Parents and Kids

When I first heard about Ellie, I rolled my eyes and immediately placed it into the growing list of unnecessary products marketed to new parents. Found on 'Indiegogo,' the Ellie is the "first ever digital UV sterilizing pod."

The startup campaign has raised $118,061 to date (their original goal was $40K) with five days left in the fundraising effort. Suffice it to say; the Ellie is in a market ripe for the picking. New parents win the "quickest credit card swipe" contest when buying products for their little one.

It is not what the Ellie does that is bothersome. Do you need to wash and sterilize baby bottles? Yes - of course, you do. Drinking milk from...

An infant in France died after being given Vitamin D by his parents. Clearly, this is a tragedy. Yet how journalists are spinning this is a tragedy too. 

AOL leads with “French baby dies after taking product to treat Vitamin D deficiency” and their quote, "Investigations are under way to establish the precise cause of death and to see if it could be linked to Uvesterol D," said the French medical safety watchdog in a statement.” 

The BBC tells us “French baby death linked to vitamin dose” and from the headline you would think that the vitamin treatment was responsible. The...

Children make you lose your mind, at least that's what a first-of-its-kind study says. But worry not, mothers-to-be, because according to researchers, that's probably good thing!

The study  — published in Nature Neuroscience — explains that while we've known the radical hormone changes and biological adaptations that come with bearing a child, psychological changes have remained unknown, perhaps until now. The prospective study, including both first-time mothers and fathers, shows that pregnancy effected changes in brain structure, specifically in loss of gray matter (GM) in regions responsible for...

'Do as I say, not as I do,' said every plugged-in parent ever.

Mom and dad are just as guilty — if not more — of soaking up screen time than their offspring, a new study found. A national report from the Common Sense Census analyzed how parents manage their kids' — and their own — media use. Surveys from more than 1,700 parents of children between the ages of 8 and 18 showed that while parents actively limit the use of their tweens and teens media time, parents themselves rack up more than nine hours per day with computers, e-readers, smartphones, and other devices. And, 82 percent of the time the screen is...

It seems like every time I open up my computer, another children's homeopathic product is getting recalled. This time, the products are from the company Raritan. The recall notice states that

  • "The U.S. FDA has tested some products and recovered varying levels of belladonna extract content from what is declared on the label." 

Varying levels.... but no information as to how much or little was in the product. Enough to kill an infant... who knows? 

The products affected are 

  • CVS Homeopathic Infants' Teething Tablet 135 tablets
  • CVS Homeopathic Kids' Ear Relief Liquid 0.85 fl. oz.
  • Kids Relief Homeopathic Ear Relief Oral Liquid 0.85 fl. oz. 

Andrew Wakefield, Jenny McCarthy and their anti-vaccination groupies are making less and less of an impact, according to a new report released by the CDC that analyzes vaccination data on Kindergartners.  

The CDC collected vaccination data from the beginning of the 2015-2016 school year, and the results look like a win for medicine. The data collected looked at the rates of vaccination for three vaccines - the first two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, the diptheria, tetanus and pertussis (whopping cough) (DTaP) vaccine and the two doses of the varicella zoster (chicken pox) vaccine (for the 42 states that require it.)

For each vaccine, the percentage of vaccinated...

For years, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the National Institutes of Health, and Health Canada have recommended that young (over 2 years old) children be given low-fat milk* — ostensibly to help fend off the development of overweight and obesity.

But a new report in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition presents data that just may make these organizations think again.

In addition to providing protein, dairy milk is also the source of much of the vitamin D in young children's diets. A group of Canadian researchers wished to investigate whether consumption of whole versus low or reduced- fat milk seemed to affect the...

Young Kids Watching TV

When it comes to kids under age 5, can parents ever be certain about what they say they're feeling, is true? And further, since they have a limited ability to know themselves physically, and express themselves, is what they're saying always accurate? Or is it just roughly true? Or can they say things that on occasion may not even be true at all?

Well, if it's hard to say for sure, consider that these are some of the important questions hanging over a recent study which sought to determine whether little kids can be influenced to eat by TV food commercials when they are not hungry.

Certainty is an essential element in any study, and obviously those with some uncertainty baked right in should be viewed with a skeptical eye. And that's what it appears we have here with a...

On my recent flight to New York City, an attendant announced that a passenger had a severe peanut allergy. If any of us had brought food containing peanuts, it was requested that we put it away for the entire flight. I poked fun at this on my Facebook page, after which I was castigated for my insensitivity and lack of compassion.

"It's the recirculated air," one person said.

"It can be ingested through particles circulated in the air," chimed in another.

A teacher weighed in, too: "A child in my class... went in to shock after touching the same door knob that someone who had... peanuts had touched earlier."

No, that's not how it works. The apparently widespread belief that recirculated peanut-tainted air can kill unsuspecting children is based on several...

We like to make it a point not to alarm parents unnecessarily. Part of our mission is to inform the public about health concerns, simply and calmly, without resorting to scare tactics to get attention. And the most recent news about youth sports and eye-related injuries should be treated in just that way.

Eyes and eyesight are vitally important. No question about it. And a recent retrospective study shines light on a health issue that, while important, has recently been overshadowed by other youth concerns, like concussions and severe knee injuries, especially among adolescent and teenage girls. That said, it's good to pay attention to what this new study tells us, learn...