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Psych Medicine and Kids: What Parents Need to Know

Statistics show that 1 in 10 of American children may have some kind of emotional disturbance that can make their home and school life difficult. As a parent you may be wondering if psych meds are the best option for your child. Psych meds should be used moderately and responsibly in children. Here’s what you should know as a parent:

Medical Evaluation

Your child needs to be thoroughly evaluated by an expert. In some cases a more appropriate treatment other than psych meds can be used. Whether the child needs to be evaluated by a pediatrician or a psychologist will depend on the condition being evaluated. Whoever evaluates your child should be licensed and have extensive experience working with children. Read more »

Posted in Blog on March 3rd, 2017

No-Nit Policies Discontinued At Schools

Inside of a closed school building, lice can travel from student to student like wildfire. Whether from sharing a hat or hugging a friend, lice becomes a serious schoolwide problem in a very short period of time. With regular lice inspections, children with head lice are removed from school and sent home. No-nit policies dictate when a child is allowed to return.

What is a Nit?

The term nit is used in reference to either an egg or a young, developing parasitic insect that attaches itself to hair. Head lice is the most common parasite with regards to nits, but there are a handful of other insects that cling to hair.

What is a No-Nit Policy

A no-nit policy inside of a school is when a child can return to class, day care or another public center only after all eggs have been killed and removed from the child’s head. The problem? Dead nits linger in the hair long after the live infestation is gone. This means kids lose out on academic and social time (and parents may have to miss work or find a sitter) for no medical reason.

Discontinued No-Nit Policies in Schools

Under the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Center for Disease Control and the National Association of School nurses, children are recommended to stay in school and then receive treatment at home. School systems have adopted a “no live lice” policy. This means a child is allowed to return to school as long as there are no living lice on their head. If you suspect your child has lice, look for live bugs and call your pediatrician for treatment advice.

Posted in Blog on February 24th, 2017

Tips for Managing Screen Time

Tablets, televisions, computers and smartphones are an easy entertainment device for children. However, extended exposure to these devices can cause an assortment of health problems in children, ranging from unhealthy weight due to a lack of physical activity to diminished attention spans due to the constant flashing and bright colors of the screens. In order to avoid these issues and to make sure you raise a healthy child, here are several tips for managing screen time.

Set a Good Example

Children learn by example. If you are constantly on electronic devices your children will follow suit. When you are around your children, resist the urge to check your phone more often than not. Read more »

Posted in Blog on February 17th, 2017

How To Help Kids Fight Bullying

In the perfect world your child would never be bullied; in fact, no one would. Unfortunately, we don’t live in the perfect world and bullying may be an issue.

One of the biggest problems with bullying is that it can be hard to detect. A common indicator can be a change in mood or mood swings. Another is avoidance. If your child has always wanted to go to the park and suddenly doesn’t want to, that may indicate a problem. Unless your child tells you about it, you may not know he or she is being bullied.

As a parent it’s good to get ahead of the problem by calmly discussing bullying as a family before it occurs. When your child knows you think bullying is wrong and should be stopped, they will be more likely to confide in you when trouble comes.

If your child comes to you with a bullying problem, listen quietly and offer support. Getting upset won’t help your child so stay calm. It’s hard for many kids to talk about bullying because they are ashamed or embarrassed and sometimes they worry about their parent’s reactions. Often they think it may somehow be their fault. Cyberbullying in particular can cause parents to react by taking away the child’s access to social media, but this can be seen as punishment. Instead, walk through technological and emotional solutions.

Remind your child that you are proud of them for coming to you and sharing. Tell them you want to help them figure out what to do together, they are not alone and you will help them solve the problem. That also means resisting the urge to be a mama or papa bear. Instead of calling the bully’s parents and giving them an earful, come up with a way your child can handle it, knowing you have his or her back.

Whether or not your child is struggling with a bully, you can join the growing anti-bullying community in order to show support for creating healthy school environments. If you are concerned about your child’s mental or emotional health, talk to your pediatrician.

