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Heart-healthy habits for dad

Posted on 6/13/2017

During pregnancy, moms get all of the healthcare attention, and for good reason. But where does dad fit into the picture? June is not only about Father’s Day—it is also Men’s Health Month and a time for families to focus on keeping dad healthy. These heart health tips can keep dad in top condition so he can enjoy playing with the kids for years to come.

Know your family history

When it comes to heart disease, dads need to learn about their pasts to keep their futures healthy. Having a family history of heart disease can increase your risk of developing it yourself, so find out who in your family may have been diagnosed with heart disease, have had a heart attack or suffered a stroke.

Your family history may also provide insight into your chances of developing certain risk factors for heart disease. For instance, if diabetes or high cholesterol runs in your family, you could have a greater risk of getting them as well.

Watch your waistline

Reaching and maintaining a healthy weight is one of the most important things you can do for your heart health. Dads can achieve this goal by getting active with the kids and taking part in making healthy eating choices as a family. In fact, by eating a diet rich in lean protein, whole grain carbs and healthy fats while limiting salt and added sugar, dads can set a lifesaving example for their kids while getting healthier themselves.

Give up smoking

Smoking is disastrous for your heart health. For dads, smoking is not only dangerous for them but for their kids as well. Secondhand smoke can increase kids’ chances of getting asthma and other respiratory problems and cancer. For your own health and the health of your little ones, talk to your doctor about quitting.

For your children’s health, choose Sunrise Children’s Hospital and pediatrics specialists in Las Vegas. From preventative care to emergency room treatment and NICU and PICU services, our children’s hospital is here for all of your child’s medical needs. Get a referral to a physician or find out more by calling (702) 233-5437.


Recognizing migraines in kids and teens

Posted on 6/8/2017

Migraines are debilitating for adults, and for kids and teens, they can be even more troublesome. Although migraines are usually thought of as something that only happens to adults, they can and do occur in children as young as 18 months. By recognizing the signs of migraines in your child and getting him or her to a pediatrics specialist as soon as possible, you can help him or her avoid disabling pain and other symptoms. Here is what you need to know.

How common are migraines in kids and teens?

Unfortunately, migraines in kids and teens are often underestimated, so parents don’t recognize the symptoms because they think it can’t happen. In reality, approximately 10% of school-aged kids get migraines.

In adults, migraines are more common in women. They are also more common in girls than boys after puberty. However, before puberty, boys get them more often.

What are the symptoms?

A severe headache is the most common symptom of a migraine, but in kids and teens, head pain may not be the worst symptom. This is another reason migraines often go unnoticed in kids since they are more likely to complain about symptoms that are not associated with head pain.

Some common migraine symptoms in kids and teens are:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue

Some kids and teens also experience aura right before a migraine. Auras are visual disturbances, such as flashes of light.

What should I do if my child has migraine symptoms?

If you think your child could be suffering from migraines, make an appointment with his or her pediatrics physician. He or she can make a definitive diagnosis and help your child find a treatment plan that provides relief.

Does your child need a referral to a pediatrics specialist for migraine symptoms or another condition? Contact Sunrise Children’s Hospital in Las Vegas and get a referral to a specialist in our network by calling (702) 233-5437.


Key rules for safe swimming

Posted on 5/25/2017

Summertime is the perfect time for kids and parents alike to enjoy a dip in the pool. Don’t let a relaxing day poolside turn into an emergency for your family. By sticking to some simple water safety rules, you can all enjoy swimming without a trip to the hospital interrupting your fun. Keep these rules in mind the next time your family decides to go swimming.

Teach kids how to swim

Swimming lessons are one of the best safety tools you can give to your child. When your child knows how to swim, you can drastically reduce the risk of an accidental injury or drowning, even if your child inadvertently falls into the water or enters deeper water than he or she expected.

Although your child may not have the gross motor skills and coordination to truly begin swimming until they are three or four, you can take swimming classes with your baby when they are as young as four months. Babies may not actually learn how to swim, but can get comfortable in the water during these classes.

Never let kids swim alone

No matter how much your child swims like a fish, kids should never be left alone to swim without an adult present. If you have a home pool, make sure your kids know that it is off-limits unless they are with you or another adult.

