Children are more susceptible to health problems as their immunity is still developing and along with frequent infections such as fever or stomach problems, skin problems are a common affliction. Most skin problems within children are a manifestation of the underlying conditions such as allergies or other sicknesses. Some of the common skin allergies and problems are mentioned here.
Problems with the skin during the teenage years are very common. Although skin issues can be really stressful, the right skin care treatment can help in controlling the problems you may face during this time. Here are some of the skin issues that you may face at this stage of life and ways to prevent them:
1. Oily Skin: Oily skin is a very common occurrence during teenage years. To a certain extent, oily skin may be due to genetics but for some, it may be due to hormonal changes that cause excess oil to be produced on the skin surface. In order to not inflame the skin further, individuals with oily skin shouldn't overly scrub their skin as well as not use harsh cleansers to clean the face. More importantly, when you do use a cleanser on your face, you should only do so two times a day. If you go overboard, it would only do more harm than good.
2. Acne: Whether it is blackheads, whiteheads or spots filled with pus, acne affects about 80% of teenagers at some point in their lives. Teenagers are more prone to this problem because the hormone levels during this time are especially high, resulting in an increase in the magnitude of sebaceous glands and the oil that is produced. When too much oil is produced, this, along with dead skin cells block, the follicles, giving rise to acne. There are certain ways in which you can prevent it from occurring, such as always having a bath after any strenuous activity, not picking or touching the problem areas and washing acne-prone spots only two times a day.
Always make it a practice to encourage your children to inform you if they face any pain or discomfort in the neck or back before it becomes a serious problem.
Dental sealants: protection shield for children oral health
10% of children are prone to dental cavities, as it is one of the most common problems worldwide. Children need specialized pediatric care & their parents have to play an important role to take care of their children's dental health.
Cavities occur when children takes more sugar in their diet which forms plaque or translucent bacterial on the tooth surface. It destroys the tooth enamel. Once you lose tooth enamel, it can't be recovered.
Many studies showed that from childhood to adulthood, children have many dental problems and the most common is cavities. As we can do, many cure through dental visits, good oral hygiene, fluoridated tooth paste which have minimum quantity of fluoride, flossing, mouth rinse.
After all the precautions, children still have cavities because some have low immunity so response to bacteria is more prone on their oral cavity. When your child eats and drinks, these bacteria create acids, which can dissolve the protective layer beneath the retained plaque. It removes minerals from the enamel, which if left untreated causing a cavity. Parents often have questions about how to take care of their children's teeth.
For good oral hygiene of children, using dental sealants as protection shield to keep the teeth healthy. Dental sealant is a plastic material that is applied to the teeth, hardens them, and provides a barrier against plaque and other harmful substances. They are usually placed on the chewing (occlusal) surface of the permanent back teeth, the molars and premolars & protect them from cavities. It works like rain coat for tooth against cavities.
Dental sealant procedure:
First, polishing the surface of the tooth to remove plaque and food debris from the pit and fissure surfaces.
Next, isolate and dry the tooth. Then, etch will apply on the surface of the tooth, rinse off the etching material and dry the tooth.
Applying the sealant on the surface of the tooth with a brush; a self-curing light will be used for about 30 seconds to bond the sealant to the tooth surface.
Then, evaluating the dental sealant and check the occlusion. Once the sealant as hardened it becomes a hard plastic coating, and child can chew on the tooth again.
Many studies have shown that dental sealant are effective in helping to prevent decay on chewing (occlusal) surfaces for last many years. If necessary, it is also possible to place a new dental sealant on the tooth. Dental sealant is a painless treatment without drilling or numbing medications. Sealants are more common in children because of the new growth of permanent teeth.
What is acne?
Acne is a disorder of the hair follicles and sebaceous glands. Hair follicles are the areas around the base or root of each hair. Sebaceous glands are the tiny glands that release oil (sebum) into the hair follicles. The sebum moistens the skin and hair. The sebum and hair get to the skin surface through tiny holes called pores.
Acne is very common. Most children and young adults between ages 11 and 30 will have acne at some point. Acne most often begins in puberty. But it can happen at any age. There are different types of acne that affect newborns, infants, younger children, and adults.
Acne may occur when the pores gets clogged with dead skin cells and oil. Bacteria that are normally on the skin may also get into the clogged pore. Acne comes in several types. One type is a comedone. This is a plug of sebum in the hair follicle. They are either closed whiteheads, or open blackheads. These are not inflamed or infected.
