When should you call a doctor?

By Elizabeth Temple - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) – Children see the doctor for checkups, colds, bumps and bruises, but can you guess the most common reason? The answer is ear aches and more than 5 million children are diagnosed every year with the ailment.

An estimated 8 million kids in America have some hearing loss, which can stem from chronic ear infections. Parents can agonize over whether to call a doctor or just treat their child at home for this type of problem. Dr. Kipp Ardoin, a pediatrician from The Children's Clinic of Southwest Louisiana, says parents are always the best judge.

"When you feel as a parent that the pain is unbearable or if they're having a lot of high fever and you really don't know what the cause is...and they're not getting any better," Said Dr. Ardoin about when to call a physician.

In the meantime, over the counter medications can help with the pain.

"There are not really a lot of home remedies, but you can soothe the individual with Tylenol or Motrin and that will also help with the fever," said Dr. Ardoin.

Another common pain can plague children into their teens: headaches. 75% to 80% of teens aged 15 to 18 have headaches. Most are tension headaches caused by stress, but if the pain is more severe, it could be migraines.

"There is no real cause of migraine headaches," said Dr. Ardoin.

If those aches and pains weren't enough for kids to endure, attention problems at school could bring grades down if untreated.

"Screening starts between the age of 6 and 12, however, kids with ADHD will have signs and symptoms before the age of 7," said Dr. Ardoin.

He says that many children can become squirmy or hyper, but children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, ADHD, will be noticeably more active than classmates their same age.

For more information or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ardoin call The Children's Clinic at 337-478-6480.

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