If you like our blogs we would like to hear from you!
Posts for category: Children's Health
Your child just woke up with a runny nose, an elevated temperature and body aches. Could this just be a passing cold or could it be the flu? It’s important to be able to tell the difference between the two. A common cold is usually mild and will go away on its own without treatment but the flu often requires medical attention to prevent serious complications. While an annual flu shot can protect your child from developing the flu it’s also important to know what to look for and when to visit their pediatrician for care.
Warning Signs of the Flu
Unfortunately the common cold and the influenza viruses have a lot of the same symptoms, which can make it difficult to determine what your child might have. We know that you don’t want to worry unnecessarily and rush them into the office if you don’t need to but it’s also good to know when their condition warrants medical attention.
One difference is that a cold will come on gradually over the course of a couple of days while the flu will often attack suddenly, with symptoms showing up practically overnight. While a fever isn’t a common symptom of a cold a fever is almost always present with the flu, as well as full body achiness or weakness.
Children are also more likely to deal with diarrhea or vomiting with the flu. While symptoms of a cold are usually localized to the head, flu symptoms are more widespread.
You Suspect Your Child has the Flu. Now What?
The first step is to call your pediatrician. While it can take up to a week for your child to feel better after the flu sometimes medical attention is required. It’s especially important that you talk to your doctor if your child has flu-like symptoms and they are under the age of 5, as young children are more likely to deal with health-related complications from the flu.
You’ve talked to your doctor and you now know whether you are supposed to bring them in right away for care or whether you should continue to monitor their condition before bringing them in. At this point the most important thing you can do is help reduce their discomfort and control their symptoms. Make sure they are staying hydrated and getting as much rest as possible.
Avoid giving your child over-the-counter medications, as many of these medications aren’t safe for young children and won’t be effective for treating flu symptoms. If your child has a mild fever ask your pediatrician what over-the-counter medications could help alleviate their fever. Keep in mind: Children should never take aspirin!
The sooner you seek medical attention for the flu the better, as many antiviral medications can prevent the virus from getting worse if it’s administered within the first 48 hours. This medication is often taken for 5 to 7 days and it can help ease symptoms and speed up recovery.
The key is making sure to get your child proper medical care as soon as flu-like symptoms appear. Call your children’s doctor right away.
Not sure whether your child’s symptoms warrant a trip to the doctor’s office?
We know that the last thing you want to do is rush to the doctor’s if your child doesn’t actually need to be there. Of course, when certain symptoms or issues arise, it’s important to understand what you can treat from the comfort of your own home and what requires immediate attention from one of our La Jolla, CA, pediatricians. Read below to learn some of the most common symptoms that may require emergency medical attention from here at Children's Clinic La Jolla:
Every child will develop a fever at some point and we know how scary it can be the first time your little one comes down with a fever; however, a fever is the body’s way of fighting the infection so it should be seen as a positive thing rather than a negative one. That being said, you know that it's time to call our La Jolla children’s clinic if,
- Your child is under 2-3 months old and has a fever (even a low-grade fever under 100.4 degrees F needs medical attention)
- Your baby is over 3 months old but is experiencing other symptoms such as vomiting
- Your child has a fever over 104 degrees F (this is especially important if your child is also experiencing other symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, or a rash)
This is another unpleasant symptom and one that all children will face at some point. While a single episode shouldn’t worry you too much, if the symptom persists, you need to talk to a pediatrician. After all, vomiting can lead to more serious issues such as dehydration, which is why it’s important to keep replenishing fluids throughout the day.
Call your pediatrician if the vomiting becomes severe or lasts more than a few hours. You should also call us if your child is showing signs of dehydration such as dry mouth, cracked lips, decreased urine output, and general weakness.
Sure, most rashes will come and go and not cause your child any issues; however, it is important to know when a rash may be letting you know that something more serious is going on. Here’s when to call us:
- If the rash is painful
- If the rash is severe or widespread
- If your child is weak or fatigued
If you still aren’t sure whether or not your child should come into our office for immediate pediatric care, call our office today to find out. Children's Clinic La Jolla is dedicated to providing medical care to your child whenever they need it most. Call (858) 459-KIDS (5437) today, and have peace of mind when it comes to getting emergency pediatric care in La Jolla, CA.
A hearing screening is the easiest way to determine if your child is suffering from hearing loss. Thanks to a hearing screening, your pediatrician can determine the degree of hearing loss and how best to help your child hear well again. If your child’s hearing loss goes undiagnosed, it can lead to problems with normal development, learning disabilities, and problems socializing with others.
Your child could be suffering hearing loss from a variety of causes including a family history of hearing problems, infection during pregnancy, or birth complications. Hearing problems can also be caused by middle ear infections, infectious diseases, or even loud noises.
