Meet our Experts: Dr. Mona Amin
Dr. Mona Amin is a first-generation Indian American who was born and raised in Southern California. She is a mother and enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, working out, and writing. She has a passion for promoting health and wellness for both mothers and children. Dr. Amin is a General Pediatrician with 5+ years of experience in private practice and is the host of The Pedsoctalk Podcast where she hares educational information on common concerns as a parent.
All parents have been there. Brand new baby, new experiences, and a thousand questions. Let Dr. Mona Amin answer all of your burning questions about life with a newborn, and give you advice on the best ways to keep them happy and healthy!
Crane- How often do you recommend a parent take their newborn to their pediatrician?
Dr. Amin- In the first two months of life, visits usually go as follows: At 3-5 days of life, at two weeks of life, at one month of life, and at two months of life. Of course, if a child has any concerns with weight or other medical issues, the doctor may ask for more frequent visits.
Crane- How do you deal with children who are nervous and anxious during your appointments? How do you make them comfortable?
Dr. Amin- For babies and toddlers, I remind families that it’s normal for them to be scared. I find narration helps. “I’m looking in your ears and now listening to your heart.” I find for older children, the biggest thing is validating their fear. Saying, “it’s okay to be scared and that we are here to keep them healthy and safe.” If they have a stuffed animal or toy with them, I listen to them first and then listen to the child. I always remind the parents that they need to stay calm too. If they are frazzled and nervous, the child has no hope of staying calm in the visit.
Crane- What advice can you give to new parents to help keep their child in the best health possible?
Dr. Amin- The main facets of a healthy life include: eating nutritious food, managing stress, having self-confidence, and having healthy coping strategies. On my platform @pedsdoctalk and my Podcast: The Pedsdoctalk Podcast, I encourage these parenting principles from a young age. It’s important to also look at how we as adults approach the above mentioned areas so we can lead by example. Keep your appointments with your child’s Pediatrician, teach them about their bodies, and be their go-to for any questions about their physical and mental health.
Crane- When do you recommend a parent to seek medical attention for their child vs when not to?
Dr. Amin- Listen to my podcast episode on The Pedsdoctalk Podcast: Episode 10-The Top Ten Reasons Children Visit Their Doctor. I break down common reasons children come to the doctor. A rule of thumb is if your child is dehydrated, having difficulty breathing, a persistent fever over 4-5 days, or is uncomfortable in any way to seek medical attention. Always go by your gut. If you feel something is wrong, it’s better to seek medical attention.
Crane- What is the best way a parent can deal with a fussy newborn?
Dr. Amin- Listen to my podcast episode on The Pedsdoctalk Podcast: Episode 6-The Fussy Newborn. I go through so many great tips on managing fussy babies.
Crane- What is a piece of advice you wish you had as a first-time parent?
Dr. Amin- I wish I knew just how much my mind space would be taken up by my boy. I think about him when I’m with him, when I’m at work, and when he’s sleeping. Always take time for yourself also. Parental maternal health is VITAL to raise a healthy and loved child.
Crane- How important is a child’s annual checkup? What ages are the most essential to see your pediatrician?
Dr. Amin- Annual checkups are important to make sure a child is developing normally, that they are growing normally, and that the parents have no concerns. If a child does sports, its important we do a physical for sports clearances. In my opinion, the first five years of life are VITAL to visit the Pediatrician as so much development happens in these years. Another important age frame is adolescence. It’s important for parents to discuss any behavior and development concerns during this age group with their Pediatrician.
Crane- What do you do to calm overwhelmed/stressed parents?
Dr. Amin- I remind them that they are human. That it’s okay to feel stressed and overwhelmed. That I do too. But it’s important to find ways to cope with life’s stressors for the sake of their own well-being and their child also. I advise the following:
- Schedule nothing time for 20 minutes a day. When kids are napping or after they go to the bed. NO cell phone. Journal, drink some tea, take a bath, but do something for you.
- Go outside in nature. Nature has a restorative effect. Feel the fresh air. Stretch. Just for a moment.
- Try to prioritize exercise, drinking a lot of water, and nutritious food. These are the things that provide us natural energy and mental clarity.
Crane- How do you tell parents to go about dealing with allergies? Do you recommend they test out the bigger allergies such as Peanuts or Tree nuts?
Dr. Amin- Listen to The Pedsdoctalk Podcast Episode 22 which is all about food allergies. I speak with an Allergist and Immunologist.
Crane- What is a piece of advice you wish you had as a first-time pediatrician?
Dr. Amin- I wish I had known just how much Pediatrics is parenting and not medicine. I learned way more medicine in residency and not as much about parenting styles. It wasn’t until I started in private practice that I started to learn about parenting styles and create my own. And now as a mom, fine-tuning that even more.
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