5 Fun Kid-Friendly Cinco de Mayo Activities

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Although Cinco de Mayo is a minor holiday in Mexico, it has become an American tradition to go all-out when celebrating May 5th. Cinco de Mayo can also be a great opportunity for you to teach your children about the traditions of other cultures. Below are five ways you can educate your children about the culture of Mexico.

Make Your Favorite Foods

Most kids love to cook. Find your kids’ favorite Mexican dishes and create them together as an ode to the holiday. Guacamole is something simple you can make with your child. You can also make tacos or enchiladas if you prefer to make an entire meal together.

Build Your Own Maracas

Traditional Mexican maracas were built using dried gourds and filled with fried beans. To make a modern-day maraca, simply use leftover smoothie containers and fill them with beans, rice, pasta or even beads. To see the full directions, click here.

Break A Piñata

Piñatas are the epitome of a Mexican celebration. Most discount and party stores sell piñatas at a reasonable price. Have your child invite over a few friends and let them take turns hitting the piñata, blindfolded. They will love when the piñata is broken and they are able to grab the candy.

Make Homemade Tortillas

Tortillas are some of the most simple foods to make. Having your child make this basic food with you is a great way to teach him or her the benefit of homemade versus store bought foods.

Learn The Vocabulary

Many kids will learn some Spanish vocabulary in school, but it is nice to review these words with them on Cinco de Mayo. Try beginning with basic terms, like “hello” and “goodbye.” Slowly incorporate numbers, colors and days of the week.

For more up-to-date medical information and healthy tips, continue to check in on the Medical City Children’s Urgent Care blog.

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.

What To Do If Your Child Has Mono

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There’s a common misconception that mononucleosis, typically called mono, can only be spread from kissing. While the virus can be spread that way, there are a handful of other ways to spread it, making young kids susceptible to the virus as well. It’s important to determine if your child is suffering from mono so that he or she can recover, but equally important that the virus not be spread to friends and classmates.

Signs and Symptoms of Mono

If your child has developed mono, he or she will likely begin to experience symptoms 4 to 7 weeks after the virus was contracted. Signs of mono include:

  • Extreme fatigue
  • Fever and sore throat (often with swollen tonsils)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Headaches
  • Sore muscles and weakness
  • Skin rash
  • Abdominal pain
  • Larger-than-normal liver or spleen

While symptoms will usually dissipate within 2 to 4 weeks, fatigue and weakness have been known to last as long as a few months. If your child is suffering from the above symptoms, a doctor will need to perform a blood test and physical exam to properly diagnose the virus.

Treating Mono

The best way to treat mono is to make sure your child gets plenty of rest, especially toward the beginning of the illness when symptoms are at their worst. If your child is suffering from a fever and aching muscles, acetaminophen or ibuprofen may offer some relief. It’s important to note that aspirin should never been given to a child with a viral illness. Make sure your child drinks plenty of fluids as well while recovering. Doctors suggest that children who get mono stay away from sports for at least a month after the symptoms have subsided because the spleen is usually still enlarged and at risk of rupturing.

If you believe your child may be suffering from mono, it’s important a medical professional sees them. At Medical City Children’s Urgent Care, our technicians are highly qualified in pediatrics and will treat your child with the utmost care.

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.

3 Benefits Of A Kid-Friendly Urgent Care

 

pediatric doctor examining little patientOne of the things we love most about children is their adventurous spirit; however, it can also make them extremely accident-prone. When accidents happen, quick medical attention is crucial. Urgent care facilities can be a great alternative to a hospital or pediatrician, which can take days to get into.

Kid-friendly urgent care facilities, like Medical City Children’s Urgent Care, are designed exclusively to meet the needs of children. Children’s urgent care clinics are staffed with pediatric-trained staff that knows exactly what your child needs. Your child will feel completely at home too with plenty of toys, sticker collections and a clinic design that is geared toward children.

Urgent care facilities are often preferred over hospitals and general physicians because the wait is typically much shorter. Most pediatric urgent care facilities have an average wait time of 30 minutes, so a sick or injured child won’t have to sit around.

If you live in Dallas and are in search of a pediatric urgent care facility, consider checking out Medical City Children’s Urgent Care. We have six locations throughout the DFW area with facilities open from 4pm to 11pm on weekdays (Plano weekdays 3pm to 10pm) and 11:30am to 8pm on weekends.

Since 1986, we have been dedicating ourselves to providing best-in-class care in a wide range of pediatric specialties. Our services include:

  • Strep, flu, urine, RSV and mono testing
  • X-rays
  • Lab services (on site and referral)
  • IV fluids
  • Fracture care and splinting
  • Laceration repair (stitches, staples and glue)
  • Sports and camp physicals
  • Breathing treatments
  • Urine catheterization
  • Removal of foreign bodies from nose, ears and skin

If your child is suffering from a non-life threatening illness or injury, it’s important a medical professional sees them. At Medical City Children’s Urgent Care, our technicians are highly qualified in pediatrics and will treat your child with the utmost care.

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.

Do First Aid Kits Expire?

First Aid KitIn order to be prepared when accidents happen, most of us have a first aid kit on hand, or even in the car. Because these kits can tend to be an afterthought, they don’t get updated often. It’s also tough to throw out a half used tube of antibiotic ointment. So how do you know when to toss certain items in your first aid kit and when you can keep others?

Let’s back up a second and take a look at what items should be included in a home first aid kit in the first place. A standard first aid kit should be kept within easy reach (although out of the reach of children) and include the following items:

  • Sterile gauze pads in a variety of sizes
  • Adhesive tape and adhesive bandages in a variety of sizes
  • Antiseptic wipes and antiseptic solution like hydrogen peroxide
  • Hydrocortisone cream
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Tweezers, sharp scissors and safety pins
  • A thermometer
  • Elastic bandages
  • Acetaminophen and ibuprofen
  • For additional suggestions for your first aid kit, read here.

