Category: Health Care Children

Common Summer Ailments in Children as Explained by Gaithersburg Pediatricians

Summer is a great time for kids to get out and play. Summer camps, hiking trips with friends, or a long vacation with family are all on the list when summer arrives. However, this season, your kids are also susceptible to a lot of ailments and diseases when they come in contact with nature or with other infected kids. Pediatricians in Gaithersburg, MD explain the kind of summer ailments to look out for and how to keep your kids protected from them.

Dehydration

Kids play so much in summer that their regular intake of fluids becomes insufficient to combat loss of water through sweating or sun exposure. Common signs of dehydration include extreme thirst, fatigue, and reduced passage of urine. To protect your child from dehydration, encourage him/her to carry a water bottle at all times and drink from it at regular intervals. In case you see signs of dehydration, give your child plenty of fluid – encourage him/her to take sips at regular intervals than in one go. Use oral rehydration salts if the dehydration is extreme. This will help restore the mineral and electrolyte balance in their bodies.

Sunburns

The scorching heat in summer often results in sunburns, characterized by a burnt, red, and irritated skin. Long treks, beach camps, and outdoor activities in summer can all result in sunburns. To avoid the same, teach your kids how to use sunscreen products. Get them to apply the cream, lotion, or gel at least 15 to 20 minutes before sun exposure. Remind them to re-apply after a few hours for extended protection. Encourage them to wear protective sunglasses, hats or caps, and lightweight scarves when they step out.

Heat/sunstrokes

A heat stroke is the next stage of sunburns. It is a serious condition characterized by dizziness, increased sweating, rapid heart rate, vomiting, cramps, and skin that’s cool to the touch and covered with goosebumps. Sunstrokes generally occur during strenuous summer hikes, long hours on the beach or outdoor yard work. If your child displays signs of extreme fatigue, bring him/her inside, run the air conditioner, and administer cold water or sports drinks that can bring down the body temperature. Do not resort to extreme measures like applying an ice pack or giving a cold bath, which could worsen the condition by sending the body into shock. Call emergency or your Gaithersburg pediatrician if the symptoms do not subside.

Norovirus

Norovirus is the pesky stomach bug or infection that affects the stomach and intestine. It is characterized by nausea, vomiting, cramps, fever, body aches, and chills. Norovirus is usually foodborne and the best way to keep your children protected is by getting them to eat fresh and preferably home-cooked food. The virus leaves the child’s body and the ailment subsides on its own in a couple of days. During this period, keep your child hydrated, and use over the counter medications to treat fever and aches. If the fever or condition gets worse, consult a pediatrician in Gaithersburg immediately.

Factors to Consider While Selecting A Pediatrician in Gaithersburg, MD!

Finding a good child specialist for your babies is a very important step towards parenting. Since in the first year of baby’s birth, there are multiple visits to your pediatrician for vaccines and child care, it is extremely important to find a good doctor who can connect well with the child and understand their problems.

How to verify the doctor’s credentials

It is equally important to verify your doctors’ credentials. Whether he/she is an MD just a diploma holder. Parents should be confident enough before letting the doctor handle their little one. He/she can be verified by –

● AAP Member:

Mostly the potential pediatricians in America are a member of this community. It is American Academy of Pediatricians.

● Board member:

A pediatrician has to write and clear a tough exam to become a board-certified pediatrician. Else just passing the medical college wouldn’t make him a board member.

Factors to consider while selecting a pediatrician for your little one –

1. Child’s response to medicines!

The best pediatrician in the town may not suit your child, or the child may not respond to him or his medicines in the required way. Hence, finalizing upon a pediatrician for a long run should be based upon the child’s response to the doctor.

2. Is the pediatrician updated with latest medical advances?

With rapid advancements in technology and science, it is really important that the doctor should be well updated with medical advancements. New vaccines, new viral/infection knowledge and its cure etc.

3. Are they available over the call?

At times, a child needs urgent treatment wherever he / she is. It is important that the doctor should provide on-call treatments in the emergency. At times babies become so cranky and irritated that it is difficult to take the child to the hospital. At such times on – call support is really helpful.

4. Does your doctor encourage discussions and educates you about the child’s health care and behavior?

Doctors should encourage discussion and should educate the parents from time to time about child’s eating habits, behavior, healthcare etc. A good doctor would always encourage discussion sessions with their patients.

