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Posts for: January, 2021

January 22, 2021
Tags: Tonsillitis  

Has your child been complaining of throat pain? Tonsillitis, one of the illnesses and conditions treated by the pediatricians at 7 Days Pediatrics, may be to blame. The doctors serve the South Plainfield, Perth Amboy, Woodbridge, and Edison, NJ, areas from three convenient offices.

What is tonsillitis?

The tonsils are two soft lumps of tissue located on either side of the back of the throat. The tissues trap germs, helping your child stay healthy. Unfortunately, tonsils can become infected by the same germs they trap. Both viruses and bacteria can cause tonsillitis. A viral infection is most likely to be the cause of tonsillitis in younger children, according to Medline Plus. Bacterial infections are often responsible for infections in children ages 5 to 15 years.

What are the symptoms of tonsillitis?

If your child has tonsillitis, he or she may experience some of these symptoms:

  • Inflamed Tonsils: Tonsils can be seen when your child opens his or her mouth, although you may need a small flashlight to view them clearly. If your son or daughter has tonsillitis, the tonsils may be red or swollen. You may also see yellow or white spots on them.
  • Pain: Throat pain may be the first sign that there is something wrong with your child's tonsils. Your child may also mention other types of pain, such as a stiff neck, headache, or stomach ache.
  • Fever: A fever may accompany any viral or bacterial infection, including tonsillitis.
  • Difficulty Swallowing: Inflamed, enlarged tonsils can make it harder to swallow easily.
  • Swollen Lymph Nodes: Lymph node swelling is common if your child has an infection. If you feel the nodes on either side of the neck, you may notice that they seem larger than normal.

How do pediatricians treat tonsillitis?

Bacterial infections are treated with antibiotics. Although antibiotics aren't helpful if your child's tonsillitis is caused by a viral infection, there are a few things you can do to keep your child comfortable while he or she recovers.

If you don't have ice cream, ice pops, or gelatin on hand, stop by a South Plainfield, Perth Amboy, Woodbridge, or Edison grocery store and pick up these items. Cool foods and drinks soothe inflamed tissues in your child's throat and can decrease pain. Over-the-counter medication, like acetaminophen or ibuprofen, can reduce pain and fevers. Gargling with salt water and sucking on cough drops may also be helpful.

Although tonsillectomies used to be performed on a routine basis years ago, the surgery is usually only recommended if your child has frequent bouts of tonsillitis.

Are you worried that your child may have tonsillitis? Call the South Plainfield, Perth Amboy, Woodbridge, and Edison, NJ, area pediatricians at (732) 548-3210 to schedule your son or daughter's appointment.

January 19, 2021
Category: Child Safety
Tags: Tetanus Shot  
Tetanus ShotAll children need to get a tetanus shot. When we think of tetanus we often think of rusty nails; however, this bacterium isn’t just found on rusty metal items, it also lives in soil and dirt. If bacteria come in contact with a wound or opening in the skin this can lead to a serious infection. If your child, like many, enjoys running around outside barefoot, they must be keeping up with their tetanus shots.
When should my child get their first tetanus shot?

While tetanus can cause some serious symptoms including “lockjaw," it is completely preventable with a vaccination. The DTaP vaccine is used to prevent tetanus (along with diphtheria and pertussis) and your child will get their first series of shots at 2, 4, and 6 months. Your child will also need another tetanus shot between the ages of 15 to 18 months old and between 4-6 years old.
Children should continue to get a tetanus shot during their annual pediatric checkup until they turn 18 years old. Instead of getting the DTap vaccine, which they got as a young child, they will get the Tdap booster shot that still protects against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis.
Once your child reaches adulthood, they will get a Td vaccination, which will protect them against tetanus and diphtheria.
What are the signs and symptoms of tetanus?

