POSTS WITH TAG: toddler health

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    It's midnight, you have a sobbing toddler in the grips of some serious teething pain in your arms, and you can't figure out the right dose of pain relief medicine for your kiddo. Feeling desperate? You're not alone.

    A new study of calls to poison control has revealed some 10,000 come in every year over liquid medication dosage errors. Turns out parents are unwittingly overdosing their own kids on common medications.

    A LOT of parents.

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    It only took a second for Aileen Burger to decide to move her whole family across the country. It was a Wednesday, and doctors had just told her they couldn't operate on 4-year-old Elizabeth's brain to cure her intractable epilepsy. By Saturday, the Burgers, who hail from New York, were in Colorado, signing their daughter up for Charlotte's Web, a strain of medical marijuana that's changing the lives of kids with epilepsy.

    Choosing to put your toddler on pot may not be the obvious decision for any parent, the Burgers included. But as Aileen told The Stir, it's the only one that was right for their little girl.

    "We decided to treat Elizabeth with medical marijuana because we had exhausted nearly all other available treatments," she said simply.

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    Ear infections. If you've got a child, no doubt you've dealt with at least one. After all -- three out of four kids in America will have at least one case before age 3. Scary statistic? You better believe it.

    "Many experts (and parents) believe ear infections are on the rise, possibly the result of increased day care attendance at younger ages and increased allergen exposure," notes Dr. Jennifer Gardner, the pediatrician and mom behind the Healthy Kids Company. While Gardner notes other experts say immunizations and increased focus on breastfeeding is bringing down the number of ear infections, contradicting moms' beliefs, ear infections remain "the number one reason for non-wellness doctor visits in babies and toddlers."

    Don't want to end up in the pediatrician's office with a miserable tot? Here are pediatricians' best tips to try to prevent ear infections:

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    If your baby sucks their thumb, you've probably heard the warnings: thumb sucking will ruin their teeth! Been trying to wrench that little digit out of baby's mouth ever since but struggling? You're not alone. As much as 46 percent of "typically developing" kids under 4 suck their thumbs.

    And yes, it can damage their teeth, says Dr. David Zirlin, pediatric dentist at White Plains Pediatric Dentistry. But you can stop pulling that thumb from baby's mouth right now -- and don't bother grabbing a pacifier.

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    Child safety gates are pretty high on parents' "childproofing" to-do lists. They're super handy in keeping the children off the stairs, out of rooms, and away from dangerous objects. But they do have their dangers. Boy do they have dangers! A new study released in this month's issue of Academic Pediatrics shows that baby-gate related injuries have quadrupled since 1990.

    According to researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, when used incorrectly, the gates can lead to some very serious injuries.

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    Got a "time-out" chair in your home? You might want to put it back in the playroom. While time-outs were the discipline method du jour for parents in the '90s, they've fallen out of favor with today's more progressive child behavior experts. "Time-outs were originally a way for kids to take a break, think about what they did, maybe even have remorse for it, and settle down and return," says Tovah P. Klein, Ph.D, author of How Toddlers Thrive. "They don't make sense at all for young children."

    The two biggest reasons to skip time-outs? They're not healthy for your child's emotional well-being (now or later), and they're not effective in terms of curbing "bad" behavior. (If you're constantly giving your child a time-out, that tells you something, doesn't it?)

    Let's take a closer look at this form of discipline.

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    More and more parents in the United States are choosing not to vaccinate their children for religious, philosophical, health and other reasons. Anti-vaxxers, as they're called, run the gamut across the political and geographical spectrum. Overall, more than 10 percent of parents are either delaying when their children are vaccinated or not getting the shots at all.

    The decision of whether or not to vaccinate your child is a personal one, but make it a well-informed one. Ask questions. Do your research. Talk to your pediatrician. Your decision affects not only your child, but the people around them (at school, at church, on the playground, at the grocery store, and so on). Understanding the risks of not vaccinating your child is an important part of the decision-making process.

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    There is something to be said for those small moments, moments where there are things we can fix, Band-Aids to be applied, kisses to be given, Scotch tape, and glue, and staples ...

    And there is something to be said about the needle and thread I hold now in my right hand, as I clutch a little blue and gray sock monkey we found in the back of my almost-4-year-old son Owen’s closet yesterday as I was doing some New Year’s cleaning. He asked to bring it into his crib to join the menagerie of dolls and stuffed animals that have nearly overtaken the space where his little body goes to rest, and I said it was fine, only stopping him when I happened to glance over and saw some stuffing emerging from the little monkey’s right leg.

    I assured my boy that I would fix the monkey’s “boo boo” and return him right after Owen’s nap.

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    In the ongoing debates over the best parenting strategies, spanking always manages to come up. And moms on both sides of the issue never fail to get super-heated. Research has intervened to give their say this week. For a new study, published in the Journal of Family Psychology, researchers analyzed real-time audio recordings of parents interacting with their children and concluded not only that parents are spanking for "trivial misdeeds," but 73 percent of the time, kids end up misbehaving again within 10 minutes. Wow.

    That said, if spanking is SO ineffective, it hardly seems like it pays for even its biggest proponent to do it! Really, the findings only serve to echo what opponents of spanking say: It's a bogus, unnecessary way to discipline.

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    A tragic disaster is something none of us ever wants to pay witness to. But sometimes it's absolutely necessary to scare us into making changes that can preempt another horrible incident from occurring. That's exactly what Miami-Dade Fire Rescue spokesman Arnold Piedrahita believes -- and the reason why he recently shared surveillance footage of a toddler almost drowning.

    Still, seeing the upsetting incident unfold is gut-wrenching, really almost unbearable to watch, but considering that drowning is the leading cause of injury-related death among children 1 to 4 years old, it also serves as a wake-up call. Watch below ...

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