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By AAA Pediatrics
October 16, 2017
Category: Children's Health
Tags: Nose Bleeds  

While nosebleeds can be scary for a child, they are rarely a cause for alarm. Nosebleeds are typically common in children ages 3 to 10 years, and will often stop on their own with safe treatment at home.  Our pediatrician is available to provide you with tips on how to properly stop a nosebleed.

If your child experiences a nosebleed, it is important to do the following to stop the bleeding:

  • Remain calm and reassure your child.
  • Gently pinch the soft part of the nose with a tissue or clean washcloth.
  • Keep pressure on the nose for about 10 minutes.
  • Do not have your child lean back, as this may cause blood to flow down the back of the throat.
  • Have your child relax after a nosebleed.
  • Discourage nose blowing, picking or rubbing, and any rough play.

If your child experiences frequent nosebleeds, contact your pediatrician for further diagnosis and treatment options.

By AAA Pediatrics
October 04, 2017
Category: Safety
Tags: Poisons   Safety  

Young children explore the world by putting things in their mouth. For this reason, more than one million children under the age of six are victims of accidental poisoning each year. To help protect and keep your child safe, your pediatrician offers advice for identifying and locking up toxic materials and knowing what to do if they touch, inhale or swallow something poisonous.

Common Examples

Medicines: Vitamins and minerals, cold medicine, allergy and asthma medicine, ibuprofen, acetaminophen

Household Products: moth balls, furniture polish, drain cleaners, weed killers, insect or rat poisons, lye, pant thinners, dishwasher detergent, antifreeze, windshield washer fluid, gasoline, kerosene, lamp oil

How to Poison Proof Your Home

To maintain a healthy, safe home, your pediatrician offers these safety rules:

  • Keep harmful products locked up and out of the reach of your child
  • Use safety latches or locks to keep drawers and cabinets closed tight
  • Take care during stressful times
  • Never refer to any type of medicine as candy
  • Don’t rely on child-resistant containers
  • Never leave alcohol within the reach of your child
  • Call the Poison Help Line at (800) 222-1222 or your pediatrician if your child swallows a substance that is not food
  • Keep products in their original containers, as to not confuse your child
  • Read labels before using any product
  • Always keep a watchful eye on your child
  • Check your home for old medications and dispose of them properly
  • Move purses, luggage and grocery bags away from prying hands

Talk to your pediatrician today for more information on how to properly poison proof your home. Each extra measure taken is important to protecting your child from harm in your home.

By AAA Pediatrics
September 18, 2017
Category: Children's Health

One of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of illnesses is through proper hand washing.  Young children in particular need to be reminded to wash their hands, which is very important after sneezing, nose-blowing, using the bathroom and before eating. With help from your child’s pediatrician, you can help keep your child healthy.

School age children are in close contact throughout the school day are more likely to share school materials, and frequently touch their faces. Since germs from sneezing and coughing droplets can survive on surfaces for up to eight hours, teaching your child about proper hand washing is very important to maintaining their health. Your pediatrician provides this step-by-step guide for proper hand washing:

  • Turn on the water until it is warm, but not too hot.
  • Rub your hands together to get a nice, soapy lather.
  • Wash your palms, the back of your hands, fingers and under the nails.
  • Sing “Happy Birthday” or count up to 15 to 20 “Mississippi’s” to effectively wash their hands for an appropriate amount of time.
  • Dry hangs on a paper towel.
  • If at a public or school restroom, have your child turn off the faucet with the paper towel when they are done.
  • When exiting a public or school restroom, encourage your child to use the same paper towel on the handle of the bathroom door to open it and to throw it away after exiting.

Maintaining proper hand washing methods will help your child to remain healthy throughout the year. Your child’s pediatrician is available to provide you with further tips on how to maintain a healthy child. However, if your child does get sick, your pediatrician encourages you to visit their office for proper diagnosis and treatment.

