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Archive for July, 2012

BACK TO SCHOOL PHYSICALS

Posted on: July 31st, 2012 by Angela Ardolino No Comments

As the back-to-school season approaches you should start thinking about arranging your child’s annual physical. Part of that decision will be where to take your child. Many health care outlets advertise cheap and quick physicals but you shouldn’t be lured by these claims. Their ability to complete a form and basic exam is not the same as taking them to their pediatrician.

Why should my kids visit their primary physician over a health care outlet?

Firstly, your child’s pediatrician will provide continuity in health care with records of growth, immunization, medical history and ongoing care. This kind of care cannot be duplicated by a walk-in clinic. A perfect example is your child’s standardized growth curve that their primary physician can immediately analyze based on prior measurements. If your doctor spots a new trend it will alert them to ask questions about nutrition, exercise and other symptoms that may point to a medical condition.

What should my child’s physical consist of?

A comprehensive physical will include a review of your child’s weight, height, body mass index (BMI) and vital signs, like blood pressure, heart rate and temperature. Their pediatrician will also check their heart, lungs abdomen, eyes, ears, nose and throat. If your child decides to play a sport this year the doctor should also address recent injuries, cardiac issues, concussion history and asthma. In a perfect world, have your child’s sports physical about 6-weeks before the start of the activity.

Are there questions I should ask at my child’s physical?

Being engaged and participating in the health care process will allow you to know what’s going on and give the doctor the opportunity to explain health care in depth. Before you visit the doctor compile any questions that you may have regarding your kids’ health. Here are a few questions to start:

–          Is my child’s weight within a normal, healthy range?

–          What is my child’s BMI?

–          What vaccinations (if any) does my child need? Why?

If your child plans to play a sport here a few additional questions:

 

–          Is there approved safety equipment I should purchase?

–          Should my child get a follow-up exam if they experience a sports injury?

The most important part of your child’s health is being involved and having them communicate with you when something doesn’t feel right. Remember that doctors are not mind readers so if you think something is wrong, say something.

Sources:

www.TBParenting.com

www.AfterHoursPediatrics.com

www.SJBhealth.org

ROADTRIPS WITH KIDS

Posted on: July 20th, 2012 by Angela Ardolino No Comments

Summertime is about making family memories and what better way to make lasting memories than by planning a road trip. Heading out on the open road this summer will help your family save money by avoiding the airport and give you a chance to discover little nooks not normally visited by the masses. You’ll also get to spend quality time together while on the road. Making sure that your kids stay engaged and excited will help make the trip much easier for mom and dad.

Traveling by car gives you and the kids a chance to see sights up close and stop when something seems to good to pass by. Here in Florida and in many other states, the turnpike systems have rest area and service plazas where you can find out local history and information about the surrounding area. Many of these stops also offer family friendly activities near by when the family needs a break from the road or just want to experience something off the beaten path.

Spending a long period of time in the car, you’ll need to plan about ways to keep your family entertained for the long car ride. Even if the drive is only an hour or two long, it can seem like an eternity for your kids if there’s nothing to do. Here are some fun activities and games your family will love.

Count Your Animals

Each person counts the animals they see one their side of the car. As they count, if they spot a graveyard they have to bury all the animals and start counting all over again. The person that’s spotted the most animals by arrival wins the game.

Alpa-Spot

Put all those road signs and license plates to good use in this game. The first person to spot every letter of the alphabet (in order) wins this fun, action-packed game.

Sing-Along

When there’s nothing ahead of you but open road, get a chance to learn some of everyone’s favorite music. Have everyone in your family create a playlist of their favorite songs and share it with everyone on the long drive ahead.

Watch for Plates

On your road trip, you’re bound to spot cars from other states. The person who spots the most state license plates is the winner. The passengers in the car can decide what the grand prize is (ie: the winner gets to choose where the family has dinner or gets to choose the movie you watch in the hotel).

There are an endless number of games that you and your kids can play on your upcoming road trip. The most important thing is that you’ll get to spend invaluable time together without the distractions of T.V. or computers.  Your kids may not thank you now but they’ll definitely appreciate the time spent together when they’re older.

Sources

TBParenting.com