Frequently Asked Questions
All Pediatric Care knows that proper patient care & knowledge go hand in hand. It is extremely important that as patients & parents we feel comfortable addressing and asking any question. Our providers pride themselves on making sure all patients & their family are well informed. Listed below are some common questions asked:
All Pediatric Care is on staff with all hospitals in Hernando County, such as Spring Hill Regional Hospital, Brooksville Regional Hospital, and Oak Hill Hospital & Medical Center. The Physicians prefer you to use either Oak Hill or Spring Hill Regional Hospital for emergencies because they are the only hospitals that have pediatric units in case your child needs to be admitted. If your child is critically ill and is in need of more intensive care, we are also affiliated with All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg and we will have your child transferred to that facility. The Staff at All Pediatric Care will keep close contact with the physicians at All Children’s hospital during your child’s inpatient stay there.
Why do I need to call the doctor before going to the Emergency Room?
We might be able to advise you on the problem and keep your child comfortable till we can see him/her in the morning.
If your child needs to go to the emergency room we will call ahead and speak to the physician in the emergency room and let them know what is going on.
After he evaluates your child he will call us and discuss the case.
If you go to the emergency room without calling us first, many times, unintentionally, the emergency room physician will forget to call us.
If your child is critically ill we will meet you at the emergency room.
Emergency room visits are quite expensive, thus we might be able to spare you the unnecessary cost.
Therefore, it makes sense to call us first.
Routine check-ups may be scheduled with the doctor of your choice. Some parents like to keep the same physician while other prefer to rotate among the doctors so they get to know all of them. However, when your child is ill and needs to be seen the same day, you will be seen by the doctor who is present. Hint: If you would like to schedule a check-up for an evening, please schedule well in advance as these times are “snapped up” quickly.
Why do I sometimes have to wait for my scheduled appointment?
The doctors understand that you have to fit your child’s appointment into your schedule, and they try to see everyone on time, however, situations may arise which require more of their time then they allotted. For example: a child requiring removal of stitches or treatment of a burn. We wish to give every child as much time as they need. In addition, emergencies may occur in the office or at the hospital. In the above situation you will be given the option of waiting, rescheduling, or we can send you to the other office (the offices are approximately ½ hour away from one another or you can be seen by another provider whose panel is not as busy.Another reason that we may run late is patients arriving late for appointments. Circumstances at times cause late arrivals and we try to accommodate the patient, recognizing that they have set aside their time to be at the office. However, if the lateness is such that those with the following appointment will be inconvenienced by “fitting-in” the patient, we will ask that the appointment be rescheduled (of course emergencies will always be seen and worked in). If you are going to be more that 10-15 minutes late, please call and let the Office Staff know. One last thing… Please don’t ask us to “take a peek” at another child who is in the room, but not scheduled to be seen. This is unfair to the patients who have appointments. In addition “peeking” involves more than a few seconds if the child is to be evaluated and treated appropriately.
This is the plague of any busy pediatric office- particularly Monday morning and after school lets out. Ours is a telephone-oriented profession where we make appointments, give advice and call to check up on our patients. However, that is no consolation when you have a feverish child at home screaming with ear pain and can’t get through to make an appointment. We have added lines to our currently system. If you are consistently having a problem getting through to our office or experience any type of concern please speak to our Office Manager and she will address the issue immediately.
The doctors want to know your children and watch them grow up. We want to answer any questions you have and give you advice about safety, feeding and other topics. The doctors want to help you provide a safe, healthy environment for your children in addition to ensuring that they received the proper immunization. Furthermore, they want to make certain that you understand the purpose and side-effects of the immunizations and to make sure that your child does not have any reasons not to be vaccinated with a particular vaccine. For these reasons, we prefer your child be examined on a routine basis, especially before receiving vaccines, even if you will not be receiving your vaccinations here. You should have received a list of when we want to see your child and what will be done at that particular visit. If you didn’t receive this, please ask our front desk receptionist to provide you with one.
