Find out the best way to handle an ear infection when it happens to your little one.
An ear infection is one of the most common problems that children face. While an older child can vocalize that their ear hurts, a baby or infant cannot. That’s when you must turn to non-verbal cues such as tugging or pulling at the ear, fussiness and irritability, crying when lying down or fluid draining from the ear. When you notice these symptoms it’s important to call our Austin, TX, pediatricians right away.
When to See a Doctor
It’s important to bring your child in for care if they are crying in pain, if no at-home treatment seems to quell the discomfort, if your child’s symptoms get worse or if they have a fever over 101 degrees F.
When you call our office, we will be able to determine whether or not you need to come in right away or whether you should just watch your child’s symptoms to see if they improve on their own. Healthy children who are 2 years old or older and who are only dealing with mild symptoms may not need to come in at all; however, we will recommend that you monitor them to make sure their symptoms aren’t getting worse.
How to Treat an Ear Infection
In most cases, an ear infection will go away all by itself. Of course, there are simple at-home solutions for managing pain and other symptoms until the infection subsides. Sometimes applying a warm washcloth to the ear can also soothe and reduce discomfort in your little one. Since your child is fighting an infection it’s important that they are also getting the rest they need to help their body fight the infection. Limit certain activities and make sure they are getting enough sleep.
The only situation in which your child may require antibiotics to treat an ear infection is if bacteria are the cause. If at-home care isn’t improving your child’s condition then your little one might need antibiotics.
North Austin Pediatrics offers locations in Austin, Cedar Park and Leander, TX, to serve you better. No matter whether you are looking for a new pediatrician or you think your child is dealing with an ear infection, don’t hesitate to call one of our offices today.
Your child seems warm to the touch--feverish, in other words. But, how warm is too warm, and do you know what to do when your child has a fever? Your pediatricians in Austin want you to know how to deal with your little one's fever and when you should call North Austin Pediatrics for help.
Elevated temperature or true fever?
How do you know the difference? Simply put, always call your Austin pediatrician when you're really concerned about your child or if you just don't know what to do. Otherwise, follow these guidelines:
- A true fever is a temperature elevated above 100.4 degrees F.
- Call the office if any elevated temperature lasts five days or longer.
- Call if your child is under three months old and has any elevated temperature.
- Seek immediate medical attention if your child has a fever of 104 degrees or higher, cannot urinate and seems sluggish.
- Phone North Austin Pediatrics if your child has a fever of 102 degrees or higher after receiving immunizations.
Dealing with a fever
An old adage says, "Starve a cold. Feed a fever." But, really, how does a parent deal with an elevated temperature? First, check the numbers with a digital thermometer.
Then, don't run to treat it acetaminophen. Fevers, if they are not too high, serve a real purpose in letting a cold or other illness run its course. Additionally, you could simply make your child more comfortable with a warm (not cold) bath. Avoid heavy blankets and clothing.
Know what to do
Your team of doctors and their professional staff at North Austin Pediatrics wants parents well-informed about fevers. Be sure to call the office with any concerns or questions you may have. We have three convenient locations:
- Austin (512) 491-5125
- Cedar Park (512) 259-0900
- Leander (512) 260-0101
The flu season is here, and the physicians at North Austin Pediatrics urge parents to protect their youngsters from this potentially debilitating, and even deadly, contagious disease. But, the doctors also caution you not to panic. You can arm yourself against the flu and avoid it with simple, common sense tactics, such as flu shots in Austin and Cedar Park, TX.
What are the symptoms of the flu?
Anyone who has experienced the flu knows the symptoms well:
- Muscle aches
- Vomiting and diarrhea
From infection with respiratory droplets or other body fluids, most patients develop full-blown symptoms within five to seven days, says the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta. However, young children, immuno-suppressed individuals and elderly adults may feel sick sooner, and these are the groups that develop dangerous complications such as ear and sinus infections, pneumonia and more.
What you can do
An old adage says, "Forewarned is forearmed." Your pediatricians at North Austin Pediatrics agree with that advice, and they recommend flu shots for little ones six months and older. In fact, the CDC says that children under the age of two are most at risk for developing serious complications from the flu. Additionally, youngsters with asthma, diabetes and heart problems get very ill from the influenza virus.
So, flu vaccines--available as trivalent shots that protect against three viruses--are given in two doses for children six months to eight years of age. Children nine and older get one dose if they have been vaccinated in previous flu seasons.
