At Clearwater Pediatric Care and Westchase Pediatric Care, our skilled team of pediatricians can help your child find relief if they are suffering from allergies in Clearwater, and Westchase, FL. Allergic reactions can be scary, but we are here to help, and it's possible for your child to live a full and happy life managing their allergies.
What is an allergy?
An allergic reaction happens when a normally harmless substance is introduced and the body's immune system reacts as if it's a threat. Some of the most common allergies are environmental like pollen and grass, certain foods, and pet dander. Symptoms of allergies are:
- Itchy, watery eyes
- Difficulty breathing
- Swelling of the face and tongue
- Stomach irritation
Any of these symptoms after being exposed to or consuming an allergen could mean your child is allergic. If you think your child has allergies in Clearwater, and Westchase, FL, contact us for an allergy test.
Testing for allergies
When your child has had allergic reactions or allergy symptoms, your doctor will recommend an allergy test. An allergy test involves exposing a patch of skin to an allergen to see how the skin reacts. This is done multiple times with different allergens across tiny patches of skin. Once you know how your child reacts to certain substances, you can start avoiding their allergens.
Your child can live a normal and healthy life with allergies. Your doctor's recommendations will include avoiding your child's allergens and may involve medication. There are several medications available that help control reactions to allergens that are hard to avoid like environmental and animal allergies. If your child has severe allergic reactions, your doctor could recommend an EpiPen as a precaution. Carrying an emergency injection has saved the lives of children with allergies.
Clearwater Pediatric Care and Westchase Pediatric Care are here for you and your child to help you manage allergies in Clearwater, and Westchase, FL. Contact us for an appointment at (813) 818-1543, or (727) 461-1543.
It’s important to know the warning signs so you can act fast.
Asthma is one of the most common chronic illnesses in children here in the US. Despite being quite common, we shouldn’t ignore the fact that asthma can be dangerous and even life-threatening (particularly if it isn’t properly controlled); however, it isn’t always as easy as you might think to detect asthma symptoms in your child. Here are the warning signs that should bring your child in to visit our Westchase, FL, pediatrician Dr. Raj Pai for an evaluation:
- Wheezing or whistling when breathing in
- Difficulty breathing
- Chest tightness and/or pain
- Frequent coughing (that often gets worse at night)
- Easily tired or fatigued after exercise or physical activity
Some children may have difficulty sleeping due to chest tightness or wheezing. You may also find that these symptoms intensify when your little one catches a cold or respiratory infection. In some cases, asthma may also hinder your child’s ability to play sports or be involved in more strenuous activities without feeling easily winded or having trouble catching their breath.
Since symptoms do vary greatly, it’s important that if your child is displaying any of these asthma symptoms (no matter how minor they may seem) that you call our Westchase, FL, pediatrician right away.
Treating Asthma in Children and Teens
As you might imagine, the sooner we treat your child’s asthma the better, as we can help your little one control not just day-to-day symptoms but also prevent future asthma attacks. The overall goals of asthma treatment are to lessen and even prevent the frequency and severity of asthma attacks, reduce and even eliminate day-to-day symptoms and make sure that the medications we prescribe are managing their symptoms effectively enough to enjoy activities and exercise without issue.
There are a couple of ways in which we will help your little one treat their asthma. First and foremost, we will prescribe a long-term controlled medication that will be used every day to reduce inflammation within the airways to prevent attacks. We will also give your child a fast-acting medication for when asthma attacks flare up, as the long-term controlled medication will not be able to treat attacks once they start. This fast-acting medication is only to be used when your child feels the symptoms of an attack coming on.
Clearwater Pediatric Care provides general and urgent health care to children and teens in the Clearwater and Westchase, FL, areas. Whether your child is displaying symptoms of asthma or you need to discuss better treatment options to control your child’s asthma, call (727) 461-1543 or (813) 818-1543 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Pai.
When your child falls ill, you shouldn’t have to wonder where to go for medical care.
If your child has a fever that doesn’t seem to be getting better or they are dealing with a stomachache that is getting worse, who do you call? Instead of turning to a local urgent care center where they don’t know your child and their medical history, you can turn to our Clearwater, and Tampa, FL, pediatricians, also serving Westchase, FL, for all of your urgent care needs.
Thinking of the ER? Think Again!
While there are situations that are critical and do require emergency care, oftentimes an emergency room visit isn’t necessary. Unless your child is dealing with a serious traumatic injury such as a concussion or a critical or potentially life-threatening condition, the ER is usually not where you need to turn.
When you turn to most ERs, one thing you may realize is that they don’t typically have a dedicated pediatric staff that understands the specialized care that kids and teens need, particularly for more minor injuries and illnesses. This means that you may leave not fully satisfied with the care your child received, and you may still need to come to our practice for additional treatment and follow-up care.
