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Posts for tag: Pediatrician

By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
March 26, 2021
Category: Child Healthcare
Whooping CoughPertussis, more commonly referred to as whooping cough, is a contagious bacterial infection of the lungs. The nickname comes from the “whooping” sound that occurs when a child breathes. While many people assume that whooping cough is an infection that no longer exists, it’s actually more common in the US than we’d like to admit. In fact, pediatricians have seen an increase in the number of whooping cough cases over the last couple of decades.
 
Whooping Cough May Look Like a Cold

You might brush off the early signs of whooping cough because they look an awful lot like the common cold. Older children and teens may develop congestion, mild fever, cough, or runny nose; however, within the first 1-2 weeks you will notice that the cough gets worse. In fact, your child may develop severe and sudden coughing fits.

Children and newborns are more likely to display severe symptoms. They may not have a whoop in their cough, but they may vomit or show severe fatigue after coughing. While anyone can develop whooping cough, infants are at particular risk for serious and life-threatening complications so it’s important to have your family vaccinated.
 
Vaccines Can Protect Against Whooping Cough

While newborns are too young to be vaccinated against whooping cough, you should make sure that the rest of your family is fully vaccinated. The DTaP vaccine will protect against whooping cough and will be administered at 2, 4, and 6 months old, again at 15 to 18 months, and again at 6 years for a total of five doses.
 
Turn to a Pediatrician Right Away

If you suspect that your child might have whooping cough, you must call your pediatrician right away. Children under 18 months old may require hospitalization so doctors can continuously monitor them, as children are more likely to stop breathing with whooping cough. Of course, coming in during the early stages of the infection is important as antibiotics are more effective at the very start of the illness.
 
Until the body clears whooping cough, some of the best ways to manage your child’s symptoms include,
  • Resting as much as possible
  • Staying hydrated
  • Sticking to smaller meals to safeguard against cough-induced vomiting
  • Making sure your family is up to date on their vaccinations
If you want to fully protect your child against many dangerous communicable diseases, one of the best ways is through vaccinations. Your child must be up to date on all of their vaccines. Talk with your pediatrician to find out when your child should get the whooping cough vaccine.
By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
March 17, 2021
Category: Child Health
Tags: Pediatrician   Thumb-Sucking   Pacifier  
Thumb SuckingReflexively, your baby is born with the ability to suck. It makes sense. After all, your little one must be able to suck to get nutrients, whether breastfeeding or bottle-feeding. Thumb sucking also has the ability to soothe and calm your little one. However, there are moments as your child gets older where thumb-sucking may become a problem. Your pediatrician can provide you with the tips and tricks to help your little one grow out of this habit.
 
Thumb-Sucking Tendencies

This is a normal habit in newborns that typically goes away around 6-7 months; however, this seemingly innocuous habit may actually be a cause for concern if thumb sucking continues beyond 2-4 years, where it can alter the shape of the face or cause teeth to stick out.
 
When to Consider a Pacifier

Many children desire a pacifier between feedings, but this should not be a replacement for feedings. It’s important to recognize when your child is sucking because they are hungry and whether they merely want to self-soothe. If your child still has an urge to suck and they don’t need to nurse, then a pacifier is a safe way to soothe and ease your child’s needs (if they want it).
 
It is safe for children to use a pacifier while sleeping, whether at bedtime or when they go down for their naps. Just prepare for babies to wake up fussy in the middle of the night when the pacifier falls out of their mouths, as they aren’t able to place the pacifier back in their mouths themselves. Make sure that you do not try to place the pacifier on a string around your baby’s neck or tie it to the crib, as this can lead to a serious and potentially deadly injury.
 
How to Phase Out the Pacifier
There will come a point when your child will need to give up their pacifier. While the medical community has different age ranges, The American Dental Association recommends that children stop using a pacifier by age 2, as going beyond two years old could alter the alignment of your child’s teeth or impact the shape of their face.
 
Here are some tips to phase out the pacifier,
  • Do not tease or punish your child for using a pacifier, but instead praise them when they do not use it. Provide them with rewards when they go without it.
  • Some children use pacifiers out of boredom, so give your child something to do to distract them such as playing with a game or toy (to keep their hands busy).
  • If incentives and rewards aren’t enough and your child is still using a pacifier, your pediatrician may recommend a “thumb guard” that can prevent your child from sucking their thumb. While you may feel in a rush to get rid of your child’s pacifier, it’s important to be patient. All children eventually stop this habit.
Even if you are concerned about your child’s thumb-sucking, it’s important to know that most children do grow out of it not long after starting school. While you can provide them with helpful ways to ditch the habit it’s important not to put pressure on them. With the help of your pediatrician, your child can and will outgrow this habit.
By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
February 16, 2021
Category: Child Safety
Tags: Pediatrician   Stitches  
When Does My Child Need StitchesWe all know how accident-prone kids can be. They get bruises, bumps, cuts, and scrapes from time and time. Most of the time, these boo-boos are nothing to worry about, but sometimes a cut or laceration may require turning to your pediatrician for stitches. Does your child need stitches? We know it isn’t always easy to tell. Here are some telltale signs that your child might need stitches,
  • Apply pressure to the cut for five minutes. If it’s still bleeding after five minutes, it probably needs stitches
  • The cut is more than ½-inch deep or longer
  • The cut is around their eye
  • The cut is on their face or neck and is longer than ¼ inch
  • The cut is gaping open
  • There is an object sticking out of it, including debris or glass
  • The cut is spurting blood
Any cut that spurts blood could be a sign of a nicked artery. Immediately apply pressure to the area and head to your local ER for immediate medical attention.

