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Tips of the Week for March, 2014

Big Kid Beds: When To Make the Switch
03-31-2014

Your toddler may have a heady sense of freedom the first few nights after transferring permanently to a bed. Luckily, most children are happy to “graduate” and stay in their beds more willingly than they did in their cribs. However, for a few, the transition has to be managed closely. The best way is to continue with the same bedtime routine you have used since your child first joined the family.

Repeat the Following Steps:

  1. When you end a routine, tell your child to stay in bed until you come for her.
  2. If she gets out of bed, calmly and quietly lead her back and tell her she must stay in bed.
  3. When she gets back into bed, reward her by telling her briefly what a good girl she is for being there, then leave the room.
  4. Tell her that you will come and check on her during the night. For some children it provides reassurance.

Prepare Yourself for a Bedtime Struggle

But don’t kid yourself that the struggle is over. Be prepared to repeat steps 1 and 2 as many times as you have to for several nights in a row. Twenty “farewell appearances” in one evening is by no means an unusual number. Above all, stay calm and keep interactions with your child on a low-key level; they should be brief and boring. The aim is to reward her with praise for staying in bed and not for getting out. Children tend to feel, as many advertisers do, that any attention is better than none. If getting out of bed brings your toddler extra attention—even negative attention, by making you angry—she’ll do it again and again. By contrast, if you keep the atmosphere quiet and even boring, the excitement of getting out will soon pale.

Avoid Rewarding Bedroom Breakouts

While respecting your toddler’s newfound mobility, insist on the rule that once it’s time for sleep, people have to stay in bed until morning unless they have to go to the bathroom. Avoid rewarding bedroom breakouts, such as by allowing your child to climb into your bed or join the members of the family who are still up. Instead, praise her in the morning for having stayed in bed all night.

Make Climbers Safer

If your child is going to climb out of bed whether you want him to or not, let him know that the only time that climbing out is acceptable is when sleep or nap time is over. In addition, you should make his room as safe and hazard-free as you can. While you are waiting to buy a new bed, place the crib mattress on the floor. Clear away furniture and large toys, like rocking horses, that could injure your child if he fell against them. You may need to install a safety gate across your toddler’s bedroom door to keep him from wandering when you are not awake. You will also need a gate at the top of the stairs to prevent possible injury when your toddler gets out of bed. Install childproof latches on chests of drawers or tape drawers shut so they can’t be pulled out and used as steps.

Information provided by HealthyChildren.org.  Please visit the following link for additional information.  http://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/toddler/Pages/Big-Kid-Beds-When-To-Make-the-Switch.aspx

 Last Updated 9/5/2013

Source

Sleep: What Every Parent Needs to Know (Copyright © 2013 American Academy of Pediatrics)

The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.

 


Spring Break Safety Tips
03-24-2014

Spring break is a great time for the family to get away from the cold, dark days of winter and have some fun in the sun. Keep your family safe while on your trip by following these tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

Sun Safety for Babies

  • Babies under 6 months of age should be kept out of direct sunlight. Move your baby to the shade under a tree, umbrella or stroller canopy. Dress babies in lightweight clothing that covers the arms and legs, and use brimmed hats.
  • It is okay to apply a small amount of sunscreen on infants under 6 months if there is no way to avoid the sun. Remember it takes 30 minutes to be effective.

Sun Safety for Kids

  • Select clothes made of tightly woven fabrics. Cotton clothing is both cool and protective.
  • Try to find a wide-brimmed hat that can shade the cheeks, chin, ears and back of the neck. Sunglasses with ultraviolet (UV) protection are also a good idea for protecting your child’s eyes.
  • Apply sunscreen to areas of your child’s skin that aren’t covered by clothing. Before applying, test the sunscreen on your child’s back for an allergic reaction. Apply carefully around the eyes, avoiding eyelids. If a rash develops, talk with your pediatrician.
  • If your child gets sunburn that results in blistering, pain or fever, contact your pediatrician.

