As young Marylanders learn remotely, pediatricians still advise parents to watch out for their health
MARYLAND – Some local pediatricians say they have seen a drop in non-COVID related visits from students, as many are participating in remote learning across Delmarva.
“This year and our admissions for that virus as well as a smattering of others have been lower than they have been in previous years. And as a result of that we are seeing less pediatric admissions,” says Dr. Dawn Sibanda, pediatrician at TidalHealth.
We’re told the lack of close contact has made for healthier students during a time when pediatricians would usually be seeing more sick kids.
“Typically this season starting about October is our influenza and respiratory virus season,” says Dr. Sibanda.
Dr. Mohsin Ansari, a pediatrician, notes an almost 30 percent drop in patients compared to before the pandemic. “There are actually several studies which have been published which have shown the environment is less polluted the last several months because of lack of traffic, lack of people going out.”
We’re told common illnesses like stomach problems and allergies are on the decline but Dr. Ansari points to one alarming health issue he’s seen on the rise.
“I have actually seen much more rapid weight gain in most of the case. In school they have gym classes, physical activities,” says Dr. Ansari.
While illnesses that cause parents to take their kids to see a doctor are on the wane both doctors warn that lack of exercise can be detrimental to both physical and mental health. So they say, it is the long term impacts that are important to be aware of.
Some local pediatricians stress that checkups and vaccinations for other illnesses like the flu should still be addressed.