A holistic approach to pediatric care in Frisco and Plano, Texas

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CHECK IF YOUR TOOTHPASTE HAS “Sodium laureth sulfate”

Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLS) is an ingredient derived from ethoxylated lauryl alcohol and used as a surfactant; may be contaminated with potentially toxic manufacturing impurities such as 1,4-dioxane.

Virtually every toothpaste that foams, has SLS. But researchers discovered a problem. According to Dr Toby Talbot, an expert in restorative dentistry and a member of the Royal College of Surgeons, Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS), is used as a wetting agent (something that allows the paste to spread more easily), is a major concern for good dental health. "The problem with SLS is that it opens up the gaps between the mucosal – skin – cells in the mouth, which allows toxins or carcinogens to get in (these can come from all manner of sources including tobacco smoke), he said.

So next time you buy a toothpaste, THINK!


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WINTRY WEATHER – HOW TO PROTECT YOUR CHILD

This is Accuweather’s prediction for this weekend.

It sounds brutal. Let’s avoid falling sick. Know that.

· Young children generate less body heat, and get cold more quickly than adults.

· It is better to dress your child in layers of clothing that can be put on and taken off easily.

· Infants being pulled in a sled need extra bundling. Because they aren’t moving, they can’t generate body heat the way a playing child can.

TIPS TO MANAGE KIDS IN WINTER

· Children shouldn’t play outside alone. Establish a buddy system. Better yet, avoid outdoors. Never send children outside in extreme weather conditions such as snowstorms.

· Check often to see that your child is warm and dry. Younger children should take regular breaks and come inside for a warm drink.

· If your child’s feet and hands are warm, what they are wearing is usually good. Dress your child in layers of clothing that can be put on and taken off easily. Wear a hat because a lot of body heat is lost through the head. Keep ears covered at all times. Wear mittens and wear warm, waterproof boots that are roomy enough for an extra pair of socks and to wiggle toes. Use a neck warmer instead of a scarf. Remove wet clothing and boots immediately after playing.

· The rule of thumb for older babies and young children is to dress them in one more layer of clothing than an adult would wear in the same conditions.

· If a blanket must be used to keep a sleeping infant warm, it should be tucked in around the crib mattress, reaching only as far as the baby’s chest, so the infant’s face is less likely to become covered by bedding materials.

· Stay away from snowplows and snow blowers.

· Take extra caution when crossing roads. It might be hard for drivers to see you playing if they have snowy or frosty windows. Icy roads can also make it difficult to stop.

· Snowballs should never be aimed at people or cars. They are especially dangerous when the snow is hard-packed or icy.

· Don’t put metal objects in your mouth. Lips and tongues can freeze to the metal and cause an injury.

· Don’t eat snow, which can be dirty.

· Never sled on or near roadways. Look for shallow slopes that are free of trees, fences or any other obstacles.

· If frostbite occurs, bring the child indoors and place the frostbitten parts of her body in warm (not hot) water. 104° Fahrenheit (about the temperature of most hot tubs) is recommended. Warm washcloths may be applied to frostbitten nose, ears and lips. Do not rub the frozen areas. After a few minutes, dry and cover the child with clothing or blankets. Give him/her something warm to drink.

· If your child suffers from winter nosebleeds, try using a cold air humidifier in the child’s room at night. Saline nose drops or petrolatum may help keep nasal tissues moist.

· Children 6 months of age and up should get the influenza vaccine to reduce their risk of catching the flu.

· If you suspect your child is hypothermic, call 911 at once. Until help arrives, take the child indoors, remove any wet clothing, and wrap him in blankets or warm clothes.

Stay safe.

Source: Multiple including NIH, Healthychildren


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IS YOUR HOME CHILD PROOF?

Home is the place where there is family, relaxation and play go together. Home is also the place where accidents happen the most. Minor cuts and bruises are okay. When major accidents happen then it becomes a big concern.

From the moment babies learn to crawl, the world becomes a magical place for them for their adventures. From their perspective everything is a mountain to climb. Book-shelves, furniture, pesky stairs, they have mysterious places to investigate beyond their safety gates. Little bumps do happen. We have to help them so that these brave expeditions don’t result in something serious.

Some tips for home safety

• Walls should be in good condition without peeling and cracking. Older homes contain lead in the paint chips. When peels fall out they find their way straight inside a baby’s mouth.

• Nails in walls hurt babies. So it should be removed.

