Raising Awareness Archives - Nemours Blog

Raising Awareness

Should kids participate in the Hot Pepper Challenge for ALS?, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Should kids participate in the Hot Pepper Challenge for ALS?

This post originally appeared on Philly.com By now you’ve probably heard about the Hot Pepper Challenge for ALS which began gaining popularity this month. After NBA writer Tom Haberstroh found out his mother was diagnosed with ALS, his family started the Hot Pepper Challenge in December to raise money for research — a similar idea to the Ice Bucket Challenge in 2014. People are nominated on video and encouraged to donate to the cause. Should Your Kids Take Part? Challenges like this are done in good fun and help to raise awareness and funds for important causes. But as a pediatrician, I have mixed feelings about children participating in the pepper challenge. Here’s why. Hot peppers can cause some unpleasant symptoms due to a chemical compound called capsaicin. Most of the capsaicin is in the seeds and membranes, so remove these parts if you’re worried about the heat. Among other things, capsaicin […]

What's the Big Deal About Precision Medicine? | Promise: Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

What’s the Big Deal About Precision Medicine?

Better health outcomes for all of us, at a lower cost and with fewer side effects. It’s no secret that each of us is different – we’re born with different genetic backgrounds, grow up in different environments, and lead different lifestyles. But until now, much of the medical care we receive has been delivered in a one-size-fits-all way. Precision medicine, a newer approach for disease treatment and prevention, takes into account all the things that make us different – and uses those factors to create more effective treatments with fewer side effects. In the same way that a doctor might take your child’s medical history (think allergies, blood type, past surgeries or illnesses) into consideration before recommending a course of treatment, precision medicine can guide health care professionals in the same way. But precision medicine is more than a fancy technique. Instead, it’s a movement for understanding, diagnosing, managing and […]

How Hands-Only CPR is Helping More People Stay Alive | Dr. Gul Dadlani | Promise: Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

How Hands-Only CPR is Helping More People Stay Alive

Imagine you’re walking through the park, on a play date with a good friend and both of your children, when the outing takes an unexpected turn. Your friend stops mid-stride, struggling to catch her breath. She begins sweating, and before you can understand what’s happening, she’s collapsed on the ground. What do you do? Cardiac arrest is an electrical malfunction in the heart that causes an irregular heartbeat (also called arrhythmia) and disrupts the flow of blood to the brain, lungs and other organs. It’s a leading cause of natural death in the United States. Each year, some 350,000 people experience cardiac arrest outside of a hospital setting. Of those, 90% will die. And while the prompt administration of CPR can double—or even triple—a person’s chance of surviving a heart attack, most bystanders feel helpless to act when it’s most important. Either they’re not confident in their abilities to give […]

Teens Don’t Need Performance-Enhancing Substances. Here's Why, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Teens Don’t Need Performance-Enhancing Substances. Here’s Why.

The term performance-enhancing substances brings to mind elite athletes, doping trials and drug tests. But substances like creatine, protein supplements and caffeine are commonly used by teenagers who are driven to perform-and look-their best. It’s a trend that has pediatricians concerned, and one that parents should be aware of. What Are Performance-Enhancing Substances? Performance-enhancing substances, also called sports supplements, are products that claim to use natural products to enhance athletic performance. The claims include increasing muscle mass, strength, speed, endurance, fat loss or recovery time. Most are available over the counter. They may include vitamins, minerals, amino acids, herbs, or botanicals (plants)-or any concentration, extract, or combination of these ingredients. Creatine One of the most popular supplements on the market, creatine, is easy to obtain and comes in a variety of forms (like powders, tablets, energy bars). Creatine is a natural substance that we usually get from protein-rich foods in […]

The Good News About Updated Guidelines for Peanut Allergies | Promise, powered by Nemours Children's Health System

The Good News About Updated Guidelines for Preventing Peanut Allergies

Peanut allergies have long been a concern for parents and families. In the past several years, the instance of peanut allergies and children – along with confusion and fear about how and when to expose young children to peanut ingredients – has been growing. Peanut allergies generally develop in childhood and continue into adulthood, and they’re not to be taken lightly. People who live with peanut allergies, along with their families, must maintain constant vigilance in the face of a peanut-contaminated environment. Allergic reactions can come from traces of peanuts from unexpected sources, and may be severe or life-threatening. And while there’s no cure for peanut allergy, a new set of guidelines from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), can help parents prevent an allergy to peanuts by introducing the ingredient earlier in life. LEAP (or Learning Early About Peanut […]

Teens, Young Adults Account for Half of New STD Cases, by Robyn Miller, MD, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Teens, Young Adults Account for Half of New STD Cases

It’s enough to send parents running to lock their teens in their bedrooms: About 10 million 15- to 24-year-olds have a sexually transmitted disease (STD) — that’s half of the new STD cases reported each year. And in 2015, there were more STDs reported than ever. The top three most commonly reported STDs — chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis — were all at an all-time high, according to the annual STD surveillance report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). STDs are now more commonly referred to by the medical community as “sexually transmitted infections” or “STIs.” The Repercussions of Sex Before teens and young adults make that very adult decision to become sexually active, they need to understand that it can come with many very adult consequences, too. Pregnancy is often the biggest concern for sex-curious teens. Even though U.S. teen birth rates are at an historic low, […]

