LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — There’s a correlation between our active monsoon season and kids being seen at the local pediatrician’s office.
With kids and teens back in school, pediatrician offices are seeing children for a variety of reasons.
“We just received our flu vaccine two weeks ago,” said Medical Director of Siena Pediatrics Dr. Carrie Wijesinghe.
Dr. Wijesinghe is treating kids for the rhinovirus right now, which is the common cold, RSV infections, and the flu.
“I’m getting reports from my specialists, we’re seeing influenza already,” she said. “They think maybe since school starts earlier here, they’re bringing the stuff in earlier as well.”
The flu vaccine is recommended for children six months and older. Vaccines are the best way to prevent severe illness and keep kids in the classroom, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
“We had a very active monsoon season and so things are growing longer than we expected, and so people are having more allergies,” Dr. Wijesinghe said.
She added that she’s seen a sharp rise in kids wheezing from both viruses and allergens over the past few weeks and that children are sometimes presenting with asthma symptoms.
One in 13 Americans has asthma and children typically start developing it during childhood when their immune systems are still developing. Certain triggers such as viruses, environmental factors like cigarette or vape smoke, and pollution can increase the risk of asthma in addition to genetics or family history of allergies or eczema.
“We do have our pulmonologist and our allergists, they are the ones testing that as well,” she said. “A lot of times, we see a pattern and then are referring patients to our specialists as well.”
There is no cure for asthma, but your pediatrician can help you recognize individual triggers, provide medication to help control symptoms, and adjust your treatment plan as you age.