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Posts for category: Child Healthcare

By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
August 11, 2021
Category: Child Healthcare
Cradle CapNoticing rough, scaly patches of skin on your newborn’s scalp? If so, this is a sign of cradle cap. This condition (also known as infantile seborrheic dermatitis) is fairly common in newborns and typically isn’t anything to worry about. It’s similar to dandruff for adults; however, while it might not be harmful or painful for your little one, you may be curious to know how to get rid of it. While it will go away on its own, there are things you can do from the comfort of your own home to treat symptoms of cradle cap.

First, is it actually cradle cap?

It’s important to be able to pinpoint the signs and symptoms of cradle crap. This condition most often occurs within the first 2-4 weeks of a baby’s life. This condition is characterized by oily, scaly, white or yellow patches that may crust over. While it might look unpleasant it isn’t painful and shouldn’t itch, but may be slightly red. You may also find these scaly patches on other parts of the body including the nose, ears and groin.

If the patches are itchy or painful, this could be a sign of another skin condition that will warrant seeing your pediatrician for an accurate diagnosis.

Should I seek treatment from a pediatrician?

Your baby’s cradle cap should go away on its own with a few weeks or months. You can care for cradle cap by simply using a mild shampoo and by shampooing your baby’s scalp every few days, which can help to remove scales. It’s important that you don’t scrub or become too aggressive with the scalp; however, if your child’s symptoms are severe or aren’t responding to home care, then it’s time to turn to a pediatrician who can prescribe a special, medicated cream or shampoo.

If you ever have concerns about your child’s health or any symptoms they may have, even minor ones, it’s important to bring it up with a qualified pediatrician that can address these concerns and also provide a fast diagnosis. No concern is too small when it comes to the health and wellbeing of your child.
By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
July 30, 2021
Category: Child Healthcare
Tags: Glasses   Vision Screenings  
GlassesWe all want our children to be healthy and to have the best chance for success, especially once they start school. Of course, your child must be getting regular vision screenings with their pediatricians. After all, vision is critical to your child’s ability to learn, communicate, and understand, and vision problems can impact your child’s school performance and quality of life. Could your child need glasses? Here are some telltale signs.

You Catch Them Squinting When Reading

When your eyes have trouble focusing on an image, squinting may actually help your child see or focus better. Your child may squint when reading anything far away such as a menu behind a restaurant counter or when reading the chalkboard at school. Your child’s teacher may even let you know that your child needed to move closer to the front to see what was written on the chalkboard. This is a telltale sign that your child needs to have their vision evaluated by their pediatrician.

Sitting Close to the TV

Another sign that your child may have trouble with their vision is if they put phones and other electronic devices close to their face to see it. Your child may also sit really close to the TV. These could be signs of nearsightedness.

Nightly Headaches

If your child’s eyes have been overworked and straining all day your child might complain of frequent headaches, particularly in the evening.

Difficulties in School

When parents and teachers notice that their child is having trouble focusing on work they may immediately think that they have ADHD, but sometimes bad vision is actually the culprit. If your child can’t properly see the board, it’s no surprise that their attention focuses on other things. This is when you should talk to your child and find out if they are having trouble seeing the board. It might not be behavioral issues, it might just mean that they need to get an eye exam.

If you are noticing changes in your child’s vision, or if your child mentions having blurry vision or trouble seeing, you must schedule an appointment with your child’s pediatrician as soon as possible. While your pediatrician does have the tools necessary for hearing and vision screenings, they can also refer your child to a pediatric optometrist who can provide further and specialized vision testing and fit them with glasses, if necessary.
By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
July 15, 2021
Category: Child Healthcare
Vitamin DVitamin D deficiency is incredibly widespread in the US, and not just with adults! In fact, about one in 10 children in the US are deficient in vitamin D and as many as 60 percent could have “suboptimal levels” of vitamin D, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. This is why all pediatricians need to screen children for a vitamin D deficiency, as this can impact bone growth, metabolism, and multiple organs and systems.
 
The Importance of Vitamin D

Vitamin D is critical for all of us, but especially children. Vitamin D is needed to absorb calcium, as well as for the support and development of a healthy body. Children with severe vitamin D deficiencies may develop muscle weakness, delayed motor development, rickets, and fractures.
 
Where to Get Vitamin D

Unlike most vitamins, which we can often get through diet alone, vitamin D is acquired through time spent in the sun. You won’t find many foods that naturally contain vitamin D. Unfortunately, if you’re in a place that doesn’t get much sunlight then chances are good your child may not be getting enough vitamin D.

