Well-child visits offer a simple way to protect your child's health. The visits, offered by your Houston, TX, pediatricians, Drs. Heena Thakkar and Shilpa Pankaj, help you ensure that your child receives immunizations and other services essential for good health.
Well-child visits provide a complete picture of your child's health
If your child has seen the pediatrician a few times this year for sick visits, you may not think that a well-child visit is necessary. Although sick visits do include vital sign measurements, the visits focus primarily on the illness or injury that prompted you to schedule an appointment for your child.
Well-child visits offer a chance to follow up on any diseases or conditions that affect your son or daughter. They also provide valuable information on your child's growth and development and help you ensure that he or she is protected from common childhood diseases. The visits to the Houston pediatric office may include:
- Measurements and Vital Signs: Before your child sees the pediatrician, the office staff will record his or her height and weight and obtain blood pressure and pulse measurements.
- Physical Examination: During the visit, your child's doctor will listen to his heart and lungs with a stethoscope and look inside your child's eyes, ears, mouth, and nose. She'll also examine your child's organs by feeling his or her abdomen and evaluate bones and joints.
- Discussion of Medical History and Any Symptoms: A review of your child's medical history and medications is an important part of the visit. Your child's doctor will ask if he or she is experiencing pain or other symptoms. If your child has a chronic disease or condition, the pediatrician may order a few tests to ensure that the condition is well-controlled.
- Review of Growth and Development: Annual visits help your child's pediatricians track his or her growth and development. If any issues are detected, she can offer guidance and referrals to specialists, if needed.
- Hearing and Visions Screenings: Well-child visits may also include basic hearing and vision screenings. Identifying potential problems as early as possible can help your child avoid difficulties at school.
- Immunizations: Immunizations not only protect your child from developing childhood diseases but also safeguard kids who are too young to be vaccinated or can't receive vaccines due to health issues.
Is it time for your child's well-child visit? Have any questions about child immunizations? Call Drs. Heena Thakkar and Shilpa Pankaj, your child's Houston, TX, pediatricians, at (713) 861-4800 to schedule an appointment.
Nowadays, parents are doing extensive research regarding childhood vaccinations. Here at Peekaboo Pediatrics in Houston, TX, Drs. Heena Thakkar and Shilpa Pankaj can be your Houston resource for child immunization questions and needs. Below, you will find a list of frequently asked questions related to immunization.
Are vaccinations and immunizations safe for children?
Yes, vaccinating your child is an incredibly safe process.
In the United States, vaccinations undergo strict testing and approvals before they are licensed for use. The monitoring of these vaccines continues even once they are approved and licensed.
The American Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) both advocate for and adhere to strict immunization schedules for children to protect the safety of those children, and others around them.
Are there side effects from child immunizations?
Like any medication, immunizations may have side effects; however, the side effects from any vaccination are quite mild. For instance, the patient may experience soreness at the vaccination site, a low-grade fever, or general body aches. Most of these side effects subside in a day or two.
Which immunizations are recommended for children?
According to the AAP and CDC, your child should receive various immunizations at different stages of childhood. Your Houston pediatrician can provide specific immunization information for your child. In general, these recommended vaccinations include:
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Rotavirus (gastrointestinal disease)
- Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis (whooping cough)
- Pneumococcal (pneumonia vaccine)
- Inactivated Poliovirus (polio vaccine)
- Measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR)
- Varicella (chickenpox vaccine)
- Human papillomavirus (HPV vaccine)
- Meningococcal (meningitis vaccine)
For more information about specific child immunizations, visit www.cdc.gov/vaccines.
Interested? Give us a call!
If your child is in need of updated immunizations, call (713) 861-4800 to schedule your appointment with Dr. Thakkar or Dr. Pankaj at Peekaboo Pediatrics in Houston, TX today!
You should ideally begin making yearly checkup appointments at three years old (before that, more often) so that your pediatrician can keep accurate and complete records of your child as she or he grows. Establish a strong, ongoing relationship with a pediatrician at Peekaboo Pediatrics in Houston, TX and schedule your child's annual checkup today.
Why Should You Bring Your Child for Annual Checkups?
Children can be very resilient and strong, but they also need monitoring to ensure that they are developing in a healthy way. At annual physicals, your pediatrician will do basic checks on the development of your child. You will also find that you need to take your child in for regular physicals for school-related reasons. Young athletes must pass a physical before being allowed to play sports and participate in certain gym activities.
What Happens at an Annual Checkup?
You’ll likely spend about 30 minutes to an hour at yearly physical with your child’s doctor. An annual checkup with your child’s pediatrician will include evaluating and recording the following information:
- Body mass index (BMI)
- Blood pressure
- Vision tests
Keeping Your Child Healthy and Happy
Scheduling annual checkups for your child is one of the best ways you can keep her or him healthy and happy throughout their younger years. The actions you take today to promote your child’s normal development will have positive ramifications throughout his or her life, well into adulthood. Other tips to consider include:
- Asking your doctor for dietary information to ensure that your child is receiving the proper nutrition on a daily basis.
