Common Triggers of Headaches in Children

Headaches are a common problems for young children of all ages. The pain of headaches can be triggered by a number of factors.

headaches in children

Most common triggers of headaches in children

  • Dehydration : Not drinking enough fluids is one  of the leading causes of headaches. This is especially true when the weather get warmer and kids are more active outside  and lose fluid through sweating.  In this case the best cure is simply drinking water.
  • Stress : Children and teen go through stress from time to time. If your child is under a lot of pressure at school or going through a big change at home such as divorce or a big move, a headache can result.
  • Vision problems : If your child is straining his eyes to see faraway, this is known as eye strain. This can be interpreted as headaches even though it is different from recurrent headaches . An  eye test can be used to determine whether your child’s  eyestrain is caused by vision problems.
  • Diet : Skipping meals can trigger headaches. It is also important to make sure that your child is eating a balance diet with lots of fruits and vegetables.
  • Sleep : It is important that your child gets the right amount of sleep each time. Not sleeping enough at night can cause headaches.
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    2019/2010 Flu Season

    The flu season is here again. Many don’t realize how dangerous the flu can be. It causes thousands of deaths in the United States every year. It is important as parents to protect your children from the flu by getting them vaccinated  before the flu starts circulating in your community. Everyone around  kids should be vaccinated too.

    vaccine

    What types of influenza vaccines are available ?

    There are 2 types of vaccines available for the 2019-2020 flu season. The first one is what many people call the flu shot and the second one is the nasal spray. All the vaccines available this year contain all the four influenza viruses , two A and two B  viruses. Vaccines for adults will contain three or four viruses. read more

    Will my baby’s belly button always stick out ?

    Your baby’s belly button may not always stick out. About 20% of all newborns  have an umbilical cord hernia which is also known as an “outie”. The umbilical cord heals and falls off after birth and the opening of the abdomen usually closes spontaneously. However occasionally the opening does not close  and results  in a bulging belly button especially when there is increased abdominal pressure such when the child cries or during a bowel movement.

    baby

    The hernia usually does not cause any problems. As long as the child is comfortable , the area is not swollen and tender and the bulge is soft  and compressible, there is no reason to be concerned. These hernias usually go away in about 12 to 18 months and surgery to close them is not usually necessary . read more

    Anemia in Newborns

    Babies who have anemia have a red blood count that is lower than normal. Red blood cells carry oxygen throughout the whole body.

    What causes anemia in newborns

    There are 3 main causes of anemia in newborns. They include the following :

    • The baby doesn’t produce enough red blood cells : Most babies have some anemia in the first few months of life. This is known as physiologic anemia. This occurs because the baby is growing fast and it takes time for red blood cells production to catch up.
    • The body breaks down red blood cells quickly : This problem is common when the mother and baby’s red blood cells do not match. This is known as Rh/ABO incompatibility. These babies usually have jaundice which causes the skin to become yellow. In a few babies, anemia can also be caused by  infections or genetic disorders.
    • The baby loss too much blood : Blood loss in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit NICU usually occurs because frequent blood tests need to be done. These tests are needed  to help the medical team manage your baby’s condition. The blood that is taken is not  replaced immediately which causes anemia.

    Other causes of anemia include the following :

    • Internal bleeding
    • Transfer of blood between the baby and the mother  while the baby is still in the womb.

    Symptoms of anemia in a newborn

    Most babies with anemia don’t have symptoms. However if symptoms do occur, they include the following :

    • Pale skin
    • Poor feeding
    • Feeling sluggish
    • Fast heart rate  and rapid breathing when resting

    What are the treatments for newborn anemia ?

    Your baby’s doctor will determine the best treatment option. Many babies with anemia do not need any treatment. However very premature babies  who are sick may need a blood transfusion  to increase the number of red blood cells. read more

    Signs of Drug Use in Adolescents

    Most adolescents that use drugs  do not become drug addicts in adulthood. However the use of drugs in adolescents  can put their mental, emotional and physical health at risk. It can put vulnerable kids at risk for ongoing drug abuse and addiction problems in future.

    drug use

    Drug abuse is when a person uses drugs for pleasure or to get high.  Drug addiction means that a person has become dependent on the drug and has no control over whether, how, or when to use it, or how much to use.

    Signs of drug use in children

    Your child may be using drugs if you notice a dramatic  change his  appearance , friends  or physical health. read more

    Braces for Children

    What is orthodontics ?

    It is the dental specialty  that focuses on the development and correction of irregularities of the teeth, bite and jaws. An orthodontist also have specialized training in facial abnormalities and disorders of the jaw. You may be referred to an orthodontics by your dentist. The American Dental Association recommends that every child receives an orthodontic evaluation by the age of 7.

    braces

    Why choose an orthodontics treatment.

    The following  may be one of the reasons why you see an orthodontics.

    • Misaligned, crooked or crowded teeth
    • Open bite
    • Extra teeth
    • An overbite
    • Missing teeth
    • Misaligned or incorrect jaw position
    • A disorder  of the jaw joint

    At what age are braces appropriate in children ?

