5-12 years: Elementary School Archives - Nemours Blog

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5-12 years: Elementary School

Layers of Protection, Including Swim Lessons, Help Prevent Child Drownings

The pandemic has put many children behind on swim lessons. The AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) is alerting parents that swim lessons for children over 1 year are an important part of the layers of protection that can help prevent drownings. So, schedule those swim lessons for your kids and use all these layers of protection to help prevent drownings: Water Watcher There should always be an adult water watcher while children are in and around a pool. For young children and beginner swimmers, the water watcher should be within arm’s length. For older children who can swim, the water watcher should have their eyes on the children at all times. The water watcher should not be using a cellphone, socializing, drinking alcohol, or doing anything else that might be distracting. At a party, have adults take turns as water watcher. Even if a lifeguard is on duty, a water […]

Melatonin: 5 Safety Tips for Kids and Teens

Melatonin: 5 Safety Tips for Kids and Teens

We all know that terrible feeling of not being able to sleep and drudging through the next day in a fog. If your child is having trouble sleeping, of course you want to help. You have probably heard of using melatonin for sleep problems. Its use has skyrocketed in the past few years. Melatonin is a hormone (or chemical messenger) made by the brain. It helps us fall asleep. Melatonin is also made as a dietary supplement and can be bought in the U.S. without a prescription. But is melatonin safe for kids and teens? Does it work? If melatonin is used with guidance from a health care provider, it is probably safe for short-term use in kids over 5 years. It can help kids and teens get some rest while they work through certain types of sleep problems. But it is still being studied so we don’t know for sure what […]

Is the Lower-Dose COVID-19 Vaccine OK for my Child?

Is the Lower-Dose COVID-19 Vaccine OK for my Child?

This week brought big news for kids and families. The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is finally authorized for kids ages 5 to 11 years. The vaccine has been studied in thousands of kids in this age group and has been found to be safe and effective. It is given as two shots, spaced three weeks apart. The main difference between the vaccine for kids younger than 12 and those older than 12 is the dose, which is lower for younger children than for teens and adults. Studies have shown that younger kids have very strong immune systems that react just as well to lower doses of certain vaccines. An added bonus of lower dosing is that it can result in fewer side effects following the vaccine (such as chills and fever). Parents Have Questions About Vaccine Dose The lower dosage for younger children has confused some parents. They might wonder whether […]

Stuttering: What to Know About a Common Speech Problem in Kids

Stuttering: What to Know About a Common Speech Problem in Kids

As toddlers and preschoolers begin to speak more, they might stumble over their words or have problems with enunciating certain sounds. That being said, how do you know if your child is having typical speech problems, or experiencing something more than just the common stumble over their words? What is stuttering? Many young kids go through a stage between the ages of 2 and 5 when they stutter. This might make them: repeat certain syllables, words, or phrases prolong them stop, making no sound for certain sounds and syllables Stuttering is a form of dysfluency (dis-FLOO-en-see), an interruption in the flow of speech. What Causes Stuttering? Doctors and scientists aren’t completely sure why some kids stutter, but most believe that a few things contribute to it, such as: a problem with the way the brain sends messages to interact with the muscles and body parts needed for speaking. Genetics, kids who stutter […]

A Local Partnership With Global Impact

How did two children’s healthcare organizations in Jacksonville, Florida care for kids 7,000 miles away? Jonathan Soud was a 12-year-old patient at Wolfson Children’s Hospital and Nemours Children’s Health, Jacksonville, being treated for leukemia. During his treatments, his doctors and family spent a lot of time talking to him about his interests in travel and other cultures, especially the country of Mongolia. Eric Sandler, MD, is a pediatric hematologist/oncologist at Wolfson Children’s Hospital and chair of the department of pediatrics at Nemours Children’s Health, Jacksonville. He developed a special bond with Jonathan during treatments, sharing his own fascination with distant lands. Dr. Sandler also discovered that Jonathan had an interest in serving others. “After he passed away, his parents came to me and said they wanted to figure out a way to honor Jonathan’s memory,” said Dr. Sandler. “Since we had had all those conversations regarding Mongolia, his family decided to […]

Expert Question and Answer

Expert Q&A: COVID-19 Vaccine for Kids

In this video, recorded on June 2, 2021, Kenneth Alexander, MD, PhD, Division Chief, Infectious Diseases at Nemours Children’s Hospital, and April Novotny, RN, MSN, CEN, CENP, Chief Nurse Executive and Vice President of Clinical Services at Lakeland Regional Health, share the latest updates on the COVID-19 vaccine for kids, as well as insights on how COVID-19 has been impacting children and what parents can do to help their children have a safe summer and a successful return to school in the fall. Learn more about: How COVID-19 is impacting kids today How to talk with your teen about the COVID-19 vaccine Why your child shouldn’t get the COVID-19 vaccine at the same time as routine vaccines Tips for safely rejoining society after being vaccinated If you have a question for Dr. Alexander, post it in the comments section on Facebook. If my child already had covid, do they still need the […]

