Tips to Treat Nosebleeds in Children by Dr. Debbie Bauer, Pediatrician

“Nosebleeds are very common in children, especially during these winter months,” says Debbie Bauer, Pediatrician. The dry air from outside combined with the dry air from heaters inside can make the skin inside the nose more fragile and sensitive. This is one of the most common reasons children get nosebleeds. Some children also get nosebleeds from picking their nose, from sniffling too much from allergies/colds, or of course from being hit in the nose.

Learn what to do if your child has a nosebleed and when to get help from a doctor below. Also, check out our tips on how to prevent nosebleeds from coming back!

What should you do if your child has a nosebleed?

– First, don’t panic! Nosebleeds are rarely serious. Your child will have an easier time following your instructions if you remain calm.

– Have your child sit down and put their head slightly forward, NEVER have them tilt their head backwards.

– Put firm pressure on either side of their nose with your fingers and hold it there for 10 minutes.

– After 10 minutes, check to see if the bleeding stopped. If it hasn’t, hold firm pressure again for 10 more minutes.

– When bleeding has stopped, gently clean blood off their face with water but do not put anything in their nose or have them forcefully blow their nose.

When should you get help from a doctor?

– If your child has a nosebleed for more than 20 minutes without stopping.

– If your child looks very pale, weak or sweaty.

– If you see blood in your child’s urine or stool.

– If your child has strange, unexplained bruises.

– If frequent nosebleeds are concerning you.

How can you prevent nosebleeds?

– You can use a saline nasal spray to keep their nose from getting dry.

– You can use a humidifier in their room.

– You can apply a small amount of Vaseline inside their nose carefully with a Q-tip.

– If your child picks their nose, keep their fingernails trimmed short.

At NOAH, we’re here for you. If you have any questions for your child’s pediatrician, give us a call at 480-882-4545. You can also send a message to your pediatrician via your child’s MyChart account.

Skin Care Tips for Teens by Dr. Debbie Bauer, Pediatrician

“Adolescence can be a tough time – especially on your teen’s skin! Almost 8 out of 10 teenagers will have acne at some point,” says Dr. Debbie Bauer, Pediatrician. This is because the changing hormones cause an increase in oil production and can lead to clogged pores. This can happen all over your child’s body, not just their face. And while acne isn’t dangerous for their health, it can cause scars and decrease their self-esteem.

Here are a few pointers for home care of your teen’s skin:

  • Keep it clean: They should wash their face with warm water and a gentle cleanser twice per day. CeraVe, Cetaphil and Dove make reasonably-priced and effective cleansers.
  • Be gentle: Harsh scrubbing or rough washcloths are not recommended. Your teen should be using just their hands to gently rub in the cleanser and rinse off.  Very hot water or very cold water should not be used.
  • Stick to the routine: Oily skin and acne can last for months or years, so it’s important to have a good skin routine to minimize the effects. Remind your teen to always remove make-up before sleeping.  And change sheets and pillowcases frequently.
  • Don’t pop pimples: Although it’s tempting, squeezing pimples will only make things worse. Not only will they introduce more oil onto their skin from their hands, but this will probably push the oil deeper into the skin and cause inflammation and swelling.
  • Keep moisturizing: Drying out their face can actually lead to more acne because their body will try to produce even more oils to keep their face from being so dry. Make sure the moisturizer bottle says “oil free” or “noncomedogenic” on it so it doesn’t clog their pores more.
  • Use sun block: This is important for every child, but especially for those with acne. The sun’s rays can irritate skin and make acne and scars much, much worse. Make sure the sunscreen is at least SPF 15.

Some kids even need prescription medication to help manage acne, and our NOAH Pediatricians are here to help with that too!

For more information about taking care of your skin, visit the American Academy of Dermatology: www.aad.org.

October is Dental Hygiene Month!