Sun Safety for the Family

  • The sun’s rays are the strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Try to keep out of the sun during those hours.
  • The sun’s damaging UV rays can bounce back from sand, snow or concrete; so be particularly careful of these areas.
  • Wear commercially available sun-protective clothing, like swim shirts.
  • Most of the sun’s rays can come through the clouds on an overcast day; so use sun protection even on cloudy days.
  • When choosing a sunscreen, look for the words "broad-spectrum" on the label - it means that the sunscreen will protect against both ultraviolet B (UVB) and ultraviolet A (UVA) rays. Choose a water-resistant sunscreen and reapply every two hours or after swimming, sweating or towel drying. You may want to select a sunscreen that does not contain the ingredient oxybenzone, a sunscreen chemical that may have hormonal properties. 
  • Zinc oxide, a very effective sunscreen, can be used as extra protection on the nose, cheeks, tops of the ears and on the shoulders.
  • Use a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15. There is no benefit to using a sunscreen with an SPF of 50+.  
  • Rub sunscreen in well, making sure to cover all exposed areas, especially the face, nose, ears, feet and hands, and even the backs of the knees.
  • Put on sunscreen 15-30 minutes before going outdoors - it needs time to work on the skin.
  • Sunscreens should be used for sun protection and not as a reason to stay in the sun longer.

Tanning Salon Dangers

  • Many teens and young women go to tanning salons. The UV radiation from tanning salons raises a person’s risk of developing skin cancer, including melanoma, the most dangerous type of skin cancer. Tanning salons are not safe. Teens and others should not use tanning salons. 
  • The AAP supports legislation prohibiting access to tanning salons or use of artificial tanning devices by children under 18 years of age.

Beach Tips*

  • Drink plenty of water even if you do not feel thirsty.
  • Stay within the designated swimming area and ideally within the visibility of a lifeguard.
  • Never swim alone.
  • Be aware of rip currents. If you should get caught in a current, don’t try to swim against it. Swim parallel to shore until clear of the current.
  • Seek shelter in case of storm. Get out of the water. Get off the beach in case of lightning.
  • Watch out for traffic – some beaches allow cars.

All information provided by HealthyChildren.org.  For additional information please go to http://www.healthychildren.org/English/news/Pages/Spring-Break-Safety-Tips.aspx

*used with permission from Florida Travel and Tourism Bureau

 

Published

3/5/2014 12:00 AM

 


Front of Package Nutrition Labels
03-17-2014

The front label of a package is prime real estate in the nutrition world, so it only makes sense that manufacturers use this highly visible space to tout their nutritional claims. Unfortunately, these claims (such as all-natural, less sugar, lower sodium, etc) are not currently regulated and can be misleading and confusing. The take-home message: Don’t let yourself be fooled by a few well-placed and carefully worded claims. Instead, commit to understanding the components of a nutrition label.

What’s in a Label

Nutrition facts labels may be confusing and intimidating at first but once you know what to look for, it will be much easier to scan a product and know whether it meets your family’s nutritional needs. All labels contain the same basic information.

  1. Serving size
  2. Calorie count

Calorie count

  1. Nutrients to limit
  2. Nutrients to get enough of
  3. A footnote that reveals how much or how little fat, cholesterol, sodium, carbohydrates, and fiber a person should eat based on a 2,000-calorie a day diet.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends these tips when using the nutrition facts label:

  • Make sure you’re getting enough potassium, fiber, vitamins A and C, calcium, and iron.
  • Use the percent daily value (% DV) column to help determine whether you’re getting a little or a lot of any particular component; 5% DV or less is relatively low, 20% DV or more is high.
  • Check servings and calories. Be sure to look at both the serving size and how many servings the package contains. Remember that the label clearly outlines the nutrients you will get from a single serving. If you double the servings you eat, remember to double the calories, nutrients, and the percent daily value.
  • Make the calories count. Look at the calories on the label and note where the calories are coming from. For example, are the calories primarily from fat, or do protein and/or carbohydrates add to the total? Compare them with the other nutrients, like vitamins and minerals, to decide whether the food is worth eating.
  • Don’t sugar-coat it. Since sugars contribute calories with few, if any, nutrients, look for foods and beverages low in added sugars. Read the ingredient list and make sure that added sugars are not one of the first few ingredients. Be aware that sugar can often be found hiding on nutrition labels listed as sucrose, glucose, high-fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, maple syrup, and fructose.
  • Know your fats. Look for foods low in saturated fats, trans fats, and cholesterol to help reduce the risk of heart disease. Most of the fats you eat should be polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. Keep total fat intake between 20% to 35% of calories.
  • Reduce sodium (salt), increase potassium. Research shows that eating less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium (about 1 teaspoon of salt) per day may reReduce sodium (salt), duce the risk of high blood pressure. Contrary to what you might think, most sodium comes in the form of processed foods, not from the salt shaker. Also, look for foods high in potassium (tomatoes, bananas, potatoes, and orange juice, for example), as potassium can help counteract some of sodium’s effects on blood pressure.

 

Information provided by Healthychildren.org - http://www.healthychildren.org/English/healthy-living/nutrition/Pages/Front-of-Package-Nutrition-Labels.aspx

 

Author

Laura A. Jana, MD, FAAP and Jennifer Shu, MD, FAAP

Last Updated

5/28/2013

Source

Food Fights, 2nd Edition (Copyright © 2012 American Academy of Pediatrics)

The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances

 


Kidney Stones in Children and Teens
03-10-2014

​ Kidney stones are hard concretions of the minerals and other elements normally found in urine. The stone typically forms in the kidney before it passes down the tubes connecting the kidney to the bladder. Rarely, stones may form in the bladder.

While kidney stones can occur at any age, even in premature infants, most occur in teens, with teen girls having the highest incidence.

Types of Kidney Stones

There are many different types of kidney stones in children, but the most common one in the United States contains calcium in association with other materials. The stones range in size from a fraction of an inch to several inches, with most around ¼ - ½ inch in size.

 

Causes of Kidney Stones

In most children and teens, kidney stones are due to the diet and/or amount of fluid the child drinks. In some children, however, they are the result of a:

 

  • Specific inherited problem
  • Blockage of urine flow
  • Kidney infection

Signs and Symptoms

The most common sign of a kidney stone in older children and teens is the sudden onset of pain in the back or side. The pain is usually constant and severe, and often causes nausea and vomiting. This pain may move into the groin area as the stone passes down the urinary tract. Most of the time, this causes blood to appear in the urine. Often this is only detectable by testing the urine for blood but sometimes it is visible to the naked eye.

 

Young children with kidney stones are usually unable to tell exactly where the pain is and just complain that their tummy hurts. A number of young children will have no pain at all and the stones are discovered during the evaluation of a urinary tract infection or as an unexpected finding on an x-ray or ultrasound study done for another reason.

 

How Is the Diagnosis Made?

While the location and severity of the pain and the presence of blood in the urine are suggestive of a kidney stone, the diagnosis rests on finding a stone in the urinary tract by an x-ray or an ultrasound. Sometimes, the diagnosis is made by capturing the stone in the urine after it has been passed.

 

Many stones can be seen with a simple x-ray of the abdomen and most can be seen with an ultrasound of the kidneys. A CT scan can show the smallest stones but exposes the child to more radiation. If you or your doctor suspects your child has a kidney stone, he or she can help you decide what method is needed in order to make a diagnosis.

 

Treatment

Once a stone is discovered, the initial goal is to help your child pass the kidney stone out of the urinary tract by drinking large amounts of water and other fluid. In a sense, they are trying to “flush it out.” If your child cannot keep fluid down because of the pain and nausea, it may be necessary to have the fluid given through an IV. Often, medicine is given to help reduce the pain.

 

Stones larger than a ½ inch may require surgery or lithotripsy to remove them. Lithotripsy uses a special machine to send sound waves into your child to smash the stone into much smaller pieces that can then be passed down the urinary tract. While it may sound scary, it is quite safe and doesn’t damage the kidney. Lithotripsy can even be done in small children, although a child may be put to sleep for the procedure.