Children get about 80 percent of their vitamin D from sunlight. So if your child doesn’t spend much time outdoors (especially during the winter months) it’s a good idea to talk with your pediatrician about ways to ensure that your child is getting enough vitamin D.

Children with certain health problems such as cystic fibrosis or celiac disease, as well as children who’ve undergone bone surgeries may require more vitamin D. This is something you should discuss with your pediatrician. Children over 1-year-old need at least 600 IU of vitamin D (or more) a day. Ideally, children should get around 1,000 IU of vitamin D per day.

We also know that too much time in the sun can also pose risks for children, especially their skin. During the summer months, children only need a few minutes a day in the sun to get enough vitamin D. During the winter months, kids should get about 2-3 hours per week. Children under 6 months old should never be placed in direct sunlight.

Children with darker skin will also need to spend more time in the sun to produce the same levels of vitamin D as kids with lighter skin. Just sitting inside near windows won’t be enough for your child’s body to produce vitamin D.
 
Nothing is more important than keeping your child healthy. If your child hasn’t been checked for a vitamin D deficiency, you must talk with your pediatrician to find out if this screening is right for them. Fortunately, if you find out that your child is deficient, it’s an easy fix!
By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
July 12, 2021
Category: Child Healthcare
Tags: Newborn   Pediatrician  

You may not realize that a pediatrician can do more than just help you care for your child after they are born. It’s important you find a pediatrician before your child is born to ensure that both you and your baby are getting the proper support and care you need. Your pediatricians at Pediatric Care North in Kansas City, MO, are here to help you understand the importance of a newborn doctor and how they can benefit you and your baby.

How Having a Pediatrician Before Birth Can Benefit You

When you’re expecting, there are many things you need to take into consideration to make sure your baby is getting proper care from the minute they’re born. Your newborn doctor in Kansas City, MO, can help give you the proper tools to care for your child as soon as they enter the world.

At your first consultation, your pediatrician will be there to answer any questions you may have about things like vaccinations, newborn care, breastfeeding, circumcision, or scheduling. Taking care of a newborn requires a lot of information and a lot of work, so it’s important to take advantage of the extra help and information that your pediatrician can provide you with. They will also have you meet with a lactation specialist at your first visit so that you can learn more about breastfeeding and if it’s the right choice for you and your baby.

Choosing a pediatrician before your child is born is also a good idea because they can come to check on you while you’re in the hospital with your newborn and answer any questions you may not have been able to ask yet. Your pediatrician will then be able to work directly with you to ensure that your child is healthy and progressing as they should be.

Call Your Pediatrician Today!

It’s important to meet with your pediatrician before your child is born so that you can be ready to care for your child when they get here. Call Pediatric Care North in Kansas City, MO, today at (816) 587-3200.

By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
May 19, 2021
Category: Child Healthcare

Well child physicals play an important role in children’s health and wellbeing. Scheduling regular pediatric visits enable the doctor to monitor your child’s growth and development and ensure your child is up to date with vaccinations. The frequency with which well child physicals are needed varies by age. The experienced and friendly pediatricians at Pediatric Care North in Kansas City, MO, can advise you as to how often to schedule a visit for your child.

Well Child Visits

The purpose of well child visits or physicals is to promote better overall health for your child. There are several aspects to a well child visit, including information gathering for personal and family medical histories, and a physical exam. All of these things help the pediatrician better monitor your child’s growth and development. Well child physicals also enable the doctor to identify health, growth, or development concerns and treat potential problems right away before they become more serious.

Several topics are usually discussed with parents during a well child physical, including nutrition, dietary guidelines, vaccine recommendations, physical and growth development, developmental skills, social skills, and emotional well-being. The specific topics that are addressed vary based on the age of the child. For example, toilet training is discussed during the toddler years, while school and peer interactions are talked about when kids are in upper-grade school.

Younger children can benefit from scheduling a well visit every few weeks or months, depending on their age. Kids two years of age or older only need to schedule one well child physical per year. The skilled pediatricians at our office in Kansas City, MO, can develop a schedule for how often your child should come in for a checkup.

Immunizations

An important component of well child visits is immunization. The purpose of immunization is to help kids develop immunity to certain illnesses and diseases, such as measles or the flu. The way children build immunity is through vaccination. Many vaccines are administered by injection, while a few are taken orally.

The experienced pediatricians at our office recommend children receive all vaccines at the age-appropriate visit according to the immunization schedule developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Kids who are behind on their vaccinations can be placed on a catch-up schedule.

Well child physicals help your child enjoy better health by enabling the doctor to monitor growth and development, as well as help your child stay up to date with vaccinations. To schedule your child’s next well visit with one of our caring pediatricians, call Pediatric Care North in Kansas City, MO, at (816) 587-3200.