Inflamed acne causes red, painful bumps or sores. The sores may be infected with bacteria. This type of acne includes:
What causes acne?
The cause of acne is not fully understood. Acne is linked with:
Who is at risk for acne?
Being a teen (adolescent) is the greatest risk factor for acne. A family history also increases the risk for severe acne.
What are the symptoms of acne?
Acne can occur anywhere on the body. It is most common in areas where there are more sebaceous glands, such as:
Symptoms can occur a bit differently in each child. They can include:
The symptoms of acne can be like other health conditions. Make sure your child sees his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
How is acne diagnosed?
The healthcare provider will ask about your child’s symptoms and health history. He or she will look at the areas of the body with acne. The provider may advise that your child see a doctor who specializes in skin care (dermatologist).
Treatment will depend on your child’s symptoms, age, and general health. It will also depend on how severe the condition is. The goal of acne treatment is to improve the skins appearance and to lessen the chance of scarring. Treatment for acne will include gentle, regular skin care. Your child's healthcare provider may advise:
Topical medicines are often prescribed to treat acne. These can be in the form of a cream, gel, lotion, or liquid. These may include:
Medicines to take by mouth may be prescribed, such as:
What are possible complications of acne?
Acne can cause problems with self-esteem. It may cause emotional problems. It may result in depression, anxiety, and even suicidal thoughts. Severe or long-term acne may cause scarring. Serious infections may also develop.
Living with acne
Acne can be a long-term condition. Early treatment can help to prevent or lessen severe acne. Help your child by:
When should I call my child's healthcare provider?
Call your child's healthcare provider if:
Key points about acne
Tips to help you get the most from a visit to your child’s health care provider:
What is impetigo in children?
Impetigo is an infection of the skin. When it affects just the surface, it’s called superficial impetigo. Impetigo can also affect deeper parts of the skin. This is called ecthyma. It may occur on healthy skin. Or it may occur where the skin was injured by a cut, scrape, or insect bite.
Impetigo is most common in children from ages 2 to 5. It is contagious. This means it’s easily passed from one person to another. It can be spread around a household. Children can infect other family members, and can reinfect themselves.
What causes impetigo in a child?
Impetigo is caused by bacteria. The bacteria that can cause it include:
Group A beta-hemolytic streptococcus
Who is at risk for impetigo in a child?
Impetigo is more common in children, but adults may also have the infection. A child is more likely to get impetigo if he or she:
Has close contact with to others with impetigo
Does not keep clean (poor hygiene)
Is in warm, moist (humid) air
What are the symptoms of impetigo in a child?
Symptoms can occur a bit differently in each child. They also vary depending on which bacteria caused it. Symptoms can include:
Sores that are filled with fluid, draining fluid, or crusted over
Areas that are red, swollen, and may itch
Swelling of nearby lymph glands (nodes)
The bumps or sores can occur anywhere on the body. But they are most common on the face, arms, and legs.
The symptoms of impetigo can be like other health conditions. Make sure your child sees his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
How is impetigo diagnosed in a child?
The healthcare provider will ask about your child’s symptoms and health history. He or she will give your child a physical exam. A sample of the pus from the sores may be sent to a lab. This is called a culture. It’s done to see what type of bacteria caused the infection. It can help the doctor decide the best antibiotic for treatment.
How is impetigo treated in a child?
Treatment will depend on your child’s symptoms, age, and general health. It will also depend on how severe the condition is. Treatment may include:
Prescription antibiotic cream or ointment. This is most often done for mild impetigo. Over-the-counter antibiotic cream or ointment is usually not advised.
Antibiotic pills or liquid by mouth (oral). This is most often advised if your child has several areas of impetigo or ecthyma. It may also be advised if more than one person in a household has impetigo.
Cleaning and bandaging. You will need to gently washing affected areas of your child’s skin with mild soap and water. Cover areas that are draining fluid. Make sure to wash your hands before and after caring for your child’s impetigo.
What are possible complications of impetigo in a child?
Possible complications of impetigo can include:
Worsening or spreading of the infection
Scarring, which is more common with ecthyma
Impetigo caused by beta-hemolytic strep bacteria can cause:
Kidney damage (poststreptococcal glomerulonephritis)
What can I do to prevent impetigo in my child?
You can help to prevent impetigo and prevent it from spreading to others. The following may help:
Keep your child out of daycare or school for 24 hours after starting antibiotic treatment. Your child can return after 24 hours. Cover any draining sores with bandages.