Posted in Blog on February 10th, 2017

How Much Sleep Should Kids Get?

You probably remember most of the excuses your gave your own parents about bedtime. From the famous, “I need a drink” to “One more story, please” to the minimalistic, but classic “I’m not tired,” kids have been manipulating and avoiding bedtime since the first cave child wanted to stay up to play with his baby mammoth. But the fact is, the proper amount of sleep is critical for good health.

The National Sleep Foundation has issued the following guidelines for sleep in children: Read more »

Posted in Blog on February 3rd, 2017

How To Feed Your Picky Eater Nutritious Foods

Eating nutritious food is incredibly important for staying healthy, but try explaining that to children who only want to eat what’s tasty! Here are some tips to get your children on a nutritious diet:

  1. Lead by Example

Become a good role model for your children by making healthy foods a part of your own diet. Your kids won’t take you seriously if you bring healthy foods for them but stick to greasy, ultra-processed fatty foods for your own consumption.

  1. Disguise the Taste

Some healthy foods just taste bad, but that doesn’t mean they’re uneatable. You can disguise the taste and texture of many food items by slipping them into a sneaky recipe. Read more »

Posted in Blog on January 27th, 2017

Got Lice? Don’t Panic

Head lice are tiny, wingless insects that feed on blood drawn from the scalp and result in plenty of annoying itchiness. Though they don’t spread disease, they are creepy little things and it’s hard not to freak out when you find them. If you freak out, so will your kids. So, take a deep breath and try this instead:

  1. Confirm the Diagnosis

Before launching into a full-blown lice treatment, make sure it actually is lice on your child’s head. You will be able to identify the head lice by tiny white eggs sticking to the child’s scalp, the presence of black or brown, wingless insects and sore red spots appearing on the child’s scalp. Read more »

Posted in Blog on January 20th, 2017

Child Hospitalized? Here Are Some Tips

Few experiences equal the agony of watching your child be hospitalized. If this happens to your family, these tips can help you and your child spend the most comfortable and productive healing time at the hospital:

  1. Provide Full Information

Remember that you know more about your child’s history and state of health than anyone else. You must be sure to share all the information with the hospital staff. Don’t feel hesitant in front of experienced doctors and nurses, or assume they will automatically know how to provide the best care for your child.

  1. Ask Questions

Some parents get flustered in front of physicians and hesitate to ask about the details of the treatment their child is being subjected to. Make sure to ask all the relevant questions as many times as you need to get clear-cut answers. If you are unsure of how to administer medication or use medical equipment, ask the medical staff to help you become confident. Read more »

Posted in Blog on January 13th, 2017

The Rise Of Childhood Obesity is alarming

We don’t want to scare you. On the other hand, maybe we do. The statistics for childhood obesity are more than alarming. In January of this year, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) released the latest numbers for children. Here’s what they say: “The percentage of children with obesity in the United States has more than tripled since the 1970s. Today, about one in five school-aged children (ages 6–19) have obesity”.

If that’s not enough to get your attention, we now also know more about the effects of obesity on not only short term health, but long term as well. Young people with obesity not only suffer physical problems like heart disease, diabetes, and joint and bone issues; they may also struggle with bullying and body image issues. Researchers now also know that being obese when you’re young hugely impacts the chances of being obese when you’re older. Read more »

Posted in Blog on January 6th, 2017

Should You Use Antibacterial Cleaning Products?

Antibiotics have grown in popularity since their inception as a way to ward off diseases, and the logic behind their use seems simple enough. However, a new book argues that an over dependence on antibiotics can have the opposite effect of leaving children even more vulnerable to illness.

Good vs. Bad Bacteria

Antibacterial product marketing always focuses on showing bacteria that is responsible for a host of illnesses and diseases. But the truth is, there are many other types of bacteria that actually benefit humanity:

1. Aiding in digestion by helping break down complex food products.

2. Providing immunity to the body against external threats. Read more »

Posted in Blog on December 23rd, 2016