In many of these situations, an x-ray is not needed. It’s not always fun to have an x-ray taken and we can often spare your child some discomfort. If an x-ray is required, we must examine the injured area to determine what type of x-ray to order. Sometimes pain in the wrist after a fall is due to problem at the elbow and without an examination, the wrong type of x-ray may be preformed, exposing your child to unnecessary radiation.
A baby girl’s heart rate usually is faster then a baby boy’s, but only after the onset of labor. There’s no difference between fetal heart rates for boys and girls, but the heart rate does vary with the age of the fetus. By approximately the fifth week of pregnancy, is near the mother’s – around 80-85 beats per minute (bpm). It continues to accelerate until early in the ninth week, when it reaches 170-200 bpm and then decelerates to an average of 120-160 bpm by the middle of the pregnancy. Normal fetal heart rate during labor ranges from 120-160 bpm for boys and girls.
If a woman has a short torso, there’s no place for the baby to grow but out. A long torso may mean more roomier accommodations for the baby, making it less likely for a woman’s belly to bulge outward. A wide belly may just mean the baby is sideways.
If a woman’s carrying high, this may be her first pregnancy or her body’s in good shape. Stomach muscles have a tendency to become more elastic with each pregnancy, so a belly that’s seen more then one pregnancy may hang a little low.
Just the opposite is true. Keeping a baby barefoot can help strengthen his foot muscles and help him learn to walk earlier. Once a toddler is walking, though, he needs comfortable shoes that fit well and they should be rigid. Shoes should conform to the shape of the child’s feet and provide a little extra room for growth.
A baby who spends his active hours in a walker may learn to sit, crawl, and walk on his own later then a child who has to learn these skills on his own if he wants to get around. More significantly, baby walkers are dangerous. Every year, nearly 29,000 children require emergency medical treatment for walker-related injuries.
Both high fevers and colds can cause fluid loss. Drinking plenty of fluids such as water and juice can help to prevent dehydration. And with both fevers and colds, it’s fine to eat regular meals – missing nutrients may only make a person sicker.
According to the American Red Cross, it’s usually not necessary for you or your child to wait before going in the water. However, it is recommended that you wait until your digestion has begun if you’ve had a big meal and plan to swim strenuously. Also avoid chewing gum or eating WHILE swimming, both of which could cause choking.
Fish is high in protein, which is important to brain function – but protein from fish is no better for the brain then protein from other food sources.
Overactive oil glands in the skin cause acne – not chocolate. Teens often get acne because of the hormones that go along with puberty which can stimulate the skin’s sebaceous glands to produce more sebum, an oily secretion that can clog the pores and lead to acne.
Spicy foods may aggravate ulcer symptoms in some people, but they don’t bring about ulcers. A bacterial infection or overuse of pain medications such as aspirin or anti-inflammatory drugs is the usual cause.
This tale may have started during World War II when British Intelligence spread a rumor that their pilots had remarkable night vision because they ate a lot of carrots. They didn’t want the Germans to know they were using radar. Carrots – and many other vegetables high in Vitamin A – do help maintain healthy eyesight, but eating more that the recommended daily allowance won’t improve vision
Medical Condition Tales
Cold weather, wet hair, and chills don’t cause colds. Viruses do. People tend to catch colds more often in the winter because these viruses are spread more easily indoors, where there may be more contact with dry air and people with colds. Dry air – indoors or out – can lower a person’s resistance to infection.
Although reading in dimly lit room won’t do any harm, good lighting can prevent eye fatigue and make reading easier.
Watching TV won’t hurt a person’s eyes (no matter how close to the TV), although too much TV can be a bad idea for kids. Research shows that children who consistently spend more then 10 hours a week watching TV are more likely to be overweight, aggressive, and slower to learn in school.