It’s important to know that many of the items above will expire. In fact, many items have expiration dates from 3-5 years after purchase. However, it’s suggested that you review all of the products in your first aid kit on a yearly basis to avoid items expiring or becoming less effective.

Most medications will be marked with an expiration date on them. Typically these dates can be found on one end of the packet or tube. These dates are usually an indication of how long the manufacturer feels comfortable that the product will be effective or sterile.

Slightly less easy to identify is the expiration of dressing and bandages. There are usually no expiration dates on these items, but you can inspect them by checking non-sterile gauze pads or rolls for the smell of mildew and signs of discoloration. Sterile versions of these items can be more difficult to inspect, so it’s recommended you look at the packaging to search for discoloration and signs of fading.

You can read more about first aid kit expiration here. For more up-to-date medical information and healthy tips, continue to check in on the Medical City Children’s Urgent Care blog.

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 Are X-Rays Needed?

DSC_4858Used for decades as a way to help doctors see inside the human body without the need for an incision, X-rays can help doctors diagnose, monitor and treat a number of medical conditions. For children, X-rays can be unknown and scary. If your child is in need of an imaging test, it’s best if you can explain what’s happening beforehand to help alleviate fears. Here are some important facts that you can share with your child before he or she gets an X-ray.

Why Are X-rays Performed?

Doctors may recommend an X-ray if they need to examine an area where your child is experiencing pain, monitor the progression of a disease or see how well a prescribed treatment is working. There are a number of other conditions that may require an X-Ray as well, including:

  • Bone cancer
  • Enlarged heart
  • Blocked blood vessels
  • Conditions affecting the lungs
  • Digestive issues
  • Fractures
  • Infections
  • Tooth decay
  • Retrieval of a swallowed foreign object

How Should Your Child Prepare for an X-ray?

Because X-rays are fairly standard procedures, there aren’t any special steps to take for preparation in most cases. If your child’s doctor is examining an area that may be restricted by clothing, your child should wear loose, comfortable clothing. In some instances, your child may be asked to wear a hospital gown. A lead apron may be worn to protect him or her from radiation during the X-ray process.

How Is an X-ray Performed?

Your child will be directed by a technician, who will let him or her know how to position themselves to make sure the X-ray comes out clearly. Your child may be asked to lie, sit or stand in a variety of positions, depending on the area that needs to be examined. It’s important that your child remain still while the images are being taken for the clearest images possible.

If your child is in need of an imaging test, consider taking him or her to Medical City Children’s Urgent Care. At Medical City Children’s Urgent Care, our technicians are highly qualified in pediatrics and will treat your child with the utmost care.

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.

Identifying Allergies In Infants

iStock-504046036.jpgIt’s easy to know when an older child is suffering from allergies because they can tell you themselves. However, it can be much more difficult to diagnose allergies in infants. In fact, many parents will misidentify allergy symptoms, such as a runny nose or upset stomach, as a cold or simply a fussy baby.

So how can you tell if your infant is suffering from allergies or a cold?

  • Thin, watery nasal discharge may indicate allergies, while a runny nose accompanied by cloudy nasal discharge and a fever is likely to be a cold.
  • Difficulty getting rid of a cough can be symptomatic of allergies. Because the muscles of an infant’s airways have spasms and swell when he or she is suffering from allergies, it can lead to a dry hacking cough. This can easily be misdiagnosed as a lower respiratory tract infection, so it’s important to note other symptoms your infant is experiencing with this.
  • Although newborns are prone to rashes, they usually stop around 2 or 3 months of age, which is around the same time allergic rashes tend to appear. Atopic dermatitis, or eczema, is the most common allergic rash. This is a red, scaly rash that usually appears on the cheeks, torso, arms and legs of babies.
  • Although a virus can cause vomiting, diarrhea and gassiness, these can also be symptoms of allergies. If your infant has an environmental allergy, he or she may swallow phlegm, which can irritate the stomach.

If you believe your infant is suffering from allergy symptoms, consider a skin moisturizer for rashes or an oral antihistamine, such as Benadryl, for other symptoms. If symptoms persist, consider taking him or her to see a medical professional for a proper diagnosis. At Medical City Children’s Urgent Care, our technicians are highly qualified in pediatrics and will treat your child with the utmost care.

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 Children To Pets

iStock-185069852.jpgGetting a new pet can be an exciting time for the whole family. Whether it’s a cat, dog or hamster, children love gaining a new family member. But introducing your child to the new pet can be a challenge. It’s important to educate yourself on the best way to bring a new animal into the family–for both your child and the pets.

Always Be Around

When first introducing a new pet into the family, you should be present any time your child is around the dog, cat, etc. While it’s OK to stay in the background, you should be able to observe what’s going on at all times.

Teach Personal Space

It’s important that your child is respectful of your pet’s personal space. Even the nicest animal can snap when it feels threatened. Your child should know to never bother your pet when he or she is eating, chewing a bone, etc. Also, let your child know what signs of aggression look like.

Lead By Example

One of the best ways your child can learn how to treat animals is by seeing what you do. Show compassion and patience with your new pet and your child will follow. This is also a great way for your child to learn how to properly care for an animal.

Adopt Don’t Shop

While that perfect cute puppy or kitten may be tempting, remember there are more animals in shelters than you could even imagine. Consider taking your child to the local animal shelter or rescue group facility so you can save a life together. Not only is this a great thing to do for your pet, but it’s a great lesson for your child as well.

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.