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Mantachie School Students and Staff Benefit from School-Based Clinic

Mantachie School Students and Staff Benefit from School-Based Clinic

Mantachie School Based Clinic

The opening of a school-based health clinic in November at Mantachie schools represented more than a year’s worth of work. The clinic, staffed by Amy Floyd, FNP-C, and Casey Pounds, MA, sees both children and school staff. Hours of operation run from 7:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. during school days.

School-based health centers started in 1970, but gained popularity in the 1990s. Today, more than 2000 SBHCs care for the health of more than two million students.

Students with access to school-based clinics miss fewer days of school due to illness. More days in the classroom along with better overall health means these students retain more knowledge and score better on tests.

Parents benefit from school-based clinics because they miss fewer days of work to attend appointments with their children. Increased work attendance and productivity improves a family’s financial outlook.

Our school-based clinic treats the usual urgent care illnesses such as colds, sinus infections, strep throat, and the flu, as well as managing health conditions like diabetes. Providers may also conduct vision and hearing screenings for students. Students experiencing depression or other mental illness may receive earlier intervention when a medical provider is on campus every day.

The benefits of consistent health care for students stretch into a lifetime of healthy choices, which benefits the entire family and community.

To be seen in the school-based clinic, parents and staff must complete the permission and insurance form available in the school office. The clinic bills visits to the student’s Medicaid or private insurance.   

Study Shows Long Term Health Risks from Measles

girl in tree, measles, vaccines

As the vaccine debate rages among parents, more studies show the effects of measles may last long after a patient recovers. Parents who choose not to vaccinate their children often cite the measles symptoms as one reason vaccinations may not be worth the perceived risks. A new study from the Netherlands suggests patient’s risks continue long after they recover from the initial illness.

Measles begins with a high fever 10-12 days after exposure to the virus. A cough, runny nose, red watery eyes, and white spots in the mouth may accompany the fever. A few days later a rash appears on the face and neck. The rash spreads over the entire body in the next 3 days. The rash lasts 5-6 days.

The new study shows a decreased immunity to other viruses and infections after the measles rash fades. The virus appears to wipe out the immune system’s memory. Illnesses the person had previously built immunity to were no longer recognized. The measles effect made patients even more susceptible to those illnesses and their dangerous complications. While the immune system still works, it must relearn all the viruses it one recognized.

Infants who are not yet old enough for the vaccine, children under age 5, and adults over age 30 are most susceptible to other complications of measles such as ear infections, diarrhea, and dehydration.

Yet another reason to protect our children with the MMR vaccine. If you have questions or concerns about vaccines and your child, schedule a wellness visit with one of our providers to discuss how best to protect your family’s health.

Let’s Talk Infant Immunizations

Infant Immunizations Week

The last week of April we recognize as National Infant Immunizations Week. We’ve heard a lot of discussion about vaccines in the news lately and want to provide you with the most information possible. Vaccinations are designed to protect not only your child from serious diseases but to protect those with compromised immune systems who are unable to receive the vaccine themselves.

You can find a lot of information online, but your child’s medical provider offers the best information on immunizations. Seeing the same physician or nurse practitioner for your child’s wellness exams and illnesses supplies the provider a complete history and understanding of your child’s health. Together you and your child’s health provider can make the best decisions for your child.

What illnesses do childhood vaccines protect against?

The typical course of vaccines covers fourteen illnesses:

  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Diphtheria
  • Hib Disease (Haemophilus influenzae type b)
  • Pertussis
  • Pneumococcal Disease
  • Polio
  • Influenza (flu)
  • Measles
  • Mumps
  • Rotavirus
  • Rubella (German Measles)
  • Tetanus
  • Varicella (Chickenpox)

If you’re like most Americans, you’ve never heard of some of these illnesses and have never known anyone who ever experienced many of them. You can thank vaccines for that protection. Want to know more about each of these diseases? Check out this article which describes each disease and potential complications.

Why do my children receive so many vaccines at one time?

Infant immunizations and childhood vaccines are scheduled to be given when a child is most at risk of developing the disease and when a child’s body is most responsive to developing protection after the vaccine is given. Some vaccines must be given in multiple doses spaced at specific intervals to create and maintain full, optimum protection.

What’s the recommended infant immunizations schedule for children?

