Awareness Archives - Nemours Blog


Anxiety in Kids: Know the Signs

Anxiety in Kids: Know the Signs

While back to school season is usually an exciting time for most students, many kids and teens may also be feeling anxious or worried about what this school year might have in store. For many students, this is the first time they will return to in person learning since the COVID-19 pandemic began. While some may be looking forward to getting back to their normal schedules, there are those who are struggling with returning to school under new conditions.  A lot of kids and teens have struggled with stress and uncertainty over the last year because of the disruptions to “normal” life caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. While returning to in person learning has many benefits for mental health and well-being, especially increased socializing that is crucial for kids and teens, your child may also have some concerns about heading back to school this year, including: Being behind other classmates […]

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 […]

"Whole Child" Health: Integrative Medicine Helps Heal Kids Inside and Out. Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

“Whole Child” Health: Integrative Medicine Helps Heal Kids Inside and Out

In recent years, integrative medicine has become common in the care of patients of all ages. This approach combines traditional and alternative medicine. It focuses not only on physical well-being, but also on emotional and sometimes even spiritual aspects of a person’s health. Nemours Children’s Health uses integrative medicine to treat the whole child: body, mind and spirit. When kids and their families walk through Nemours’ doors, whether in an inpatient or outpatient setting, the facility focuses on the children’s overall wellness and healing. Depending on the complexity of the condition, treatment will likely incorporate medications and physical therapies. But to get at the heart of healing, Nemours also incorporates complementary solutions such as nutrition and physical activity strategies, mind-body methods like yoga and meditation, and therapies including massage and aromatherapy. What is integrative medicine? Integrative medicine is an approach to care that puts your child at the center. It addresses […]

Pool safety, powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Water Safety

Drowning is a leading cause of injury-related death in children ages one to four, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Safe Kids Worldwide notes that more than half of drowning deaths in children happen in those ages 0 to 4. Nearly 1,000 U.S. children under 20 years old lose their lives to drowning each year. It’s important to know that drownings can happen quickly. The many rules written about pool safety come down to the same important guideline: Kids should always be supervised in and around water, no matter what their swimming skill levels. Young children especially must be watched—they can drown in less than 2 inches of water. That means drowning can happen when and where you’d least expect it. Get Them Swimming Early According to the policy statement, “Evidence reveals that many children older than 1 year will benefit from swim lessons.” And classes taught by qualified instructors at […]

Nut Allergies: What Friends and Family Need to Know | Promise: Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Nut Allergies: What Friends and Family Need to Know

For parents whose children live with an allergy to peanuts or tree nuts, avoiding the ingredients can become a matter of cautious routine. It’s never easy, but parents grow accustomed to avoiding certain foods and contaminants, watching for symptoms, and carrying the necessary supplies in case of an accidental exposure. But what about friends, friends’ parents, or other family members? It can be hard to give a simple overview of the dangers and limitations that come with a peanut or tree nut allergy – especially when you’re trying to allow your child to live a life that’s as close to normal as possible. Here’s what friends and family members should know about caring for or spending time with a child who has a nut allergy – whether it’s a sleepover, family vacation, or a babysitting gig. It’s a real thing. No matter what your own experiences with peanut or tree nut […]

When Your Child Complains of Chest Pain by Thomas Craig Edwards, MD | Promise, powered by Nemours Children's Health

When Your Child Has Chest Pain

When your child complains of chest pain, it’s natural to jump to heart-related conclusions. But most cases of chest pain in children aren’t caused by cardiac conditions. It can sometimes be hard to get a clear description of your child’s chest pain, but symptoms usually include: Tightness. Discomfort. Burning sensation. Pain when taking deep breaths. Coughing. Wheezing. So what should you do? Make an appointment with your child’s primary care physician, and keep in mind that chest pain in children is usually not heart-related. Chest pain can often be attributed to one or more of the following: Gastroesophogeal reflux disease, or ongoing heartburn Pain or inflammation in the chest wall Asthma Pneumonia Stress or anxiety Injury Viral illness Heading to the hospital is absolutely necessary in some situations. Seek emergency care if: Exercise brings about chest pain, or makes it worse. Chest pain occurs with rapid or irregular heartbeat. Fainting or […]

