Newborn/Infant

 

Is breast-feeding my baby better than formula?
Yes! The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies be breast-fed for six to 12 months. Breast-fed babies have fewer illnesses because human milk transfers to the infant a mother's antibodies to prevent disease. About 80 percent of the cells in breast milk are macrophages, cells that kill bacteria, fungi and viruses. Breast-fed babies are protected, in varying degrees, from a number of illnesses, including pneumonia, botulism, bronchitis, staphylococcal infections, influenza, ear infections, and German measles. Furthermore, mothers produce antibodies to whatever disease is present in their environment, making their milk custom-designed to fight the diseases their babies are exposed to as well. Studies suggest that there are also psychological benefits such as the comfort your child experiences from holding him or her up close while nursing. Few viruses can pass through breast milk, however. HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is one of them. Women who are HIV positive should not breast-feed. Each case must be evaluated on an individual basis with your doctor.

 


 

My child has a fever. What should I do?
Fever is the body's natural response to a variety of conditions, such as infection. Generally, if the fever is mild and no other problems are present, no medical treatment is required. Drink fluids to prevent dehydration and rest. Fever is not a disease, instead, it is a symptom that can accompany many childhood illnesses, especially infections.

In general, you should call your pediatrician if your infant under three months of age has:

  • a rectal temperature above 100.4° F,
  • if your infant aged 3-6 months has a temperature above 101° F,
  • or if an infant above 6 months has a temperature above 104° F.


For most older children, you should worry less about the number on the thermometer, and more about the way your child looks or feels. Generally, if your child has a low grade fever, but is alert, active and playful, is not having difficulty breathing, and is eating and sleeping well, you will not need to treat the fever with medicine. Treatment of a fever can include 'Over the counter' fever reducers including products that contain acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil). If your child has an infection, using a fever reducer will not help your child to get better any faster, but they will probably make him feel better.

Things to avoid when your child has a fever include:
  • Ignoring any fever in an infant under three months of age.
  • Giving your child a sponge bath with alcohol.
  • Using cold or hot water when giving your child a sponge bath for a persistent fever. Use lukewarm water instead.
Most fevers are caused by infections, such as upper respiratory infections, ear infection, urinary tract infections, strep throat, and many types of viral illnesses, but there are other causes of fever that aren't caused by infections.

 


 

What can I do to comfort my baby during teething?
Some babies may have sore or tender gums when teeth begin to grow. Gently rubbing your child’s gum with a clean finger, a small, cool spoon or a wet gauze pad can help. Your dentist or pediatrician may recommend a pacifier, teething ring or a special numbing gel for the gums. Acetaminophen or Ibuprofen can help relieve nighttime discomfort.

 


 

What is the cause of 'baby bottle tooth decay'?
Decay occurs when sweet liquids are left clinging to an infants' teeth for long periods. Examples of these liquids include milk, juice, and formula. The best way to prevent it is to refrain from giving your children bottles at bedtime, and by practicing good brushing habits. Please consult your childs dentist for more information.

 


 

When does a child's fever require medical attention?
If a child experiences any of the symptoms or conditions below, get medical help:

  • Lethargic
  • Has difficulty breathing
  • Is under 3 months of age
  • Has a stiff neck
  • Has purple spots on the skin
  • Has a seizure
  • If the fever exceeds 103 degrees Fahrenheit
  • If the fever persists longer than 24 hours even with treatment, or is accompanied by other symptoms (like vomiting)

 


 

When should I schedule my newborns first appointment?
In general, we suggest a weight check in 3 to 5 days and post hospital check at 2 weeks of age.

 


 

When should my baby get his/her first immunization?
Certain vaccines are most effective at certain stages in your childs life. The CDC has a chart available for what ages vaccines are recommended.Click Here to view.