By AAA Pediatrics
September 08, 2017
Tags: Appendicitis  

Truth is, anyone with an appendix can get appendicitis—even our children. Appendicitis is a painful inflammation of the hollow, finger-shaped organ attached to the end of the large intestine. If left untreated, an inflamed appendix can rupture, leading to a lengthy hospital stay for complications including abdominal infection and bowel obstruction.  

When your child complains of stomach pain, consult your pediatrician for proper diagnosis and to ensure the health of your child. Since appendicitis is potentially life-threatening, it is important to understand the symptoms so that you can spot appendicitis in your child. In order of appearance, the symptoms include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever

Unfortunately, symptoms of appendicitis might also be hidden by a viral or bacterial infection that preceded it. Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and fever may appear before the typical pain of appendicitis, which makes the diagnosis much more difficult.

Your child’s discomfort might also disappear, which will persuade you that they are better. However, this disappearance of pain could also meant that the appendix has just broken open or ruptured. The pain might leave for several hours, but this is the moment when the appendicitis becomes dangerous, making it more important than ever to visit your pediatrician for immediate care for your child.


When your pediatrician diagnoses your child with appendicitis, surgery is usually needed as soon as possible. Surgically removing the appendix is usually the treatment of choice, as it is important to eliminate the inflamed appendix before it bursts.  

While most children with abdominal pain do not have appendicitis, you can never be too safe when it comes to the health of your child. Visit your pediatrician for further diagnosis of this serious problem and to take the next steps toward a healthy child.

By AAA Pediatrics
August 22, 2017
Category: Children's Health
Tags: flu   Common Cold   Whooping Cough   Illness   Strep throat  

One of the rites of passage of parenting is dealing with childhood illnesses. At AAA Pediatrics in Woodbridge, Virginia, our staff's mission is illnessto support parents and help children as they navigate pediatric issues like the common cold, flu, strep throat, and pertussis. Below, Dr. Oscar Sugastti and Dr. Griselda Meza discuss these illnesses and how they're treated.

Common cold

Who hasn't experienced the runny nose, sneezing, coughing and achy feelings that the common cold brings? According to the Centers for Disease Control, a common cold is the most common infectious disease that a human can get, and kids are more likely to pick up the viruses that cause it due to an immature immune system and less stringent hygiene. To lessen their chances of getting a cold or passing one to others, your Woodbridge pediatrician advises parents to make sure kids are washing their hands frequently and staying home from school when they're exhibiting the signs of a cold.


The flu, short for influenza, can be thought of like a major cold. Both are caused by viruses and have similar symptoms, although the fever with the flu is typically higher and the symptoms tend to start with a dry, scratchy throat, while colds typically begin with a runny nose. Flu vaccinations from your Woodbridge pediatrician can lessen the likelihood of getting the flu, but if your child should happen to have it, there are anti-viral medications available to shorten the infection's duration and help prevent complications like pneumonia. It should be noted that the "stomach flu" is not actually caused by an influenza virus; other viruses or bacterial infections are typically responsible for nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea that accompany this illness.

Strep throat

One of the most common illnesses that keep kids out of school and keep your Woodbridge pediatrician busy is strep throat, a bacterial illness that is caused by the Group A strain of streptococcus bacteria. Diagnosed from testing a cotton swab that is touched to the tonsils; strep's classic features include a sore throat, fever, and headache. A round of antibiotics generally clears up strep in a week or so.

Whooping cough

Also known as pertussis, whooping cough is a bacterial infection that starts out with similar symptoms to a cold: fever, runny nose and cough. However, the cough associated with pertussis progresses into uncontrollable coughing fits that can last as long as 10 weeks. The gasping breaths that people take in between coughing can make a "whoop" sound, hence the nickname. While pertussis is often simply annoying for adults, it can be life-threatening for very young children.

For diagnosis and treatment of these and many other pediatric illnesses, contact AAA Pediatrics in Woodbridge, Virginia, to make an appointment with Dr. Sugastti or Dr. Meza!

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