• Photo frames and paintings should be hung neatly and securely, far out of the reaches of babies.

• Rugs should be secured on floor fitted with anti-slip pad underneath.

Doors and windows

• Finger pinch guard on doors is a must.

• Rubber tips removed on all door stops or install a one piece door-stop.

• Sliding doors should be fitted with child proof stops.

• Install Safety bars or window guards on upper level windows.

• Window stops to keep them ajar or not closing all the way.

• Window blind specially designed to clip loose cord.

Furniture

• Furniture and book shelves should be secured with wall brackets so they can’t be tripped over.

• The sharp edges of coffee tables, furniture and counter tops of corners paddled.

• Safety hinges fitted to toy chests and other chests.

• Checking the baby equipment if they are recalled.

• TV screen mounted securely on wall or other TVs stable on ground

• There should be stops on all drawers preventing them from falling out.

Stairways

• Safety gates at the top and bottom of every stairway is a must.

• Check whether stairways clear of tripping hazards such as loose carpeting or toys

• Are the banisters and railings secured?

• Door to the basement steps locked.

• Is there enough light on stairways.

While your aim is to prevent major mishaps, don’t worry about small bumps.

Kids learn through exploring. If we kill curiosity, we kill the joy for life.


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CIGARETTE FACTS

Cigarette has fire at one end and a fool at the other. Whenever you light a cigarette you actually are putting your health, your life expectancy and your money on fire. Cigarette industries earn about $400 billion a year as cigarette is the most traded item in the world. It is a sad truth that initially people start smoking to look cool, stylish and sexy and gradually they become dependent on smoking both physically and psychologically because nicotine is a highly addictive substance.

Something you perhaps didn’t know about Cigarettes, Cigars or Other Tobacco products.

· The American cigarette manufacturers sell less cigarettes to Americans as compared to the number that they sell to non-Americans.

· 70 % of the cigarette market is owned by major brands like Marlboro, Camel, Kent and kool.

· Out of total cigarettes sold all over the world, 25 % are smuggled.

· Legally tobacco cannot be sold to people younger than 18 years in most of countries except Japan where legal age for the purpose is 20 years.

· Within 10 seconds of inhalation of cigarette smoke, nicotine reaches every part of body including brain.

· Cigs are now added with flavors with toppings of substances like, clove, licorice, orange oil, apricot stone, lime oil, lavender oil, cocoa and many others.

· Sometimes, Urea, which is excreted in urine is used to flavor the cigarettes.

· There is a myth that smoking helps in digestion. In fact smoking slows digestion by diverting the blood towards other organs, away from intestine where it is required for digestion.

AND THE BEST

It has been proven by research that smokers’ life expectancy is reduced by 14 years.

Following is a short account of the most horrible diseases caused by smoking.

1. Respiratory disease: Smoking over a longer period of time can lead to development of breathing problems, commonly known as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). During first phase of the disease patient develops chronic bronchitis, which means longstanding inflammation of airways, followed by bronchiectesis, which means destruction of airways, and eventually emphysema, which means destruction of alveoli (small balloons where oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange takes place). Hence one shouldn’t smoke in the first place and if you have already started smoking quit it as soon as possible.

2. Gum Disease: Smoking can inflict serious damage and disease to oral mucosa and gums because it leads to deposition of toxins over gums and mucosa causing their staining.

3. Blindness: Recent research has revealed that smoking also contributes towards blindness by atrophy of muscles leading to degeneration of macula and by reducing blood supply leading to degeneration of retina.

4. Diabetes Mellitus: Not only the risk of developing diabetes is increased manifold by smoking but also that of developing secondary complications of diabetes like heart disease, vascular disease, stroke, kidney disease, eye disease and foot problems.

5. High BP: Smoking causes narrowing of the blood vessels resulting in increased blood pressure, which leads to increased risk of heart disease, peripheral vascular disease and stroke.

6. Peripheral Vascular Disease: Smoking causes atherosclerosis, which means deposition of fat on the inner side of the walls of the blood vessels and stiffening of these walls resulting in loss of their elasticity. These changes not only result in rise in blood pressure but also reduction in blood flow through the blood vessels. This impairment in blood flow can lead to tissue ischemia, which means death of tissues due to lack of blood supply, especially in legs. This ischemia can eventually lead to amputation of lower limbs, hence it is said that either you can have your cigarettes or your legs.

