You might brush off the early signs of whooping cough because they look an awful lot like the common cold. Older children and teens may develop congestion, mild fever, cough, or runny nose; however, within the first 1-2 weeks you will notice that the cough gets worse. In fact, your child may develop severe and sudden coughing fits.
Children and newborns are more likely to display severe symptoms. They may not have a whoop in their cough, but they may vomit or show severe fatigue after coughing. While anyone can develop whooping cough, infants are at particular risk for serious and life-threatening complications so it’s important to have your family vaccinated.
While newborns are too young to be vaccinated against whooping cough, you should make sure that the rest of your family is fully vaccinated. The DTaP vaccine will protect against whooping cough and will be administered at 2, 4, and 6 months old, again at 15 to 18 months, and again at 6 years for a total of five doses.
If you suspect that your child might have whooping cough, you must call your pediatrician right away. Children under 18 months old may require hospitalization so doctors can continuously monitor them, as children are more likely to stop breathing with whooping cough. Of course, coming in during the early stages of the infection is important as antibiotics are more effective at the very start of the illness.
- Resting as much as possible
- Staying hydrated
- Sticking to smaller meals to safeguard against cough-induced vomiting
- Making sure your family is up to date on their vaccinations
How primary care services from your doctor in Maricopa, AZ, can help you stay healthy.
You need adult primary care services, especially as you get older. Your primary care physician is an expert at treating acute conditions like viruses and infections, and chronic diseases like arthritis and heart disease.
Dr. Anthony DiGeorge of Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, and his skilled team offer a wide range of adult primary care services and pediatric services to help keep you and your family healthy.
Your primary care doctor can provide annual physical examinations to help you maintain good health and give you peace of mind. Routine physicals are an excellent time for you to ask any questions about how to stay healthy.
Immunizations are also an important part of primary care services. Influenza, pneumonia, shingles, and other conditions can be prevented with a simple injection once each year.
- Your primary care doctor can also help with common problems including:
- Body aches and pains
- Muscle, tendon, or ligament strain
- Joint problems, including arthritis
- Sports or vehicle accident injuries
- Allergies, asthma, or breathing problems
For women, your primary care doctor can do routine gynecological examinations to ensure the health of your reproductive system.
For men, your primary care doctor can diagnose and treat prostate issues, erectile dysfunction, and other conditions.
As you get older, the expertise of your primary care doctor becomes even more important. The condition of your body and how it functions changes as you age, and your primary care doctor can monitor those changes. Preventive care like immunizations and lifestyle modification like diet and exercise can help you make the most of your health.
You deserve the caring compassion of an excellent primary care doctor. To learn more about how adult primary care services can help you stay healthy, call Dr. DiGeorge of Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, at (520) 568-9500 today!
How your pediatrician in Maricopa, AZ, can help your child deal with asthma symptoms.
It can be scary when your child is having an asthma attack. Your child’s airways are much smaller than those of an adult, so breathing problems are even more pronounced. The good news is, your child can live well with asthma, and your doctor can help.
Dr. Anthony DiGeorge of Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, and his skilled team offer a wide range of pediatric and adult primary care services, including asthma treatment.
One of the main causes of asthma episodes is exposure to an allergen. The first step in allergy treatment is to find out what your child is allergic to. Your pediatrician may recommend skin testing, blood testing, or other methods to identify allergens.
When you know what your child is allergic to, it’s much easier to avoid the allergen, and avoid an asthma attack. Treating allergies with shots or sublingual immunotherapy can also help. In addition to treating allergies, there are other ways to help your child live well with asthma. Remember to:
- Avoid letting people smoke around your child
- Keep your child active, to keep lung function strong
- Have your child eat healthy, to avoid gaining excess weight
- Place a HEPA filter in your child’s bedroom to keep the air free of irritants
- Use hypoallergenic bed linens
- Vacuum carpets regularly, or switch to hardwood floors
You should also schedule regular visits for your child with the pediatrician. Professional asthma care is the foundation of living well with asthma. Your pediatrician may recommend a combination of long-term medications to keep asthma under control, and short-term rescue inhalers to treat sudden, acute asthma attacks.
Many children suffer from asthma. In fact, 1 child in 10 has asthma, according to the CDC. If your child also suffers from asthma, don't worry. Your pediatrician can help. To find out more about how your child can live well with asthma, call Dr. DiGeorge of Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, at (520) 568-9500 now!
This is a normal habit in newborns that typically goes away around 6-7 months; however, this seemingly innocuous habit may actually be a cause for concern if thumb sucking continues beyond 2-4 years, where it can alter the shape of the face or cause teeth to stick out.
Many children desire a pacifier between feedings, but this should not be a replacement for feedings. It’s important to recognize when your child is sucking because they are hungry and whether they merely want to self-soothe. If your child still has an urge to suck and they don’t need to nurse, then a pacifier is a safe way to soothe and ease your child’s needs (if they want it).
- Do not tease or punish your child for using a pacifier, but instead praise them when they do not use it. Provide them with rewards when they go without it.
- Some children use pacifiers out of boredom, so give your child something to do to distract them such as playing with a game or toy (to keep their hands busy).
- If incentives and rewards aren’t enough and your child is still using a pacifier, your pediatrician may recommend a “thumb guard” that can prevent your child from sucking their thumb. While you may feel in a rush to get rid of your child’s pacifier, it’s important to be patient. All children eventually stop this habit.
The doctors at Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, are here to help your child if they are struggling with allergies.
What are allergies?
An allergic reaction is the body's immune system responding to an allergen it perceives as a threat. The two main things that cause allergic reactions are food and environmental allergens. When your child has an allergic reaction, their immune system is reacting to the allergen to attack it and this causes different symptoms depending on the allergen. Visit Southwestern Pediatrics in Maricopa, AZ, if your child has any of the following symptoms:
Allergic reactions from food have these symptoms:
- Swelling of the face and tongue
- Stomach irritation
- Shortness of breath
- Mouth itchiness
Environmental allergies like pollen and pet dander cause the following symptoms:
- Watery eyes
- Itchy eyes
- Runny nose
- Shortness of breath
Does my child have allergies?
If your child has symptoms of allergies, an allergy test can determine what the immune system is reacting to. Allergy tests are administered by testing tiny patches of skin with different potential allergens. If the skin reacts to the substance, the child is allergic. Knowing what allergens are causing reactions is the first step to managing the symptoms.
How does a pediatrician treat allergies?
The best way to avoid allergic reactions is to avoid the allergen itself. This is sometimes difficult, but there are medications available to help manage symptoms when you can't avoid an allergen. Several medications can help manage reactions to seasonal and animal allergies.
Allergic reactions can range from presenting mild to severe symptoms. In severe cases, a patient may need an emergency injection like an EpiPen. These injections can save lives in cases of a dire allergic reaction.
The professional staff at Southwestern Pediatrics can test your child for allergies and help you manage the symptoms. Contact us in Maricopa, AZ, at 520-568-9500.
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