5. Is he/she geographically reachable?

For new-born babies and toddlers, it is very essential that their doctor should be closer to their place. At times of emergencies, and ill health, doctor’s closer to the place really helps in immediate treatment.

Choosing a pediatrician is absolutely a personal decision. No matter if you have the world’s best doctor on speed dial if you are not comfortable asking her advice. So, go ahead and choose the perfect one for your kid!

Why Do You Need Pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD For Your Child?

During their growth period, children often fall sick because of different reasons. Sometimes their immune system naturally fights back the ailment, while at some other times, they need some medical attention and prescriptions. Though a pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD is easy to find, it is also important to look for certain things while finding the one. After all children’s health is not a child’s play. Pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD holds a medical license in compliance with the law that allows them to practice medicine for children. Parents must always be watchful of this because improper or wrong treatment is even dangerous than the sickness itself. In addition to the knowledge and the certification of the doctor, willingness of children to visit the pediatrician is also important. Therefore, while finding a pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD, parents must also take care that pediatrician is available for kids either at a clinic or a general department of a hospital or health centre. Children are often scared because of the chaos of the patients at the emergency section and they begin to be scared of the pediatrician.

If a pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD is easily available on calls when children cannot be taken to them, are not less than angels from heaven. It is the parents who take care of all the treatment and medication for their children. Therefore, in case they need guidance while at home, a pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD with prompt and flexible availability is all they need. It is not just the child, but parents also get affected by the sickness at both a physical and emotional level. A skillful pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD understands this and handles both the parents and the child alike. They know how to break even the serious news without breaking their spirit and moral. Again, it is the skills of a pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD that are tested in case of the toddlers who cannot even speak about their symptoms and feelings, instead diagnose is dependent on parent’s observation of child’s behavior and some physiological symptoms. It is not the number of practice years of a pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD should always matter, but the compassion and empathy that they have with their young patients should be counted on. A doctor with a good experience might diagnose faster and better but the one with a commitment to the children is what every parents look for in a pediatrician in Silver Spring, MD when it comes to their child’s health.

Child Psychology – Right Psychologist For Your Child

Children are the best creation from God to human being. Hence it is our duty to take care of our child. Children development takes place gradually what they learn from their family, friends & surrounding. Child development is its rapidly emerging sub-field of study, which seeks to account for the gradual evolution of the Childs’s cognitive, social and other capacities, first by describing changes in the child’s observed behaviors and then by uncovering the process and strategies that underlie these changes.

At early ages, children need special care as well as attention of their parent. They also need as much love and attention as possible, to allow it to develop physically, mentally and emotionally. It should be taught how to eat, walk and talk and how to get the most out of what it learns at school and college. But while discharging one’s duty as a parent, seldom does one realize that every step the youngster takes.

Each & every parent wants to be his child intelligent & healthy. In initial time, child undergoes several physical as well as mental developments. Healthy food is the most important factor that affects development of a child.

Initial mental development of your kid is also an important factor. Hence there is a need to understand the psychology of your little one. Child psychology is not only about describing the characteristics of the child’s psychological change over time, but also to find ways to explain the principles and internal workings fundamental to these changes. Awareness of these factors is supported by the use of models. Some children have psychological problems. In addition, there are many problems, unrelated to environmental and social circumstances that affect children in particular. Child psychology addresses clinical problems that beset children and early adolescents. These include mental retardation, autism, learning impairments such as dyslexia, behavior disorders and complications born of deafness, blindness, and the like. Many children’s speech impairments can also be resolved by a trained child psychologist.

Psychological problems that crop up in childhood can translate into serious consequences like criminality later on. At the very least, unresolved psychological complications can result in an unhappy and traumatized adulthood. Hence as a parent you should always take care of your child health, physical as well as mental development.

Tips For Choosing the Right Pediatrician

Choosing a pediatrician for your baby is an important decision. In the first year of your baby’s birth, you will be visiting the doctor quite often for regular immunizations and checkups. For a first time parent, this very thought can be an overwhelming one. A little bit of legwork should help you find a doctor you like and can trust. There are times when parents know exactly which doctor they will be taking their baby to, but many parents start looking for one only after their baby actually arrives.

It is a wiser choice to make a decision well before your child is born as this will ensure that your choice is a well-considered and well-informed one. Compile a list around four months prior to the due date.

