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Tips to Keep Your Child Healthy This Fall and Winter

At Bluestem Health our family medicine providers offer a range of services to keep your children healthy this fall.

Keep Your Child Healthy

Fall is around the corner, and our family medicine providers at Bluestem Health in Lincoln are here to keep your children healthy as the weather begins to change. At Bluestem Health Piedmont Clinic in Lincoln, Nebraska, our family medicine providers offer a range of services such as well-child check ups, routine screenings, immunizations, same-day visits, and medical advice to keep your children thrive this fall.

Your child’s health matters to us. We understand how difficult it can be to find a provider you trust, as well as the correct information to keep your child healthy and happy. Our family medicine providers at Bluestem Health Piedmont Clinic are here to help make that process easier.

Establish a Family Medicine Doctor

Establishing a family medicine provider or a pediatrician who is the right fit for your child can be a difficult and time-consuming process. It’s important to find a doctor that you can trust, and one that both you and your children feel is a good fit. Our family medicine providers at Bluestem Health are attentive, friendly, and communicate with patients in a way that makes your health concerns feel heard and validated.

While searching for a family medicine doctor, finding one that is in your insurance network is just as important. Bluestem Health in Lincoln accepts Medicaid and Medicare insurance, as well as offers a sliding fee discount for the uninsured. Providing you with the best care possible is the goal for our family medicine providers, Reba Cooksley, DNP, APRN-NP, Jeff Baker, APRN-NP, and Andrew Shahan, MD, at Bluestem Health Piedmont Clinic in Lincoln.

Schedule Well-Child Checkups

Making sure your children are up-to-date on their immunizations and well-child checkups is crucial to keeping your kids healthy. Well-child checkups are a time for parents and your family medicine doctor to make sure your children are growing at an appropriate rate. These routine checkups help prevent illness, promote your child’s well-being, and keep you informed on the development of your child. The Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, recommends scheduling checkups as follows:

  • 2 weeks
  • 1 month
  • 2 months
  • 4 months
  • 6 months
  • 9 months
  • 12 months
  • 15 months
  • 18 months
  • 24 months
  • 30 months

Visit your doctor once a year after that until they reach adulthood. Schedule your child’s routine checkup with one of our family medicine providers at Bluestem Health in Lincoln.

Do Daily Exercise

Children need at least 60 minutes of physical activity a day. It doesn’t have to be a full hour at a time, it can be in short increments. This helps kids get better sleep, feel less stressed, keep a healthy weight, and build healthy bones, joints, and muscles. A few examples of exercise can be walking to school, going to a park, dancing, playing tag, skipping, or swimming at indoor pools during colder months.

Eat a Balanced Diet

To keep your children healthy it’s important for them to eat a balanced diet. Their diet should consist of nutrient-dense foods, such as protein, fruits, vegetables, grains, and dairy. Limit your children’s intake of added sugars, sodium, and saturated/trans fats. Your children’s activity level and growth play an important part in how many calories your child should be eating. Ask our family medicine doctors at Bluestem Health Piedmont Clinic in Lincoln for more advice on how to make sure your child is consuming enough calories and eating a healthy, balanced diet.

Get Sleep

Adequate sleep is significant to your children’s well-being and health. Children who do not get enough sleep can have trouble functioning throughout the day. The amount of sleep children need varies based on their age.

Babies (1-4 months old) should be sleeping around 18 hours per day. It is normal for them to wake every 3-4 hours to feed.

Infants (4-12 months old) typically sleep 12-16 hours a day. Most babies this age will need 3 naps a day: one in the morning, one in the afternoon, and one early evening.

Toddlers ages 1-2 years need between 11 and 14 hours of sleep. At this age it’s best to avoid naps too late in the day, as this can affect the amount of sleep they get at night.

Children 3-5 years old average around 10-13 hours of sleep. At this age, they usually only need one nap a day.
Here are a few sleep habits to help your children get the correct amount of sleep:

  • Avoid screens before bedtime.
  • Give your child a bath before putting them to bed.
  • Read a book to your child before bed.
  • Keep the lights dim.
  • Avoid too much stimulation around bedtime.
  • Cuddle, rock, or provide a sense of security for your child before bedtime.
  • Play soothing music or white/brown noise to help your child fall asleep.

For every age, a consistent bedtime routine is important. This will help your children establish healthy sleeping patterns and keep them healthy.

Bluestem Health’s Piedmont Clinic is accepting new patients. Keep your child healthy this fall by scheduling a time to meet with one of our family medicine providers, Andrew Shahan, MD, Jeff Baker, APRN-NP, or Reba Cooksley, DNP, APRN-NP. You can do this by calling 402-480-7380.

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