 

Prevention

The best treatment is to prevent new stones from forming. All children with kidney stones should:

 

  • Drink a lot of fluid throughout the day
  • Limit the salt in their diet
  • Limit the amount of soda or soft drinks they consume

Your doctor may ask you to collect all the urine your child passes for 24 hours to test it for specific factors that may predispose your child to kidney stones. With this information, your doctor will better understand why your child formed a stone and be able to make specific dietary recommendations or prescribe certain medications to help prevent your child from making another kidney stone. Your doctor may also recommend that your child see a pediatric nephrologist or urologist who has experience in treating children with kidney stones. 

 Provided by HealthyChildren.org.  For additional information, please click on or copy the following link to your browser. http://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/conditions/genitourinary-tract/Pages/Kidney-Stones-in-Children-and-Teens.aspx

Last Updated

2/28/2014

Source

American Academy of Pediatrics (Copyright © 2012)

The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.

 


Front of Package Nutrition Labels
03-03-2014

The front label of a package is prime real estate in the nutrition world, so it only makes sense that manufacturers use this highly visible space to tout their nutritional claims. Unfortunately, these claims (such as all-natural, less sugar, lower sodium, etc) are not currently regulated and can be misleading and confusing. The take-home message: Don’t let yourself be fooled by a few well-placed and carefully worded claims. Instead, commit to understanding the components of a nutrition label.

What’s in a Label

Nutrition facts labels may be confusing and intimidating at first but once you know what to look for, it will be much easier to scan a product and know whether it meets your family’s nutritional needs. All labels contain the same basic information.

 

  1. Serving size
  2. Calorie count

Calorie count

  1. Nutrients to limit
  2. Nutrients to get enough of
  3. A footnote that reveals how much or how little fat, cholesterol, sodium, carbohydrates, and fiber a person should eat based on a 2,000-calorie a day diet.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends these tips when using the nutrition facts label:

  • Make sure you’re getting enough potassium, fiber, vitamins A and C, calcium, and iron.
  • Use the percent daily value (% DV) column to help determine whether you’re getting a little or a lot of any particular component; 5% DV or less is relatively low, 20% DV or more is high.
  • Check servings and calories. Be sure to look at both the serving size and how many servings the package contains. Remember that the label clearly outlines the nutrients you will get from a single serving. If you double the servings you eat, remember to double the calories, nutrients, and the percent daily value.
  • Make the calories count. Look at the calories on the label and note where the calories are coming from. For example, are the calories primarily from fat, or do protein and/or carbohydrates add to the total? Compare them with the other nutrients, like vitamins and minerals, to decide whether the food is worth eating.
  • Don’t sugar-coat it. Since sugars contribute calories with few, if any, nutrients, look for foods and beverages low in added sugars. Read the ingredient list and make sure that added sugars are not one of the first few ingredients. Be aware that sugar can often be found hiding on nutrition labels listed as sucrose, glucose, high-fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, maple syrup, and fructose.
  • Know your fats. Look for foods low in saturated fats, trans fats, and cholesterol to help reduce the risk of heart disease. Most of the fats you eat should be polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. Keep total fat intake between 20% to 35% of calories.
  • Reduce sodium (salt), increase potassium. Research shows that eating less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium (about 1 teaspoon of salt) per day may reReduce sodium (salt), duce the risk of high blood pressure. Contrary to what you might think, most sodium comes in the form of processed foods, not from the salt shaker. Also, look for foods high in potassium (tomatoes, bananas, potatoes, and orange juice, for example), as potassium can help counteract some of sodium’s effects on blood pressure.

 

Author

Laura A. Jana, MD, FAAP and Jennifer Shu, MD, FAAP

 

Information provided by HealthyChildren.org – For additional information, please go to http://www.healthychildren.org/English/healthy-living/nutrition/Pages/Front-of-Package-Nutrition-Labels.aspx

 

Last Updated

5/28/2013

Source

Food Fights, 2nd Edition (Copyright © 2012 American Academy of Pediatrics)

The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances

 


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