When Experience Counts

The experience that your pediatrician has is an important consideration. Exposure to and focus on the health of children gives a pediatrician the expertise to handle all medical issues related to children in a more effective manner. Child care is very different from treating adults. Children are very sensitive and do not have the body strength to sustain any kind of experimental treatments. Accurate diagnosis of the ailment is very important and can go a long way in ensuring that your little one is healthy and fit. Your obstetrician, physician or hospital will be able to provide you with recommendations.

The Comfort Factor

The second most important point to consider while choosing a pediatrician is the comfort factor.

You should be comfortable with discussing health issues with the person. In addition to this, the doctor should also be willing to consider what your choice is when it comes to baby care.

The Right Pick

The doctor you pick should hold a medical degree and should have passed a pediatric board exam. That is as far as the education factor goes. The other things you might want to consider are:

• How does your baby respond to the doctor?
• Does the doctor look like he/she enjoys working with children?
• Is the doctor proactive with addressing doubts and answering questions?
• Is the pediatrician accommodating with schedules? This is important when you are dealing with an ill child
• Is the staff at the doctor’s office helpful and patient?
• How far away from your home is the clinic?
• Is there a long waiting time?

These are some of the basic things to be taken into consideration while choosing a doctor for your baby and it is best to look into all of these things before the child is actually born.


Children’s Health – The Importance of Activity

Children are full of energy all the time. Any parent will tell you that children need to be constantly occupied or they’ll end up bouncing around with all the energy stored up inside them. The energy children have can come out in two ways if not properly through activity. The first way energy is expended is through arguing and tantrums, these will be long and arduous tasks, as children will be using all their energy to get their own way, whereas they would otherwise be too tired to argue. The second way energy comes out is through random running around inside the home or while out shopping, which is incredibly dangerous for the child as they could injure themselves by running into something sharp or hard.

Giving children the activity they need doesn’t need to be through some task parents don’t enjoy. Children love to run around and play outdoors, and playing with them will not only help them to burn more of their energy, but it will strengthen the bond between parents and their children through the memories they build together.

Going for family bike rides is an incredibly enjoyable activity that the whole family can enjoy. Not only is this great exercise for everyone but it also build up good foundations for encouraging children to go off on their own when they’re older for longer bike rides with their friends. Bike rides also build up the reinforcement that activity is good for health, and will make it easier for children to make the transition from exercising with the family to exercising on their own while out and about.

Ultimately what activity in children helps is to prevent obesity in children. Childhood obesity is a growing problem, and without activity in place with families to help prevent it there will be even more obese children in the future. Currently this is a problem the world is fighting, but families need to do their part to ensure it doesn’t become any worse, or the population is in real trouble. Part of what makes more people obese is having obese parents, so the world needs to start being more active to prevent a terrible future.


Elements Of Quality Child Care

One of the very important decisions you will have to make in the early stages of your child’s life is identifying a child care center that will be suitable for your child. There are many different child care services available and picking the right one can be a challenge. It is important to do your homework so that you pick an exceptional center that is offering the best child care services.

Importance of child care

Child care refers to the different types of education and care that are provided for young children by persons who are not their parents. More and more families are using the services of a child care center since the parents are employed or have other important activities that need their attention.

Child care is no longer just about babysitting, but also includes an educational element. This is because many people now appreciate that the experiences in the early life of the child will greatly impact on their development and success academically. It is therefore important to get a center in which the learning, social and emotional skills of your child are developed.

Developmental domains

There are generally three domains that should be addressed in a child’s personal development. The physical development has to do with development of the motor skills of the child. Cognitive development includes skills used for problem solving and language development. The social/ emotional development is about how the child interacts with peers when in a group.

A center that wants to make a difference in child care should ensure that these developmental domains are addressed. This can be done by ensuring that the planned schedules, materials that are used and the activities that take place at the center are appropriate for the ages of the children and that they address all the developmental needs of the children.

Personal development

The personal and social development of a child is crucial in the early years of life. In personal and social development, a child is able to develop social competence, self-concept and self-control. Social competence has to do with the child understanding and performing basic responsibilities like dressing. The child is also able to interact appropriately and respectfully with familiar adults and children and is able to listen to and take direction.