New Screen Time Guidelines and Tips to Unplug, by Michelle Kartan, MD, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

New Screen Time Guidelines and Tips to Unplug

There’s no getting around it: Screens are everywhere. Take a look around next time you’re at a restaurant, coffee shop, on the bus, at the park, or even in your own home. How many people — adults and kids — have their eyes on a screen instead of on the world around them? Of course there is a time and place for screen time. But as the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) announces new recommendations for children’s media use, it’s a good reminder for all of us to get our own media use in check. New AAP Recommendations for Screen Time For children younger than 18 months Avoid use of screen media altogether, except for “video chatting” (e.g., letting Grandma and Grandpa see or talk to your little one). For children 18 to 24 months of age If you want to introduce digital media during this age, choose high-quality programming and watch […]

Donate Blood: Why Should You Give?, Promise, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Donate Blood: Why Should You Give?

Did you know that every three seconds, someone in the United States needs a blood donation? Even though nine out of 10 people will need blood products in their lifetime, less than 10 percent of the eligible population opts to donate blood. The thing is, regular blood donations by healthy people ensure that safe blood will be available whenever and wherever it’s needed — for children and adults alike. And there’s a constant need for blood supply because blood can only be stored for a limited time before use. How Does It Help? A decision to donate your blood can save a life — or even several lives — if blood is separated into its components (red blood cells, platelets, and plasma), which can be used individually for patients with specific conditions. Red Blood Cells Red blood cells, made in bone marrow, contain hemoglobin and carry oxygen to the body. So who […]

“Love Helps Me Heal:” An Original Song

This spring, in partnership with the University of Delaware, Nemours hosted Artist-in-Residence Frank Waln, an award-winning Native American hip-hop artist from the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota. Frank joined Nemours in our Creative Arts Therapy program at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children, where he has been able to share his story with our patients and families. Frank met with groups of patients while here and spoke about growing up as a Native American, being raised by a loving single mother, and the ways hip-hop music offers him healing during difficult times. One of his goals while here was to work with our patients to create a one-of-a-kind musical work that tells their story about being in the hospital. With a degree in audio engineering and his experience as a performer, Frank was able to show kids how to create hip-hop music. Frank taught them how to build a song by […]

Laundry Pod Dangers, Powered by Nemours Children's Health System

Laundry Pod Poisonings Increasing Despite Safety Warnings

In the hustle and bustle of our everyday lives, I can really appreciate the small conveniences that are available to make our lives easier…drive-throughs, single-serve coffee makers, even microwave meals. One of the biggest things that make our lives easier is washing machines. They make washing things so much more efficient. Many people would be lost without their washing machines and dishwasher. This is why many homeowners decide to insure their appliances at https://homewarranty.firstam.com/homeowner/home-warranty/michigan. That makes sure that homeowners can receive 24/7 support if their appliances break down. Someone will also come out and take a look at the appliance too. Hopefully, they’ll be able to fix it, allowing us to continue with our washing. But sometimes these little conveniences can carry a danger we never considered, especially when using pods. The laundry (and dishwasher) detergent packets/pods are a great example of what seems to be the perfect modern-day convenience. […]

What's Up With Kids' Blood Pressure?

What’s Up With Kids’ Blood Pressure?

We don’t usually think of blood pressure as a matter of concern during childhood — and for most kids, it’s not. But blood pressure is an important vital sign and one that your child’s physician should be taking at every check-up. Babies’ blood pressure measurements are taken at birth as part of routine newborn screenings. After that, expert guidelines, including those of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), call for measurements to be taken at well-child visits and sick visits in the pediatrician’s office, starting at age 3. What’s Considered “Normal” Blood Pressure for Kids? Determining normal or optimal blood pressure for children is a bit complex because it depends on a number of factors including age, height and gender. A simplified approach is to use these thresholds: A child from 3 to 11 years should have blood pressure at or below 110/70. From age 12 upward, a measurement of […]

Transformation: Celebrating Child Life and Social Work Month

For children and families who are navigating serious medical concerns, visits to the hospital can be stressful and tedious – even a little scary. That’s why the Child Life and Social Work team at Nemours Children’s Hospital is dedicated to building a supportive, enriching and fun environment for the children in our care. It’s a mission the team embraces every day, but during the week of March 21st, the work of the Child Life and Social Work team took on extra importance as we celebrated National Child Life and Social Work Month. The team focused on the theme of Transformation, and celebrated with related activities each day. And it wasn’t just the patients who benefitted – staff from departments throughout Nemours Children’s Hospital got in on the festivities.  Associates from various departments supported their Child Life and Social Work colleagues through their attire, sharing stories of success and showering the […]

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