January 31st, 2018
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ACPeds  Parent Talk

Keeping parents up to date on the latest news in child and teen health

Urgent Influenza Update: Important information for parents
This is turning out to be the heaviest flu season since the 2009 swine flu H 1 N 1 pandemic.

While many children handle flu fairly well even without early antiviral treatment, the disease and its complications are often deadly in (mainly elderly) adults and can rarely be deadly in children . Serious complications, like bacterial pneumonia, are often responsible for the deaths which occur with both "A" and "B" influenza strains.

Early (within 48 hours of illness onset) use of antiviral medicines such as TamifluĀ® can reduce the illness severity and may make complications less likely.

If high fevers persist more than 2 to 3 days, bacterial complications like sinus or ear infections and/or pneumonia should be considered. Antibiotics may be needed for those complications. Vaccination for this season is not as protective against the new H 3 N 2 strain since that strain was not in the vaccine, but will probably prove effective against the B strains of flu .

B strains of the influenza virus do not mutate very readily and generally predominate later in the flu season (February through April). Some fortunate people may have genetically-determined, natural resistance to influenza. Those who have had flu before, especially those who have had it more often than every 7 to 10 years, are probably more likely to get it again and are most likely to benefit from vaccination. It does take about two weeks to get protection from flu vaccines.
The Flu causes millions of illnesses, hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations and tens of thousands of deaths each year in the United States. Last season, over 100 pediatric deaths from influenza were reported to CDC.

So if your children have not been immunized against flu, please consider it as soon as possible.

For more information
Overscheduling                                                      #WeeklyBlogPost

While extracurricular involvement can have a lot of benefits, excessive pressure and time commitments for kids can lead to unfortunate consequences such as poor mental health, burnout and weakened family relationships.

Parents may feel like they have to push their children to succeed. But cramming a child's life full of activities really isn't helping anyone, especially not the child. For more info on the dangers of overscheduling kids,  

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