Posts for category: Child Safety
Keep your child safe while enjoying fun in the sun.
School’s out for summer, and your child may be gearing up for outdoor adventures, summer camps, swim team, and other activities. Of course, keeping your child safe is of the utmost importance to all parents and pediatricians. Here are some helpful tips to keep your little one safe all summer long.
Recognize Signs of Heat Exhaustion
When kids get dehydrated, which is quite common on hot summery days, they are more at risk of heatstroke and exhaustion. By recognizing the symptoms of heat exhaustion in your children, you’ll be able to bring them indoors and prevent them from developing heat stroke (which can be incredibly dangerous, especially for young children). Signs of heat exhaustion include,
- Body temperature between 100 and 104 F
- Increased thirst and sweating
- Clammy, cool skin
When you notice these symptoms, it’s essential that you bring your child into a cool place and make sure that they drink lots of liquids to stay hydrated. You can also help lower their body temp by applying cool compresses to their skin.
Keep Kids Protected from the Sun
Sunscreen isn’t just for adults; it’s also for kids. Just one sunburn can increase your child’s risk for skin cancer in the future. That’s why it’s important that you have them lather up with a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.
It’s important that you apply a generous amount to their face and body about 30 minutes before going outside. If they are going to be playing or swimming outdoors, it’s essential that they reapply immediately after coming out of the way or if they are sweating.
Know Water and Swimming Safety
Summer often means a lot of time spent in the pool or by the water. While the water can be a ton of fun for kids, it’s also important that they practice proper water safety habits to prevent drowning and other accidents. Make sure to keep an eye on your child, even if there is a lifeguard on duty. If your child is new to swimming, you may want to enroll them in a swim class that can help them develop strong swimming skills.
Keep Bug Bites at Bay
Along with protecting your child from the sun’s powerful rays, you must also protect them from mosquitos and other pests that could sting or bite them outdoors. Apply insect repellent before your child goes outside. There are many insect repellent options on the market these days, some of which are made from DEET-free and natural ingredients that are safe for all ages. Ask your child’s pediatrician if you are unsure which insect repellent is safe for them.
Summertime is the best time to be a kid, and these helpful tips will ensure a smart, safe, and fun season for the whole family. Don’t forget to schedule your child’s back-to-school physical with your pediatrician, especially before the sports season begins.
Is it safe to incorporate peanuts into my child’s diet?
Research shows that introducing a small number of peanut products to your baby’s diet may actually reduce their risk for an allergy. This means everything from adding a little bit of peanut butter to peanut powder to their food. You can introduce your child to peanut-based products at around 4-6 months old.
Is my child at risk for a peanut allergy?
It is important to recognize if your child is at high risk for a peanut allergy. If your child has an egg allergy or has severe eczema they may be more likely to have a peanut allergy and should be properly screened by a pediatrician, as even trace amounts of peanut products could cause a reaction. A skin or blood test may be performed to check your child’s response to peanuts and look for allergy signs.
What are the signs of a peanut allergy in children?
Symptoms can range from mild to severe, often coming on suddenly and lasting for hours. Mild symptoms may include hives on the face and mouth or a rash. Signs of a more severe allergic reaction include:
- Widespread hives
- Tongue or facial swelling
- Trouble breathing
- Swelling of the lips
My child has a peanut allergy. Now what?
While there isn’t a way to cure a peanut allergy the best treatment option is to simply avoid consuming peanuts and peanut products. Your child’s pediatrician can provide you with an extensive list of products your child will need to avoid. Make sure that they also don’t share food with other kids at school. Your pediatrician may also prescribe an EpiPen, which is to be used if your child has a severe allergic reaction. Your pediatrician may also recommend that your child see a pediatric allergist who can provide further and more specialized recommendations.
If your child is showing signs of a peanut allergy, call your child’s pediatrician today to schedule an evaluation. If you simply have questions about incorporating peanuts into your child’s diet to reduce their risk for an allergy, your pediatrician can also provide you with expert advice.
Is the Covid-19 vaccine safe for children?
