KOCHI: The rate of lifestyle diseases among teenagers and young school children is on the increase and nearly three per cent of children have hypertension. Stress from schools and tuition centres, wrong food habits, issues in families are some of the major contributing factors for the poor health of children, according to paediatric experts. “Studies show that in the last 10 years, the rate of lifestyle diseases among teens is on an upward trend. Among the 5 lakh babies born every year in the state, 5000 infants have cardiac problems. Among them, only 1000 babies need emergency surgery and the rest of them can be treated through medicines,” said Dr. M. Sulfikar Ahmed, head of paediatric cardiology, Medical College, Thiruvananthapuram.
He was addressing a workshop in Kochi on Friday organized in connection with the annual meeting of the Indian Academy of Paediatrics, Kerala chapter. The workshop was on the topic ‘cardiac problems in newborns and children’. More than 80 per cent of deaths taking place due to cardiac arrest during sports and games activities can be prevented if tests like ECG are done for physically active children, paediatric experts pointed out. Dr. T.V Ravi, Dr. Edwin Francis, Dr. Deepa S Kumar and Dr. B. Vijayakumar presented papers on the topic. Dr. Pramod Jog, national president of IAP will inaugurate the annual meeting, to be attended by more than 1000 paediatricians, on Saturday.