Control to help your child maintain a healthy weight through the preschool years.