Yes, the Covid-19 vaccine is safe for kids 5 years old and older. The vaccine has undergone the same testing, clinical trials, and authorization that the Covid-19 vaccine has for adults. While it is normal to experience mild side effects such as soreness at the injection site or fatigue, these are signs that the body is building up protection. While some kids may experience side effects, not all kids will.
What is in the Covid-19 vaccine?
There is a blend of active and inactive ingredients within the vaccines and each manufacturer has published a list of their vaccine’s ingredients online. All vaccines are free from metals and manufactured products such as carbon nanotubes. Vaccines do not contain eggs, latex, preservatives, or gelatin. Each manufacturer offers its list of ingredients that you can check out: Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson.
How many doses of the Covid-19 vaccine does my child need?
Pfizer is the only vaccine that is currently approved for use in children ages 5 years to 17 years old. Teens 18 years old and older can choose from Pfizer, Moderna, or the J&J vaccine. Both Pfizer and Moderna require two doses administered at least three weeks apart, while the Johnson & Johnson vaccine only requires a single dose.
Can my child get the booster shot?
It’s is recommended that everyone get the booster shot about 6 months after getting the Pfizer vaccine. Teens 16-17 years old and older are eligible for the booster shot and should get one. Talk to your pediatrician to find out if it’s time for your child’s booster.
If you need to schedule a Covid-19 vaccine for your child or teen, call your pediatrician today to book your child’s appointment. If you have additional questions about the vaccine, don’t hesitate to call your child’s doctor.
What are the signs and symptoms of chickenpox?
Chickenpox is notorious for causing fluid-filled and intensely itchy blisters on the body. Chickenpox blisters typically appear about 10 to 21 days after being exposed to the virus, and symptoms can last up to 10 days. In the beginning, your child may only show symptoms of a cold including loss of appetite, fatigue, fever, headache, and overall malaise. They may also experience a stomachache or sore throat. These symptoms will often appear before the rash.
The rash often starts on the face or stomach and then spreads throughout the rest of the body. Once the blisters break open, they will crust over and eventually fall off. It’s important that kids do not scratch these blisters, as this can lead to infections and scarring.
Is there a way to treat chickenpox?
Since chickenpox is caused by a virus, antibiotics will not be effective at treating this infection. Most treatment options are aimed at providing relief from symptoms while the body gets rid of the infection. If your child is at risk for complications related to chickenpox, their pediatrician may prescribe antiviral medication. Simple home care can help to alleviate discomfort due to chickenpox. This includes taking oatmeal baths and applying cold compresses to the blisters.
Is chickenpox preventable?
Absolutely. There is a chickenpox vaccine that all kids can and should get from their pediatrician. Even if kids still end up getting chickenpox after getting the vaccine, their symptoms will be much milder. If your child has already had chickenpox then they do not need to get vaccinated as they already have lifelong immunity.
If you have questions or concerns about chickenpox, or whether your child should get vaccinated, don’t hesitate to call your child’s pediatrician to learn more.
What is considered a fever?
A healthy body temperature is 98.6 F; however, many things can elevate a person’s temperature including intense exercise, so not all temperature fluctuations mean that your child is sick; however, an illness or infection can certainly shift your body’s temperature as it works to fight off the bacteria or virus.
What can cause a fever?
There are quite a few reasons why your child might be dealing with a fever. Some common causes include:
- Viral infections (e.g. cold; flu)
- Bacterial infections
- Severe sunburns
- Heat exhaustion or heat stroke
- Inflammatory health problems
- Side effects of certain medications
A fever that develops in an infant (babies under 3 months old) is often a far more serious matter than fevers in children. If your infant develops a fever of 100.4 F or over, it’s highly recommended that you bring them to your pediatrician right away for care.
When to seek medical attention for your child’s fever?
By the age of 3 years old, most children will have developed at least one fever. While some fevers won’t be anything to worry about and will go away on their own, it is important to know when your child’s fever requires medical attention. You should call your pediatrician if:
- Your child’s fever persists for more than 5 days
- The fever is over 104 F
- Your child has symptoms of dehydrated
- Medications aren’t helping to reduce their fever