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Thursday, June 21st, 2012
Paternity Blood Tests That Work Early in a Pregnancy
Now blood tests are becoming available that can determine paternity as early as the eighth or ninth week of pregnancy, without an invasive procedure that could cause a miscarriage. The testing requires a blood sample from at least one of the possible fathers. (via NY Times)
Chemicals in Baby Shampoos Lead to False Marijuana Positives
Commonly used baby soaps and shampoos, including products from Johnson & Johnson, Aveeno and CVS, can trigger a positive result on newborns’ marijuana screening tests, according to a recent study. Just 0.1 milliliters or less of the cleansing products were found to cause a positive result. (via TIME)
Health Groups Criticize Allergy Drug Promotion
Public health advocates on Wednesday accused the drug company Merck of improperly marketing an over-the-counter allergy medicine directly to children using animated characters from the movie “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted.” (via NY Times)
Dogs Can Help Prevent Childhood Asthma
The microbes living on your pet dog may help to strengthen your immune system and prevent childhood asthma, according to a new study. (via msnbc.com)
Watching Violence Makes for Angry Kids, Study Shows
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Children exposed to violence in video games and on TV display similar reactions to those who witness war and acts of violence in real life, according to an Australian study. (via Fox News)
allergies, asthma, baby shampoo, Dogs, marijuana, paternity test, pets, Television, TV, violence | Categories:
Monday, March 26th, 2012
Editor’s Note: This guest post was written by Dr. William E. Berger, a Parents advisor and one of the nation’s foremost experts on allergies and asthma. He is also a board-certified physician in two separate specialties (Pediatrics and Allergy and Immunology) and a member of the Joint Task Force on Practice Parameters that writes the national treatment guidelines for asthma and allergies.
A sure sign of spring in the many parts of the country are news reports about high pollen counts. And this year’s relatively mild winter nationwide has triggered an unusually early release of tree pollen, suggesting that this could potentially be the worst allergy season in a decade.
As many as 30% of children suffer from seasonal allergies — prompting the seemingly endless sneezing, itchy and watery eyes, and stuffy noses. Allergies can also lead to congestion, prompting more kids to develop colds, flu and sinus infections. Antibiotics are often prescribed, but they have shown to be ineffective at combatting such viral infections. Follow these tips to manage your child’s allergies:
Make an appointment early. If your child seems prone to allergies, see the pediatrician before allergy season to get tested. By knowing what your kid is allergic to will help determine how soon she should start allergy medications and ensure the products have the greatest effect.
Stay hydrated. Water also helps thin mucus build up, making it easier to expel and relieve congestion.
Use a natural decongestant. Steam can have a profound effect on allergy and cold symptoms, but historically, it has posed some challenges. Humidifier tanks are prone to mold and bacteria growth and Neti pots and nasal rinses can be generally unpleasant. Instead use a handheld steam inhaler like MyPurMist – warm mist soothes irritated tissues in the nose and throat, calming coughs, opening nasal passages, and reducing dryness.
Keep allergens out. Set your central air conditioning unit on recirculate and keep windows and doors shut to limit the pollen and mold entering your home.
Plan playtime. Kids enjoy playing outside, so let them! But do a little planning – pollen.com provides reliable zip code-specific pollen forecasts. When pollen or mold counts are high, consider using allergy medication as a preventive measure or limiting outdoor play to late afternoon. Most pollen is dispersed in the early morning and travels best on warm, dry, breezy days. It tends to peaks in urban areas around midday. Pollen counts are lowest during chilly, wet periods.
Consult your pediatrician again. If symptoms persis, the doctor can refer you to an allergist, who can confirm your child’s allergens and to see if it’s necessary to start allergy shots.
Visit the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America for the nation’s top allergy capitals.
Read more about allergies on Parents.com
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Friday, August 26th, 2011
Grandparents Play a Bigger Role in Child-Rearing
Less frail and more involved, today’s grandparents are shunning retirement homes and stepping in more than ever to raise grandchildren while young adults struggle in the poor economy.
When Schools Depend on Handouts
Earlier this month, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced that he and five other wealthy individuals had raised $1.5 million to reinstate the January Regents exams, which New York State had canceled because of budget cuts. Although praiseworthy as a matter of personal philanthropy, the donation by the mayor and the others, whose names were not disclosed, is highly distressing as a matter of public policy.
Chocolate Milk Gets a Makeover
Parents who are concerned about the amount of sugar their children are chugging in school cafeterias may be encouraged by an announcement from the milk industry. Starting in September, chocolate milk will have fewer calories and less sugar.
Five Healthiest Vacuum Cleaners for the Home
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The right vacuum is key for good health. “Dust can trigger allergies and asthma,” says James Sublett, MD, a spokesman for the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology.
Friday, May 27th, 2011
Although breastfeeding is the best way to help reduce your baby’s risk of developing allergies, if you are not nursing exclusively and have a family history of allergies, Gerber’s Good Start Formulas may help reduce an infant’s risk of eczema, the FDA has concluded. Published studies like this one support this link. Good Start Protect and Good Start Gentle are made from 100% whey protein that has been partially hydrolyzed—which means that it has been broken down into smaller pieces that may be easier for an infant to digest. The formulas are made from milk, so any baby who has already been diagnosed with a milk allergy or has symptoms of a possible milk allergy should not drink it.