7. Stroke – Smoking causes vascular disease resulting in reduced blood supply to brain and weakness of walls of blood vessels. Hence stroke can result either from obstruction in blood supply to brain or from rupture of weak blood vessel wall resulting in bleeding into brain.

8. CANCER – Most common cancer caused by smoking is lung cancer. Other types of cancer that are caused by smoking include blood cancer, mouth, tongue, larynx, pharynx, esophagus, bladder, kidney, stomach, pancreas and cervix.

9. HEART DISEASE – Smoking causes atherosclerosis of the blood vessels, which means deposition of fat on the inner side of blood vessels and hardening of walls of blood vessels resulting in loss of their elasticity. Atherosclerosis of coronary arteries (arteries that supply blood to the heart itself) results in reduced blood supply to heart hence reduced work capacity of the heart while atherosclerosis of peripheral arteries results in increased resistance to blood flow and consequently putting increased work load over the heart. This imbalance in work load over the heart and blood supply to the heart results in extra stress and strain over the heart causing angina and myocardial infarction.

Takeaway:

TALK to your child about the dangers of smoking.


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CHOKING HAZARDS

On an annual basis 12K kids go to ER for choking. Do you know why?

STUDY:

Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), looked at 100K choking-related ER visits that involved food between 2001 and 2009 for children ages 0-14 years. 10 % were hospitalized. ~35% were children under a year, although the mean age was 4.5 years.

DETAILS:

The top five foods that kids choked on:

1. Hard candy

2. Other candy (like gum)

3. Meat

4. Bone

5. Fruits and vegetables

For babies under a year, the top three were:

1. Formula/milk/breast milk (peak age for this was 4 months)

2. Fruits/vegetables

3. Biscuits/cookies/crackers (beware of those baby biscuits–it’s easy to get a big chunk off).

For children 1-2 years, here were the top dangers:

1. Fruits/vegetables

2. Seeds/nuts/shells

3. Other candy (not hard candy–perhaps people usually know better than to give toddlers hard candy)

TAKEAWAY:

· Choking can be prevented.

· Be alert for small objects that can cause choking, such as coins, buttons, and small toys.

· Check under furniture and between cushions for small items that children could find and put in their mouths.

· Latex balloons are a choking hazard.

Keep items that are choking hazards away from babies and young children. These include:

· Coins

· Buttons

· Toys with small parts

· Toys that can fit entirely in a child’s mouth

· Small balls, marbles

· Balloons

· Small hair bows, barrettes, rubber bands

· Pen or marker caps

· Small button-type batteries

· Refrigerator magnets

· Pieces of dog food

Keep the following foods away from children younger than 4 years:

· Hot dogs

· Nuts and seeds

· Chunks of meat or cheese

· Whole grapes

· Hard or sticky candy

· Popcorn

· Chunks of peanut butter

· Chunks of raw vegetables

· Chewing gum


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SUMMER HEALTH ISSUES IN KIDS

Saw a good article that I believe is worth sharing with our community:

SUMMER HEALTH ISSUES IN KIDS

SMOG/MOLD: More smog and air pollution, high pollen levels and increased mold growth due to high humidity all cause a spike in asthma attacks in summer. Check local air pollution and pollen counts at airnow.gov. Stay indoors, in air conditioning if levels are high.

SWIMMERS EARS: Ear care is especially important during the summer months when heat and humidity can fuel the growth of the bacteria and fungi that can cause swimmer’s ear. To prevent water from getting stuck in the ear canal, dry your ears thoroughly after swimming or showering. Tilt your head so one ear faces down to allow water to escape the ear canal. Then gently pull your ear lobe in several directions to help the water drain out. If the water is still stuck, you can use a hair dryer to remove it —keep the dryer on the lowest heat setting and hold it several inches away from your head. And, never stick a cotton swab or other object in your ear. "Leave the ear wax alone — it protects the lining of the ear from infections such as swimmer’s ear

FOOD POISONING: Prevent food poisoning by keeping perishable foods refrigerated or in a cooler with ice. In temperatures higher than 90 degrees Fahrenheit, food should not be left out for more than one hour. In many cases it can lead to diarrhea. Loss of water volume and electrolytes due to a diarrheal illness can cause dehydration and frequently send kids to ERs.

HYPERTHERMIA: Chronic medical conditions, such as heart disease, poor circulation and obesity can also hinder a person’s ability to cool down. To prevent heat-related illnesses, avoid exerting yourself outdoors during the hottest hours of the day, and seek air conditioning — on hot days. drink eight to nine glasses of water a day.