Most children will develop symptoms within two weeks of exposure to the bacteria. Symptoms of tetanus include,
  • Painful and severe muscle spasms
  • Shoulder, jaw, and neck stiffness
  • Difficulty breathing and swallowing
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Fever
If left untreated, tetanus can be life-threatening so it’s important to bring your child in right away if they develop any of these symptoms.
If it’s time for your child’s next tetanus shot, your pediatrician will be able to administer the vaccine either during their next routine checkup or at a separate important. You must be keeping up with your child’s vaccine schedule so that they are fully protected against potentially dangerous communicable diseases.

January 19, 2021
Category: Child Safety
Tags: Broken Bone  
Does My Child Have a Broken Bone?Accidents happen. Perhaps your child hurt themselves falling off their bike or taking a rough tumble down the stairs. In these instances, the first thing you’ll probably do is check your child over for bumps, bruises, and possibly broken bones. It’s important to recognize whether your child could be dealing with a broken bone so that you can bring them in to see their pediatrician right away.
The warning signs of a broken bone include,
  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Tenderness
  • A popping or snapping sound at the moment of impact or injury
  • Trouble straightening out the limb or affected area
  • Unable to put weight on the area
  • Limited range of motion or unable to move normally
If the bone is visible through the skin, you must call 911 or head to your nearest emergency room for care. If there is no bone visible but your child is still experiencing the symptoms above, then call your pediatrician right away. This problem should be treated on the very same day by your child’s doctor.
The most common fractures that we see in kids often affect the bones of the elbows, ankles, and wrists. Falling off monkey bars and other injuries on the playground are incredibly common and can lead to wrist and elbow fractures.
How is a broken bone treated?

First, your pediatrician will run X-rays to determine the location and severity of the break. Your doctor will place a splint or cast around the broken bone to provide support and stabilization and to restrict certain movements that could impede healing.
Your doctor may also recommend certain exercises that your child should do at home every day to help ease symptoms such as pain, limited mobility, and swelling. Your doctor may also refer your child to a pediatric orthopedist for physical therapy, depending on the type and extent of the injury. You will also need to bring your child back into the office in a few weeks to see how the broken bone is healing.
A broken bone is considered a serious injury. If your child is displaying symptoms of a broken bone, it’s a good idea to call your pediatrician right away for a consultation.

January 19, 2021
Category: Child Safety
Keeping Your Child Safe While TravelingWhether you’re simply taking a weekend trip to visit the grandparents, or you and the family are flying internationally, you must know how to keep everyone healthy and safe while on vacation. After all, the last thing you want to worry about is looking up local hospitals near your hotel in the middle of the night. Here are some tips for how to keep your little ones safe while traveling.
Bring all Medications with You…
And make sure you have enough. This is especially important if you are going to spend a couple of weeks on vacation. You will want to make sure that your child has access to their medications and that they don’t run out. If you’re flying, make sure to pack all medications in your carry-on, just in case the airline happens to lose your luggage.
Get the Appropriate Vaccinations
While travel throughout the US won’t typically require your child to get inoculated, traveling abroad may require certain vaccines ahead of time. You must schedule an appointment with your child’s pediatrician about a month in advance to make sure that they get all appropriate vaccinations before travel.
Depending on where you’re traveling, your pediatrician may recommend certain immunizations against typhoid, yellow fever, meningitis, or rabies. Your child may also require antimalarial drugs to protect against malaria.
Get Travel Insurance
While we never want to imagine a medical emergency happening while abroad, it is important to be prepared just in case your child breaks their arm or gets sick. In this case, having travel insurance can be a major stress-reliever and lifesaver. Most travel insurance covers kids under 17 years of age and also provides emergency care and 24/7 assistance.
Traveling During COVID-19
Of course, during the pandemic, medical officials highly recommend avoiding any travel unless essential. While we understand everyone’s desire to travel again and for life to return to normal, we must be doing our part to keep everyone safe during this time. If you do need to travel make sure to wear a mask, practice good hygiene and social distancing, and choose outdoor places such as parks where you can avoid crowds and other people.
If you do have questions about traveling with your child, or about getting them the proper vaccines before travel, talk with your child’s pediatrician. It’s important to talk with a pediatrician a month or more before your trip so that you can ensure that your child has everything they need before traveling.