Only about 4% of the children in the US have strabismus, a disorder in which the eyes are misaligned, giving the appearance that they’re looking in different directions. Eye crossing does not lead to strabismus.
Thumb sucking often begins before birth and generally continues until age 5. Parents should discourage thumb sucking after age 4, when the gums, jaw, and permanent teeth begin their most significant growth
However, habitual knuckle cracking tends to cause hand swelling, decreasing grip strength, and can result in functional hand impairment.
Just 15 minutes of listening to loud, pounding music; machinery; or other noises can cause temporary loss of hearing and tinnitus, a ringing in the ears. Loud noise causes the eardrum to vibrate excessively and can damage the tiny hairs in the cochlea, a cone-shaped tube in the inner ear that converts sound into electrical signals for the brain to process. Although temporary hearing loss usually disappears within a day or 2, continuous exposure to extreme noise can result in permanent hearing loss. For example, if a child is wearing headphones – and those around him can hear the music – the volume is too high.
Myths About Immunizations
Vaccines work by helping to prepare your child’s body to fight illness. Your child receives a shot containing either a dead or weakened germ. This show helps your child to develop permanent or long-standing protection if the child is ever exposed to that disease.
Immunizations have obliterated many childhood illnesses like pertussis and measles. Each day, immunizations protect children from potentially deadly diseases and save many lives. Unfortunately, misconceptions about vaccines could cause a parent to decide not to vaccinate their child. Here are a few common myths and facts.
There are two types of vaccines. One with dead (killed) bacteria or viruses and one weakened (attenuated). It is impossible to get the disease from any dead vaccine. Only those vaccines made form a weakened virus (Measles, Mumps, Rubella, and Chicken Pox) could possibly make a child develop a MILD form of the disease. This form is almost always less severe and the risk of disease from immunization is extremely small.
It is true that one single child’s chance of catching a disease is low if everyone is protected. However, if one person decided to skip vaccination, the changes are good other parents did as well. Any child not protected from these diseases increases the risk of the disease spreading. This actually happened in 1989-1991 when an epidemic of measles broke out in the US. Dropping rates of immunizations led to a dramatic increase in the number of cases of measles. Some children died while others were left with brain damage. The best way to protect your child is through immunization.
Very few things in life work 100% of the time, but vaccines are one of the most effective weapons we have against disease. They work in 85-99% of cases. They greatly reduce the risk of a disease traveling though a population. It is difficult to watch your child get a shot, but the pain is nothing compared to the suffering through a potentially deadly bout of diphtheria, measles or pertussis.
The most common reactions to vaccines are minor, including redness and swelling where the shot was given. The child may develop a fever and rash. Although in rare cases vaccination may trigger seizures or an allergic reaction, the risk of these is much lower than that of catching the disease if the child is not immunized. Every year millions of children are safely vaccinated, and almost all of them experience no significant side effects. Research continually improves the safety of immunizations. Many vaccines have been changed or deleted if safety was a concern. The diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis vaccine now includes only a portion of the pertussis cell instead of the entire dead cell. This has significantly decreased possible side effects. Even the additives in immunization are closely monitored, as evident by the removal of thimerosol that is a byproduct of ethyl mercury. There are also rumors that vaccines cause sudden infant death syndrome, autism, multiple sclerosis and other problems. It is only coincidence that autism usually shows signs about the same time the measles, mumps and rubella shot is given. Several studies have failed to show any connection between vaccines and these conditions.
Vaccinations are intended to help KEEP healthy children healthy. Because vaccines work by protecting the body before disease strikes, if you wait until your child gets sick it will be too late for a vaccine to work. The best time to immunize your child is when he is healthy.
A few vaccines, like the one for measles or hepatitis B, may make you immune for your entire life. Others, like tetanus, last for many years but require periodic shots (boosters) for continued protection. Some, like pertussis, wear off but do not require boosters because the disease is not considered dangerous among adolescents and adults. It is important to keep a record of your child’s shots so you will know when he is due for a booster.