Introducing Children To Exercise

Group of kids running over grass on a sunny dayEncouraging your child to participate in physical activities is a great way to get him or her familiar with exercise. In fact, studies show that when your child participates in various activities, he or she is less likely to experience an overuse injury. It is recommended that your child gets at least an hour of exercise each day. For children, this may appear in the form of running around or playing outdoors.

So how do you introduce your child to exercise? It depends on the age. What may work for a younger child might not be successful with a teenager.

 5 Years Old And Under

Team sports are a great way for young children to get involved in exercise. At this age, it’s important for sports to be fun and not a competition. Sports like soccer, basketball and T-ball are excellent for children five and under.

Ages 6 To 8 Years Old

As children get older, their skills progress and activities like gymnastics and riding a bike become easier. This is a great time to expose your child to a variety of physical activities so they can determine what’s the best fit.

Ages 9 to 14 Years Old

This is the age range where children gain better hand-eye coordination. They also tend to become more competitive at this age, so it’s OK to encourage competition, as long as it’s friendly. Discourage heavy weight lifting and encourage lighter strength training, such as stretchy tubes and bands.

Ages 15 And Up

At this age, children may begin to express interest in endurance activities, such as triathlons or marathons. It’s important for your child to focus on proper training to avoid injury. Continue to encourage your child to be active, which will help build a healthy foundation for exercise moving forward.

Continue to check in on the Medical City Children’s Urgent Care blog for more kid-friendly activities, healthy living tips and medical information. We love to make your life as a parent as easy as possible!

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you or your child.

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4 Fun After-School Activities

Fruit dessert for child

By the time summer is done, kids (and parents) are often ready for school to return. However, once school is out each day, your child will likely be looking for something to keep busy. While homework needs to be completed, there are also a number of fun after-school activities that your child can enjoy as an alternative to sitting in front of the TV all afternoon and evening.

Get Creative With Snack Art

Most kids get hungry after school. Have your child help out with their after-school snack by creating fun snack art. A few examples are sandwiches cut by cookie cutters, fun creatures made from hard-boiled eggs and healthy dips served with animal crackers.

Build An Art Gallery

Have your child get creative outside with sidewalk chalk. Offer suggestions for an artwork theme, such as family members, favorite animals, etc. and let your child go crazy. Invite neighbors over to check it out and vote on their favorite drawings.

Do Something Nice For A Friend

Decide on a friend or neighbor who is in need and do something nice for him or her. Whether you water the plants of an out-of-town neighbor, bake cookies for a friend who’s been sick or simply go visit an assisted living home for senior citizens, teaching your son or daughter to give of their time is a great activity and life lesson.

Go Exploring

Take a walk to a new park or go on a bike ride to the library on a different path. Wherever you decide to explore, make sure it’s somewhere new and exciting that will get your child wanting to be outdoors.

For more information on family safety, helpful health tips and up-to-date medical information, check back in on the Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care blog regularly. We are also open seven days a week to serve you when medical attention is needed for your child. 

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you or your child.

Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care Dallas Hosts Back-To-School Bash

DallasNWH_9391.jpgAs you and your kids prepare for school to start back up, it’s essential you pack in as many fun events as possible before summer winds down. To celebrate the new school year, Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care will host a back-to-school bash at the Dallas location. The bash is the perfect event to transition from summer to the school year on a high note!

This event will feature carnival games, face painting, balloon animals and a fire truck tour for the kids. You and your children will also have the opportunity to tour the clinic, meet the doctors and hang with Leo the Lion. Be sure to come hungry to enjoy Mimi’s Pizza!

Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care will also be offering discounted school physicals at only $25 for those needing a checkup before the school year begins.

The back-to-school bash will take place at the Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care Dallas location, 6805 W Northwest Hwy. Dallas, TX 75225, on Saturday, August 20 from 10 am to 1 pm. Many of the events will take place outdoors, so be sure to dress appropriately and wear sunscreen.

Get your free ticket here: http://bit.ly/2aIJWSB

If you have school-aged children, check back in on the Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care blog regularly throughout the school year for tips on keeping your kids healthy and to keep yourself current on medical information. At Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care, we provide quick, efficient service so you can avoid the typical hassle of a doctor’s visit.

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you or your child.

5 Healthy Summer Treats For Your Kids

Mother and daughter smiling and eating breakfast

With kids out of school and constantly on the go during the summer, it’s smart to have healthy treats on hand for them whenever hunger strikes. It’s often tough to make snacks that are both healthy and enjoyable to children, but we’ve got a few easy treats that your kids are sure to love.

Raspberry Cheesecake Freezer Pops

Plain Greek yogurt and frozen raspberries are the main ingredients in this healthy frozen treat. The fresh lemon juice, vanilla and honey make this treat taste just like cheesecake.

Homemade Protein Bars

These low-sugar treats are an easy grab-and-go treat that kids love. Peanut butter, protein powder, wheat germ and almonds add plenty of protein to this snack, while honey and oatmeal add texture and natural sweetness.  These protein bars can also double as no bake cookies!

Fruit and Cheese Kabobs

One of the easiest healthy snacks around is fruit and cheese kabobs. Simply dice your child’s favorite cheese into larger pieces, cut fruit into bite-size pieces and place a kabob (wooden is preferable) through the middle of each piece until you’ve filled the entire kabob. To make the kabobs even more fun, consider using a cookie cutter to make the fruit and cheese into fun shapes.

