Parenting Medical Questions Answers (cont.)

Years ago, men used to die from "indigestion". That was before we knew that coronary arteries were blocked and they were actually having heart attacks. So I think the terms are synonymous. Indigestion was a term given to a particular condition, but really turned out to be coronary artery disease, blocked arteries. Colic, I think, falls in the same category.

Event_Moderator Should all children be immunized?

Dr_Goldman_Speaker Yes, unless they have an allergy to the particular vaccine. Let me explain why they should be immunized.

Years ago people died from diphtheria, whooping cough, polio, measles, small pox; you name it, they died from these things. Nowadays, you don't see diphtheria, you don't see whooping cough or polio. Small pox has been wiped off the planet. There is no small pox at all in any of the countries in the world. That's fantastic. They used to have epidemics of small pox and people died from this. Now we don't even have cases of this. Same thing with polio and how it caused damage and death. Today you don't see polio. And that's due to vaccines. So yes, all children should be vaccinated against diphtheria, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, whooping cough, and small pox. Also, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, chicken pox, and I think eventually influenza. But, now all of those, except influenza, are required to get into school and that's a good idea. The only exception, as I said, is if they're allergic.

Event_Moderator Is there a recommended schedule for vaccination of children?

Dr_Goldman_Speaker Yes there is. And it starts out basically at two months of age or with some physicians sooner. You go 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 1 year, 15 months, 2 years, 4 years. And if you follow that schedule, and you're going to have to anyway because the schools require it. That's a very good rule.

People used to die from measles and get complications from measles and polio, as I mentioned before. You don't see that anymore because they're vaccinated. It's a health precaution.

Event_Moderator Where can a parent who cannot afford immunization go to get their children immunized?

Dr_Goldman_Speaker Off-hand, I can't tell you. I know there are programs for this and, if I'm not mistaken, I could be wrong, but it's through the Medical program here in California. Your family physician may be able to inform you of this. But, generally speaking, if you're eligible for Medical, then your children are also covered under that program. And all of the vaccines are covered under Medical.

loving_mom_MSN I have a 14-year-old son that is having bad back pain (flank of the back on left side) he is also vomiting. I'm not sure if I should take him to the doctor or just wait it out and see if it is the flu?

Dr_Goldman_Speaker You don't wait out anything. You take an action. You're having flank pain and vomiting...what are you waiting for? Take your child to the doctor or the emergency room. Off-hand it could be a kidney stone or kidney infection. But, vomiting? That's not normal. Flank pain? That's not normal. Take your child to a doctor or emergency room and get some tests done. We live in a period of time where we have all these wonderful tests. Avail yourself of it and do it soon because if you put it off you may be causing damage to your child.

christine31_MSN Can you tell me if it's still okay that my son still wets at night?

Dr_Goldman_Speaker Enuresis is very common. Use some simple measures first. Restrict fluids before sleep a couple of hours or so. That's the main thing. That sometimes works. In fact, it works a great deal of the time. Should it persist, you probably should consult a physician to see if there is any bladder or kidney infections or any infections, period. Sometimes there is a psychological reason, but you have to go through those other means first.

Event_Moderator What should a parent do if their child gets chicken pox? At what age is this most common?

Dr_Goldman_Speaker Chicken pox, generally speaking, is a mild disease, especially in children. In very, very rare cases it can cause complications. However, you can avoid all of this by getting a chicken pox vaccine which has been available. And, now, this year it is required to get into school. Chicken pox is self-limiting and goes away after a while. You treat the symptoms with calamine lotion if there is itching and Tylenol for the fever. If the condition persists, you should see a physician in case there are other infections. But, now in California, it is a requirement before the child can enter school to get the chicken pox vaccination.

When I think about the diseases for which we now have vaccines that used to cause complications and death, I think this is wonderful! My kids got chicken pox and they went to school. It's only considered a mild disease. In a very few instances it can be bad.

There is one more thing about chicken pox. If a child gets chicken pox, that child should not be exposed to a senior citizen or a patient who is immune compromised. That's like someone who has AIDS. For someone who has AIDS it could be devastating. So, stay away from an immune compromised individual and stay away from senior citizens because their immune systems may be compromised.

Event_Moderator What are some food recommendations for poor sleep?

Dr_Goldman_Speaker Well, don't eat so much. That's number one. Because I know when my companion and I go out for dinner, she doesn't want to eat too late because it interferes with her sleep. So, don't eat too much food. Number two, stay away from caffeine. Caffeine is present not only in soft drinks, but in coffee, tea and chocolate. So, stay away from caffeine.

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