“Don’t be tricked on Halloween, choose the right treats that may help your children steer clear of the Mouth Monsters (also known as tooth decay) like Ginger Bite-Us and Tartar the Terrible. Instead, choose Tooth D.K. Dark chocolates and sugar-free gum which are better for the teeth compared to gummies, caramel, sour candy or bubble gum,” says our friends at The American Academy of Pediatric Dentists. They’re less likely to get stuck in the tiny grooves and crevices of your teeth. If you prefer chocolate, try to encourage your kids to eat dark chocolate. This tasty treat is packed with antioxidants that can stop bacteria from sticking to teeth, which may help fight gum infections and has less sugar in most cases than milk chocolate with may help reduce tooth decay! Don’t forget to rinse your mouth with water anytime you consume sweet treats and make sure to brush before bed! Have a safe and Happy Halloween from our NOAH family to yours!

For more information, go to: https://mouthmonsters.mychildrensteeth.org/aapds-guide-to-a-tooth-friendly-halloween/

Halloween Safety Tips by Amit Jain, MD, FAAP, MBA

It’s that time of year again! Halloween is right around the corner. With it comes lots of fun, elaborate costumes, tricks, and treats! Have your children thought of the costume they’d like to wear this year? We here at NOAH want to make sure they stay safe while out trick or treating this year. With assistance from the American Academy of Pediatrics, have provided some great safety tips below to keep them safe while they’re out.

Fun / elaborate costumes can be an exciting part of Halloween. One of the most effective but most easily forgotten ways to help make your child’s Halloween a safe one is with costume safety.

Here are some great safety tips:

  • As most of the trick or treating happens after dusk, make sure costumes are bright and colorful and / or have some reflective surfaces that can be easily seen by drivers and others. You can even consider adding some reflective tape or striping to the costumes and trick-or-treat bags with such tape. It can even help for a cool effect the children would love.
  • Make sure the costumes are short enough to prevent tripping, and are clearly labeled as flame-resistant.
  • Along with this, make sure your children have shoes that fit well and are comfortable for walking long distances.
  • Masks can obscure a child’s vision, especially to the sides (peripheral vision) as the mask moves around their face. Consider non-toxic makeup and decorative hats as fun and safe alternatives to masks.
  • Any swords or other sticks / canes that are a part of the costume should not be sharp or too long that they could hurt your child if they trip and stumble over these objects.
  • Make sure all children and their escorts have flashlights with a fresh set of batteries.
  • Before leaving for trick or treating, make sure your children know how to call 9-1-1 or their local police department in case they get lost or separated or in an emergency. Have a safety plan in place for the chance that a child gets separated from the group, which should include having the child stay where they are in a safe location if they do get separated from the group. The non-emergency number for the Phoenix Police Department is: 602-262-6151.
  • Also, make sure they have a good meal prior to going trick or treating, and bring a water bottle for each child and the children’s escorts to stay hydrated while out.
  • A parent or responsible adult should be with and watching children at all times while out. Instruct children to always stay in a group and close to the parent / responsible adult. Also instruct them to remain on well-lit streets, always use the sidewalks (or as close to the edge of the road as safe if no sidewalk is available, facing traffic), and use designated crosswalks to cross the street.  Don’t assume you have the right of way – it is much more difficult to see the road and pedestrians at night! While out trick-or-treating, only go to homes with a porch light that is on. Remember to never enter homes or cars for a treat.
  • If your older children are going alone, plan and review a route that is acceptable to you beforehand – and ensure they will stay on that route. Plan and agree upon a time that they should arrive home by. Remember curfews – Phoenix juvenile curfew hours are 10 p.m. for children 15 and younger and midnight for 16- and 17-year-old children. If possible, give them a cell phone for emergency contact use.
  • Finally, after the fun night of trick-or-treating, sort and check all treats before the child eats any of them (including ones they eat while still out trick-or-treating). Throw away any spoiled, unwrapped, or suspicious looking treats. Ration out treats for the weeks and months following Halloween. They should not eat any of these treats immediately before bedtime. Along with this, remind your children that the rules don’t change from a normal day – remember to have your children brush their teeth before bedtime to get all of that stuck-on candy out of their teeth.
  • Also, don’t forget to have regular check-ups with our wonderful Pediatric Dentists here at NOAH!

Please check the American Academy of Pediatrics website for some more awesome safety tips here:

https://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/news-features-and-safety-tips/Pages/Halloween-Safety-Tips.aspx

Have a fun, safe, and Happy Halloween from your friends at NOAH!

