UPDATED MASK POLICY
We have made it through. Due to low number of COVID cases in our community and with the likelihood of other viruses becoming less prevalent in the spring, we will become mask optional in the office. We are asking, as a courtesy, if you or your child (2 years and older) has a cough, runny nose, and/or fever, please consider wearing a mask. We are moving forward to making masks a voluntary choice. You and your child can choose to wear a mask. Our staff will do the same to protect fellow staff members and our patient families if they have upper respiratory symptoms or just to protect themselves when they will be in direct contact with ill patients.
The ONLY EXCEPTION, of course, is being COVID positive. If you are positive, you will need to isolate for 5 days, then wear a mask from day 6 to 10 when coming to the office.
UPDATED VACCINE POLICY
We have updated our vaccine policy. We will no longer be splitting up vaccines or providing vaccines on an alternate schedule. There is no sound evidence to do so and these alternate schedules are putting the patients at risk. Please read our policy on the website for additional details.
Vaccine Policy | Branford Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine (branfordpeds.com)
SPRING TIME ALLERGIES, TICKS and POISON IVY
We are so grateful for the warmer days to come. We’d had a taste here and there already. If you are prone to seasonal allergies, we recommend you start your oral allergy medications. If you are taking a prescription allergy medication such as Singulair or montelukast, make sure to call us early for refills. You may also need allergy medications for the alleviation of nasal and eye symptoms.
The key issue is how to tell if your child has allergies or cold or COVID 19. The diagnosis is often made when a child comes to our office for a lingering “cold.” Other tip offs that you are dealing with allergies are clear, watery nasal discharge, itching of the eyes, ears, nose or mouth, or repeated sneezing. It is important to note that fever will never be due to allergies. If you are not sure, it can be helpful to do an at-home rapid Covid-19 antigen test, especially if your family has come into contact with someone who has recently tested positive for Covid-19. These tests can be found at most pharmacies, as well as many schools which may have a cost-free supply.
Please call our office for an appointment if your child has any concerning symptoms in order to see one of our providers.
How to tell the difference between a cold and allergies
As we move outdoors to play and help clean up from winter, please make sure to apply insect repellents that will prevent ticks from adhering. It is important, after being outside to come in, put the clothes in the washer, shower, and check for ticks.
Below is information from our Heath FAQ’s tab in FOR PARENTS on our website.
What should I do if I find a tick on my child?
First, don't panic – two things are on your side:
- The risk of developing Lyme disease after being bitten by a tick is only about 1 to 3 percent.
- Ticks can’t transmit the bacteria that cause Lyme disease until they attach and begin to feed, which makes them engorged. This can take up to 48 hours, so if you find a tick that isn’t engorged, your child may be less likely to contract Lyme disease.
All you need to do is to remove the tick and watch for symptoms. See these resources for information:
Here’s how to remove the tick:
- Remove the tick using a fine-tipped pair of tweezers. Grasp the body of the tick and pull in an upward motion until the tick comes out. Do not squeeze or twist the tick’s body. Put the tick in a bottle.
- Take note of the size and color of the tick, as well as your estimate of the time it has been attached and whether or not it is engorged.
- It’s not necessary to take your child to a doctor after a tick bite, but if you have questions or want a consult, see your child’s pediatrician.
A small bump or redness at the site of a tick bite that occurs immediately and resembles a mosquito bite is common. This generally goes away in 1-2 days and is not a sign of Lyme disease.
Poison Ivy and other plants that have similar irritants may be hard to spot in early spring especially if they are dried vines on trees. They still have the resin present and can cause irritation. If you think you have had contact and have developed a rash, try applying calamine lotion and OTC hydrocortisone cream or ointment. Take OTC antihistamines for relief. If the rash is spreading and you are concerned, call to make an appointment to see us.
SUMMER PHYSICAL EXAMS AND FORMS
Summer will be here before we know it. For many, this is the time for your annual physical exams. If you are due for your physical in the summer, it is recommended you book an appointment now. Those coveted times will fill quickly. As always, please access your insurance company if you are unsure about the timing of the physical and the coverage of the visit. If your child will be graduating from high school this June, congratulations! If their plans include going to college in the Fall, please bring in all college forms to their appointment. We will be happy to fill them out at that time. Each college and university have different requirements prior to enrollment. It is recommended you review their requirements and plan accordingly. Summer camps are part of the season for many children. Hopefully, more camps and special programs will be available this year. Part of registration may require submitting an up-to-date physical exam form. If you have had your physical already, please see if they will accept a copy of the completed CT state “blue form.” Every patient receives, at their physical exam appointments, a completed CT State "blue form." We always advise to keep a copy or scan a copy onto your computer. If you need to have a special form or a college form to be completed outside of the physical exam appointment, please remember we ask for 7-10 days to complete the form. There is a fee for standard and rush form completion.