Going to summer camp is one of the experiences of childhood that for many American families is not to be missed. At the right camp, youngsters can gain leadership and social skills, connect with nature, learn independence, and improve self-esteem. In these ways, the summer camp experience can be tremendously beneficial to kids – physically, mentally, and emotionally.
With the arrival of warm weather, so comes the potential for tragedy . Every year in the United States, more than a thousand children die in drowning accidents. The peak period of risk is among toddlers and preschoolers, but a child of any age can be at risk in the wrong circumstances. What can we do to prevent these devastating accidents? The American Academy of Pediatrics offers the following guidelines:
As the weather heats up, many families will be spending more and more time outside with their children. While fresh air is good for you and your little one, make sure to protect them from the other things that come from being outside. Be prepared to prevent bug bites and sun exposure as the days get longer and you’re able to spend more time outside!
“Drink your water – it’s good for you!” How many times have you heard that in your life? And it’s true, but not for newborns. In fact, giving a newborn water can actually be harmful.
Aren’t sippy cups great? They give our precious toddlers something to occupy their hands, fill their tummies, and build motor skills and independence. But – not so fast. As more and more sippy cup manufacturers are having to recall their products due to safety issues, it’s time to look more closely at whether sippy cups are actually good for your little ones.
We know that too much screen time isn’t good for anyone, let alone kids. Too much time on digital devices has been linked to poor sleep patterns, behavioral issues, loss of social skills, obesity, and even violence, but the National Institutes of Health wanted to delve into this issue a little further and see what long-term effects, if any, screen time for kids might have on the actual structure of their brains. The results are concerning.
While nose bleeds and asthma attacks in kids are fairly common, I often find that parents are understandably worried about them. It doesn’t help when these conditions seem to accelerate during the colder months. As Houston’s version of winter arrives, now might be a good time to talk about how cold air can trigger asthma attacks and nose bleeds in children.
Depending on where you live in the United States, spankings and other types of aversionary discipline, such as yelling or shaming, may be fairly common. In other areas, punishments like this are on the decline, which is a good thing. For about two decades, the American Academy of Pediatrics has urged parents to use caution when disciplining their kids with these types of punishment tactics – especially spanking. Recently, the organization updated its recommendation: Don’t spank your kids. Ever.
There’s a lot you have to learn in a few short months if you’re about to be a parent. Your OB/GYN will be there to help you through much of it, but there’s another doctor you should get involved in this process before your baby is born: a pediatrician. A good way to go about doing that is by taking advantage of a prenatal visit.
Baby walkers are such a common and ubiquitous part of childhood that many of my patients are taken aback when I tell them that baby walkers not only pose a potential threat to their children, but that they’ve been banned in other countries all together.