CHA Family Advocacy Week

Family Advocacy Week: Nemours Patients Share Their Stories

This past year and a half has been tough on all of us, especially our children and youth. For so many, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed life as we know it. But for Nemours patients Kate and Sebastian, the pandemic is just one of many life-changing events they’ve faced. And that’s why they are both sharing their medical journeys to members of Congress during the 2021 Children’s Hospital Association (CHA) “Speak Now for Kids’ Family Advocacy Week,” to increase awareness about the ongoing and essential care provided by children’s hospitals. Kate’s Story When she was just 2 years old, Kate McKinery was diagnosed with optic pathway glioma, a brain tumor that interferes with her optic nerve and impacts her sight. The tumor also causes hormone deficiencies, resulting in abnormal liver function, type 2 diabetes and a full height potential of around 4’2. Kate has undergone multiple procedures, tests and appointments […]

Celebrating Each Moment with Cancer in the Rearview

This blog post is written by Larry, the father of Maddie, a medulloblastoma patient who survived a brain tumor at the age of 2. Larry inspires us by sharing his daughter’s story. “Heroism is endurance for one moment more.”      George F. Kennan In the fall of 2008, at the age of two, our daughter Maddie was diagnosed with medulloblastoma, a brain tumor that arises at the base of the brain and often spreads down through the spine via the spinal fluid. Over the course of the next ten months, Maddie underwent multiple brain and spine surgeries and intense chemotherapy protocols at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children. After six cycles of chemo treatment, she had made amazing progress, knocking out 90% of her original disease. Because her scans were not completely cancer-free, she then went through an additional six weeks of radiation therapy. Conquering Cancer The effects of radiation on a 3-year-old can […]

Period Poverty and Top Myths about Periods

Period Poverty & Top Myths about Periods

For some individuals, their period is nothing more than a slight inconvenience. However, this is not the reality for everyone. A study by Thinx and the nonprofit Period found that 1 in 5 teens have struggled to afford period products, and more than 4 in 5 teens have missed class or know someone who has had to miss class because they did not have any period products. What is Period Poverty? Period poverty refers to a lack of access to period products, as well as a lack of education surrounding periods. People associate period poverty with poor countries, but even in the United States millions of people suffer due to period poverty. In the U.S., period products aren’t covered by national food stamp programs, and many states still tax them. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated this issue—rates of poverty skyrocketed, making it a struggle to put food on the table, […]

Room-Sharing, Safe Swaddling and 6 Other Must-Know SIDS Prevention Tips, by Michelle Karten, MD, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

8 Must-Know Tips to Ensure Safe Sleep for Your Baby

Much of a baby’s early life is spent sleeping. In fact, many newborns snooze 16 to 17 hours a day. It’s important that sleeping hours be just as safe as those spent awake. This is because sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is a leading cause of death in infants 1 month to 1-year-old. Most of these SIDS deaths occur in the first six months of life. Here are the top tips to keep in mind to ensure that your baby’s sleep environment is as safe as possible. This doesn’t mean that you make the baby’s room look bland and plain, you can decorate the walls in a safe way with fixed shelving and nursery wall decals, so they have a bright and cheerful room. 1. Keep your baby in your bedroom – but not your bed. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends room-sharing (as in bedroom-sharing). This is when an […]

Dynamic Dan!

This blog post is written by Amy, the mother of Dan, a mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS) patient who passed away in 2016 at the age of 19. Amy is a Nemours nurse and her son’s story inspires us and others every day. When Dan was born in September 1996, we were told he was a healthy baby. He joined his sister, Haley, who was 2 years old and we thought our lives were perfect. We had this sweet little family with a precious little girl and strapping baby boy. We had just moved to a new house, both had good jobs, life was good. As Dan developed, he hit all his milestones except for one; he wasn’t talking by the age of 2. He had about 20 ear infections in his first 2 years of life and the pediatrician thought his lack of language was due to him not hearing well. We went to an ENT at […]

All About Animal Therapy

All About Animal Therapy

Besides stealing our hearts by being cute — and in many cases, fluffy — our four-legged friends who are trained as therapy animals have numerous health benefits to offer. Animal assisted therapy is proven to help with both mental and physical conditions. Even healthy people can benefit from animal therapy. Many hospitals offer various animal therapy programs to assist patients in healing. In fact, this is a practice that dates back to the ancient Greeks, who were said to use horses to cheer up patients.   Benefits of Animal Therapy  Animal therapy has physical benefits that include:  Lowering blood pressure  Releasing oxytocin, which has a calming effect   Lessening any physical pain patients have   On top of the physical benefits, animal therapy also has mental health benefits such as:  Decreasing feelings of loneliness and isolation  Lowering stress  Providing a sense of comfort  Nemours Children’s Health System offers animal therapy programs at their hospitals in Delaware and Florida as a part of their commitment to caring for the whole child. One program offered in Florida […]

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