The CDC provides informative guides for when you should expect your child to receive specific vaccines. You should also receive an updated vaccination record when your child has new vaccines.

Download the CDC’s guide in English

Download the CDC’s guide in Spanish

Where can I have my child vaccinated?

While some pharmacies offer certain vaccines for adults, it’s important to schedule time with your child’s regular medical provider for their vaccines.

Mantachie Rural Health Care, Inc., offers vaccines to children who are covered under Medicaid or private insurance as well as children who do not have insurance. We’re also part of the federally funded Vaccines for Children program which offers vaccines at no cost to children who might not be vaccinated due to an inability to pay.

If your child has received vaccinations at another clinic, we are able to pull those reports from our office which ensures your child receives the correct vaccines in the right order.

Make an appointment for your child’s next vaccines by calling our office at (662) 282-4226.

Does my child need a sports physical in Mississippi?

youth sports physical mississippi, girl playing tennis

Springs sports swung into action weeks ago while summer and fall sports prepare for tryouts, sign-ups, and early practices. In Mississippi, March and April present beautiful months (when it doesn’t rain every day) where you can find a sports competition or practice of just about any sport you like. If your child plans to participate in a new season of sports or a new sport altogether, read on to learn about how a sports physical isn’t just necessary but could save their life.

What’s the difference between a sports physical and an annual wellness exam?

A sports physical focuses on the aspects of your child most likely to be affected by active play. These aspects include your child’s joints, breathing, heart rate, blood pressure, etc. Annual wellness exams cover a broader spectrum of your child’s wellbeing. This exam often includes blood and urine tests, questions about your child’s academic performance, nutrition, sleep habits and behavior.

Each type of exam focuses on a specific aspect of your child’s wellbeing and both are necessary. The Mississippi High School Athletic Association has a Mississippi Athletic Participation Form your school will hand out for your child’s provider to complete. This exam should catch major health issues that might affect your child’s participation. However, it will not catch other problems only discovered through an annual exam.

Annual exams, on the other hand, may not discuss injury prevention for your child’s sports or how to prevent dehydration or overuse. For your child’s healthiest future, ensure your child receives both exams.

Who should complete my child’s sports physical?

Many schools hold physical days on campus. However, others may drive student-athletes off campus to low or no cost physical days. During these events, physicians or nurse practitioners see hundreds of athletes. Your child will receive a quality sports physical at a low cost in a convenient way, making these events very popular. If your child is unable to participate in these events, your regular medical providers can provide the same service at a reasonable fee.

A benefit to having your child’s regular provider perform the sports physical is a continuity of care. That means one provider who knows your child’s medical history can provide care specifically for your child in a less rushed atmosphere. Continuity of care is especially important if your child has an illness that can affect their athletic performance. Some of those illnesses include asthma, allergies to stinging insects, diabetes or other illnesses.

When should my child have a sports physical?

Most schools require a physical every calendar year. As your child grows they will experience different challenges and health risks. A physical each year screens for those changes. We suggest your child complete their physical at least six weeks prior to starting a new activity. If your provider notices a problem and refers your child to a specialist you have time to see the specialist and determine treatment (if needed) before the start of tryouts, practice or games.

School physicals usually begin as students enter the seventh grade. Children participating in sports earlier than this age should also undergo a sports physical to ensure they are performing at their optimum best.

What does a sports physical involve?

During a sports physical, your provider evaluates your child’s:

  • Medical history
  • Family history
  • Height and weight assessment
  • Vision exam
  • Musculoskeletal exam
  • Cardiac screening (pulse rate and blood pressure)

What if they find a problem?

Most sports physicals result in an approved form after a 20-30 minute visit with your provider. If your child’s physical returns an issue, your provider will likely refer your child to a specialist. It could be something as simple as a referral to an optometrist for glasses or a recheck of blood pressure in a week or two.

Providers rarely bar children completely from playing a specific sport. The majority of issues found in a sports physical can be treated in a way that allows your child to continue participation.

What should we bring for the exam?

Be prepared to complete information on your family history of illnesses and your child’s medical history. This includes hospitalizations, injuries, and surgeries. Remember to bring a list of all your child’s regular medications. If your child wears glasses make sure they have those for the exam.

