Friday, May 24th, 2013
A new survey shows that 24 percent of U.S. teens have abused prescription medications that were not prescribed to them and this number represents more than 5 million teenagers. These numbers are very scary. This is a 33% increase from 2008. Many teens may take ADHD drugs which have not been prescribed for them but were prescribed for their siblings or friends. In fact, 13 percent of teens said they took either Adderall or Ritalin (both ADHD medications) at least once when it was not prescribed for them.
The prescription drug use may begin before teens are 14 years of age. Research shows 20% of the teens who admit to abusing prescription drugs said they first abused prescription drugs that were not prescribed for them before they were 14 years old. Teens that start abusing drugs when they are young are much more likely to have an addiction problem as adults. Unfortunately, 27% of these same teens mistakenly believe the abuse of prescription drugs is safer than the use of ecstasy or cocaine. Almost 33% of parents surveyed believed Adderall or Ritalin can boost a teen’s school performance safely even if they haven’t been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
Inappropriate doses of ADHD medications can cause hallucinations, seizures, psychosis, hypertension, mania or aggressive behavior and many other untoward reactions. Use of narcotics like OxyContin can result in addiction, respiratory arrest, severe hypotension and shock. Teens and adults may have the misconception that these prescription medications are safe and are safer than “street drugs”.
This same study indicates about 80% of parents talk to their teens about marijuana and alcohol, almost 33% talk about crack and cocaine, but only 15% of parents said they ever discussed abuse of prescription medications.
The take home message is clear. Parents need to talk to their kids about the abuse of all these drugs and not neglect discussing the abuse of prescription medications. These conversations should begin in grade school and should be reinforced as kids enter middle school and high school. Secondly, prescription medications should be locked up so they are not accessible and unused, old and expired prescription medications should be discarded safely. We all need to wake up to the reality of this crisis for our young people.
Submitted by David Roos, M.D.
Tuesday, May 7th, 2013
If you have been to a well baby appointment recently, you may have filled out the Ages and Stages Questionnaire. This is a routine component of our well child visits that helps us evaluate how your child is developing. It is given at every check-up from 4 months of age until 5 years old.
One goal of a preventative health care visit is to ensure that a child is developing normally. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all young children have a formal developmental screening at each check-up. This screening helps identify subtle delays that may not otherwise be apparent. Early identification of problems allows for immediate intervention and greatly improves the child’s chance of reaching his or her full potential.
If any concern is raised using this standardized screening tool, your child will be referred for further evaluation through the early intervention services in our community.
As parents, you play an important role in the detection of your child’s developmental problems. It is important to bring up any concerns you may have regarding your child’s development with the doctor. The Ages and Stages Questionnaire is simply another tool to help us give your child the best care possible.
Monday, April 29th, 2013
During the infancy period, infants are obligate nose breathers which means they only breathe through their nose and not through their mouth. If an infant has any amount of nasal congestion present, they will have an increased amount of difficulty breathing, especially when feeding.
I’ve just learned about a product available to help with the aspiration of the nasal congestion to help infants have an easier time of breathing. ”The NoseFrida The Snotsucker” is a nasal aspirator that actually works! It is distributed by fridababy.com. It’s doctor invented and recommended. It’s 100% hygenic due to the included filters. It’s been reviewed by Rachel Ray and Parenting Magazine! It’s the number 3 selling baby product on Amazon.com. It’s easy to clean and top-rack safe in the dishwasher. You can purchase it on fridababy.com, amazon.com or at Babies R Us. It sells for $15.00 on fridababy.com, $12.75 or $19.20 with 20 additional filters, on amazon.com and $16.99 at Babies R Us.
Submitted by Vona M. Lantz, CPNP
Monday, April 22nd, 2013
National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW) is April 20-27. NIIW is an annual observance to highlight the importance of protecting infants from vaccine-preventable diseases and celebrate the achievements of immunization programs and their partners in promoting healthy communities. Since 1994, NIIW has served as a call to action for parents, caregivers, and healthcare providers to ensure that infants are fully immunized against 14 vaccine-preventable diseases.