- Ensuring that your child gets proper rest each night (toddlers need up to 13 hours).
- Encourage good dental hygiene habits.
- Be a positive example for your child when it comes to healthy habits -- they will follow your lead.
Schedule Your Next Visit
Is it about time for your child’s next annual checkup? If so, schedule your appointment today at Peekaboo Pediatrics in Houston, TX by calling (713)-861-4800. Dr. Heena Thakkar and Dr. Shilpa Pankaj are caring and attentive pediatricians (a mother-daughter pediatric team) who look forward to helping children maintain good health.
According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, five out of six children will have an ear infection before they turn three years old. Do you think your child may be suffering from an ear infection? If so, there are signs you can look out for and easy tests that can be performed by your pediatrician. The doctors at Peekaboo Pediatrics in Houston, TX, have a legacy of providing their young patients with exceptional pediatric care and treatments, including diagnosing and clearing ear infections.
What Causes an Ear Infection in a Child?
Fluid on the ear (in the eardrum particularly) is usually the cause of an ear infection in a child. The fluid carries bacteria that creates the infection, irritating, and inflaming the tissues inside of the ear. The symptoms of an ear infection include:
- Pain in the inner ear.
- Incessant crying.
- Hearing challenges.
How an Ear Infection Is Diagnosed and Treated
When you visit Peekaboo Pediatrics in Houston, TX, to diagnose an ear infection in your child, your pediatrician will perform a test called a tympanometry. It is an easy and pain-free test that looks at the condition of the middle ear and measure hearing ability. If an infection is present, your child’s doctor will make the determination if antibiotic therapy is necessary, and remove trapped fluid in the ear to hasten healing.
No More Ear Infections
If you think about the possible ways that your child may have developed an ear infection, you can take steps to reduce the chance of it happening again. Here are some tips for how to prevent ear infections in children:
- Wash your hands frequently when handling your child, and also keep his or her hands clean.
- Keep up with your child’s vaccination schedule (particularly the pneumococcal vaccine).
- Avoid exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke.
- Consider ear tubes with your pediatrician if your child gets ear infections very frequently.
Talk to a Child Doctor at Peekaboo Pediatrics
The team at Peekaboo Pediatrics in Houston, TX, is committed to helping your child get relief from acute or chronic ear infections. Call (713) 861-4800 today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Heena Thakkar or Dr. Shilpa Pankaj.
Discover the benefits that breastfeeding has for both moms and babies.
Are you currently deciding whether or not to breastfeed your little one? While we know that this is a very personal choice that only you can make, our Houston pediatricians, Dr. Heena Thakkar and Dr. Shilpa Pankaj, can help you weigh out the pros and cons of breastfeeding vs. bottle-feeding. Read on to learn some of the benefits that both you and your baby will enjoy if you do decide breastfeeding is the right decision, and if you have more questions, give our Houston office a call!
Benefits to Your Baby
Contained within breast milk are enzymes and antibodies that help your little one stay healthy through a variety of ways, including:
Possibly reducing the risk for obesity
Some studies suggest that children that are breastfed are less likely to become overweight or obese as compared to children that aren't breastfed. While medical experts aren’t entirely sure why this is, some theories believe that the amount of protein that is consumed by formula-fed newborns is higher than in breastfed infants, which can lead to an increase in body weight.
Protecting again viruses, ear infections, and gastroenteritis
As we mentioned before, breast milk contains a lot of important antibodies and nutrients necessary to protect your little one’s developing immune system and to ward away infection. In fact, some research has found that children that have been formula-fed are more likely to be at risk for chronic infections such as metabolic disorders. Children who are formula fed are also five times more likely to be hospitalized in infancy than children who are breastfed.
Reducing bouts of diarrhea, constipation, and stomach pain
Breast milk contains everything your little one needs to develop and remain healthy; therefore, it comes as no surprise that breast milk will be easier on your baby’s stomach and digestive tract than formula may be.
Protecting against allergies
Again, the proteins found in breast milk are safe and natural for your little one; however, some of the protein found in other kinds of milk or formula could cause an allergic reaction in some infants.
Benefits to You (the Mom!)
That’s right, your little one isn’t the only one reaping the benefits of breastfeeding. Here are some of the perks you’ll enjoy too,
- A lowered risk for ovarian and breast cancers
- Accelerated loss of pregnancy weight
- Aid in shrinking the uterus back to its normal size
- A lowered risk for osteoporosis
- An increased bond with your baby
Give us a call!
Do you have questions about breastfeeding or are experiencing difficulty nursing? We know it isn’t always easy, which is why our pediatric team at Peekaboo Pediatrics in Houston is here to help! Call us at (713) 861-4800 to ask any questions and schedule a consultation!
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