What Parents Should Know About Children’s Bone Health : The pandemic COVID-19 in India, as well as the resulting health emergency, forced severe limitations beginning in March 2020. Schools and universities have been closed since then because of the quarantine, which has forced the closure of nearly all government enterprises and work activities.
Outdoor educational, work and sporting activities have been prohibited to children, thus impacting their physical health and development. Despite the fact that we are all dealing with additional challenges as a result of the crisis, parents are frequently concerned about how they will care for their children while working and learning at home and remaining calm throughout this unusual outbreak, according to Dr. Ratnav Ratan, a pediatric orthopedic surgeon in Delhi.
Dr. Ratnav Ratan is a top orthopedist in Gurgaon, Delhi. He has over 13 years of experience in pediatric orthopedics, sports medicine, and limb restoration procedures. He is currently a consultant in pediatric orthopedics and sports injuries at W Pratiksha Hospital, Miracles Mediclinic Hospital, and Aryan Hospital in Gurgaon.
Children’s bone disease is a term that describes conditions that affect bone strength, growth, and overall health in children. The bones of children are continually growing and changing. The growth plate is a susceptible area of the bone where growth-related injuries can develop. During growth remodeling, old bone is eventually replaced by new bone tissue. Many growth anomalies may improve or worsen as the child develops. Other bone abnormalities can be passed down through the generations or arise spontaneously in childhood.
Parents should remember the following crucial points to help their children’s bone health:
- Encourage your kids to engage in physical activity at least five times each week.
Encourage your child to participate in activities that are age-appropriate, enjoyable, and varied. This varies based on your child’s age, ranging from preschoolers (ages 3 to 5) being active all day to school-aged children and teenagers being active for 60 minutes or more (ages 6 through 17 years). Include muscle-strengthening exercises in your child’s daily 60 minutes or more at least twice a week, such as climbing or doing push-ups.
- Provide a calcium-rich diet to your youngsters in terms of nutrition.
Dairy products contain moderate levels of calcium. Ragi is an excellent source of calcium for people who live in the south. The calcium content of ragi is 350-375 mg per 100 grams. Incorporating ragi into one’s diet is essential. If ragi isn’t accessible, north Indians can use Rajma or Sesame instead. In rajma, calcium is found in amounts of 275-300 mg and 800 mg in sesame. As it’s a highly concentrated and quickly available type of calcium.
- Colas, sodas, and aerated drinks should not be consumed by children.
There is enough evidence to suggest that excessive soda and fizzy beverage consumption in children is connected to lower bone mass. Despite the fact that the exact cause of the problem is unknown, researchers believe that drinking soda, particularly colas, has a number of negative consequences on bone density. One reason could be that people who drink colas replace more nutritious beverages like milk or calcium-fortified juice with soda, making them less likely to get enough calcium and vitamin D in their diets.
- While your youngster is taking online lessons or watching television, keep an eye on their posture.
Dr. Ratnav Ratan, a pediatric orthopedic expert in Delhi, advises adopting the ’90-90-90′ guideline when sitting for children. When your child sits, his elbows, hips, and knees should all be at a 90-degree angle. This means that the height of your child’s workstation should be the same as their elbow. The chair may need to be adjusted in size to accommodate young children in the proper seated position. Foot support or a stool should be supplied if your child’s feet are dangling in mid-air rather than resting firmly on the floor.
Families should be concerned about the following common growth abnormalities:
1) In-toeing/W-position sitting
2) Knock knees and bowlegs
3) An abnormal curvature of the spine
4) Have a flat foot
When it comes to toeing
When children first begin walking, many of them have in-toeing, which can be caused by basic toe abnormalities or the hip anatomy. In general, there is no reason to be concerned; nonetheless, a consultation with a skilled physician or a pediatric orthopedic surgeon can be beneficial.
Knock knees and bowlegs
Most babies have bow legs at birth, which get exacerbated until they are 18 months old, and then proceed to knock knees by 36 months. By the age of seven, they’ve settled into slight knock knees.
The curvature of the spine
Scoliosis is a shift in the curvature of the spine that is frequently overlooked. Families should examine their children’s spines from the back and look for small alterations. According to Dr. Ratnav Ratan, a pediatric orthopedic expert in Delhi, this is frequent in teenage girls.
With a flat foot
This is another benign presentation that does not hinder one’s ability to function. Around 10% of children have flat feet, which can be bothersome and cause issues. Most infants have flat feet, but by the age of three, the arches have begun to form, and by the age of ten, the arches of the feet have matured.
Bone disease can be caused by a variety of conditions in children, including:
Trauma, infection, or cancer can cause bone problems; they can also be hereditary, develop as a child grows, or arise for no apparent reason. Some bone problems cause discomfort and make walking difficult, while others show no signs or symptoms.
Doctors diagnose patients with a complete history, close observation and examination, and the selective use of x-rays or MRIs.
Vitamin D deficiency:
Vitamin D aids in the absorption of calcium and phosphorus from the diet, which works together to produce strong bones. Thin, brittle, or misshapen bones might result from a severe deficiency.
A condition in which a child’s bones become mushy and weak. A long-term, chronic vitamin D deficiency causes rickets in the majority of children. Legs that are bowed are a common sign.
Osteogenesis imperfecta, often known as brittle bone disease, is a hereditary disorder that affects people from the moment they are born. Brittle bones are characterized by easily shattering bones.
Infantile osteopetrosis is a rare inherited condition that begins at birth. In this disorder, the bones do not normally form, resulting in abnormally thick but weak and easily broken bones. This condition can cause short height, hearing and vision loss, frequent fractures, and infections, among other things. Children with this condition frequently have low blood calcium and parathyroid hormone levels.
Bone disease is easily identified using a variety of ways and treated with vitamin D and calcium supplements. Some types of bone illnesses require prescription medicines, physical therapy, or surgery, depending on the severity of the condition.
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