If your child is scheduled to receive a flu shot but is not feeling well, check in with the office team at North Austin Pediatrics first to see if the doctor wishes to postpone that shot.
To further reduce your youngster's chance of getting the flu, teach him or her basic hygiene techniques at home:
- Cover sneezes and coughs with a hand or sleeve.
- Wash hands after coughing or sneezing, before meals and after using the toilet.
- Keep hands off eyes, nose and mouth.
Additionally, parents should keep sick children home from school and avoid crowded shopping venues during the peak flu season.
Stay well in Austin and Cedar Park
You can successfully navigate this year's outbreak of the flu, and the team at North Austin Pediatrics is ready to help. To schedule a flu shot appointment, please call our Austin office at (512) 491-5125, or for Cedar Park, phone (512) 259-0900.
An Austin and Cedar Park, TX pediatrician from North Austin Pediatrics is well versed in medical conditions that affect children. We believe in giving exceptional care to our patients while fostering an ongoing relationship between our team and you and your child, the patient. This allows us to offer you helpful tips on how to manage a variety of childhood illnesses.
First, bronchiolitis is an acute inflammatory injury to the bronchioles caused by a viral infection. This affects young infants primarily. Signs and symptoms include: low-grade fever, increasing congestion, apnea and difficulty feeding. An Austin pediatrician can examine your child to diagnose them with the proper care for this illness. Oxygen helps young children the best. Nonpharmacotherapy or supportive care may include nasal/oral suctioning, ventilation, hydration maintenance or supplemental humidified oxygen.
Next, conjunctivitis or pink eye is inflammation of the conjunctiva. This clear, thin tissue lies over the white part of the eye and lines the inside of the eyelid too. To relieve symptoms of pink eyes, protect the eyes from dirt and other irritants. Also, use artificial tears to help with burning and itching.
Lastly, tonsillitis is when the tonsils become inflamed or infected. This is common in children and can occur occasionally or recur frequently. Treatment will depend on the cause. Our team can give a rapid strep test or throat swab culture, which can detect a bacterial infection. Antibiotics are typically used to treat this illness if a bacterial infection is present. Viral infections will heal on their own. Always take all of the medication prescribed even if symptoms improve with your child. This allows the body to fully suppress the inflammation and infection so it doesn't come back frequently.
In order to maintain your child’s health, regular wellness visits with an Austin and Cedar Park, TX pediatrician is important. To schedule an appointment today at our office, call 512-491-5125.
What’s all the fuss about vaccines and are they safe for your little one?
The minute your child is born they will start visiting our Austin and Cedar Park, TX, pediatricians regularly for checkups and screenings to make sure they continue to maintain good health. Of course, during the course of a lot of these visits your child will require vaccinations. Some parents get a little nervous about vaccinating their children because of stories they’ve heard on the news or read in a magazine. We are here to shed some light on vaccines and why your child should get them.
There are some people who believe that vaccines can be dangerous and have the potential to harm a child. While any vaccine carries the risk of side effects, serious side effects are extremely rare. In fact, you’ll be happy to hear that the pros of vaccinations far outweigh the cons.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, vaccines are actually 90 to 99 percent effective in preventing diseases in children. This means that vaccinating your child routinely could protect them from developing serious and life-threatening conditions that could cause paralysis or even death. In fact, the CDC has reported that about 732,000 US children were saved from death between 1994 and 2014 just by getting vaccinated. These are some pretty amazing and hopeful statistics.
Of course, those who are against vaccinating children also say that vaccines contain potential dangerous ingredients that could harm your little one. While some ingredients like aluminum could certainly be dangerous to anyone’s health in large doses, the trace amounts found in vaccines won’t cause your child any harm. In fact, children are more likely to be exposed to more serious and harmful infections, toxins and bacteria from their everyday environment than they are from getting vaccinated.
If you have any concern about the ingredients in your child’s vaccines, or if your child has any allergies, this is something that our Austin and Cedar Park children’s doctors would be happy to sit down and discuss with you beforehand to make sure that your child doesn’t experience any complications from the vaccines they are getting.
North Austin Pediatrics in Austin and Cedar Park, TX, is here to provide your little one with the quality, compassionate medical care they need when it matters most. Your child’s health is so important. We think so, too!
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