Chronic Diseases in Children

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The number of American children with chronic illnesses has quadrupled since the time when some of their parents were children, which could mean more disability and higher health costs for a new generation of adults. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about childrens chronic diseases in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Children often have acute, short-term illnesses. These can include conditions such as upper respiratory tract or ear infections, gastrointestinal illness with vomiting and diarrhea, or injury-related problems. However, some children develop chronic illness lasting for years or even their lifetime as a result of genetic conditions or environmental factors.

Some of these conditions include asthma, cystic fibrosis, diabetes and developmental disabilities, including attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and the autism spectrum disorders.

More children are overweight, obese or morbidly obese than ever before. Many children who are overweight maintain their obesity as adults, leading to obesity-related complications such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke and some cancers.

To improve the chances of your childs health, ensure early and comprehensive prenatal nutrition and care. Encourage healthy eating habits and physical activity beginning at an early age.

Regular medical care is important for all children to increase the chance that a chronic disease is diagnosed and treated early, lessening the overall impact on the child and family.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.