Self-concept has to do with the child being aware of self and the abilities that she has, and is therefore able to make choices based on their interests. The child is able to accept the consequences of her actions and takes pride in her accomplishments. Self-control involves the child seeking emotional support from an adult when needed and recognizing her own emotions as well as those of other people. A center that aims at making a difference in child care will ensure that the personal and social development of the child is promoted.

Making a choice

If you are looking for a child care center for your child, it is a good idea to get recommendations from family and friends. They can direct you to centers where they were happy with the services offered. You can then find out if the center shares your values and if your child will get the attention that is required.


A Child-Like View Of Pediatrics

The most direct and simplest definition of pediatrics is the field of medical care and practice that devotes itself to seeing a child grow up physically and emotionally healthy. Starting at age 1 day and looking ahead to the child’s development into adulthood, pediatrics is one of the most complicated fields of medicine because children are always growing and changing. Any parent knows that each child has their own set of problems and challenges that have to be dealt with. This reality is why your pediatrician, the doctor who practices pediatrics, should be one of the parent’s best friends.

The Short List

There are a number of specialties in pediatrics. Here is a short list of the types of specialists you are most commonly going to encounter as your child develops.

Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine – This specialty generally involves treating children in the early and late teens.

Allergy and Immunology – Treats children who have allergies or allergic conditions, and those who have asthma or issue with their immune system.

Emergency Medicine or Critical Care – Technically these are two separate specialties, but when your child arrives in the emergency room the differences will not likely matter much to you.

Developmental Medicine – Here the focus is on the emotional and intellectual development of the child. Behavioral problems, issues with school academics, and social interaction are a few examples of what this area specializes in.

Endocrinology – With this specialty, think hormones. There are a number of developmental problems associated with hormones that are out of balance in a child. Ask any parent who has a teenager.

General Pediatrics – As the name of the specialty states, these pediatricians are trained to address a wide variety of the more common physical and emotional issues.

Hospital Medicine – Nobody likes to be sick, and even more so no child likes to have to stay and be treated in the hospital. Pediatricians with this specialty spend the majority of their time training in hospitals.

Infectious Diseases and Global Health – Though immunizations against measles, mumps, and chicken pox significantly reduce the possibility of the spread of infectious diseases, the flu, common cold, and MRSA are diseases that can potentially affect your child.

Nutrition – There are more connections between poor diet and childhood illnesses and diseases than you may realize. While not every child needs to consult with a pediatric nutritionist, it is wise to schedule an appointment with one at various stages of the child’s development.

General Duties

As you can see from The Short List, you may need to see several specialists for your child depending on the specific problems that occur during their development. Generally, a pediatrician will perform common duties such as doing an annual physical, treating minor injuries and diseases such as a clod or the flu, and making observations about the child’s emotional development. Should any condition be of particular concern to the pediatrician, they may refer you to a specialist for further testing and diagnosis. Naturally, they are able to write prescriptions and order additional testing when necessary.

No Kidding

Perhaps the most important aspect of the relationship between you and a pediatrician is the relationship between your child and the pediatrician. Because of the broad range of services a pediatrician provides, it is best that your child gets along with them easily. This develops confidence in the doctor by the child. Since it is not advisable to change pediatricians, especially between the ages of birth to seven years old, the happier the child is with the pediatrician, the better. Open communication is essential in any doctor-patient relationship, and is even more critical when children are involved.


Different Types Of Child Care

You might be a parent who doesn’t have any idea of the type of child care you would want your child to have. Here are the types of day care services available:

1. In Home or Nanny Day Care

This type of day care is usually provided by au pairs and nannies. If you decide to go for this option, ensure that you choose a nanny from a well known agency. Check to see if the nanny has good reviews from past clients before hiring.

The advantages include:

– Undivided attention is given to your child.

– The nanny you hire may also handle some chores in your home.

– You as a parent are a direct employer of the nanny. The nanny will always work as instructed by you.

– Your child will not have to travel daily to a day care centre, but stays at home in a well known environment with less exposure to illnesses.

– A professional nanny has the relevant skills in caring for kids.

The disadvantages include:

– May be more expensive compared to other options.

– You will have to arrange for a backup in case your child’s nanny is unavailable.

– You will have to pay for the nanny’s benefits and taxes as you are the employer.

– The chances of your child interacting with others are low.

2. Private and Community Based Day Care

These may be the best option if you want services from the most qualified personnel. These centres are regulated by relevant authorities and always have the required licensing.

