Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!! Remember to be SAFE!

Halloween is an exciting time of year for kids. Here are some tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to help ensure they have a safe holiday.

All Dressed Up:

  • Plan costumes that are bright and reflective. Make sure that shoes fit well and that costumes are short enough to prevent tripping, entanglement or contact with flame.
  • Consider adding reflective tape or striping to costumes and Trick-or-Treat bags for greater visibility.
  • Because masks can limit or block eyesight, consider non-toxic makeup and decorative hats as safer alternatives. Hats should fit properly to prevent them from sliding over eyes.
  • When shopping for costumes, wigs and accessories look for and purchase those with a label clearly indicating they are flame resistant.
  • If a sword, cane, or stick is a part of your child's costume, make sure it is not sharp or too long. A child may be easily hurt by these accessories if he stumbles or trips.
  • Obtain flashlights with fresh batteries for all children and their escorts.
  • Do not use decorative contact lenses without an eye examination and a prescription from an eye care professional. While the packaging on decorative lenses will often make claims such as “one size fits all,” or “no need to see an eye specialist,” obtaining decorative contact lenses without a prescription is both dangerous and illegal. This can cause pain, inflammation, and serious eye disorders and infections, which may lead to permanent vision loss.
  • Teach children how to call 9-1-1 (or their local emergency number) if they have an emergency or become lost.

Carving a Niche:

  • Small children should never carve pumpkins. Children can draw a face with markers. Then parents can do the cutting.
  • Consider using a flashlight or glow stick instead of a candle to light your pumpkin. If you do use a candle, a votive candle is safest.
  • Candlelit pumpkins should be placed on a sturdy table, away from curtains and other flammable objects, and should never be left unattended.

Home Safe Home:

  • To keep homes safe for visiting trick-or-treaters, parents should remove from the porch and front yard anything a child could trip over such as garden hoses, toys, bikes and lawn decorations.
  • Parents should check outdoor lights and replace burned-out bulbs.
  • Wet leaves should be swept from sidewalks and steps.
  • Restrain pets so they do not inadvertently jump on or bite a trick-or-treater.

On the Trick-or-Treat Trail:

  • A parent or responsible adult should always accompany young children on their neighborhood rounds.
  • If your older children are going alone, plan and review the route that is acceptable to you. Agree on a specific time when they should return home.
  • Only go to homes with a porch light on and never enter a home or car for a treat.
  • Because pedestrian injuries are the most common injuries to children on Halloween, remind trick-or-treaters:
    • Stay in a group and communicate where they will be going.
    • Remember reflective tape for costumes and trick-or-treat bags. 
    • Carry a cell phone for quick communication.
    • Remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk.
    • If no sidewalk is available, walk at the far edge of the roadway facing traffic.
    • Never cut across yards or use alleys.
    • Only cross the street as a group in established crosswalks (as recognized by local custom). Never cross between parked cars or out driveways.
    • Don't assume the right of way. Motorists may have trouble seeing trick-or-treaters. Just because one car stops, doesn't mean others will!
  • Law enforcement authorities should be notified immediately of any suspicious or unlawful activity.

Healthy Halloween:

  • A good meal prior to parties and trick-or-treating will discourage youngsters from filling up on Halloween treats.
  • Consider purchasing non-food treats for those who visit your home, such as coloring books or pens and pencils.
  • Wait until children are home to sort and check treats. Though tampering is rare, a responsible adult should closely examine all treats and throw away any spoiled, unwrapped or suspicious items.
  • Try to ration treats for the days following Halloween

Thursday, October 10, 2013

AAP-Warning about decorative contact lens

When 14-year-old Robyn and her friends saw decorative contact lenses for sale at a convenience store, they thought they would be a fun way to change their looks. Unfortunately, Robyn ended up with a serious eye infection. When her eye healed, the scar left her partially blind. She had to have surgery on her eye to be able to see again.

“All contact lenses have risk, corrective or decorative,” said Thomas Steinemann, M.D., the eye doctor who treated Robyn. “The risk is infection. The risk is increased if you don’t take care of your lenses; the risk is increased if you sleep in your lenses; the risk is increased if you share your lenses.”
Actors and musicians with decorative contact lenses are everywhere, it seems. From Lady Gaga to Twilight, changing the look of their eyes with decorative contact lenses is the latest craze. As Halloween nears, costume shops begin to sell the contacts, too. There are plenty of styles to choose from: colored lenses, shapes, spirals, even white. But most people do not know that these lenses are not legal. They have dye in them that can cause problems. One size does not fit everyone.
This can stop air from getting to the eye, and trap germs underneath.

Anyone who wants to wear decorative lenses should get them from an eye care professional and be measured first. The eye doctor will write a prescription for lenses that are made to fit your eyes. These contacts are approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Contacts that are bought from a store or online without a prescription are not. Wearing these decorative contacts can cause:
• a scratched eye (corneal abrasion),
• infections from bacteria, viruses, parasites or funguses, and
• allergic reactions.
Some problems can cause blindness in hours. Parents should keep an eye on any child who wears contacts, decorative or prescription. Problems include redness and pain, light sensitivity, and tearing or drainage from the eye, said Dr. Steinemann. “If it hurts, get it out and see an eye care
professional right away.”

— Trisha Korioth
Only buy decorative lenses with a prescription

**AAP statement

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Flu shots are here!!

It is that time again to book your appointment for your FLU SHOT or FLU MIST! This year we are offering the Quadrivalent Flu Shot and Mist. The new Quadrivalent provides protection against additional flu strains. We are booking appointments now and they are filling up fast. We will not be doing Flu walk in's and you must schedule and appointment. See you soon!