Halloween-Make Healthy Tooth Friendly Choices

Follow these tooth friendly tips this Halloween!

1 – Consume treats in moderation.

2 – Screen treats your child collects and help them make tooth healthy choices.

3 – Allow you child to eat a few healthy choices after trick-or-treating and donate the rest.

4 – Brush your child’s teeth after eating their treats and before going to bed.

5 – Non-candy options like stickers, pencils and straws are great alternatives!

To schedule an appt., please call 480-882-4545.

Domestic Violence Awareness Month

For many of us, home is a place of comfort and love. Though for millions of others, home is anything but a refuge. “The U.S. Department of Justice estimates that 1.3 million women and 835,000 men are victims of physical violence by a partner every year.” Join us in breaking the silence about #DomesticViolence. At NOAH, we’ll work with you and your #child to choose the best path for their overall #health and #wellness. Please call 480-882-4545.

Mental Health in Teenagers by Dr. Debbie Bauer, Pediatrician

Adolescence is a very difficult time for everybody, kids and parents alike. Teenagers are going through all kinds of changes such as: physical, emotional, intellectual and social. It can be hard to keep up with the way their feeling and finding ways to communicate with them. It’s a big challenge to try and not feel overwhelmed during these transitions. It’s very normal for a teen to feel moody, sad, or anxious, but when these feelings take over their life and start to affect how they think and act, it can become a serious problem. Mental health issues are much more common than you may think, about 1 out of every 5 adolescents has had a serious mental health disorder at some point in their life.

What parents need to know:

  • A mental health issue isn’t anybody’s fault. Just like with any other health complication, this is not a choice, it’s an actual problem with how the brain functions. The reason these issues develop is incredibly complicated and involves both genetic and environmental factors.
  • Mental health problems are common and treatable. There are many people and resources that are available to help your teenager. From pediatricians, to school guidance counselors, to mental health professionals – we’re all here to help. The sooner a concern is raised, the more time we have to address the issue, and get your teen the assistance they need. If you have any doubts, reach out!
  • It’s important to stay involved. Try to build a trusting relationship between yourself and your teenager. They should feel comfortable sharing information with you without fear of always being punished for bad choices. It can be helpful to share decisions that you have made or lessons you have learned from the past. Remember, they are still learning.

Signs of mental illness to look out for:

  • Loss of interest in past favorite activities
  • Sudden personality shifts that seem out of character
  • A sudden and/or dramatic change in grades
  • Isolation from friends and family
  • Big changes in sleep habits (more or less sleep then usual)
  • Dramatic changes in eating habits
  • Anything else that you think is concerning about their behavior

If you have any concerns about your teen’s mental health, talk to them. From there, you can schedule an appointment with their pediatrician. At NOAH, we address all aspects of your child’s health including their initial medical assessment. Other services that are available to you and your child include counseling and nutrition.

For more information, please visit:

www.healthychildren.org

Car Seat Safety by Dr. Amit Jain, Pediatrician

We here at NOAH care about your child’s health and safety not only at the clinic, but at home and on the go too. One very important part of this is Car Seat Safety.  We would like to remind you about the importance of Car Seats, and how to keep your child safe when on the go.

Especially for a new parent, the variety of car seats available today can be overwhelming! And it makes it more difficult to make sure your child is buckled in appropriately. We would like to help alleviate some of the confusion! Thinking about a car seat starts before your child is born. Most hospitals require an appropriate car seat for you to take your baby home and do car seat checks when your new baby is first allowed to go home from the hospital.

Unintentional injuries (including car accidents) are the leading cause of death in children and teens. Courtesy of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), we know that on average, 3 children were killed every day in traffic accidents. Of those, more than a third of the children were unrestrained. More than half of injuries and deaths were cases in which car seats and seatbelts were incorrectly used.

There are various types of car seats to consider based upon your child’s age, weight, and height including rear-facing, convertible (rear-facing that can become forward-facing), forward-facing, and booster seats (with or without back support). Below is a chart explaining the various car seats, separated by age group. To securely install these various car seats, you can either use the available seatbelts or the LATCH system. Nearly all vehicles and car seats built after September 1, 2002 include this LATCH system (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) which consists of a lower anchor where the seat cushions meet, and a tether which can be located on the panel behind the seat, on the back of the seat, the ceiling, or the floor.