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Thursday, May 12th, 2011
It’s allergy season again, which means your child may be experiencing watery and itchy eyes, sneezing, coughing, wheezing, and exacerbated asthma. According to Bill McLin, President and CEO of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA), “asthma affects nearly seven million children in America, and it is imperative that we make an effort to further educate children and parents on asthma care and management.”
If your child deals with asthma year-round, EveryoneBreathe.com is a great site dedicated to providing parents with helpful explainers, resources, and tools to manage its symptoms. Printable tools that increase asthma awareness include a glossary, a symptom and trigger tracker, a healthcare provider checklist, a back-to-school checklist, and more.
Mary Joe Fernandez, an Olympic medalist and tennis champion, is the site’s spokesperson. “Having battled the symptoms of asthma for many years, and now as the mother of a child with asthma, I can’t emphasize enough the importance of quality asthma care both at home and in school.” To help improve quality of care and education for school-aged children with asthma, EveryoneBreathe.com is partnering with the AAFA for a new Everyone Breathe Asthma Education Grants program. Parents who have children with asthma can apply for a $2,500 savings bond for their child’s continued education and a $5,000 savings bond for their child’s school to improve asthma care and education in the classroom. Ten winners total will be selected. The deadline is July 29, 2011.
Read about asthma on Parents.com
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allergies, allergy, asthma, asthma and allergy foundation, child education, education, health, Health & Safety, mary joe fernandez, olympic medalist, Olympics | Categories:
GoodyBlog, Health & Safety, Your Child
Tuesday, March 8th, 2011
The recent Skippy peanut butter recall serves as a reminder that peanuts are still a problem in the U.S., in more ways than just salmonella.
Food allergies among children are actually increasing in the United States, the most common being the peanut allergy. Peanut allergies are the most dangerous, since often breathing or eating just a small amount of peanuts could cause fatal reactions such as anaphylactic shock and death.
While most children grow out of certain food allergies by the time they are in their teens, some have worsening allergies or later develop certain allergies. In a recent New Yorker article, most doctors have commonly believed that children are less likely to develop food allergies if they are not exposed to certain foods as babies. Those with food allergies have to avoid certain foods for life, reading labels carefully and asking about ingredients, since no other particular treatments are available.
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GoodyBlog, Health & Safety, News, Your Child
Wednesday, February 9th, 2011
Study Tracks Drug-Related Teen Suicides
Teenage girls are about three times as likely as boys to attempt suicide for drug-related reasons, according to an analysis of emergency-room visits. A government study also found boys are far more likely to attempt drug-related suicide in the month of December, while the suicide rate for girls stays fairly steady throughout the year. (Wall Street Journal)
Higher IQs linked to healthier diets in kids
Plenty of studies have established a link between breastfeeding and intelligence. One-meta-analysis of 20 such studies found that babies who were breastfed got an IQ boost of 3.16 points, on average (even after adjusting for the fact that moms with more education are more likely to prioritize breastfeeding). (Chicago Tribune)
Giving Baby Solid Foods Too Early Linked to Obesity Later
MONDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) — Babies who were formula-fed and introduced to solid foods before they were 4 months old were more likely to be obese when they were 3, researchers report. (Business Week)
Brain Tumor Risk Drops with More Allergies
There may be one benefit to having a lot of allergies — they may protect against glioma, researchers found.
Patients with gliomas were significantly less likely to report having any allergy (OR 0.60, 95% CI 0.46 to 0.79), a relationship that applied to both high- and low-grade tumors, Bridget McCarthy, PhD, of the University of Illinois at Chicago, and colleagues reported in the February issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. (Med Page Today.com )
After a False Dawn, Anxiety for Illegal Immigrant Students
MILWAUKEE — It was exhilarating for Maricela Aguilar to stand on the steps of the federal courthouse here one day last summer and reveal for the first time in public that she is an illegal immigrant. (New York Times)
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Tuesday, February 8th, 2011
Parents who depend on Children’s Zyrtec Chewable Tablets to treat their kids’ allergies will need to speak to their pediatricans about other safe, alternative over-the-counter medication. Mitch Lipka on Consumer Ally reports the tablets are not being recalled, but being made unavailable until 2012 because of changes in production and manufacturing.
According to Consumer Ally, after McNeil recalled Children’s Benadryl Allergy Fastmelts, Motrin Junior Strength Caplets, and other medication last year, Johnson & Johnson recommitted to producing medication “to the levels of quality and compliance that consumers expect….” Johnson & Johnson’s McNeil Consumer Healthcare recently made the decision to stop outsourcing production of Zyrtec Chewable Tablets and begin manufacturing them in-house, which means they won’t be ready until next year.
In the meantime, kids age 6 and older can still take other types of Zyrtec tablets and liquid gels. Read more on Consumer Ally.
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