Homemade Pizza Bites

For a quick and hearty snack, simply slice English muffins in half, spoon some pizza sauce on top of each half and top the muffins off with mozzarella cheese and other fun and healthy toppings. These muffins only need to be baked for 10 minutes and cooled for five minutes before your child can enjoy.

Frozen Fruit

During the hot summer, nothing tastes better than a cold treat. Pop grapes or slices of banana into the freezer for a super easy and naturally sweet snack.

By having healthy snacks available for your kids during the summer, they will be more likely to reach for healthy foods on their own as well. For more healthy tips and up-to-date medical information, check back in on the Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care blog regularly. 

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you or your child.

Introducing Your Child to Team Sports

Boys_SoccerTeam

Perhaps your child has been asking to join a sports team or you have high hopes of passing down your passion for a certain sport. Whatever the reason, introducing your child to team sports is an excellent way to develop their social skills and help them learn how to work together as a team. When introducing your child to team sports, there are several things that should be considered:

  • Wait until the time is right. Although you may be tempted to sign your child up for sports, specifically something competitive, at a young age, it’s important that you don’t push them when they’re not ready. Children who begin playing competitive sports at a younger age are more likely to burn out or feel forced into playing something they may not enjoy.
  • Offer your child options. While your child is still young, allow him or her to participate in different sports and different positions so he or she can choose what they enjoy most. Doing this also reduces the risk of injury due to overuse of a particular muscle.
  • Participate when possible. Try to stay involved with the team, especially if your child is very young. This will help assure your child that you are not simply dropping him or her off at practice, games, etc. Perhaps your child’s team is looking for a team mom or assistant coach, so you can participate to the level you feel comfortable.
  • Remember it’s just a game. As your child gets older and the league gets more competitive, it’s important to keep in mind that it’s only a game. Some parents tend to get over-enthusiastic and put unnecessary pressure on their children. Keep your distance, especially when it comes to games, and try to encourage your child when you can.

If your child is in need of a sports physical or is injured during practice or a game, consider Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care. We provide quick, efficient service so you can avoid the typical hassle of a doctor’s visit.

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you or your child.

 

How to Get Picky Eaters to Eat Healthy

Healthy Dinner.jpgYou’ve tried everything, but your child is still refusing to eat what you put on his or her plate. Perhaps your child would rather eat nothing than something healthy. As frustrating as this may be, there are a few ways you can prevent mealtime mayhem with your child.

Be respectful. Although it may seem counterintuitive, sometimes it’s best if you don’t force your child to eat a meal or snack. Arguing against your child’s wishes will only create a power struggle and cause your child to associate food with anxiety and emotion. Instead, offer small portions and allow your child to ask for more if he or she is still hungry.

Be regular. Keeping meals and snacks consistent is important. Try to serve meals and snacks around the same time each day. This will help your child to learn that snacks are available if needed and that he or she does not need to overeat at meals.

Be patient. While getting your child to try new foods can be very frustrating, it’s important to remain patient. Repeated exposure is often key before a child is willing to fully try a new food. Be encouraging and engage your child by talking about the food’s color, shape, texture, etc. instead of focusing on taste.

Be creative. No one enjoys boring foods, especially not kids. Instead of serving plain broccoli and carrots, consider including a favorite dip or sauce. Use cookie cutters to create fun shapes so your child learns that healthy foods can still be fun. Brightly colored foods also add some fun to your child’s plate.

If you have questions or concerns about your child’s diet, consider speaking with a professional. Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care has medical professionals who would love to talk with you. Designed exclusively to meet the needs of children, Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care provides quick, efficient service so you can avoid the typical hassle of a doctor’s visit.

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you or your child.

When to Seek Help for your Child’s Digestive Trouble

iStock_000034696976_Large.jpgAs an adult, it’s obvious when someone is suffering from a legitimate digestive issue. Not only can they identify stomach pain, they also can determine what food causes this pain and avoid eating it. However, children who suffer from digestive trouble can be harder to diagnose. Because children are generally picky eaters, it’s tough to know what may be causing them problems.

Knowing when to seek medical care about your child’s digestive issues is important in getting him or her back on the road to recovery and a healthy diet.

  • If your child’s digestive issues include vomiting or diarrhea, always call your pediatrician or a local urgent care center immediately. While there are many illnesses that can result in these symptoms, any time your child has vomited more than once, you notice blood or bile in their vomit or they can’t keep down liquids, you should call a doctor.
  • On the other end of the spectrum, constipation can also be means for a doctor visit. Symptoms of constipation include abdominal pain, cramping of the stomach, painful bowel movements and obvious blockage of bowel movement.
  • Severe abdominal pain that is accompanied by bloating, cramping, nausea or general discomfort should be observed by a doctor, especially if it occurs for more than two weeks.
  • Pickier-than-normal eating is a major sign for concern. Because you know your child’s likes and dislikes, you should be able to pick up on increased food avoidance. Telltale signs of diet issues include difficulty gaining weight, heartburn after meals and abdominal pain.

If you think your child may be suffering from digestive trouble, it’s a good idea to get him or her checked out to be safe. For a full medical evaluation, visit Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care to speak with a trained health expert. Designed exclusively to meet the needs of children, Medical City Children’s Hospital Urgent Care provides quick, efficient service so you can avoid the typical hassle of a doctor’s visit. Be sure to use the online check in to avoid the waiting room.

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you.