Some important points when using these systems:

  • Most rear-facing car seats do not use the tether for installation, just the lower anchor and/or seatbelt.
  • You should not use both the lower anchor and seat belt together unless specifically instructed in the car seat installation instructions. However, the tether can and oftentimes will be used along with the seatbelt to securely install the seat.
  • To get a tight fit using the seatbelt, the seatbelt should lock. For most modern cars, the seatbelt can be locked by pulling it out all the way, and then letting it retract as it clicks.
  • When possible, the middle back seat is the safest. However, the middle seat often doesn’t have a LATCH system, or is too small, or uneven to safely support a child. It is most important that wherever the child may be seated, that the seat is securely and tightly installed in the vehicle.
  • Infants and children should wear thinner clothes when buckled into car seats as bulky clothing such as jackets can leave the straps too loose, increasing the risk for injury. 
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all infants be placed in rear-facing car seats starting from their first ride home from the hospital.
  • All infants and toddlers should ride rear-facing as long as possible (even if their legs are bent), until the highest weight or height allowed by their car seat.
  • When children outgrow their rear-facing only car seat, a convertible car seat installed rear-facing should be used.
  • A forward-facing car seat should be used only once a child has reached the weight or height limit for their convertible rear-facing car seat. Similarly, a forward-facing car seat should be used until the weight or height limit for that specific car seat has been reached (this is usually listed on the label of the car seat).
  • A belt-positioning booster seat is the next step and should be used until a child’s seatbelt fits properly across their shoulder (without riding up to their neck), which is typically at a height of 4 feet, 9 inches or taller, and 8-12 years of age.
  • The safest place for all children younger than 13 years old is the backseat.
  • Do NOT use the car seat after it has been in a moderate to severe crash, such as if any of the following are true (according to the NHTSA):
    • The vehicle could NOT be driven away from the crash
    • The vehicle door closest to the car seat was damaged
    • Anyone in the vehicle was injured
    • The airbags went off
    • There is any significant damage to the car

And remember, always be a good role model by buckling your own seatbelt every time you’re in the vehicle! Set a reminder whenever you buckle your child’s car seat to help you remember never to leave your child in or around your car when you leave.

If you need help installing your child’s car seat, or just want to make sure it is secure, below are some great options for you to reach out to:

  • Your local fire department
  • Parent partners plus
  • Phoenix Children’s Hospital car seat safety program

For more information, please visit:

Back to School Health Tips

By Dr. Patricia Avila, Pediatrician

Summer vacation has come to an end and it is now time to get BACK TO SCHOOL!! Here are some ways you can help your children and teens have a healthier school year. We’ve got 5 tips to help your child get off to a great start this school year!

1 – Annual Well Check and Vaccinations

Having an annual well check is the perfect opportunity to make sure your child/teen is developing and growing normally. Part of the well check is to detect health conditions that you may not be aware of such as:

  • Checking their heart and blood pressure.
  • Vision/hearing screenings.
  • Obtaining labs checking for anemia, cholesterol, and diabetes.

During their well check the doctor also has an opportunity to educate you and your child/teen and for you to address any concerns/questions you may have. Vaccinations are also an important part of your child’s annual well check. They are one of the simplest and most proven ways to protect your child/teen from preventable diseases.

2 – Establishing healthy sleep habits

No matter their age all children and teens need proper sleep to stay focused and to learn. Sleep is just as important as eating healthy and exercising. Establish a regular sleep schedule to allow adequate sleep.

  • Toddlers – young children ages 3-5 years need 10-13 hours of sleep per night.
  • School age children ages 6-12 years need 9-11 hours of sleep per night.
  • Teenagers ages 13-19 years need 8-9 hours of sleep per night.

AVOID all use of electronics 1-2 hours prior to bedtime. Electronics including cell phones, TV, tablets, video games, and computers if used prior to bedtime can interfere with your child/teens ability to fall asleep and stay asleep. Instead, try having them read a book or choose a quiet activity prior to bedtime instead.

