Colds, sniffles, and the occasional upset tummy don't always warrant a trip to the pediatrician. Being exposed to germs—especially in school and day care—is an ordinary part of childhood and it helps strengthen the immune system. In order to ensure the health and well-being of your child, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that you make sure your child gets her annual checkups and receives her immunizations at the correct time.

Fevers taken orally over 99.5 degrees Fahrenheit (or rectally over 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit) that last more than a day or two, especially when accompanied by earaches, a sore throat, or persistent coughing should be brought to the attention of your doctor. A few bumps and bruises are the signs of an active child, but if your little one hits her head and gets knocked unconscious, call 911 immediately.

Here's a look at children's health by the numbers:

  • 41 million: Number of children in the United States in excellent health.
  • 14 million: Number of school-aged children (aged 5-17 years) who didn't miss school in the past 12 months due to illness or injury.
  • 10.2 million: Number of children in the U.S. who had an emergency room visit in the past 12 months. 
  • 6.3 million: Number of children who had two or more visits to the ER. 
  • 6 million: Number of children who had no health insurance coverage in 2010. 
  • 1.6 million: Number of children who were unable to get needed medical care because the family couldn't afford it. 
  • 4.3 million: Number of children aged 2-17 years with unmet dental needs because their families could not afford dental care. 
  • 5 million: Number of children living in households headed by an adult other than their parent.
  • 7 million: Number of children with asthma.
  • 10 million: Number of new cases (annually) of ear infections (otitis media) affecting babies and young children and the number one reason for visits to the pediatrician. 
  • 5.8 million: Number of children under 18 with a food allergy. 
  • 8: Number of foods that cause the most allergies: peanuts, milk from a cow, shellfish, eggs, soy, wheat, tree nuts (such as walnuts, pecans, cashews and pistachios), and fish (such as tuna, salmon and cod).
  • 1: Number of ounces of sunscreen needed to cover the exposed areas of the body, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
  • 2: Number of hours after swimming or heavy sweating that sunscreen should be re-applied.
  • 20: Number of minutes before going out into the sun that sunscreen should be applied.
  • 3: Number of years that the ingredients in sunscreen are effective.
  • 5 million: Number of children aged 3-17 years with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). According to the CDC, boys are twice as likely as girls to have ADHD.



 American Academy of Pediatrics

8 Percent of U.S. Children Have Food Allergies

Food Allergies in Children

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Summary Health Statistics for U.S. Children: National Health Interview Survey, 2010

The American Chiropractic Association
Chiropractic Approach to Ear Infections

The Environmental Protection Agency
Sunscreen: The Burning Facts