Colorado Children’s Immunization Coalition (CCIC) is a statewide non-profit organization that promotes improved access, delivery, and demand for children’s vaccinations to keep Colorado healthy. CCIC announces “TEAM VACCINE”, a blog created to improve access and delivery and demand for children’s immunizations to keep Colorado kids healthy. Team Vaccine features physicians, nurses, parents, researchers, advocates, and community members who are passionate about immunizations and protecting kids from vaccine-preventable diseases. I encorage parents visit this blog site to learn more about immunizations and read other parental accounts of their experiences with immunizations.
Submitted by Vona M. Lantz, CPNP
Tuesday, April 16th, 2013
A recent study published in the Journal of Pediatrics March 2013 shows that children who receive the regular schedule of childhood vaccines are at no increased risk of autism compared with children who are unvaccinated or who are on an alternate/delayed schedule of the vaccines. This demonstrates there is no connection with any particular vaccine or the number of vaccines children receive in 1 day or the total number of vaccines children receive and autism.
There have been more than 20 studies showing no connection between autism and vaccines. Approximately 10% of parents today are choosing to skip or delay vaccinating their children and this has resulted in a sharp increase world-wide in vaccine preventable diseases. We are currently experiencing a nationwide epidemic of whooping cough (pertussis) with more cases seen last year in 2012 than we have seen since 1962. There were more than 1400 cases in Colorado last year of pertussis and 1 infant died from the disease. Deaths from pertussis last year were also seen in 16 other states. We have also seen increases in measles and rubella. Pregnant moms who develop rubella (German measles) during their pregnancy may have a baby with rubella syndrome which can result in heart defects, hearing loss or deafness, cataracts, mental retardation or death. At least 3 infants in 2012 were born with congenital rubella in 2012 Increased rates of these infections are directly tied to the increased numbers of parents not vaccinating their children.
In third world countries with poor vaccination rates for their children there is an even higher incidence of vaccine preventable infections. The U.S. will see more epidemics of these infections as more third world children visit this country and expose our unvaccinated children. Some communities have more unvaccinated children than other communities and these poorly vaccinated communities are ripe for epidemics with infections like whooping cough, measles and rubella or meningitis from bacteria like Haemophilus or Meningococcus.
A 2010 study in Pediatrics also confirmed the safety of the current regular vaccine schedule when it compared babies receiving all the standard vaccines on time during their first year of life with infants skipping or delaying vaccines. The researchers found no neurological or psychological differences between these groups of infants. That is there were no increased problems with items like stuttering, facial tics or lower IQ’s.
The take home message is simple: WHEN PARENTS SKIP OR DELAY VACCINATING THEIR CHILDREN THIS PUTS THEIR CHILDREN AND OTHER CHILDREN IN THE COMMUNITY AT RISK FOR DEVELOPING DANGEROUS INFECTIONS. Ask a provider at Crown Point Pediatrics if you have any questions about vaccines for your kids.
USA Today (3/29)
Submitted by David Roos, M.D.
Monday, April 8th, 2013
A quarter of children’s calories come from snacks so it is important to offer healthy food choices at snack time. If your child’s snack usually includes chips, cookies, candy or soda, then it’s time to make a change. Starting healthy eating habits early in life is critical in the prevention of obesity. Remember that small changes make a big difference!
First, have your child drink water and eliminate soda, juice boxes and other sugary drinks. 100% fruit juice is okay but should be limited to one cup a day. Low-fat milk can accompany meals.
Next, try to offer fresh produce, complex carbohydrates and lean proteins as snacks. The following list may give you some ideas.
Reduce the temptation to grab a bag of chips by preparing snacks ahead of time so they are ready-to-eat when the kids are hungry. Don’t keep unhealthy snacks in the house. It is best to have one set snack time between meals or after school in order to avoid continual snacking and grazing. Avoid snacking due to boredom – children will often complain of hunger or ask for snacks when they are bored instead of hungry. Last, but not least, parents should remember to set a good example by reaching for those healthy snacks too.
Submitted by Jaime Fell, MS, PA-C
Tuesday, March 19th, 2013
Parents, have you ever found yourself wondering which car safety seat is appropriate for your child? Do you have a child that has recently gone through a growth spurt and you are now questioning if the car seat you own is still adequate? Have you placed your child in the car seat and then into the car to find that he or she must contort themselves into different positions to remain in the car seat?