When should I call the pediatrician?

If in doubt about whether or not your child may need stitches, call your pediatrician. With the introduction of telehealth visits, many pediatricians can now look at images of the injury or wound through a simple online appointment and determine whether the child or teen needs to come in for stitches. While the warning signs above are telltale indicators that your child may need stitches, even if the cut doesn’t need stitches, you should still see the doctor if:
  • The cut was made by a rusty or metal object
  • There is redness, swelling, pus, or other signs of infection
  • The child has been bitten by an animal
  • The cut hasn’t healed within 10 days
  • There is still severe pain after a few hours
Cuts and wounds made by metal, rusty, or dirty objects may require your child to get a tetanus shot. This is why you should see your pediatrician right away, as it’s important for them to get this shot within 2-3 days after the injury.

If you still aren’t sure whether or not your child should get stitches, it doesn’t hurt to give your pediatrician a call. Let us know the symptoms your child is experiencing, and we can determine if their injury requires a closer look from our team. Call us today; we can deal with your child’s urgent medical matters.
By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
January 22, 2021
Category: Child Healthcare

Don’t scramble to find a pediatrician for your baby at the very last minute.

There is so much to do and prepare for before your baby arrives. While you’re also thinking about what color to paint the nursery, what car seat will bring your baby home from the hospital and what to pack in your hospital bag, you may also be wondering what pediatrician your child will go to. For more than 30 years, our board-certified pediatric doctors have provided comprehensive medical care to newborns, children and teens living in and around Kansas City, MO.

When to Start Looking

A good rule of thumb is to start searching for a pediatrician about three months before your baby’s due date. You may wish to talk with family members or friends to get recommendations and referrals for pediatricians they love. Online reviews of the practice can also provide helpful insight.

What To Look For

There are certain factors that you’ll want to consider before choosing the right newborn doctor here in Kansas City, MO. After all, weren’t there certain factors that played a role in which general doctor or dentist you turn to for care? Here are some factors to consider before deciding if our practice is right for your family,

Location: How easy is it for you to get to our practice? We know that for many families, the proximity of their pediatrician’s office is the most important factor. If you’re a quick drive to our practice, then we may be ideal for you.

Scheduling: How easy is it for you to get an appointment? At Pediatric Care North we may it easy to schedule an appointment by calling our practice or simply requesting an appointment online. We also know that some parents don’t want to take their kids out of school or don’t want to have to leave work for a doctor’s visit. That’s why we offer appointments until 8pm, Monday through Thursday and appointments on Saturdays between 9am-12pm.

Personality: Do you jive with the pediatrician who is providing you and your child with care? How friendly is the staff, from the person who greets you to the nursing team that checks your child’s vitals to your child’s doctor? Do you feel like your pediatrician is listening to your needs and concerns? It’s important that you feel comfortable with every member of the team. We work hard to provide a friendly, caring environment.

If you are looking for a Kansas City, MO, doctor for your newborn that can provide your little one with the care they need to help them grow healthy and strong, then call Pediatric Care North at (816) 587-3200 to schedule a no-risk consultation with our team to see if we’re a great fit for your family.

By Children's Mercy - Pediatric Care North
September 21, 2020
Category: Child Healthcare
Tags: Pediatrician  

Are you unsure which type of doctor to choose for your baby, child or teen? The Kansas City, MO, pediatricians at Pediatric Care North, an affiliate of Children's Mercy, offer the specialized care children need to maintain good health.

5 reasons your child needs a pediatrician

Pediatricians offer these benefits:

  • Familiarity with Growth and Development: The needs of growing children are much different than those of adults. In addition to treating illnesses and injuries, pediatricians also evaluate your child's development and growth. Growth and development issues aren't always obvious yet may affect your child's physical or mental health. If any issues are noticed, your child's pediatrician can discuss options and treatments with you or refer your child to a specialist if needed.
  • A Child-Friendly Environment: Visits to the doctor may be a little overwhelming for kids. Pediatricians understand that their young patients may feel apprehensive or shy and strive to make visits relaxed and positive. In addition to putting your child at ease, they'll offer age-appropriate explanations of illnesses, injuries and treatments.
  • Treatment and Prevention of Common Childhood Illnesses: Pediatricians have plenty of experience diagnosing and treating illnesses and diseases that affect kids of all ages. They also offer vaccines that will prevent many diseases, including polio, influenza, rotavirus, whooping cough, measles, mumps, tetanus and meningitis.
  • Help for Mental Health Issues: Childhood isn't always as carefree as it should be. Anxiety, depression and other mental health issues can affect kids as well as adults. Your pediatrician can offer a sympathetic ear and treatments for many mental health issues and also make referrals. Are you worried that your child may have autism or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)? Your child's doctor can provide resources, discuss testing and offer referrals to specialists.
  • Children's Hospital Privileges: Pediatricians have admitting privileges at children's hospitals like Children's Mercy in Kansas City. They can refer you to specialists at the hospital, help you make appointments, and coordinate your child's care if he or she is admitted to Children's Mercy.

Are you ready to schedule a visit with Pediatric Care North, an affiliate of Children's Mercy? Call the pediatricians in Kansas City, MO, at (816) 587-3200 to make your child's appointment.