In short, if your child intends to participate in a sport this summer or fall, now’s the time to schedule a sports physical. Our providers are prepared to complete this exam for your child and to provide follow up care if needed.

 

Children’s Dental Health: 11 Tips for Keeping Your Child’s Mouth Healthy

sleeping baby, children's dental health

Nothing’s cuter than a baby’s gummy smile with his first tooth shining through. Children’s dental health starts here. By the time that baby reaches four years old he’ll have a mouthful of teeth useful for chomping down on his favorite foods and smiling for mom’s camera. But did you know that tooth decay is the most common chronic illness in children age 6-12? And that 50% of children will have had a cavity by the time they are five years old?

Yes, children lose those tiny baby teeth over time, but tooth decay and early loss of teeth can lead to eating problems, speech delays, and crooked adult teeth. The great news for our kids is that most tooth decay can be prevented. While the best dental hygiene habits start early, it’s never too late to adopt new routines to protect your child’s remaining baby teeth and growing permanent teeth.

Need some help? Start with these ten tips for children’s dental health.

  • Start early by wiping your infant’s gums with a clean damp washcloth at least once a day.
  • Model great oral hygiene habits by brushing your own teeth twice a day and visiting your dentist twice a year.
  • Do not allow your child to sleep with bottle or sippy cup of milk or juice. Sweet liquids sitting on your baby’s teeth and gums all night
  • As soon as your child’s first tooth erupts, use a child’s toothbrush with a smear of toothpaste the size of a grain of salt to brush her teeth twice a day.
  • Schedule your child’s first dental visit within 6 months after their first tooth erupts or no later than their first birthday.
  • Find a dentist your children (and you) enjoy seeing.
  • At the age of three-years-old, you can start using a pea-sized amount of toothpaste and start teaching your child to spit the toothpaste out, not swallow it.
  • Find a flavor of toothpaste your child likes to encourage him to brush twice a day.
  • Choose a toothbrush featuring your child’s favorite character to encourage brushing each day.
  • Continue brushing your child’s teeth until they are able to brush them on their own (usually around 6-8 years old).
  • Reduce the amount of sugar in your child’s diet and instead focus on crunchy fruits and vegetables as well as cheese, lean meats, and nuts.

People shy away from dental visits because of fear of pain or fear of the bill. Regular dental visits reduce the need for dental repairs and dental pain. Mantachie Rural Health Care’s dental clinic works off the same sliding scale we use in our clinic, which means you can receive the dental care you need at a price you can afford. Call us today (662) 282-4226 or 662-282-4335 to make your appointment.

Lice: The Back-to-School Hitch Hiker

lice prevention

Go ahead and scratch your head, we know you want to. In fact, we’re scratching our head as we write. Nobody wants to talk about lice, but they exist as an unfortunate reality anywhere multiple children gather especially in schools and daycares.

What are Lice?

Formally known as Pediculus humanus capitis, head lice use their six claws to crawl along strands of hair. As a parasite, they feed on human blood by clinging to a person’s neck or scalp. They exist in three stages: eggs, nymph, and adult.

Eggs gestate for 8-9 days before hatching and adult lice may live 40-45 days unless they are removed from their food source (i.e. a human scalp). Once removed, a louse lives 24-48 hours.

How do you get these parasites?

Contrary to popular belief, these parasites do not jump from head to head. They may, however, fall onto the backpack of their human host, who hangs said backpack next to your child’s backpack. The louse crawls from one backpack to another and when your child straps on her bag at the end of the day, voila, a new host.

They also move from one host to another when children come in head-to-head contact, hang scarves, coats and other clothing in close spaces together, share earbuds or headphones or use the same combs and brushes.

Because lice cannot live more than 24-48 hours after falling from their host, it’s rare to become infested with lice from carpets or furniture.

More importantly, how do you get rid of lice?

Most pharmacies sell over-the-counter treatments. Because their eggs or nits hatch 8-9 days after the mother lays the eggs, a second treatment once those eggs hatch may be necessary. Treatment will not kill the eggs because they have not yet hatched, so it’s important to remove all nits during the treatment process.

A deep clean of your home isn’t necessary, but you should wash all bedding and clothing the child wore in hot water. Favorite stuffed animals can be run in the dryer for 30 minutes to kill any parasites that may have fallen onto them. Dry clean unwashable items or tie them in a plastic bag for 48 hours. This method serves to smother lice. You’ll also want to vacuum your floors.