3 – Proper Nutrition

Studies show that eating a healthy, well balanced meal for breakfast improves your child’s/teen’s ability to do well in school by helping them focus and have increased energy to learn. Make sure to pack a healthy well-balanced lunch too! A well-balanced meal consists of:

  • 1-2 servings of fruits/vegetables.
  • A good source of protein (dairy – cheese, milk, yogurt, eggs, nuts/nut butters, lean meats, fish, beans/lentils, tofu).
  • Whole grains – whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta, quinoa.
  • A good source of calcium and vitamin D like milk/milk products or almond/coconut/soy/rice/oat milk.

4 – Keeping your child/teen physically active

We have been seeing an increase in obesity over the past 30 years – the rate has
doubled-tripled in children and quadrupled in teens. Children and teens need 1 hour of physical activity per day. Exercise can be anything that keeps your children active including:

  • Sports.
  • Dancing.
  • Biking.
  • Swimming.
  • Hiking.
  • Jump rope.
  • Trampoline.
  • Chasing the family dog.
  • Hula hooping.

The key is to make it fun and enjoyable. It is also helpful to make exercise a family event to increase motivation. Making exercise a part of the routine early with children will help them continue to be active adults.

5 – Homework and Study Habits

Help your child/teen form good study habits by having a quiet space free of distractions to help them stay focused. Keeping this space free of distractions includes setting aside electronic devices including:

  • Phones.
  • Tablets.
  • TVs.

Set aside a designated time for homework to be completed. If you notice your child is struggling with learning and/or completing tasks, talk with your child’s teacher and doctor to help your child/teen succeed.

Summer Fun in The Sun

By Dr. Amit Jain, NOAH Pediatrician
“There’s nothing better than having fun outdoors during school vacations. However, especially during summer here in Arizona, we here at NOAH want to remind everyone of some safety tips to keep safe while having some outdoor fun,” says Dr. Amit Jain, NOAH Pediatrician.

Protecting yourself and your children from harmful ultraviolet light exposure is important to prevent melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer, which often strikes those who have been severely sunburned, especially during infancy and childhood.

The first line of defense against the scorching summer sun is proper clothing and keeping in the shade.

• Try to limit sun exposure during the peak intensity hours between 10am and 4pm.

• Take frequent shade breaks if staying out in the sun for long periods of time.

• Cotton clothing is protective and can also help whisk away moisture to keep you cool while playing outside. Pick tightly woven fabrics for best protection.

• Wear a hat: wide brimmed for best protection of your child’s entire face, including the nose, cheeks, chin, ears, and back of the neck.

• Get your children sunglasses with UV protection. Those from the dollar store, Walmart, Walgreens, or similar stores are nice, economical options that can be easily replaced if they break or get lost. Just be sure they’re labeled as having UV protection.

• Protect your children with a sunscreen that has an SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of 15 or greater. SPF 15 or 30 should be enough for most common uses. Apply this to all areas not covered by clothing. Don’t forget the ears, back of the neck, arms, and legs. Carefully apply around the eyes, avoiding eyelids.

• Choose a sunscreen that has the words “Broad Spectrum” on it – that will cover both UVA and UVB rays. Try to avoid sunscreens that contain oxybenzone that may have hormonal properties.

• Before applying sunscreen for the first time, test a small amount on your child’s back for an allergic reaction.

• Apply sunscreen at least 30 minutes before sun exposure, as it can take this long to become active.

• Reapply sunscreen at least every 1 hour.

• If playing in the water, reapply sunscreen every half an hour, and use a waterproof sunscreen.

• For infants less than 6 months old, avoid direct sun exposure – keep them under shade with a canopy or under a tree. Use wide brimmed hats to help cover their face, ears, and neck. Dress babies in lightweight clothing that covers their arms and legs as well. If this is not available, apply small amounts of sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 15 to your baby’s face, hands, and legs.

• Don’t forget to use sun protection even on cloudy days, as the harmful ultraviolet rays from the sun can even come through clouds.

• Contact your pediatrician if you develop a sunburn, rash, or blistering.

Resources:
American Academy of Pediatrics: https://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/news-features-and-safety-tips/Pages/Swim-Safety-Tips.aspx
Healthy Children: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/safety-prevention/at-play/Pages/Swimming-Pool-Safety.aspx