So, how do you know if your child needs a hearing screening? According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) these are some of the most common signs and symptoms of hearing loss in babies and children:
- Not turning toward sounds at 6 months
- Not saying single words at 1 year
- Not hearing all sounds
- Not answering to their name
- Delayed or unclear speech
- Difficulty following directions
Hearing screenings are often performed at well-child visits and during school physicals. If your child hasn’t had a hearing screening, and you notice any of the signs and symptoms listed above, you should schedule a hearing screen as soon as possible. Early detection of hearing difficulties leads to early treatment, which is much better for your child.
If your child has hearing difficulties, don’t worry. There are many effective ways to help with hearing loss including:
- State-of-the-art hearing aids, cochlear implants and other hearing devices
- Medications if the hearing loss is caused by an ear infection
- Surgical treatment to correct structural issues which may be causing the hearing loss
- Alternative communication techniques
- Educational and supportive services for the family
A hearing screening is important to the health and well-being of your child. You don’t want your child to miss out on all of the beautiful sounds of life. Your pediatrician can help you schedule a hearing screening to get your child started on the road to hearing well.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly recommends scheduled immunizations for children starting from birth all the way up to age 18. Understand why immunizations are important and how you can have your child immunized by a doctor at Children’s Clinic La Jolla in La Jolla, CA.
Types of Immunizations
There are over a dozen different vaccinations recommended for children of various ages. The CDC publishes a schedule for kids ages 0-6 years old, and another for 7-18 year-old patients. These are some of the most recognizable immunizations:
- HPV (Human papillomavirus)
- Influenza shots
- Measles and mumps
Why Is It Important to Get Immunized?
Immunization is a protection both for your child and the other children they will come in contact with, so it is both a personal and public health issue. The shots help build up the child’s immunity to diseases, training their systems to handily and quickly fight off viruses, bacteria, and infections. Schools often require proof of immunizations as a condition of enrollment—especially if the child plans to participate in contact sports. Talk to your La Jolla, CA pediatrician at your child’s next checkup appointment to have any of your concerns about immunizations alleviated.
Keeping Up with Your Child’s Immunization Schedule
It can be confusing to stay on track with your child’s scheduled immunizations, so ask your pediatrician to provide you with a calendar. If you miss one immunization, don’t worry. Just visit your child’s doctor as soon as possible to get caught up. There’s a special catch up schedule for children who start getting immunizations later than recommended or who are over a month behind schedule.
Call for Your Child's Immunizations
Your appointment to have your child immunized will likely be a quick and simple experience. The pediatricians at Children’s Clinic La Jolla in La Jolla, CA are committed to keeping your children healthy and happy in a child-friendly environment. Call (858) 459-KIDS (5437) today to schedule your visit.
Does Your Child Have Vision Problems?
Does your child have vision problems? Children learn through their eyes. Healthy vision is critical for children to see the computer and chalkboard, read, write, and even play. Children's eyes should be examined regularly, as many eye conditions and vision problems can be detected and treated early. Here are six signs that your child may have a vision problem.
1. Squinting eyes. If your child is nearsighted then squinting his eyes helps him make his vision a little clearer and can clear up any distorted vision. Nearsighted just means that they can see things that are near them but have a harder time with objects that are far away. Squinting is a coping mechanism to help relieve their blurry vision.
2. Sitting close to the TV. While it's a myth that sitting close to the television will damage your eyes, this habit may be a sign of a vision problem. If your child can't see televised images clearly or always holds a book too close, it could mean she or he is nearsighted.
3. Frequent eye rubbing. Yes, kids often rub their eyes when they're upset or tired. But if your child rubs her eyes while she's trying to concentrate on something, or while she is being active, it could mean that she has a vision problem. Frequently rubbing their eyes can be a sign of eye strain in children. It can be a sign of a focusing issue that causes the eyes to tire easily.
4. Losing place while reading. When children learn to read and are sounding out words, they will frequently use their finger to track which word they're on. But eventually children should be able to focus without losing their place. If after a while your child still uses his finger, ask him to try reading without pointing. If he has trouble, he may have a vision problem.
5. Sensitivity to light. Are your child's eyes sensitive to sunshine or indoor lighting? Many common eye conditions can make people more sensitive to light. If your child's light sensitivity is caused by an eye condition, then treatment for their condition can mean that his eye becomes less light sensitive.
6. Receiving lower grades. If your child is having a hard time seeing what her teacher writes on the board because of poor vision, she may not tell you about it. As a result, her grades can suffer. Most of what kids learn in schools is taught visually. That means if your child has an untreated vision problem, it could affect his or her development.
Yearly eye exams are as important as visits to the pediatrician. If you think your child may have a vision problem, schedule an appointment with a doctor. Early detection and treatment provide the best opportunity to correct a vision problem so your child can learn to see clearly.