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Posts for category: Pediatrics

By Pediatric Associates of Davidson County
February 13, 2020
Category: Pediatrics
Tags: Strep Throat  

It's important to be able to spot the differences between a regular sore throat or viral infection and strep throat. Anyone can get strep throat, but it is most common in children and teenagers. If you notice any of these symptoms in your child, it's important to see your pediatrician immediately to determine whether or not your child has strep throat. Here are some symptoms of strep throat.

Throat Pain

Strep throat is a bacterial infection that causes inflammation and throat pain. Severe pain in the throat is normally the first sign of strep throat. If you notice that your child's sore throat isn't going away easily, you may need to take your child to the pediatrician because it's usually difficult to get rid of the discomfort completely without the use of prescription medication.

White Patches

Yellow or white patches on the tonsils or in the back of the throat are another symptom of strep throat. Instead of yellow or white patches, you may instead notice long streaks of pus coating your child's tonsils. 

Difficulty Swallowing

Pain during swallowing is another common symptoms of strep throat. If it becomes difficult for your child to swallow and they experience pain when they attempt to swallow, they may have strep throat.

Swollen Glands

If you touch the glands in your child's neck, you may be able to feel if their glands are swollen. The lymph nodes in your child's neck will usually be tender to the touch and swollen if they have strep throat, because normal lymph nodes are generally not painful or tender.

Headaches

Headaches are another common symptom of strep throat. They can range in severity from mild to extremely excruciating. If your child's headache occurs frequently or worsens, be sure to consult a pediatrician immediately.

Fever

Another common symptom of strep throat in children is a fever over 100'F. A lower fever may end up being a symptom of a viral infection and not strep throat, so be sure to take note of that. With a viral infection, most fevers should go away on their own within one or two days, and by the third day, other symptoms should start to disappear.

So what are you waiting for? If you notice any of these symptoms in your child, be sure to consult your pediatrician as soon as possible so that they can determine whether or not your child has strep throat or just a viral infection and your child can receive all the relief they need.

By Pediatric Associates of Davidson County
January 31, 2020
Category: Pediatrics
Tags: Diabetes   Child Care  

With the rise of newly diagnosed cases of type 1 and type 2 diabetes in children in the US, it’s now more important than ever for both parents and children to understand ways to prevent diabetes, as well as being able to identify the symptoms of type 1 and type 2 diabetes. A pediatrician is an integral part of your child’s health, providing everything from screenings and vaccines to routine checkups and lifestyle recommendations to ensure that your child stays healthy.

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects glucose levels in the body. When the cells in the pancreas responsible for making insulin do not produce enough insulin or are insulin resistant, this results in diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes is most often diagnosed during childhood and is not the result of a poor diet or being overweight. In those with Type 1 diabetes the cells in the pancreas are unable to produce enough insulin. Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent type 1 diabetes in children.

On the other hand, type 2 diabetes is also becoming increasingly common in children because of the high rates of obesity. Type 2 diabetes means that the body doesn’t use insulin properly. Ensuring that your child eats right, gets regular exercise and maintains a healthy weight can greatly reduce your child’s risk for type 2 diabetes.

What are the symptoms of childhood diabetes?

Symptoms of type 1 diabetes will appear suddenly, while type 2 symptoms will develop over time. Symptoms may include:

  • Excessive thirst
  • Increased hunger
  • Frequent urination
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Mood swings
  • Blurred vision
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Cuts or sores that don’t heal
  • Dark patches of skin

If you notice any of these symptoms in your child it’s best to see a pediatrician right away. The sooner a diagnosis is made the sooner your child can get the proper medication and treatment they need to manage their blood sugar levels. By managing your child’s diabetes right away our doctors can prevent potentially serious complications and hospitalizations.

How is diabetes treated?

There are a variety of lifestyle modifications and medications that will be recommended to help treat your child’s type 1 or type 2 diabetes. For both forms of diabetes, a healthy diet and active lifestyle are paramount. Talk with your doctor about what foods your child should avoid. You will also want to monitor your child’s glucose levels during the day to make sure that the insulin medication is working effectively.

All children should visit their pediatricians regularly for checkups, vaccines and care. Of course, if your child displays any symptoms of diabetes, call our office immediately.

By Pediatric Associates of Davidson County
January 28, 2020
Category: Pediatrics
Tags: breastfeeding  

The saying “breast is best” is not an overstatement and it isn’t false advertising either. Your breast milk is really the perfect food you can give your baby. Just as cow’s milk is perfect for calves, your milk is tailor-made to satisfy all the nutritional requirements of human babies. However, while giving birth and finally meeting your little one may be exciting, it could also be overwhelming, especially if you’re new to breastfeeding. If you want to know all the ins and outs of breastfeeding, our physicians here at Pediatric Associates of Davidson County in Nashville, TN can help. Meanwhile, here are some breastfeeding facts you should know about:

  • Breastfeeding offers short and long-term benefits for your little one including:
    • Minimized risk of developing all sorts of infections due to improved immunity against bacteria and viruses.
    • Reduced risk of SIDS or sudden infant death syndrome.
    • Decreased risk of developing diabetes.
    • A healthier weight.
  • Breastfeeding also offers you the following benefits:
    • Better and faster recovery.
    • Reduced risk of developing postpartum depression.
    • Losing extra weight faster.
    • Decreased risk of developing certain cancers and medical conditions.
  • Getting the perfect latch and position will take practice and patience, but once you and your little one get the hang of it, it will be smooth sailing from there.
  • The taste, smell and color of breast milk changes based on what food you eat. It could be yellow, pink, green, orange, or blue and taste and smell sweet or sour depending on what you ate before breastfeeding.
  • Because it can be difficult to tell if your baby is getting enough milk, rather than trying to measure in units, refer to these signs instead:
    • Your baby isn’t showing signs of hunger.
    • Your little one produces lots of dirty diapers regularly.
    • Your baby is growing and gaining sufficient weight.
  • Expect your baby’s weight to drop during the first few days of his life. He should then start gaining weight steadily after three days or so. But if you find that his weight continues to drop, you might not be making enough milk to meet his needs or he may have other issues aside from breastfeeding. If you’re concerned about your baby’s weight and feeding, consult our doctors in our Nashville, TN, office to just to be on the safe side.
  • Your baby literally eats what you eat so you should load up on nutritious foods and drink lots of fluids to ensure sufficient milk production. Avoid alcohol, caffeinated drinks, and sugary beverages. If you must imbibe, refrain from breastfeeding for at least two hours.
  • Some soreness and pain are common during the first several days of breastfeeding. These should subside after a few days, but if not, visit your doctor as soon as you can to avoid complications like mastitis.

Breastfeeding should be a breeze, and it is really is for some moms. For some, however, it can be hard, uncomfortable, nerve-wracking, and even painful. So don’t hesitate to ask for help if you’re having any issues with breastfeeding. Visit us at the Pediatric Associates of Davidson County in Nashville, TN, or schedule an appointment with one of our physicians by calling (615) 329-3595 right now.

By Pediatric Associates of Davidson County
January 16, 2020
Category: Pediatrics
Tags: Asthma  

While there is no cure for asthma, there are ways to manage your child’s asthma symptoms and to reduce the risk for a flare-up. Of course, to be able to properly control your child’s asthma it’s important to understand more about this condition and what triggers your child’s symptoms. A pediatrician will be a valuable asset when it comes to discussing asthma treatment options and addressing any concerns that you might have.

Know Your Child’s Triggers

There are a variety of environmental elements and conditions that can also trigger airway inflammation and lead to an asthma attack. It’s important to figure out what your child’s triggers are so you can avoid them as much as possible. Of course, this is something that your pediatrician can help you determine as well. Common triggers include:

  • Outdoor allergens such as pollen and mold
  • Indoor allergens such as pet dander
  • Viral infections
  • Exercise
  • Weather changes

Stick With Your Plan

Once a pediatrician has diagnosed your child with asthma, the next step is to create an asthma management plan (also referred to as an action plan). This plan is designed based on your child’s specific triggers to minimize the severity and the frequency of your child’s flare-ups, which also reduces the need for emergency medical care. So, what’s including in an asthma action plan? Here’s what should be in your child’s action plan:

  • The medications prescribed to your child, along with how much they take and when they should take them
  • Possible triggers
  • Pinpointing the early signs of asthma flare-ups and what to do when they occur
  • How to handle an asthma attack
  • When to seek immediate medical attention

Take Medications as Directed

Medication is the most common way to manage asthma symptoms. Your pediatrician will prescribe a long-term controlling medication that your child will use daily to reduce airway swelling. When signs of a flare-up appear, a quick-acting inhaler can reduce swelling and prevent it from getting worse.

Know Signs of a Flare-up

Once your child has experienced a couple of flare-ups you’ll begin to pick up the warning signs so that you can start to recognize when another one might occur. These warning signs might come in the form of a persistent cough or wheezing. When these symptoms appear it’s important to have your child’s medication readily available.

If your child is showing symptoms and warning signs of asthma it’s important that you bring them in for an immediate medical checkup. Call your pediatrician today to learn more about ways to help your child better control their asthma symptoms.

By Pediatric Associates of Davidson County
December 17, 2019
Category: Pediatrics
Tags: Ear Infection  

An ear infection is one of the most common infections that children have to deal with. In fact, most children will experience at least one ear infection by the time they are five years old. Of course, it’s important to understand the telltale signs of an ear infection, as well as know how to treat the infection and when you should turn to a pediatrician for care.

An ear infection isn’t contagious and usually isn’t a cause for concern; however, you will want to monitor your child’s symptoms to make sure problems aren’t getting worse or don’t warrant seeing a doctor. In many instances, a child may develop an ear infection after they’ve had a cold.

Signs and Symptoms of an Ear Infection

So, how will you know if your child has an ear infection? Children who are old enough to talk will certainly be able to let you know that they are experiencing an earache or pain; however, a baby or toddler won’t be able to tell you that they are experiencing an earache. Therefore, signs that your baby might have an ear infection include:

  • Increased fussiness
  • A fever
  • Pulling at the ears
  • Crying or tantrums, particularly when lying down
  • Having difficulty hearing noises or not responding to sounds
  • Fluid draining from the ears

So, when should you wait out an infection and when should you call a pediatrician? You should give your child’s doctor a call if they have an ear infection and they are also experiencing:

  • A rash
  • Vomiting
  • Difficulty hearing
  • Ear swelling

You should also turn to a doctor for care if your child:

  • Has an ear infection and they are under 6 months old
  • Is in significant pain or still experiences pain after two days of taking ibuprofen
  • Also has other serious health problems

How is an ear infection treated?

In most cases an ear infection will go away on its own. If your child isn’t in significant pain and they don’t have a high fever your pediatrician may tell you to wait a couple of days to see if symptoms improve. If symptoms remain or get worse then you should bring them back to the doctor’s office.

While antibiotics are not normally prescribed to treat an ear infection they may be used if your child has a very high fever, is in significant pain or if their ear infection hasn’t improved within 48 hours. It’s important not to give your child any over-the-counter medications without first talking with your pediatrician.