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Childhood Depression and Anxiety- Don’t overlook these important signs!

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Childhood Depression and Anxiety
I would like to discuss a touchy subject in pediatrics. Us adults
think that Lexapro or Prozac should be in the water because depression
and anxiety is so rampant with our hectic lives and numerous
stressors. However, it is also possible for children to have clinical
depression and anxiety. The way kids behave when mood is disordered is
different than that of adults and also varies according to age group.
Look for the following signs and take your child to a pediatric
psychiatrist or pediatrician:
Preschool children ( to thrive. disruptive behaviors, social withdrawal, decreased enjoyment.
developmental delay or regression in milestones.
school-aged children (6-12y): headaches, stomachaches and appetite changes.
irritability, boredom, apathy, fatigue, emotional outbursts, negative
self-statements, enjoyment (observed self-reported). worsening grades,
ability concentrate at school (this is often mistaken
for adhd).
adolescents (>13 years): Headaches, stomachaches, sleep and appetite
changes. Apathy, boredom, social isolation increased sexual activity
(think of sexual or physical abuse as well here), drug use (commonly
marijuana, smoking and alcohol), aggression, self-injurious behavior
(hitting self, cutting). Worsening grades, decreased ability to
concentrate at school.
RED FLAGS: If your child says that they want to hurt themselves, kill
themselves or hurt others please take them to the ER or to be seen by
their doctor right away for suicidal ideation assessment.
Furthermore, it is important that the child be seen by a therapist and
psychiatrist. One is for talk therapy and the other is for possibly
starting medication.

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Bed Wetting Advice | Dafna Ahdoot M.D.

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Bedwetting is a common problem in many children. It can be embarrassing for the child and frustrating for the parent. However, there are a few things that parents should keep in mind when it comes to a child that wets the bed.

One thing parents should keep in mind is that their child more than likely isn’t wetting the bed on purpose. There’s not really a cut off age for children to stop bedwetting. While it’s common for children under 6, some kids wet the bed sporadically into their teen years. If your child is wetting their bed after the age of 6, there may be an underlying issue. They can be stressed or anxious about a recent change at home or at school. They may also have a medical problem such as a urinary tract infection or simply an overactive bladder. Talk to your child to see if there’s something bothering them, and be sure to inform your pediatrician, as they can run tests to see if it’s more to the problem. In some cases if a child is drinking large amounts of water, urinating frequently and also feeling hungry (the medical triad known as polydipsia, polyuria and polyphagia) he or she should be worked up for type I diabetes mellitus.

While everyone’s dealing with this issue, there are a few lifestyle changes that can be made towards stopping bedwetting or at least working towards it stopping:

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Childhood Obesity Advice

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Childhood obesity is a major problem and can cause many issues along the road. Some people admire chubby children, but the cuteness does not take away the potential health risks such as asthma, diabetes, high cholesterol and low self-esteem. So what can parents do to fight child obesity in their home?

  • Get the whole family involved: It’s a lot harder to change when you’re the only one doing it. If you want your children to be healthy, everyone in the family should be on the journey together. Everyone should eat the same meals, and there should be schedule family exercise time. A family that plays together stays together.
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List of Things to Buy for New Baby

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  • Crib & mattress. Linens & bumpers
  • Bodysuits
  • Booties and socks
  • Burp cloths
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Picky Eater Advice

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Parents who of toddlers have probably experienced a problem at the dinner table: their children are picky eaters. While the parents prefer their child eat their carrots and broccoli, the children instead demand a diet of chicken nuggets and french fries. Dinner time doesn’t always have to be a battle. Here are a few tips to handling your picky eater:

  • Establish a routine: Some parents want their children to eat at a certain time, and the child responds “I’m not hungry.” It’s best to establish a routine so that the child can be used to eating at a certain time. If you’re around for breakfast time, make sure they have breakfast at the same time, including weekends.
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Since my kids were born (they are 8 yrs old),we have never had anyone give us as much help or time as Dr. Ahdoot has given us. She is the kind of doctor who takes a personal interest in each patient. She was always available and made sure my kids were well taken care of... read more read more

Dr. Dafna Ahdoot has recently joined the Practice at Tarzana Pediatric Medical Group and I'm so glad she is there. She has been helping with my two kids who have reactive airway disease and communicating with me by phone and email. I feel taken care of... read more read more