My Blog
By Town and Country Pediatric Medical Associates
April 17, 2018
Category: Children's Health
Tags: Sick Child  
It isn’t easy to spot the symptoms of meningitis, as many people confuse the early signs and symptoms with the flu. Meningitis signs and symptoms may develop over 
several hours or over one or two days. By visiting your pediatrician, you will be able to get a proper diagnosis for your child. 
According to your pediatrician, some of the signs and symptoms that may occur in anyone older than the age of two include:
  • Sudden high fever
  • Severe headache that isn’t easily confused with other types of headaches
  • Stiff neck
  • Vomiting or nausea with headache
  • Confusion or difficulty concentrating
  • Seizures
  • Sleepiness or difficulty waking up
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Lack of interest in drinking and eating
  • Skin rash in some cases
Seek medical care from your pediatrician immediately if your child has signs or symptoms of meningitis, such as fever, severe headache, confusion, vomiting and stiff neck. Viral meningitis may improve without treatment, but bacterial meningitis is serious, can come on very quickly and requires prompt antibiotic treatment to improve the chance of a recovery. 
If you delay treatment for bacterial meningitis, the risk of permanent brain damage or death increases. Educate yourself about meningitis and talk to your child’s pediatrician for more information and a proper diagnosis. 
By Town and Country Pediatric Medical Associates
March 30, 2018
Category: Skin Care
Tags: Baby Care   Nail Care   Infants  


When it comes to caring for your baby, nail care is often overlooked. In the first few months of life, you may not be too worried about caring for your baby’s nails. But at some point your little one will take a swipe at you, and you will quickly find out how sharp those nails are. Baby nail care is easy—for the most part. Your pediatrician is available to offer helpful tips to ensure proper care for your baby’s nails.

Proper nail care can be as simple as trimming the nails when they get long enough to scratch you. However, your baby may squirm and move around, which makes cutting his or her nails difficult. Your pediatrician, we want the process of cutting your baby’s nails to be as easy as possible, which is why we are available to offer friendly advice.

There is no wrong way to cut your baby’s nails, as long as you do not nick the baby, and the nails get trimmed. Your pediatrician shares some basic tips:

  • Clean your baby’s hands, feet and nails during regular bathing.
  • Hold your baby’s finger and palm steady with one hand and trim with the other.
  • Press down on the fleshy pad of his or her fingertip to move the skin away from the nail.
  • Cut along the shape of the nail and snip any sharp corners or use an emery board.

While these tips may be easy to follow, some parents may still remain concerned about cutting their baby’s nails. If you are still concerned, follow these tips to make the job easier:

  • Have your partner hold the baby while you trim the nails.
  • Do it while your baby is sleeping.
  • Use only baby nail clippers to trim the nails.
  • Wait until your baby is in a good mood and find something to distract him or her, such as a new video, toy or snack.

Visit your pediatrician for more information on how to care for your baby, including proper nail care.

By Town and Country Pediatric Medical Associates
March 13, 2018
Category: Child Heath Care
Tags: Safety   Infant   Baby Care  
Your child’s safety is your responsibility, even when your baby is sleeping.Your pediatrician is available to provide you with helpful tips to keep your baby safe while he or she is sleeping.

While you may find relief when your baby is asleep, it is still important to practice safety to ensure your baby’s health. Some helpful tips offered from your pediatrician include:
  • All infants should be put down for sleep on their back to reduce the risk for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
  • Avoid soft bedding that might suffocate your baby, such as pillows, blankets, plush toys, and bumpers.
  • Crib slats should be 2 3/8 inches apart or less so that your baby’s head cannot get trapped.
  • Keep your baby’s room at a moderate temperature and dress them in a way that will prevent them from overheating to also reduce the risk for SIDS.
  • Share a bedroom with your newborn—but not a bed.
  • Avoid devices marketed to reduce the risk of SIDS, such as sleep positioners.

Nursing your baby and making sure that your baby gets all of the recommended vaccines can help protect against SIDS. Your pediatrician is available to provide you with the right information to protect your baby and keep him or her healthy and that includes proper care while they are sleeping.

