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PAMF Health Blog

Be Well, Be Well Informed

Four Tips for Giving a Child Medicine

Child_meds

Giving medicine to a child can sometimes be stressful for parents — and children. It is important to give the correct medication and dose, at the right time and in the right way. Gretchen Berry, R.N., BSN, a Palo Alto Medical Foundation pediatric advice nurse, offers these simple tips to ease the process of giving medication to a child. If you have any questions about medications or dosage, consult your pediatrician or pharmacist.

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How to Prevent Common Foot Problems

Bare-Feet-Resized

Did you know one foot has 26 bones, 33 joints and more than 100 tendons, muscles and ligaments? It does. We cram this intricate structure into a narrow shoe. We pound it running, jumping, or just by standing all day. Is it any surprise that most people have foot pain at some point in their lives?

“People go out and often buy expensive shoes, spending a lot of money,” says Jeffrey M. Gregori, DPM, a podiatrist at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation. “But we don’t really think about the health of our feet – until they hurt.”

Dr. Gregori has these tips for three of the most common foot problems: bunions, flat feet and plantar fasciitis.

Battling Bunions Read More

The Risks of Energy Drinks


energydrinks.BLOGAds for energy drinks are plastered on the walls of sporting events and on the jerseys of leading athletes. The beverage makers sponsor models, music events and videos games. Red Bull, the market’s leading drink, even has its own TV series and printed magazine. They claim to boost your immune system, enhance your performance, and help you stay up longer.

No wonder 30 to 50 percent of adolescents and young adults say they buy energy drinks. But are they safe for young people to drink?

No, says Stephanie Nguyen Lai, M.D., a pediatrician at Palo Alto Medical Foundation. She explains that energy drinks are loaded with caffeine – often twice as much as coffee and eight times as much as a soda. They’re especially dangerous when mixed with alcohol.

As a parent, it is important to talk with your adolescent, and explain the risks of these products,” Dr. Lai says. Their health could be at stake.

Hidden Caffeine in Energy Drinks Read More

A Mindfulness Practice to Try

Person doing yoga during sunrise

You may have heard of mindfulness but what is it exactly? Mindfulness is a way of paying attention to the moment by focusing on your breath and on your senses of sight, taste, touch, smell and hearing. You observe your feelings and thoughts as if from a distance, without judging them.

There are many mindfulness techniques and exercises. One is as simple as conscious breathing – being fully aware of all your senses as you breathe in and breathe out.

Janetti Marotta, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist who teaches mindfulness classes at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and the author of the new book 50 Mindful Steps to Self-Esteem, offers this simple meditation on the breath to get started. Read More

Exercise and Kids: Why They Need It

Family running on the beach together

It can seem like kids are constantly on the move. But many hours of children’s days can be spent sitting at school or in front of computers, iPads or TVs, drastically reducing their daily activity level.

“Regular exercise has many health benefits for children – and adults, too,” says Elizabeth Anne Huffman, M.D., a pediatrician at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation. “It helps us all maintain a healthy weight and build strong bones, muscles and joints. Exercise is also an excellent stress buster, encourages better sleep and will help your child concentrate at school.”

Here Dr. Huffman answers common questions from parents about exercise and kids and offers tips on how the family can be active together. Read More

What Teens Can Do About Acne

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Acne: it’s caused stress before many a first date and sent teens scurrying to the drug store for the latest miracle potion. If your teen has acne, he or she is not alone.

“Approximately 85 percent of all teens have acne at some point,” says Amy E. Gilliam, M.D., a pediatric dermatologist at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation. “Although there is no magic bullet or quick fix for teen acne, there are several effective treatment options that – with patience – can help clear up this skin condition.” Read More

Tips for Water Safety

Child swimming

Whether it’s endless games of Marco Polo in the pool or jumping over waves at the beach, water is central to summer fun. Water safety requires vigilance. Children, in particular, are often completely unaware of the dangers that come with water activities. Even if they have had swimming lessons, young children can drown in only a few inches of water. Follow these tips from Palo Alto Medical Foundation Pediatrician LauraLe Dyner, M.D., to keep the entire family safe and healthy while enjoying the water this summer. Read More