    The ideal age for braces and orthodontic treatment in most cases is  between 10 and 14 years of age. read more

    How to give a baby a sponge bath

    These are tips on how to give a baby a sponge bath.

    newborn bath

  • Make sure the room is warm ( about 75° F).
  • Gather all equipments and supply in advance.
  • Add warm water to a clean sink or basin. The water should be warm to the inside of your wrist or elbow.
  • Place the baby on a bath cushion or thick towels on a surface that is waist high.
  • Remember to keep the baby covered in a towel or blanket.
  • You should NEVER take your hands off the baby, even for a moment. If you have to leave for even a second, wrap the baby in a towel and take her with you.
  • Start with your baby’s face.Use one (1)  moistened, clean cotton ball to wipe each eye, starting at the bridge of the nose then wiping out to the corner of the eye.
  • Use a soft, moist  washcloth without soap to wash the rest of your baby’s face.
  • Use a soft washcloth to clean the outside folds of the ear . Do not insert a cotton swab into your baby’s ear  canal due to the risk of damage to the ear drum.
  • Gently bathe the rest of your baby from neck down  using a small amount of soap on a washcloth.  Uncover one area of the body at one time. rinse with a small cup of water or wash cloth. You need to be sure to prevent the umbilical cord from getting wet.
  • Wash the baby’s  head last with shampoo on a wash cloth. While rinsing , you need to be careful not to let water run over the baby’s face. Hold  the baby firmly with your arm under his or her back and your wrist and support his  neck with your hand.
  • It is not necessary to scrub. However most  babies enjoy their arms and legs being massaged with gentle strokes during a bath.
  • Wrap the baby in a hooded towel.
  • Follow cord care instructions given by your baby.
  • Use a soft brush to comb the baby’s hair .
  • It is normal for your  baby to cry the first few times you bathe him. However  be sure to check whether the water is not too hot or too cold or that soap hasn’t gotten into the baby’s eye.
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    Tips to help avoid flat head syndrome

    These tips will help prevent flat head syndrome in babies

  • Place your baby on his back
  • Put babies on their tummies for a little while when they are awake. This eases the pressure on the back of the head  and help babies build shoulder and neck strength.
  • Alternate which section you put the baby in the crib every night. Your child will then alternate  which direction he or she looks out of the crib.
  • Dress your child in clothes that allows  freedom of movement.
  •  Do not hang objects above your child’s head. Put them on the side of the crib so that he will turn his head to look at them.
  •  Alternate sides when you bottle-feed your baby.
  • Relieve  pressure on the back of your child’s head by picking him up often.
  • Minimize  the use of a car seat when not traveling in the car as well as other seats like a bouncer in which the child is placed on his back.
  • If your child develops a flat spot, contact your health care professional .
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    When to take your child to the emergency room ER

    When to go the the Emergency Room

    Minor injuries can be managed at home. However there are times when a trip to the hospital is necessary. In general, take your child to the emergency room after an injury anytime you think they  may need urgent attention. This includes  when your child has the following :

  • Shortness of breath or trouble breathing
  • Coughing up blood
  • Severe diarrhea or bloody stool
  • Fever (temperature > 100.4) in a newborn
  • Problems with movement and sensation after an injury
  • Chest or stomach pain or pressure
  • Blue or purple color of the lip, skin or nail bed
  • Sudden dizziness, weakness or change in vision
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Change in mental status such as confusion, loss of consciousness or trouble walking
  • Animal , snake or human bite
  • Punctured wounds
  • Severe burns or burns to the face
  • Broken bones
  • Severe bleeding or bleeding that does not stop with direct pressure
  • Severe pain or loss of motion  or sensation anywhere in the body
  • Head , spinal cord or eye injury
  • Signs of an allergic reaction such as hives, swelling of the face, lips, eyes, or tongue, fainting, or with trouble breathing, swallowing, or wheezing
  • A stiff neck associated with fever or headache
  • Accidents involving pedestrians or bicycles and cars
  • Sudden severe pain anywhere in the body
  • Fall from any significant height
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    Blisters in Children

    A blister  is a  bump on the skin containing fluid. It is usually circular in shape . The fluid that forms underneath the skin can be clear or bloody.

    blisters

    What causes blisters

    Blisters are caused by allergic reactions, injuries and infections  which include the flowing :

    • Burns / scalds
    • Sunburns
    • Contact dermatitis
    •  Friction for example from a shoe
    • Viral infections such as chicken pox and herpes zoster
    • Impetigo which is a contagious  infection of the skin
    • Fungus
    • Thumb sucking
    • Medication reaction

    The symptoms of  a blister may   resemble other infection or medical conditions. It is always important to contact your health care professional for diagnosis.

    First aid for blisters

    Blisters often heal spontaneously. Treatment will vary according to the cause. Some of the general guidelines  for treatment include the following : read more