By Town and Country Pediatric Medical Associates
March 06, 2018
Category: Children's Health
Tags: Asthma  

Coughing, wheezing, and chest tightness seem to happen frequently. As a concerned parent, you wonder if your child has something moreasthma than a cold. Could it be childhood asthma? In Mill Valley and San Francisco, CA, Town and Country Medical Pediatrics provides the diagnostic skill and compassionate treatment you and your child need to cope with this recurring respiratory problem. If it is asthma, it can be controlled so your child has a healthy, happy life and you have peace of mind.

Symptoms of childhood asthma

According to statistics from the American Academy of Allergy & Asthma, approximately 8.4 percent of American children have asthma. In reality, we all know the signs--distressing signs of varying intensity such as:

  • Coughing
  • Wheezing on expiration
  • Chest tightness and discomfort
  • Reduced activity and stamina
  • Pallor and dark circles under the eyes
  • Recurring chest colds

However, there is no definitive test for asthma. Your physician at Town and Country Medical Pediatrics in Mill Valley and San Francisco will listen to your child's breath sounds, check his or her vital signs and review the medical and family history (asthma often runs in families).

Also, the pediatrician may perform a simple pulmonary function test for children over the age of five and a chest X-ray. He or she will ask what seems to trigger your child's symptoms and if there are any pets or smokers in the home.

After gathering sufficient information, the doctor can diagnose asthma definitely. Together, you will formulate a treatment plan to control symptoms and most importantly, to avoid acute attacks.

Treating asthma

As asthma is a chronic condition (although many children seem to outgrow it), control is key, avoiding school absences and limitation of activities and improving overall health and well-being.

The doctor may recommend measuring peak flow on a daily basis. Handheld, a peak flow meter is a simple apparatus which measures how much air your child expels in a single breath. Decreasing peak flow readings indicate an approaching attack or illness and how well asthma is controlled on a daily basis.

Besides measuring peak flow, the pediatrician may prescribe a maintenance inhaler (containing small amounts of steroidal medication) to prevent flare-ups and a bronchodilator, or rescue inhaler, for sudden attacks. Nebulized treatments deliver more concentrated bronchodilators for immediate relief during a cold or flu.

A word about allergies

Children with asthma often have allergies. Your pediatrician may advise allergy testing so your youngster avoids those things which increase his or her symptoms.

Learn more

Don't be afraid of childhood asthma. It can be controlled, and the professional team at Town and Country Medical Pediatrics can help. Please call the office if you have any concerns about your child's breathing. For the San Francisco office, phone (415) 666-1860, or in Mill Valley, call (415) 383-0918.

By Town and Country Pediatric Medical Associates
March 02, 2018
Category: Children's Health
Tags: Tanning   Adolescents   Skin Cancer  

As the skin cancer rate continues to rise, many of us can’t help but wonder why people continue to expose themselves to harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation. A tan, whether it’s acquired from the pool, in a salon or through incidental exposure, is always dangerous.

The use of tanning beds today is an especially common practice among teenagers, specifically the female population. What many young girls don’t realize, however, is that the bronzed image they so desire is only the skin’s visible reaction to damage from harmful UV rays. Melanoma, the most aggressive form of skin cancer, is now the second most common cancer seen in young adults. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, nearly 28 million people tan indoors in the United States annually. Of these, 2.3 million are teens. Their findings go on to report that 70 percent of tanning salon users are Caucasian girls and women, primarily aged 16 to 29 years.

Skin cancer aside, basking in UV rays—indoor or outdoors—also leads to premature aging of the skin. That means that even just a few minutes of exposure each day over the years without protection can cause noticeable changes to the skin later in life. Freckles, age spots, leathery skin, wrinkles, saggy skin and uneven skin tone can all be traced to UV exposure. 

The good news is that skin cancer and premature aging of the skin can easily be prevented. For one, stay away from tanning beds. Pediatricians also recommend that children and teens wear proper clothing, hats and sunglasses when outdoors. Always use sunscreen and avoid exposure during peak hours of 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Finding Alternatives

There is no such thing as a safe tan. Talk to your teen about the serious, life-threatening consequences of tanning. If your teen insists on a sun-kissed glow, suggest safer sunless methods, such as spray tans and other sunless gels or creams. 

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