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Willows Pediatrics Blog - We Know Kids

We Know Kids

The Willows Pediatrics Blog

Lice: Keeping Those Creepy Critters at Bay … and Getting Rid of Them Once They’ve Arrived

Nothing gives our favorite Connecticut parents the heebie jeebies like a case of head lice! Head lice (pediculosis capitis), while relatively harmless to children, causes great anxiety and stress to families who find themselves dealing with a lice infestation.

Before we get into the “nit-ty” (pun intended) gritty, there are two things we’d like to remind our Willows Pediatrics patients of: (1) that head lice is not a sign of poor hygiene and (2) head lice do not carry disease. Read More

Preventing Pertussis Outbreaks: Vaccination is the Key

DPT Vaccine

Photo via Wikimedia

Most of our patients at Willows Pediatrics have heard of the DPT vaccine, but fewer know a whole lot about the diseases it was designed to prevent. Today, in light of a recent outbreak in California, we would like to shed some light on the “P” in DPT: Pertussis. Before vaccines, pertussis (also known as whooping cough) was a common childhood disease that caused thousands of deaths annually back in the 1920s and 1930s. The development of a pertussis immunization in the 1940s and the acellular version (which we now use in the DPT shot) in the 1990s, has reduced the cases of this disease significantly.

However, pertussis still exists and is a highly contagious childhood disease. According to the CDC, a typical case of pertussis in children and adults starts with a cough and runny nose for one to two weeks, followed by weeks (or even months) of rapid coughing fits that sometimes end with a whooping sound. It is most often transmitted via airborne droplets from a cough or sneeze or direct contact with the respiratory secretions from an infected person. When it comes to symptoms, pertussis is most severe in infants. It can lead to pneumonia, apnea, neurological complications (such as seizures), dehydration and even death. Read More

Protecting Your Child From Overexposure to the Sun

Sun Protection for Children

photo via flickr.com

We all love sunny days in New England! The summer is our one chance to really enjoy our beaches, pools, backyard sprinklers, boats and everything else Fairfield County has to offer. However, as much as we adore the sun, we all have to be careful about exposing our skin—and our children’s young skin—to its rays. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, it only takes one sunburn to double a child’s lifetime risk of developing melanoma.  Pediatric skin cancer, while rare, is an important health concern and melanoma accounts for up to three percent of all pediatric cancers, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation.  Read More

Staying Safe in the Driveway and Street

Photo via flickr.com

In Westport, Weston, Fairfield and neighboring towns, many of us live on cul de sacs, quiet streets or have paved driveways. These smooth surfaces are ideal for kids to play on scooters, bikes, skateboards, roller blades, rip sticks and other wheeled toys. While it makes us happy to see so many of our patients outside, learning balance, practicing coordination and getting exercise, we are routinely surprised by the sheer number of youngsters we see on a daily basis without helmets. Read More

Water Safety at Home and on the Sound

water safety

photo via flickr.com

With the warm weather already here, many local families are venturing to the beach or to backyard pools for a little relief from the heat. And while swimming and splashing are fun, healthy ways to spend time in the summer, parents and caregivers cannot forget that safety is of paramount importance. The CDC reports that an average of ten people per day die from drowning in the U.S., and one quarter of those are children under the age of fourteen. Unfortunately, at Willows, we’ve seen first-hand the heartbreaking results of drownings and near-drownings in local water and hope never to see similar tragedies again. Read More

Willows Pediatrics Launches New Blog!

Blogging at Willows

Photo via flickr.com

Welcome to our first Willows Pediatric Group blog! As part of our new website, we have decided to start publishing a weekly blog for our patients and their families.

Why a blog for a medical practice? First of all, it’s a quick and easy way for us to pass on new information to the families in our practice. So, if we see a new recommendation on the AAP website or read an interesting journal article, we’ll be able to share it with you—quickly—in a clear and concise manner. Read More