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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 […]

Quinn’s Scoliosis Journey

“We are so happy with Dr. Khoury and what he’s been able to do for our son. He is an amazing doctor. He always treats everyone with respect. We are excited to continue our scoliosis journey with Dr. Khoury and Nemours.” –Mom to Quinn (age 4) Quinn’s mom first noticed something was wrong with his back when he was just 2 months old. “I could feel a bump on one side of his back,” she explains. “I thought it was lack of muscle tone…I didn’t know that what I was feeling was the rib hump.” When she mentioned this to Quinn’s pediatrician, she diagnosed him with torticollis and Quinn began doing physical therapy. His torticollis eventually got better, but mom knew there was still something wrong with his back. That was because Quinn didn’t sit on his own until around 8 months, and he didn’t crawl until after 9 months. […]

Wait No More: Nearly All Kids Can Now Get the COVID-19 Vaccine

Many parents are breathing a sigh of relief that they can finally get their babies, toddlers, and preschoolers vaccinated against COVID-19. Two brands of the vaccine have now been authorized for children as young as 6 months old, so the little ones can now join the ranks of people ages 5 and up who have helped protect themselves. So does your young child really need a COVID-19 vaccine? After all, younger children often have milder illness when they get infected. The answer is a resounding “yes,” since many young children have had serious symptoms requiring hospitalization, and some have even died. Small children can even develop long COVID, with symptoms that bother them for a long time. Parents might also wonder why it took so long for the vaccines to be authorized for this age group. It took a long time to get the vaccines authorized for young children because […]

What to Do During the Baby Formula Shortage

You may have noticed a shortage of baby formula on store shelves these days. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused supply chain and staffing issues, and a recent recall of baby formula due to contaminated products from one factory has added to the problem. If you are formula feeding your baby, you may worry about how you will continue to feed your little one. Here are some tips on how to navigate the baby formula shortage. What to do: Talk to your baby’s doctor, who may have some sample cans of formula available. You can also call a local hospital, breast milk bank, or office of WIC (the federal Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children). Women’s shelters, food banks, and faith-based organizations might also be able to help. Shop around. Try other stores that you may not have visited in the past, especially smaller independent grocery stores, pharmacies, […]

Patient surrounded by her care team

The Beat Goes On: Grace, a Heart Patient, Shares Her Story

Back in February of 2016, I started experiencing horrible palpitations, and decided one day to go get it to check out. I was immediately diagnosed with (WPW) -Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. After my first heart ablation, everything went smoothly. I was back to doing all the sports I loved like track and cheer! I was living life to the fullest. However, a couple of months later, I started to have the same palpitations, along with being super tired and getting dizzy. The doctor I originally went to had moved away, so my mom who is a nurse, did her research, and we decided to switch over to Nemours Children’s Health.  Seeing a cardiologist there, I had my second heart ablation in December 2016. I was 14 years old and have had two heart ablations! The surgery was quick, and I was told that everything looked good, they said. I recovered perfectly and […]

Talking to Your Child About the War in Ukraine

Talking to Your Child About the War in Ukraine

As conflicts in Ukraine escalate, children may see and hear things about the crisis through news headlines, social media, friends discussing the topic at school, or overheard conversations from adults. Situations like this can lead to feelings of uncertainty, anxiety, and fear. Children might have questions about the images, stories, and conversations they are seeing and hearing. Parents and caregivers should address them. Here are some tips on how to approach these conversations with children: Find Out What They Know Ask your kids questions to find out what information they already know about. They may have formed a completely different picture of the situation than you have. Take the time to listen to what they think, and what they have seen or heard. Consider your child’s age and development. Younger kids may not grasp the difference between fact and fantasy. For most kids, it’s not until they are 7 or […]

Omicron Is Spreading: Why You Shouldn’t Shrug It Off

Omicron Is Spreading: Why You Shouldn’t Shrug It Off

It’s hard to believe that we are about to start our third pandemic year. We had all hoped that by now COVID-19 would be a thing of the past and life would be getting back to normal. Instead, a variant called omicron is quickly spreading. Lots of people are getting infected from this new variant, and hospitals are filling up. Many people are feeling frustrated and defeated. If you are one of them, it might be tempting to give in and just drop your guard completely. After all, lots of people are saying that the symptoms of omicron are usually mild, and it feels like everyone will eventually get COVID-19 anyway, right? Not so fast. There are a few important things to consider. If everyone gets sick at the same time, lots of people will need the hospital at once. That isn’t safe. The more crowded the hospitals are, the […]

Questions About Omicron Abound: What’s a Parent to Do?

Questions About Omicron Abound: What’s a Parent to Do?

The media is full of news about omicron, a new coronavirus variant. A variant is a version of the virus that is a little different from the original virus. Variants can look different or behave differently from the original virus. For example, they can differ in how contagious they are, how sick they make people, and how they respond to vaccines and medicines. We are still learning about how the omicron variant differs from the coronavirus that we are already familiar with. While we wait for health experts to study the data about omicron, some parents are wondering whether they should vaccinate their child as soon as possible, or whether they should wait and see how things develop with this new variant. What Do We Know? The answer is that all children ages 5 and older should get fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as possible. Here is why we […]

When COVID-19 Hits Home

When COVID-19 Hits Home

Well, it happened. After almost two years of the pandemic, COVID-19 has found its way into our house. As an emergency room pediatrician turned medical writer and editor for Nemours KidsHealth, I thought I was as prepared as anyone can be. I read and write about COVID-19 every day. But even with all that experience I still learned more than I ever wanted to know in the last four weeks, which felt like four months. As mom to two boys ages 10 and 6 years, I learned that having a child with COVID-19 is hard (and a little bit scary), but planning, patience and creativity can help you come out on the other side. Here is what I learned. Don’t Play the Blame Game We spent the pandemic having a healthy respect for the virus. We followed all the guidelines. We didn’t eat at restaurants, we had outdoors Thanksgiving and […]

Squid Game: 10 Things Parents Need to Know

Squid Game: 10 Things Parents Need to Know

Squid Game. The latest Netflix/internet obsession. After admittedly watching the series myself (spurred by patients asking about it), there are a few things parents should know. There is enough violence, ethical dilemmas, and other mature content to draw a hard line: your young children should absolutely not watch this show. Still, teachers and schools are reporting kids emulating Squid Game at recess and in the classroom. The show itself is rated mature (17+). Teens of all ages, however, are likely to watch it or hear about it. Keep these things in mind as you navigate their viewing:  Watch Squid Game, or at least one episode, before you allow your teens to view it. You should be prepared, minimally, to have conversations about the difficult topics and those are easier to navigate when you have seen the content as well. If you are a parent of younger kids, keep them in […]

RSV on the Rise: What Parents Need to Know

RSV on the Rise: What Parents Need to Know

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to surge, doctors are warning about another well-known respiratory illness, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), spreading among infants and young children. There has been an unusual summertime uptick in RSV cases. And it’s happening at the same time as the Delta variant of coronavirus is infecting young children and teens. Cases of RSV in kids and older adults usually occur in fall through early spring. But due to a reduced spread of RSV during the winter months of 2020-2021 — because of quarantine and masking guidelines — the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that many cases are now surfacing earlier this year. Most children get an RSV infection by the age of two. As some areas lift mask mandates and other restrictions, there is a reappearance of the virus occurring. That means older infants and young children who would have gotten it last […]

"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 […]

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