Make sure your child and everyone else in your household washes his or her hands well. This means using soap and water and scrubbing well.
Have everyone in the household use their own towels for drying hands and for after bathing. Do not share towels.
Keep your child's fingernails short. This can help prevent your child scratching and spreading the infection.
When should I call my child's healthcare provider?
Call the healthcare provider if your child has a skin infection after being in contact with anyone who has impetigo.
Thrush (Oral Candida Infection) in Children
What is thrush in children?
Thrush is a mouth infection that is common in babies and children. Symptoms include white or yellow velvety patches in the mouth. Thrush is caused by a type of fungus called Candida. Candida is found naturally on the skin and in the mouth. But if Candida grows out of control, it can cause thrush. Thrush is not a serious problem for a healthy child. It can be treated with antifungal medicine.
What causes thrush in a child?
Candida yeast is common in the everyday environment. It only causes a problem when it grows out of control. This can happen if a child:
Which children are at risk for thrush?
A child is more at risk for thrush if he or she:
Thrush causes milky white or yellow patches to form on the tongue or inner cheeks. These patches can be painful and may bleed. Some babies have no pain from thrush. Others may have pain and be fussy and refuse to feed. It may hurt when your child swallows. Thrush can also cause cracked skin in the corners of the mouth. Symptoms can occur a bit differently in each child. The symptoms of thrush can be like other health conditions. Make sure your child sees his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
How is thrush diagnosed in a child?
The healthcare provider will ask about your child’s symptoms and health history. He or she will give your child a physical exam. This will include looking in your child’s mouth.
Thumb or finger sucking is common in infants through the first year of their lives. A child usually turns to his thumb when he is tired, upset or bored.
A child younger than five years should not be pressured to stop thumb sucking. While majority of children give up such habits on their own before they enter school, about 15 percent of children continue thumb sucking past their fifth birthday. This is an age when teasing often starts, causing difficulties for children.
Apart from this, thumb sucking can also lead to dental problems. A child who is still sucking his thumb by age five, when permanent teeth start coming in, may develop an abnormal bite. In addition, prolonged thumb sucking can cause minor physical problems, such as chapped lips or cracked skin, calluses, or fingernail infections.
The effects of thumb sucking are usually reversible until the age of seven because children still have their deciduous (baby) teeth. If thumb sucking continues beyond that age, when the second teeth are erupting, permanent dental problems can occur.
There are various things you can do to help your child stop thumb sucking:
1. Reward your child and offer encouragement - For example, with a hug or praise to reinforce their decision to stop the habit.
2. Limit nagging - If children feel they are being nagged they will become defensive.
3. Mark their progress on a calendar - For example, place a star or a tick for each period (such as a day or week) that the child does not suck thumb or finger. Provide a special outing or a toy if the child gets through the period successfully.
4. Encourage bonding - For example, with a special toy.
5. Reminders - Give the child a mitten to wear as a reminder not to suck, or place unpleasant tasting nail paint (available from chemists) on the fingers or thumb. Placing a band aid over the thumb at bedtime is another reminder.
6. Offer distractions - While a child is watching tv, have toys available for children to play with. Sit with the child during this time and give a cuddle to help them not to suck. In the car, have toys available to keep children occupied.
Fever remains the most common concern prompting parents to present their child to the emergency department. Fever has traditionally been defined as a rectal temperature over 100.4 F or 38 C. Temperatures measured at other body sites are usually lower. The threshold for defining a fever does vary significantly among different individuals, since body temperatures can vary by as much as 1 F. Low-grade fevers are usually considered less than 102.2 F (39 C).
Fever itself is not life-threatening unless it is extremely and persistently high, such as greater than 107 F (41.6 C) when measured rectally. Risk factors for worrisome fevers include age under 2 years (infants and toddlers) or recurrent fevers lasting more than one week. Fever may indicate the presence of a serious illness, but usually a fever is caused by a common infection, most of which are not serious. The part of the brain called the hypothalamus controls body temperature. The hypothalamus increases the body's temperature as a way to fight the infection. However, many conditions other than infections may cause a fever.
Fever in Children - Causes:
Causes of fever include:
When to seek medical care:
Although you may have done your best to care for your child, sometimes it is smart to take your child to the emergency department. The child's doctor may meet you there, or the child may be evaluated and treated by the emergency doctor.
Take a child to an emergency clinic when any of the following happen:
Home Remedies for Fever in Children:
The three goals of home care for a child with fever are to control the temperature, prevent dehydration, and monitor for serious or life-threatening illness.