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The theme for this month is “Keeping Your Child Healthy”


February brings Valentine’s Day and American Heart Month. In that vein of love and well-being, Monongalia County Health Department’s WIC’s theme for the month is “Keeping Your Child Healthy,” focusing on different beneficial practices.

First, make sure to attend all of your child’s health care visits and, for clients of MCHD’s WIC program, keep those appointments too.

At well visits, your child’s height, weight, head circumference and milestones are recorded. This allows your pediatrician to track growth and development and identify any problems. Hearing, vision and other screening tests may be a part of the visit as well.

Health care visits are also the time to raise any concerns you may have. It is important to write down a list of questions and concerns to ask the provider during the visit. Maybe your child isn’t gaining weight or has a very limited intake of fruits and vegetables. Being able to address these concerns at the visit allows the health care provider to do a thorough exam to address your questions.

During MCHD WIC visits, your child’s height and weight as well as iron status are assessed. WIC provides referrals to other services, breastfeeding counseling and nutrition education along with monthly food packages provided for those who are eligible.

Keeping your health care visits also allows your child to stay up to date on immunizations. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), well-child visits and recommended vaccinations are essential and help make sure children stay healthy.

Children who are not protected by vaccines are more likely to get diseases like measles and whooping cough. These diseases are extremely contagious and can be very serious, especially for babies and young children. In recent years, there have been outbreaks of these illnesses, especially in communities with low vaccination rates.

MCHD Clinical Services participates in the CDC’s Vaccines for Children Program for uninsured or underinsured children and also accepts most private insurances. Call 304-598-5119 to make an appointment.

Also practicing daily activity and hygiene and eating healthy foods are other ways to keep your children healthy. One example of good hygiene is proper dental care. Clean teeth and gums can prevent a wide range of health issues, including bad breath, cavities and heart disease later in life. Your child should brush and floss at least twice per day, if not after every meal.

Seeing a dentist twice a year is also a vital part of tooth health. MCHD Dentistry, located within Monongalia County Health Department, accepts WV CHIPS, private insurance and also offers a new patient special and sliding scale fees. You can make an appointment by calling 304-598-5108.

For our featured recipe, we wanted to provide you with an easy and healthy Valentine’s Day treat.


  • Makes four servings
  • 2 cups strawberries
  • 1 large banana, peeled and sliced
  • 2 cups nonfat vanilla yogurt
  • 1 cup dry WIC-approved cereal, crushed (we used Cheerios)

Wash strawberries, pat dry and cut into bite-sized pieces. Line each of four glasses with 1/2 cup of
strawberries. Top with 4 tablespoons of yogurt to each glass. Then add 2 tablespoons of cereal and 1/4 of the banana to each glass. Repeat layering as needed.