If you answered yes to any of the above questions, there is help through a new resource. The American Academy of Pediatrics has come up with an app called Car Seat Check. This app allows parents to determine which car seat is best for their child. On the app, parents enter the height, weight and age of the child and are provided with proper car seat recommendations, installation instructions, prices, videos, local car seat instillation technicians and any product recall information.
The app is available for iPhone and iPad. Parents can download the $1.99 app from iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/car-seat-check/id584790382?mt=8.
The above information was obtained from the February 2013 AAP News magazine.
Elizabeth S. Wilson, M.D.
Wednesday, February 13th, 2013
Infants receive an oral vaccine to prevent rotavirus at 2, 4, and 6 months of age. Rotavirus is a very contagious virus that causes severe diarrhea and vomiting. A new study reported by the journal of Clinical Infectious Diseases finds that vaccinating infants against rotavirus may help protect unvaccinated adults against this highly contagious virus.
Two recent studies, one suggesting a possible link between influenza (“flu”), during pregnancy and autism, and the other showing an increased risk of fetal death during pregnancy in women with influenza. In the first study, “Mother’s wiho reported having influenza during pregnancy were twice as likely to have a child who developed autism as those who did not report having influenza.” Those women who had a fever lasting a week or more during their first eight months of pregnancy were three times more likely to have a child with autism. In the second study, risk of fetal death was nearly double in women who had influenza during pregnancy.
The Wall Street Journal reports “that according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, pregnant women should receive the pertussis vaccine during pregnancy (to prevent whooping cough)”. By vaccinating during pregnancy, mothers will produce antibodies against pertussis that are passed on to the infants before they are born.
Immunizations are an important achievement in health care. There is overwhelming evidence of declining rates of vaccine-preventable diseases and virtual elimination of viral illnesses such as polio in the United States. According to the National Immunization Survey, more than 90% of children in 2009 received most recommended vaccines.
There is growing concern about the safety of vaccines, and as such, we are seeing an increase in vaccine-preventable diseases. Pertussis is at an all time high this year. We are currently facing one of the toughest influenza seasons on record.
We highly encourage all infants, children, and adolescents to be immunized with all the recommended vaccines and remain current and up to date in their immunization schedule.
Submitted by Vona Lantz, CPNP
Monday, February 4th, 2013
Cohen and his colleagues in Israel in 2012 conducted a controlled study of nighttime coughs in 300 children with routine upper respiratory infections. They used 3 different honey mixtures for treatments:
The investigators found that any of the honey mixtures were more effective than the placebo mixture (which was made from dates) in reducing the frequency and severity of nighttime coughs. The different honey extracts were equally effective reducing cough symptoms by approximately 20%.
Honey does have many potential benefits as a medicinal remedy and does have definite antioxidant activity. The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend honey for any infant under 1 year of age because of the risk of botulism so wait until your kids are older than a year before you try honey for their coughs. We now do not recommend the use of cough and cold medications for children under the age of 5 years because of potential risks of apnea, rapid heart rate or convulsions.
Grandma is right. Honey can help coughs and honey is safe. You can try honey alone or in combinations of honey with eucalyptus, labiatae, citrus, garlic or aloe. Honey. . . . . . SWEET!
Pediatrics. 2012; 130:465-471
David B. Roos, M.D.
Monday, January 28th, 2013
The key to keeping skin soft, smooth and healthy is to moisturize. For really dry skin, the best moisturizers are creams. Creams usually come in tubs and can be greasy once applied, which is why they work so well. Lotions that come in pumps are not quite as moisturizing but can be handy and can make applying moisturizer easier. They work well for less severe cases or can be placed next to the bathroom soap dispenser to help children remember to apply.
The best time to apply moisturizer is after bathing. Showers and baths should be warm, not hot and should be kept to less than 10min. Use a gentle fragrance-free soap or mild cleanser and rinse well with water. Avoid bubble baths. Remember to apply the moisturizer to damp skin within 3 minutes after bathing.
Staying hydrated is also important so encourage your youngster to drink extra water. A cool mist humidifier in the bedroom at night can also help.
If the skin is itchy, Benadryl works well and can help prevent inflammation and injury of the skin due to scratching. (Call the office if your child is under 6 years old.)
If your child has eczema, the rash can flair-up even with the best adherence to these recommendations. A prescription cream may be needed to help with itching and redness. Call our office for an appointment.
Submitted by Jaime Fell, MS, PA-C