HAND FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE: The summer-loving Coxsackie virus causes hand, foot and mouth disease. Infections, which usually affect children younger than ten, can cause fever, sore throat, oral ulcers and small blisters on the hands and feet. Coxsackie is spread person-to-person through saliva, mucous and feces. Symptoms usually go away on their own within a week. A saltwater mouth rinse of 1/2 teaspoon of salt dissolved in a glass of warm water may help soothe the pain from mouth ulcers. if your child becomes dehydrated from not drinking or develops a high fever, seek medical help.

LYME DISEASE: Lyme disease peaks during the summer months when people are exposed to ticks in yards and woods. See a doctor if you experience fever, headache, body aches, rash, facial paralysis or arthritis after a tick bite. The disease can be treated with antibiotics, but if left untreated, it can lead to joint, heart and nerve damage. Prevent tick bites by using a repellent that contains 20 percent or more DEET on exposed skin, and one that contains the insecticide permethrin on clothing. Always conduct a full-body tick check after coming in from a wooded or bushy area.

POISON IVY: Though you can get a rash from a poison ivy plant at any time of the year (even in the winter when the plant has no leaves) poison ivy is more common in the summer when people are more likely to have contact with the plant on their skin. Painful swelling and itching can be treated at home with hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion and an oral antihistamine. But see a doctor if the rash appears on your eyelids, lips, face or genitals, the skin around the rash appears infected, or you have a fever — prescription medication may be needed.

Source: http://www.livescience.com/


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ANTIDOTE TO THE DEADLIEST KILLER….MOSQUITOES

Mosquitoes are the deadliest creatures on Earth. They carry threatening diseases like malaria, West Nile and encephalitis.

Interesting stats about Mosquitoes:

• studies show that mosquitoes prefer to bite men over women;

• overweight people are at greater risk.

• Mosquitoes can hone in on carbon dioxide emitted from breath and skin from over 75 feet away.

• Scientists estimate that genetics account for about 85% of our attractiveness to mosquitoes

WHAT DOESN’T WORK

· Don’t use The Bug Zapper. A University of Delaware published a study showed that out of nearly 14,000 insects killed by six zappers in one summer, only 31 were biting fliers.

· Avoid Lemon Eucalyptus Oil. It is not recommended for young kids.

· Consumer Reports does not recommend using products that combine sunscreen with insect repellent.

· Avoid Avon Skin So Soft as a insect repellent. It protects against mosquitoes for only ~23 minutes.

· A small study from 2002 found that citronella-based repellents keep bugs away for about 20 minutes or less.

· Avoid clip on mosquito-repellent devices

· Avoid Perfumes: Female mosquitoes normally feed on flower nectar when not trying to reproduce – avoid smelling like one!

WHAT WORKS

1. Mosquitoes breed in Standing water. Clearing your home gutters of clogs, filling in sunken parts of your lawn and regularly change the water in your bird bath or kiddie pool. Inspect basements and crawl spaces. If they are flooded, drain as quickly as possible. Fix the screen on both windows and doors to block mosquitoes from coming indoor.

2. Expose as little skin as possible. Certain species of mosquitoes are attracted to dark colors like black, blue, and red. And they are all attracted to heat. So stay cool by wearing lighter colors.

3. Try to avoid being out at Dawn or dusk when they are most active

4. Position yourself near ceiling fans on patios, porches or open-air restaurants that have them. Strategically place fans around your deck or patio to get a good bug-free breeze going.

5. Plant perennial Thai lemon grass contains citronella oil.

6. Report Dead Birds to Local Authorities. Dead birds may be a sign that West Nile virus is circulating between birds and the mosquitoes in an area.

7. If you are a mosquito magnet, select blueberries, apples, watermelon, cucumbers, cabbage, and green peppers, which are relatively low in potassium, instead of potatoes, prunes, raisins, spinach, bananas, lima beans, and acorn squash, all of which are particularly high in potassium.

CHEMICAL OPTION: We don’t recommend this either:

1. DEET. According to the CDC, insect repellents that contain DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide) or picaridin (KBR 3023) usually provide longer protection than insect repellents containing different active ingredients.

Best Repellent per Consumer Report:

• Off Deep Woods Sportsman II,

• Cutter Backwoods Unscented,

• Off FamilyCare Smooth & Dry and

• 3M Ultrathon Insect Repellent 8.