Once lice are discovered on one child, every family member should be checked for quick detection and to prevent from further spreading.

Some lice do not respond to over-the-counter medications. In this case, contact your medical provider.

The good news is these parasites do not spread disease. The bad news is completely preventing them is next to impossible. The bugs can survive underwater for 6 hours, which means even frequently bathed children can still become victims of an infestation.

 

What to Expect During a Sports Physical

sports physical

You can feel it in the air. Spring is almost here. Everyone is no longer cooped up in their homes, and spring sports can begin! Before your child joins a team, be sure they’ve had their spring sports physical.

The purpose of a sports physical is to determine if your child is can take part in certain sports. Most states require children and teens have a sports physical before they can start a new sport or begin a new competitive season. Even if sports physicals aren’t required, they’re still recommended by medical professionals. Mississippi does require sports physicals.

Sports physicals help your medical care provider discover and treat problems that could interfere with your child’s sports participation. For example, if a child prone to asthma attacks is playing football this year, that child might need a different inhaler or a change in their dose. These changes are to ensure the child can breathe easily while running.

Usually, a sports physical consists of two parts: medical history and a physical exam.

Medical History

The medical history part of the exam includes questions about:

  • serious illnesses among family members
  • illnesses that your child had when they were younger or may have now, such as asthma, diabetes, or epilepsy
  • previous hospitalizations or surgeries
  • allergies (to insect bites, for example)
  • past injuries (including concussions, sprains, or bone fractures)
  • whether your child has ever passed out, felt dizzy, had chest pain, or had trouble breathing during exercise
  • any medications that your child takes (including over-the-counter medications, herbal supplements, and prescription medications)

These questions are usually on a form you fill out and send back to school. You can find the Mississippi Athletic Pre-participation Form compiled by the Mississippi High School Activities Association here.

Physical Examination

During the physical part of the exam, the medical health professional will usually:

  • record your child’s height and weight
  • take a blood pressure and pulse (heart rate and rhythm)
  • test your child’s vision (screened with glasses/contact lenses)
  • check your child’s heart, lungs, abdomen, ears, nose, and throat
  • check your child’s posture, joints, strength, and flexibility

Most of the exam will be the same for males and females, but if your child has started or already gone through puberty, the medical care professional may ask girls and guys different questions. For example, a healthcare provider may ask a girl about her period and diet to ensure she doesn’t have the female athlete triad (poor nutrition, irregular or absent period, and weak bones). A healthcare professional may also ask an older student about the use of drugs, alcohol and dietary supplements like performance enhancers.

Sports physicals help protect athletes by preventing problems on the field and court before they happen. Mantachie Rural Health Care offers thorough physicals and promptly supplies the documentation you need. If your son or daughter needs a sports physical please contact Mantachie Rural Health Care at (662) 282-4226.

The Kissing Disease:What is Mono?

monoInfectious Mononucleosis (Mono) is often called the kissing disease because it’s spread by contact with viral-infected saliva. You can get it from kissing, but it’s also spread through coughing, sneezing, or the sharing of items such as drinking glasses, eating utensils, straws, toothbrushes, or lip gloss. Mono is contagious, but it’s not as contagious as other viruses such as the common cold.

Adolescents and young adults catch mononucleosis with all its signs and symptoms most often. Young children may also get mono, but often only few of the symptoms manifest and the infection often goes unrecognized.

What causes it?

The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), also known as human herpesvirus 4, causes Mono. It’s one of eight known human herpesvirus types in the herpes family, and is one of the most common viruses in humans. This virus usually doesn’t cause any serious problems in older adults. In fact, by age 35–40, approximately 95% of the population has been infected with EBV and has built up antibodies to become immune to it.

What are the symptoms?

Mono runs its course in 10–30 days. People with weakened or suppressed immune systems, such as AIDS or organ-transplant patients, are especially vulnerable to serious complications from mononucleosis.