If you are swimming with a group of kids and adults, make sure the adults take turns being actively responsible for supervising the kids. It’s easy for adults to all assume someone else is watching the kids, when in reality, no one is.

Make drains off-limits

Pool drains can pose a danger to kids, so make sure your little ones know to swim away when they see one. If you swim in a public pool, make sure the drains have safety covers. Your home pool should have them as well.

At Sunrise Children’s Hospital, our pediatrics team and children’s emergency care department is here all year long to make sure your little ones stay healthy during every season. Learn more about our children’s hospital in Las Vegas by calling (702) 233-5437.


Start skin cancer protection early in your family

Posted on 5/18/2017

Burns during childhood can dramatically increase your child’s risk of developing skin cancer as an adult. For this reason, it is never too early to take steps to reduce your child’s sun exposure to cut his or her cancer risk. Here are some ways you can keep your child safe from the dangers of excessive sun exposure.

Stay out of peak sunshine

Playing outside is healthy for kids, but doing so when the sun is at its strongest could lead to burns. Typically, the sun’s UV rays are most intense between the hours of 10 AM and 3 PM, so consider doing indoor activities during those hours.

If you are outside with your child during these periods of peak sun exposure, try to avoid being in direct sunlight. Stay under the shade of a tree or umbrella to reduce the amount of sun your child receives.

Commit to sunscreen

The whole family can benefit from wearing sunscreen whenever they are going to be outdoors. For your child, choose a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. Your pediatrician can recommend kid-friendly brands that are good for young skin that may be sensitive.

Sunscreen should be applied about 30 minutes before your kids go outside. Use it liberally, and don’t forget the ears, tops of feet and lips.

Dress for the part

How you dress your child for the sun makes a big difference in exposure. Although hot temperatures can mean short sleeves and shorts, wearing tight-knit fabrics with long sleeves and pants offers the most protection. Dark colors can also reduce sun exposure.

Choose a hat for your child with a wide brim that protects his or her face, ears and neck. Your little one should also wear sunglasses that block UVA and UVB rays.

Your Sunrise Children’s Hospital pediatrics specialist in Las Vegas can help you make healthy choices for your child and offer preventive care as an investment in your child’s lifelong good health. You can get a referral 24 hours a day by calling (702) 233-5437.


Help your child avoid ACL injuries

Posted on 5/14/2017

Help your child avoid ACL injuries

Staying active is great for your child’s health, but it also increases the risk of injuries, including ACL injuries. May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month is a good time to refocus on sports safety and to determine if you’re doing everything you can to help your child avoid a trip to the emergency room. Commit to helping your child avoid ACL injuries that could leave him or her sidelined all season long with this advice.

Make warm-ups a must

Warm-ups play an integral role in avoiding all types of sports injuries. Ensure that your child does sufficient warm-up activities to stretch the ACL before any kind of physical activity. Stretches that help to reduce ACL injuries include:

  • Calf stretches
  • Quadriceps stretches
  • Hamstring stretches
  • Inner thigh stretches

Ask your child’s coach if you need tips for performing these stretches properly. Doing these stretches as part of a warm-up will also help to reduce post activity soreness. Stretches should be combined with an aerobic warm-up to loosen up all the muscles and get the body ready to be active.

Focus on overall fitness

When your child is committed to a certain sport, such as soccer, it is natural to assume that all of the games and practices will keep your child in top condition. However, doing other kinds of activities can help to reduce the risk of injuries because it gives you the opportunity to work different muscles.

To prevent ACL injuries, strengthening exercises can be helpful. Squats and lunges can be particularly helpful in strengthening the ACL so it is less prone to injury.

Practice proper technique

Performing activities incorrectly can leave your child at risk of an ACL injury. Encourage him or her to work closely with the coach on developing the right form, and ensure that he or she practices at home so that the proper technique becomes second nature.

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, an injury happens. When your child is hurt, seek emergency care from Sunrise Children’s Hospital in Las Vegas. Our referral line is open 24 hours a day to answer your questions about our children’s hospital or for a referral to a pediatrics specialist. Simply call (702) 233-5437 for more information.


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