When to Turn to an Urgent Care
We understand that in the heat of the moment it can be tough to know where to take your child for care when all you know is that you want to make sure that they are treated right away. We understand! Here at our Clearwater, and Tampa, FL, offices, also serving Westchase, FL, we offer urgent care to all of our patients. No appointments, no waiting. Our urgent care is great for treating:
- Minor respiratory issues or breathing issues
- Stomachaches and abdominal pain
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Respiratory infections such as bronchitis or pneumonia
- Allergies and asthma
- Urinary tract infections
- Sore throat
- Headaches and migraines
- Widespread or painful rash
- Ear or eye infections
- Sprains and strains
- Minor fractures and other sports-related injuries
- Cuts and lacerations
- Removal of foreign objects
Why Turn to Clearwater Pediatric Care?
Here at our practice, we put kids first. After all, our highly regarded pediatricians have worked extensively with critically ill children in the Pediatric ICU, as well as working in the ER. They have wide-ranging knowledge about how to handle and treat a variety of urgent health matters in kids and teens of all ages.
Clearwater Pediatric Care provides urgent care to children and teens in Clearwater, and Tampa, FL, also serving Westchase, FL. To schedule an immediate appointment with our team, simply call (727) 461-1543 or (813) 818-1543.
Over time, better methods of sanitation, hygiene, and other living conditions decreased our risk and exposure to disease but immunizations have played a central role in the long-term decrease of diseases.
Dr. Raj Pai, Dr. Mary Ann Hicks, Dr. Sheila Mak, and Dr. Emily Jones can help patients manage their immunization schedules at their Clearwater, and Westchase, FL, offices.
What is an immunization?
Although the terms vaccinations and immunizations are used interchangeably, they're different parts of the same process, according to the CDC.
- Vaccination: This part of the process is when medical professionals introduce your body to a dead or weak virus or bacteria to stimulate your immune system to produce immunity. Vaccines can be administered via injections, or by sprays in the mouth or nose.
- Immunization: This is when a person has already received a vaccine and is protected from the disease.
Children need vaccines to reach immunity and per the CDC guidelines and schedules, there is an immunization schedule you can discuss with your Clearwater, and Westchase, FL, doctor.
Why immunizations are important
Immunizations protect you and those around you. Vaccines prevent infectious diseases that once killed thousands. Vaccines help you avoid expensive medical treatments, serious complications, and death.
People with impaired immune systems may be susceptible to diseases and may not be able to get vaccinations. These people might not develop immunity even if vaccinated. People around them need to get vaccinated to protect them from less common illnesses, according to Michigan Medicine.
Getting immunized costs less than receiving treatment for a disease. Immunizations also reduce the likelihood of an epidemic if a community is exposed to a disease.
Types of immunizations
- Influenza (Flu)
- Measles (MMR)
- Meningitis (MenACWY/MenB)
- Hepatitis B (HepB)
- Rotavirus (RV)
- Tetanus (DTaP)
- Human Papillomavirus
Would you like to speak with a doctor?
If you'd like to learn more about immunizations and why they're important, call Dr. Pai, Dr. Hicks, Dr. Mak, and Dr. Jones in Clearwater, and Westchase, FL, at (727) 461-1543 or (813) 818-1543.
Find out why your child should visit the pediatrician once a year.
So much can change when it comes to the health of your child that it’s important to keep tabs on it. The best way to do that is through annual school physicals with our Clearwater, and Westchase, FL, pediatricians. Through regular school physicals, our pediatric team can monitor your child’s health and development and provide early interventions when problems arise.
Why are school physicals important?
As your child grows by leaps and bounds, sometimes health concerns arise that need to be addressed. Not all children will show symptoms so you might not even realize there is a problem. This is why yearly checkups with your Clearwater, and Westchase, FL, pediatricians are crucial for kids of all ages, yes, even teens. By coming in once a year we can detect health problems and developmental issues early on.
During these school physicals, we also provide screening tools and vaccines to protect your child from disease. It’s important to ensure that kids feel at their best before the start of the school year. By making sure your child is up to date on their vaccines you can protect them from many potentially dangerous communicable diseases.
When should my child get a school physical?
We know that the summertime is when you’re thinking of vacations, BBQs, and all things anti-school, but it’s important that you’re also scheduling your child’s school physical before the school year begins. Back-to-school physicals are necessary for all kids in Westchase, and Clearwater, FL. Try to schedule your child’s school physical about six weeks before the start of the school year.
How should I prepare for my child’s upcoming physical?
Before coming into our Clearwater, or Westchase, FL, practice for your child’s school physical you may wish to write down all the questions or concerns you might have about your child’s health, whether it’s about their sleep routine, diet, or current fitness routine. We would be happy to answer any and all questions you might have.
It’s also important to let us know if there are any changes to your child’s medical history, any symptoms you’ve noticed your child displaying, or if there are any changes in the supplements or over-the-counter medications they are taking. It’s important to provide us with as much information as possible.
To schedule your child’s school physical, call your Clearwater, and Westchase, FL, pediatricians at (727) 461-1543 or (813) 818-1543.
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