If you have a child who will be entering school soon, or who has already enrolled, you will have to get familiar with immunization schedules. It’s good to know everything possible about them and why they’re important. Learn more about immunizations in advance of your child’s appointment with Dr. Kenneth Kim of Kenneth J Kim Pediatrics in Fairfax, VA.
What Are Immunizations?
Immunizations are injections, also called vaccinations, that help your child avoid developing certain diseases and infections. When a child is immunized, the body has a better likelihood of fighting off diseases. Immunizations are given at certain milestones in a child’s development from their birth to their school years up to age 18. They not only protect your child, they also help protect the community where you and your child live from the unnecessary spread of diseases.
What Are the Standard Immunizations?
Vaccinations are considered a safe and effective way to control the spread of diseases among children. Here is a list of some of the most common immunizations that your Fairfax pediatrician will discuss with you:
- HepB and HepA
The American Academy of Pediatrics publishes the full and updated suggested immunization list and schedule each year.
Why Are They Important?
Young children sometimes have a knack for getting into dirty and unsanitary conditions where bacteria, microbes and viruses live. Their immune systems are still developing and need help to get strong enough to fight off these threats. Also, since most children go to school together in close quarters, they can easily spread bacteria and viruses to each other. As an example, just one child with a cold can cause a chain reaction that will cause numerous people to have to miss classes and work. Immunizations are important because they help prevent the onset and spread of common diseases and viruses.
Consult Your Child’s Pediatrician
Set aside time to visit your Fairfax, VA pediatrician to discuss necessary immunizations for your child. Call 703-246-0022 today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Kenneth Kim.
Children’s sports physicals are an important part of preparing them for participation in athletic activities. Sports physicals allow the doctor to ensure your child is healthy enough to play sports, as well as to discuss any potential injury risks. Many youth sports programs even require a current physical before your child can participate. In Fairfax, VA, children’s sports physicals are performed by Dr. Kenneth Kim of Kenneth J Kim Pediatrics.
Sports physicals help confirm your child is healthy and in good shape for sports participation. Various aspects of your child’s health will be examined during the physical to ensure everything is in good working order. Some of the things typically checked during a sports physical include:
- Blood pressure
- Lungs and breathing
- Heartbeat or pulse
- Eyes, ears, nose and throat
In addition to checking things like heartbeat and breathing, the doctor will likely also ask questions about your child’s dietary habits and daily physical activity. Other things the doctor might inquire about include allergies, current medications and unusual symptoms (such as dizziness or chest pain) your child might be experiencing. You will likely also be asked if your child has any history of serious illness or injury.
Preparing your child for participation in sports should always include getting an updated physical. The physical lets you confirm your child is healthy enough to play. During the physical, the doctor can also advise you on how best to prevent or minimize the risk of sports-related injuries. For children’s sports physicals in Fairfax, VA, schedule an appointment with Dr. Kim by calling Kenneth J Kim Pediatrics at (703) 246-0022.
Find out when your little one should be visiting the doctor.
While we all wish that we could prevent our children from coming down with an illness, it seems inevitable that at some point during their childhood they will get sick; however, it can be difficult to know when to call our Fairfax, VA, pediatrician Dr. Kenneth Kim or wait it out. Here are some helpful guidelines to follow to determine whether to just monitor your child’s symptoms or give us a call right away.
Routine and preventive care: Whether you have questions about taking certain over-the-counter medications, or your child is having issues with minor illnesses or even mood problems, you can give your Fairfax, VA, children’s doctor a call. Just note, we won’t be able to treat or diagnose over the phone. Your little one will need to come in so we can better assess and diagnose the situation.
Urgent needs: It isn’t always easy to tell if your child is sick or not and many minor issues like constipation or a cold may not warrant a trip to our Fairfax, VA, pediatrician’s office; however, these issues require medical attention as soon as possible:
- A rash that is accompanied by a fever
- Diarrhea and/or vomiting last several hours
- Problems putting weight on their foot
- Severe ear pain
- Difficulty swallowing or a severe sore throat
- Serious abdominal cramping and pain
- Pain that continues to get worse
When in doubt, always give Kenneth J. Kim Pediatrics in Fairfax, VA, a call. We can answer all of your questions and determine whether or not your child needs to come in right away or if these are symptoms that can easily be managed from the comfort of your own home.
In terms of preventative medicine, immunizations are an essential part of your child’s wellness. A Fairfax, VA, pediatrician such as Dr. Kenneth Kim at Kenneth J Kim Pediatrics, knows what vaccines to administer to protect your children from diseases they should be protected against. He also understands the safety of these vaccines and can answer any of your questions regarding each of them.
Why Vaccines are Important
As a parent, you want to do everything you can to make sure your kids are healthy and protected and that’s what immunizations do. They help protect your child from serious illnesses and complications from diseases that can be prevented by vaccines. Without them, your child can experience hearing loss, brain damage, paralysis and even loss of a limb. Things such as whooping cough, measles and mumps are still a threat and lead to countless deaths each year.
Ultimately, our Fairfax, VA, pediatrician, Dr. Kim, believes in preventing outbreaks of preventable diseases in the area. These outbreaks occur because parents do not vaccinate their children leading to a health risk for everyone in the community. Vaccinations are effective and safe; we all have a commitment to our community to protect each other and all of our children by vaccinating our families.
Immunizations can also help protect others that you care about too, including all members of your family, not just your children. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed with all of the types of immunizations recommends. However, a Fairfax, VA, pediatrician such as Dr. Kim at Kenneth J Kim Pediatrics, can offer you a helpful schedule so that you keep up with the recommended vaccines. He also is well versed in all of them and can answer any questions you have. To schedule an appointment for your child with Dr. Kim to discuss immunizations, call his Fairfax, VA, office today at 703-246-0022.
With the arrival of flu season, many parents will be watching their children closely for symptoms of this dreaded virus. The flu, also known as influenza, is a highly contagious viral infection of the respiratory tract (nose, throat and lungs). The virus spreads easily in settings where many people are contained in close quarters such as schools and childcare, making children especially susceptible to the flu.
Often confused with the common cold, flu symptoms are typically more severe. The following symptoms are good indicators that your child has the flu:
- Rapid onset of fever (typically above 101 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Excessive tiredness, lack of energy and general weakness
- Muscle aches and chills
- Dry cough
- Stuffy, runny nose
Other symptoms that accompany the flu may include sore throat, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Remember, if your child comes down with the flu, keep them home from school or childcare for at least 24 hours after the fever is gone. The flu is highly contagious and can infect other children and caregivers. It can spread by direct contact, such as drinking from the same cup or through indirect contact, such as when a classmate sneezes on his hand and then touches the door handle.
Flu Prevention Tips
Annual outbreaks of seasonal flu typically occur during the fall through the spring. Knowing how to identify flu symptoms and prevent the virus will help you protect your family from getting the flu. Here are just a few tips to keep the virus away from your household.
- Teach your children proper and consistent hand washing
- Avoid sharing cups, bottles, and other utensils
- Encourage your children to keep their hands away from their eyes, nose and mouth to prevent germs from spreading
- Practice the importance of coughing or sneezing into your arm or a tissue
To prevent seasonal influenza, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends children receive the influenza vaccination every year starting at six months of age. Ask your pediatrician about flu vaccinations for your child.
When your child is experiencing the flu, extra rest and drinking plenty of fluids can help relieve symptoms. Typical recovery time for the flu is one or two weeks. Contact your pediatrician if your child’s fever persists, he or she develops a cough, or if he or she complains of ear pain. Flu is a serious illness that should be monitored closely.
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