In developing countries, iron deficiency anemia is detected in about 50% of school-age children. Memorial Ankara Hospital Department of Pediatrics Uz. Dr. Sami Akbuğa gave information about iron deficiency and treatment methods in children.Iron deficiency affects children mentally and physicallyIn extensive studies conducted in different age groups in our country, iron deficiency anemia was found to be very high rates such as 30-78%. Iron deficiency is the lack of body iron that does not prevent hemoglobin formation. Iron deficiency anemia is the decrease in the amount of Hb as a result of iron deficiency. Due to the rapid growth and development of milk during childhood, the need for iron increases. This period is the most common age group in which iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia are seen as a result of insufficient nutrients. Iron deficiency is associated with poor cognitive test scores in young children, impaired school performance, shortened attention span, decreased muscle function, and physical activity, but is associated with impaired mental skills in older children and adults.How do you know if your child has iron deficiency?Parents can observe the physical and behavioral conditions of their children well and see if there is iron deficiency. The early stages of iron deficiency may be a period of symptoms without anemia. Depending on anemia, especially palms of the palms of the skin, fast breathing, heart palpitations, loss of appetite, weakness, restlessness, attention deficit, hyperactivity syndrome, growth retardation, loss of appetite, retardation in learning functions, sleep disturbances, breath holding attacks, easy break in nails and hair A number of problems, such as spoon nails, sores on the rim, flat and shiny tongue, facilitate the understanding of iron deficiency anemia. However, in order to determine the condition at the early stage and to determine the treatment option, it will be appropriate to perform the tests determined by the doctor.If your child eats soil… Pica is a habit of eating foreign matter without nutritional value. Clay, soil, paper, coffee beans, salt, cloth, ice, lime, sand, soap, hair are the most frequently renewed substances. In the presence of pica, children should be examined for iron deficiency anemia and zinc deficiency. Initially, there may not be a lack of iron and zinc, but as the pica persists it is more likely to develop. Lack of these should be treated appropriately.The cause of iron deficiency should be investigatedInitially, the cause of iron deficiency anemia is investigated. Especially in infancy and adolescence, the most common cause of this condition is the lack of iron supply. In childhood and adolescence, diseases such as underlying hemorrhage, parasitosis or celiac disease, which impair the absorption of iron from the intestine, should be sought. To maximize the absorption of drugs, it is more appropriate to take them on an empty stomach (2 hours after meals). With iron medications taken orally, there may be side effects such as nausea, vomiting, digestive problems, constipation, diarrhea, flatulence, black stool, staining of teeth in black. To minimize the staining of the teeth to black, the form of drops or syrup is introduced into the back of the tongue so as not to contact the teeth; administering the drug by dilution with fruit juice or water; It is recommended to administer the drug with a pipette.Plan your child's nutrition to complete ironIn our country, it is important to use the preventive iron treatment, which is started at the age of 4-6 months, to the babies regularly during the period the physician deems appropriate. Since iron deficiency in children can lead to high lead levels in the blood, which can cause significant problems in mental development, the use of protective iron treatment is also very important in this respect. Iron-rich foods should be provided to children in an appropriate amount and frequency. Iron-rich foods include red meats such as beef and mutton, liver, egg yolks, legumes such as lentil-chickpeas, and grape molasses. In children, consuming at least three to four times a week each of these foods in appropriate portions ensures adequate nutrition from iron. Green leafy vegetables such as spinach do not have much iron and the absorption of iron is low due to its plant structure. But no food should be forcibly given to children regardless of the purpose of the presentation.