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome (MIS-C) in Children

While some children and infants have been sick with COVID-19 and suffered complications from the virus, very few have been hospitalized, and adults still make up most of the known cases to date. However, there are still many unknowns about the virus and new information unfolds every day. Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (commonly known as MIS-C or PMIS) is a serious condition that has occurred in some children who have contracted COVID-19. This complication causes a significant inflammatory response in a child’s body that can cause a fever, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, and signs of shock. MIS-C typically presents several weeks after a COVID-19 exposure or infection. Know the Signs of COVID-19 The symptoms of COVID-19 are similar in children and adults. However, children with confirmed COVID-19 have generally shown mild symptoms such as fever, shortness of breath and cough. Abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea and headache have […]

Expert Question and Answer

Expert Q&A: Kids and COVID-19

During this Q&A session, pediatric cardiologists Gul Dadlani, MD, and Deepika Thacker, MD, answer questions from parents about kids and COVID-19. While COVID-19 transmission rates in children have been lower than adults, it can still be significant for your child. Symptoms are typically milder in children, and children can also be asymptomatic. Q: How will the COVID-19 variants affect children? A: Multiple variants of the virus are circulating globally. The UK variant (B.1.1.7) is reported to be more contagious and serious. Cases caused by the South African variant (B.1.351) and Brazilian variant (P.1) were reported in January 2021. There have been no signs of more serious disease in children caused by these variants yet, but only time will tell. Visit cdc.gov to stay up to date on the latest information about variants of the virus that causes COVID-19. Q: Why are the rates rising in kids? A: As rates of COVID-19 cases […]

Rethink How you Think About Food

Positively Delicious: Having Healthy Conversations About Food

Melanie Franklin, PhD, Psychology Fellow, contributed to this blog post. It’s well recognized that childhood eating habits have a lasting impact on health, longevity, and disease prevention. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that obesity affects approximately 42% of adults living in America, and obesity-related conditions (type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancer) are some of the leading causes of preventable death. Obesity affects nearly 20% of children and adolescents (13.7 million), which greatly increases the chances that obesity will carry forward into adulthood. While encouraging healthy food choices is important for preventing obesity and its related conditions, parents should be mindful of how they discuss diet and weight with and around their children. Encouraging kids to diet can have a lasting impact into adulthood, including: a higher risk of disordered eating, unhealthy weight control behaviors, lower body satisfaction, and higher risk of overweight […]

How Can Children Socialize During a Summer Pandemic?

How Can Children Socialize During a Summer Pandemic?

Your family’s summer plans during the COVID-19 pandemic have likely been canceled or at least shuffled around. In the first part of a series of frequently asked questions (FAQs), below are answers and ideas about how your children can socialize during the summer and out-of-school months. Can my children have playdates? For social distancing to truly work, there shouldn’t be playdates, especially inside your home. The best option is still to do a virtual playdate via FaceTime, Zoom, or Skype. A good compromise is an outdoor playdate, where you can keep that six-foot distance. Get a few kids together for a bike ride or hike. Remember to have rules: be sure that kids over 2 years wear face masks when possible make sure that they wash their hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer. If you decide that an indoor playdate is a good choice for your family, […]

A boy pretends to be an airplane while his dad lifts him in the air.

Keeping Your Kids Busy During Social Distancing

Healthy Ways to Avoid Crowds and Keep Kids Engaged during the Coronavirus Pandemic The COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) pandemic has changed Americans’ daily lives due to cancellations and closures just as many parents and kids prepared for spring break. Schools and other organizations are now closed for at least two weeks in an effort to reduce the spread of the virus. Kids are thrilled, but parents are… well, not. Here are some things parents can do with kids while avoiding crowds, and coronavirus, and keeping some level of sanity. Make a nature bracelet.When I was little, my grandmother took me on “nature walks” in her neighborhood. She made a bracelet for me out of tape, turned sticky side out, and I would pick flower petals, leaves, blades of grass, and other items from nature to “decorate” my bracelet. Put on a show with homemade puppets.We’ve all created puppets out of cotton […]

What to Tell Your Kids About Coronavirus (COVID-19)

What to Tell Your Kids About Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Help Kids Understand What it Is COVID-19 is a new disease that is caused by a coronavirus. Coronaviruses cause a number of different illnesses, from colds to more serious respiratory tract infections. Because this is a new illness, we’re still learning about it. But we do know that COVID-19 causes a fever, cough and trouble breathing. We also know that it spreads very easily when people who have it cough or sneeze, sending tiny droplets into the air. That’s why it’s important to do things to stop it from spreading, like washing our hands a lot and staying away from other people if we feel sick. For most people, the illness is not serious. People might feel a bit like they have the flu and can recover at home with rest and fluids. Some people do get very sick, though. These people can get help and expert advice from their […]

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