The first symptoms of Mono include general weakness and extreme fatigue. An infected person may need 12–16 hours of sleep daily prior to the development of other symptoms. Early symptoms of Mono mimic cold or flu symptoms. They can include:

  • Fever and chills. (EBV is most contagious during this stage of the illness)
  • An enlarged spleen, causing pain in the upper left of the abdomen
  • Sore throat and/or swollen tonsils
  • Swollen lymph glands (nodes) in the neck, armpits, and/or groin
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes) indicates an inflamed or enlarged liver
  • A red skin rash, particularly on the chest
  • Loss of appetite
  • Stomach pain and/or nausea
  • Muscle soreness and/or joint pain
  • Headache
  • Chest pain
  • Coughing
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat

If you think you may have Mono and your severe sore throat has lasted longer than 2 to 3 days after trying home treatment, call your doctor in 1 to 2 days.

Possible Complications

With mono, often the complications are more serious than the disease itself. Mono often causes an enlarged spleen which in extreme cases can rupture causing a sharp sudden pain in the left side of the abdomen. If you have been diagnosed with mono and such pain occurs, seek medical attention immediately. You may need surgery.

MRHC is dedicated to providing our patients with the highest level of compassionate, personal and trustworthy medical care in a warm and welcoming environment. If you’re feeling under the weather, call 662-282-4226 to schedule an appointment.

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/epstein-barr/about-ebv.html

http://www.encyclopedia.com/medicine/diseases-and-conditions/pathology/infectious-mononucleosis

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/mononucleosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20350328

https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/tc/infectious-mononucleosis-when-to-call-a-doctor

Childhood Obesity: How is it caused and what can parents do?

Childhood Obesity

We finally have some good news in Mississippi’s childhood obesity crisis! Childhood obesity in our state has stopped rising. According to new government data, 37% of children in Mississippi age 10-17 were either overweight to obese in 2016. This is down from a rate of 39.7% in 2011 and 44.4% in 2007.

Survey methods have changed recently which means earlier results about obesity rates may not be comparable with the newest survey results. Still, Mississippi is now ranked the third state with the most obese children behind Tennessee with 37.7% and North Dakota at 37.1 %. We celebrate this improvement, but recognize we still have a long way to go.

Childhood obesity is a complex health issue. It occurs when a child is well above the normal or healthy weight for his/her age or height. Childhood obesity usually results due to poor behaviors and habits. Eating  low nutrient food and not getting enough physical activity are the two most contributing factors.

Health risks associated with childhood obesity include:

  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Early heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • Bone problems
  • Skin conditions such as heat rash, fungal infections, and acne

What can parents do?

If your child is overweight, you must show him or her your full support. Children’s feelings about themselves are often based on their parent’s attitudes. It’s important to talk to your children about their weight. Families who communicate about food were less likely to have overweight or obese children.

It’s not recommended that parents set children apart because of their weight. Instead parents should focus on gradually changing the family’s physical activity and eating habits. Involving everyone in the family will prevent the overweight child from feeling singled out.

Find fun ways to involve the entire family and teach new healthy habits.

Need a place to start? Try these ideas:

  • Lead by example. If your children see you physically active and having fun, they are more likely to be active and stay active.
  • Plan fun family activities where everyone is up and moving. Think activities such as walking, biking, or swimming.
  • Move your meals from the living room to the kitchen table where they are supposed to be. Having a family dinner at least three times a week has been linked to a lower risk of obesity.
  • Remember restrictive feeding may influence weight gain. Foods that are withheld might become more desired or sought after. When children do get access to these food, they might chose to overeat because they have the chance. Instead of saying, “No more potatoes ever!” say “We are not having potato chips now because lunch is a half hour away. We’ll have some one day this week with dinner.”
  • Make an effort to reduce the amount of time you and your family spend in front of the TV.
  • Be sensitive to your child’s needs. Overweight children may feel uncomfortable participating in certain activities. Help your child find an activity he/she will enjoy.

For more information about childhood obesity click here:

https://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/childhood.html

https://www.cdc.gov/obesity/childhood/

https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/mississippi/articles/2017-09-19/survey-shows-childhood-obesity-may-be-falling-in-mississippi

Pinkeye Everything You Need To Know

Pinkeye

Many things can cause the outermost layer of the eye to turn pink or red. Allergies, chemical irritation, contact lenses are just a few. But these aren’t the reasons that usually keep parents up at night. When someone refers to Pinkeye, they’re usually referring to an infection of the transparent outermost layer of the eyeball and eyelid caused by a bacteria or virus. [Read more…]


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