Posts for category: Child Health Care
Below are some tips for how to keep your children safe, healthy, and happy.
With everything going on right now, more and more parents are focusing on ways to keep their children healthy. Here at Pediatric Associates of Davidson County in Nashville, TN, our pediatricians are committed to ensuring that each and every child gets the proper care they need to grow up healthy and strong. Here are some tips to help keep your child healthy all year long:
What your child consumes on a daily basis can have a profound impact on their health. Since children are growing by leaps and bounds, it’s particularly important that they are receiving everything they need from their diet to reach these developmental milestones. While you do want to limit sugar and junk food, you don’t have to ban these foods completely (they can be a nice reward).
On a daily basis, children should be receiving protein, fruits, veggies, complex carbs, and healthy fats (think avocados and nuts, not processed foods and snacks). Also, opt for healthy snack options (e.g. almond butter on celery or hummus and carrots) rather than reaching for cookies or chips.
Children and teens should be active for at least one hour every day. This is why it’s a good idea to get them involved in extracurricular sports to increase their activity levels throughout the week. Get their hearts pumping, reduce their risk for obesity, and promote strong, healthy bones and muscles.
Teach proper handwashing
You’ve probably been hearing a lot about the importance of handwashing lately. Knowing how to properly wash your hands is crucial for preventing the spread of germs. Your child should be washing their hands,
- Before eating
- After using the bathroom
- After playing with pets
- After sneezing, coughing or blowing their nose
Immunizations and Check-ups
It’s important that your child visits their Nashville pediatrician for routine checkups, immunizations, physicals, and other preventive tools to keep them healthy. Vaccines are particularly important for protecting children from dangerous and potentially life-threatening diseases. The CDC provides online vaccine schedules from birth to 18 years old here: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/schedules/index.html
Prioritize Your Child's Health
Now more than ever, it’s important that you are keeping your children up to date on their immunizations here in Nashville, TN. To schedule your child’s next checkup or to inquire about the next round of immunizations they need, don’t hesitate to call Pediatric Associates of Davidson County at (615) 329-3595. Your child’s health is our top priority!
As soon as your baby is born but before they leave the hospital, they will need to undergo a hearing screening (most hospitals perform a hearing screening but it’s also a good idea to ask). Congenital hearing loss, which occurs at birth, affects less than 1 percent of newborns; however, it is also possible for hearing loss to develop later during a child’s life, which is why routine hearing screenings are necessary for all children.
Once they leave the hospital, it’s now your pediatrician’s responsibility to provide hearing screenings and other tests and treatments that your child will need until they turn 18 years old. Your pediatrician will be an asset to your child’s health and you will work closely with them, so it’s important that you choose a pediatrician that you trust and value.
Why are hearing screenings necessary for newborns?
As soon as your child is born one of the ways in which they will receive and interpret information is through what they hear; therefore, if they have problems hearing then they may also deal with other problems including delays in language development and speech problems.
By detecting hearing problems early on your pediatrician can provide early interventions including hearing aids or other treatment options to ensure that your child reaches these important and necessary developmental milestones.
Of course, if your child responds to your voice or responds to noises then you may think that their hearing is fine, but this isn’t always the case. There may still be certain noises that they can’t hear properly and sometimes even these minor hearing issues can still affect language and speech.
Should my child’s hearing be assessed regularly?
Even if your baby passes their first hearing screening it’s still important that you turn to a pediatrician for routine checkups. Most hearing screenings usually don’t warrant a separate trip to the office, which means that your child’s hearing will be assessed during regular wellness visits.
Of course, if your newborn has certain risk factors that could affect their hearing it’s important that you share these factors with your pediatrician. These factors include:
- A family history of hearing loss
- Facial deformities
- Postnatal infections
- Premature birth
Finding a knowledgeable and trustworthy pediatrician before your baby is born is one of the most important things soon-to-be parents can do. Let our team provide your little one with the quality care they need to grow up healthy and strong.
No one is ever truly prepared to care for a newborn. You may read all the baby books, visit parenting websites, and listen to the advice of well-meaning relatives, but when that new bundle of joy arrives, it can still be an overwhelming experience.
Fortunately, here at Pediatric Associates of Davidson County in Nashville parents who need advice about things like breastfeeding and keeping the baby safe at night can get the help they need.
Here are some common questions about newborn care:
How long should I breastfeed my baby?
The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that moms breastfeed their babies for at least six months. After six months, they should combine breastfeeding with regular food for at least 12 months. However, mothers shouldn't feel pressured to wean babies immediately off after one year as long as the breastfeeding process is still successful.
How should my baby sleep in the crib?
Babies should always be placed on their backs when it is time for them to sleep. Never place your baby on her stomach or side. The baby should sleep on a firm mattress that is snugly covered with a fitted sheet.
It seems like my baby cries all of the time. Is this normal?
Yes, it's normal. Babies zero-to-three months old cry around two-to-three hours each day. If your baby cries more than three hours a day, contact one of the pediatricians here at Pediatric Associates in Davidson County.
How many hours will my newborn sleep?
Newborns don't know whether it's night or day. They sleep between 14 and 17 hours a day, and this occurs throughout the day. Their little bellies don't hold a lot of breastmilk or formula, so they awaken every two-to-four hours. While this can be tough on new parents, it is, of course, necessary, and becomes easier over time. If you live in Nashville, contact one of our pediatricians to receive more information about breastfeeding.
If you live in Nashville and have questions about breastfeeding or any other concerns about your baby, call Pediatric Associates of Davidson County at (615) 329-3595.
Sneezing. Watery eyes. Stuffy nose. These could just be symptoms of a cold or these could be signs that your child has allergies. If you notice that your child’s symptoms flare-up during certain times of the year then this could definitely be a sign of seasonal allergies. Unfortunately, allergies can impact everything from performance in school to participating in outdoor activities such as school sports. If you suspect that your child may have allergies it’s important to talk with your pediatrician.
Childhood Allergy Symptoms
Allergy symptoms can also seem a lot like a cold or other upper respiratory problems. Common symptoms associated with allergies include:
- Watery, red, and itchy eyes
- Itchy nose
- Dark circles under the eyes or puffy eyelids
- Ear pain and chronic ear problems
- Nasal congestion
- Facial pain and pressure
- Persistent cough
- Chest tightness
So, how can you tell that your child is dealing with allergies and not an infection? Some telltale signs include itchy eyes and nose, which are classic signs of allergies. If your child has a fever this is usually a sign of an infection and not allergies. Unlike a cold, allergy symptoms can last for weeks. You may also notice that your child’s symptoms come and go, appearing more often during the spring and fall months. Again, this is a trademark of childhood allergies.
Treating Childhood Allergy
There are many ways in which a pediatrician can help your child manage their allergy symptoms, and the treatments that are recommended will depend on the type and severity of your child’s symptoms. Most treatment plans include a variety of lifestyle changes and medication. Children with minor symptoms may find relief through over-the-counter antihistamines and decongestants, while other children may require a prescription-strength allergy medication to tackle more moderate to severe symptoms.
Lifestyle modifications may include using a dehumidifier in your child’s bedroom, wearing glasses instead of contacts during allergy seasons, bathing immediately after being outdoors, limiting outdoor activities during high pollen counts, and keeping pets out of bedrooms (if your child suffers from pet dander allergies).
For severe or unresponsive allergies, your pediatrician may recommend immunotherapy, or allergy shots. Allergy shots may be a good option for your child when other treatment options and medications have not been successful.
Are your child’s allergy symptoms impacting their daily routine? If so, our pediatricians can help them manage their symptoms so they can get back to enjoying days on the playground and time spent with family.