Aspects like learning systems, food, quality care, how the facility is maintained and the number of children are strictly regulated.

The advantages include:

– It is cheaper compared to in-home day care. However, you will have to pay some fees for additional facilities, which may be expensive.

– Your child will be able to interact with other children.

– A pre-arranged program of activities is followed for the children.

– The day care facility is responsible for looking for a substitute in case one care provider is unavailable.

– The staff at the centre is focused on providing children with the best care possible.

The disadvantages are:

– Your child may not receive individual care.

– Your child will need to travel daily to the centre and adjust to a new environment especially on the first few days.

– Some centres may not tolerate some children’s temperaments and particular needs.

– Your child may be exposed to illnesses from other children.

3. Family Day Care

With this option, you will have your child being taken care of in your home. It is recommended that you choose a qualified caregiver for the safety and well being of your child.

The advantages are:

– It is cheap.

– The schedule is flexible.

– Your child interacts with just a small number of children.

– The caregivers are experienced.

– Provides a home setting where your child may receive good care.

The disadvantages are:

– Some care providers may not be highly qualified.

– You will need to arrange for a backup in case your child’s care giver is unavailable.

You can make up your mind on which type will work best for you by weighing the pros and cons of each.


4 Child Development Theories That Can Help You Better Care for Children

Have you ever wondered what motivates thoughts and behaviors in children? Our understanding of human nature and child development is continually advancing but all children are different, and no one has all the answers. However, a few recognized theories can provide useful insights on early development that will help you better care for children.

During our early years of infancy through childhood, we develop the basis of our intelligence, personality, social behavior, and capacity to learn. Four theories are worth reviewing and include attachment, psychosocial, cognitive development, and sociocultural theory.

1. Attachment Theory (Bowlby): This theory’s centers around strong emotional and physical bonds that create a sense of security in a child. Bonds are established with caregivers who are available and responsive to an infant’s needs. Thus, the infant knows the caregiver is dependable, which creates a secure base for the child to explore their surroundings.

Example: Six-month-old Jordan enjoys infant toys and interacting with others. Confident that crying brings help, Jordan responds to anyone and gets upset when someone stops interacting with him.

2. PsychoSocial Development Theory (Erikson): In this theory, social development occurs in stages based on turning points in a person’s life including hope (birth to age 2), will (ages 2-4), purpose (ages 4-5), competence (ages 5-12), fidelity (ages 13-19), love (ages 20-39), care (ages 40-64), and wisdom (ages 65+).

Example: Two-year-old Jennifer has recently begun squirming and saying “no” when her Nanny tries to secure her in her car seat. Jennifer has begun to develop a sense of self, separate from her caregivers. Her Nanny must consistently set limits and follow through with Jennifer, to keep her safe and secure while riding in the car. The Nanny can increase Jennifer’s willingness to comply by providing specific praise along with allowing Jennifer to pick a special toy to hold whenever she gets into her car seat without resistance. Selecting her own clothers will also help Jennifer gain more independence.

3. Cognitive Developmental Theory (Piaget): This theory is based on a four-stage model describing how the mind processes new information. The stages are sensorimotor (birth to age 2), preoperational (ages 2-7), concrete operational (ages 7-11), and formal operations (ages 12+).

Example: Five-year-old Zachary is still egocentric and struggles to see the perspective of others but is starting to think symbolically and use words to represent objects. Zachary loves reading and is building a foundation of language. As this stage, caregivers should continue to read books daily, encourage pretend play, share logical thinking. By explaining that it’s winter time as grandma’s house and thus, a coat is needed will help Zachary, who lives in Texas, understand why a coat is being packed in the suitcase.

4. Sociocultural Theory (Vygotsky): This developmental theory evolves from children’s interactions with tools and other people in their social environment. Community, culture, and interactions are key to child development and learning.

Example: Seven-year-old Alex is struggling to solve a jigsaw puzzle. By interacting with an adult, Alex learns how to separate out the edge pieces, put together the border, and sort the interior pieces by color or design. By working with an adult, Alex develops skills that can be applied to future jigsaw puzzles.

There are other childhood theories that can help parents and other caregivers by teaching them how to spend more enjoyable time with their child, reinforce positive skills, monitor behavior and set limits, and reduce the use of harsh discipline methods. These essential caregiving skills help children develop pro-social behavior, self-regulation, and other skills they need to be successful in school and at home.