Concentrations up to 100% DEET can be purchased in the U.S., however Canada has barred sales of any repellent containing more than 30% DEET due to its toxicity. Use 30% DEET solution and reapply every 3-4 hrs. Like SPF, higher concentrations of DEET are no more effective for preventing mosquito bites than lower concentrations. DEET must be reapplied every three hours for maximum safety. When used in conjunction with sunscreen, DEET should always be applied to skin first before sun protection. DEET lowers the effectiveness of sunscreen;

OTHER NATURAL ALTERNATIVES:

• Garlic makes an semi-effective natural mosquito repellant. Mix one part garlic juice with five parts water. Put the solution in a spray bottle and spray on self as needed.

• Use Catnip: Nepetalactone in catnip seems to repels mosquitoes more effectively than DEET.

OUR RECOMMENDATION:

Try Kids Herbal Armor which was voted "Best Gear of the Year" by National Geographic. Reapply every two hours. It is Water and sweat resistant and non-greasy. But the smell is strong. Also it doesn’t work with all bugs

More information:

The American Mosquito Control Association can provide advice, and their book Organization for Mosquito Control is a useful reference.


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HIGH SPF, BETTER SUNSCREEN RIGHT? NOT!

HIGH SPF, BETTER SUNSCREEN RIGHT? NOT!

MYTHS

You may believe that higher the SPF factor on your sunscreen, the longer you can stay out in the sun without a risk of sunburn.

SPF numbers like 100 or 150 can give users a false sense of security.

You may also believe that SPF 100 is twice as effective as SPF 50.

Since one in 4 sunscreen products are spray, you may believe that they are just as safe as regular sun lotion.

REALITY

Being out of sun’s harmful UV rays is important. In 2013 alone, per National Cancer Institute, more than 76,000 men and women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with melanoma and 9,480 are expected to die from the aggressive form of skin cancer. The disease, which is often linked to ultraviolet exposure, is usually curable when detected early.

The SPF number indicates the amount of sun exposure needed to cause sunburn on sunscreen-protected skin compared with unprotected skin.

For example, a SPF rating of 50 means it would take the person 50 times longer to burn wearing sunscreen than with exposed skin.
However high SPF numbers are just a gimmick.
Where an SPF 50 product might protect against 97 percent of sunburn-causing rays, an SPF 100 product might block 98.5 percent of those rays.

In 2011, FDA said that “labeling a product with a specific SPF value higher than 50 would be misleading to the consumer.”

SO WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?

  • · Avoid sunscreens labeled with > 30 (higher) SPF factor. They have no significant benefits. Most people don’t need more than an SPF 30. They should reapply it every couple of hours.
  • · Avoid those labeled “waterproof”. You still need to reapply in a few hours to protect your skin.
  • · Use sunscreen in combination with hats, clothing and shade, which provide better protection against ultraviolet radiation.
  • · FDA is also reviewing spray-on sunscreen to look at whether the sprays can be harmful when inhaled. Don’t buy spray or powder. Use lotions instead.
  • · Avoid products that include oxybenzone (found in 80 percent of chemical sunscreens), which can penetrate the skin, cause allergic reactions, possibly disrupt hormones, and may have a link to a risk of endometriosis and low birth weights.
  • · Avoid retinyl palmitate, a form of anti-oxidant vitamin A that has been said to slow skin aging. It’s been found to possibly speed the development of skin tumors and lesions when applied to the skin in the presence of sunlight.
  • · Safer options block sun with low-risk ingredients such as zinc oxide, avobenzone or Mexoryl SX. Find a complete list of chemicals and their risks here.

EWG’s List of Best Sunscreens (with average prices):

Belly Buttons & Babies Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 30

Purple Prairie Botanicals Sun Stick, Unscented, SPF 30

Vanicream Sunscreen, SPF 30

Vanicream Sport Sunscreen, SPF 35

Vanicream Sunscreen, SPF 50+

 

EWG’s List of Worst Sunscreens:

Well at Walgreens Sport Continuous Spray Sunscreen, SPF 50

Vichy Capital Soleil Soft Sheer Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 60

up & up Sport Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 50

Trader Joe’s Nourish Spray Sunscreen, SPF 50+

Rite Aid Wet Skin Kids Continuous Spray Sunscreen, SPF 70

Neutrogena Wet Skin Spray Sunscreen, SPF 50