How to outsmart mosquitos and prevent bites
Aug03

How to outsmart mosquitos and prevent bites

Yes, you should be worried about mosquitos transmitting Zika. And you should be just as worried about dengue fever, yellow fever, chikungunya, Japanese encephalitis, West Nile, and several other diseases. About 700 million people are infected every year around the world and some get really sick. Even if you don’t get sick, bug bites are easily infected by dirty kid hands scratching their itch. Plus, bug bites are just annoying. Here’s...

Read More
5 dangers worth worrying about
Jul21

5 dangers worth worrying about

I only have 3 rules for my own kids; wear helmets, buckle up and brush your teeth. Otherwise, I let my kids run, jump and play without much intervention. But that’s because I’m a pediatrician that works in an emergency room and I know what’s really dangerous. Your child is far more likely to be harmed by things you aren’t even thinking about. Here’s what makes my palms sweat:   1. CHOKING New parents choose baby’s first solid...

Read More
Babies feel pain
Aug28

Babies feel pain

Do we learn to feel pain? Babies’ scrunched up faces and curdling screams certainly suggest that our little ones feel pain. However, until the 1980s, scientists believed that babies’ responses were purely a reflex, and not a true pain reaction. So, fearing they would overdose these tiny creatures, doctors didn’t routinely use anesthetic even during surgery. The truth is that babies are born wired to feel pain. Just this spring,...

Read More
How would kids childproof?
Jul30

How would kids childproof?

Childproofing your home to protect from falls isn’t just about buying and installing gear. Babies have a miraculous ability to fall from furniture before you have ever witnessed their ability to roll over. And toddlers are legally required to climb to the highest point available to them in any given situation. They climb out of high chairs, reach for high shelves and stand up in shopping carts. And sometimes they fall. Kids fall in a...

Read More
Hear ye! Noise is more dangerous than you think
May29

Hear ye! Noise is more dangerous than you think

Worried about damaging baby’s ears at a movie or sporting event? You should be. Babies’ ear canals are smaller and their skulls are thinner, so the sound pressure entering a baby’s ear is amplified. Hearing damage isn’t simply a result of the volume of a sound. It’s the energy in the sound that damages our inner ear. And energy is a product of both the volume and duration of exposure. For example, an 80db noise (heavy city traffic)...

Read More
You ate what?!  How to handle household poisonings
May22

You ate what?! How to handle household poisonings

I generally don’t put non-food substances in my mouth. But young kids exploring this new world might eat deodorant, nail polish remover, grandma’s pills, or hand sanitizer just in case they might be delicious. How worried should you be?  Children are at higher risk for accidental poisoning than adults are. Kids are particularly sensitive to overdose from even small doses of toxins simply because they are smaller. In order for Tylenol...

Read More
That’s gonna leave a mark: Cuts, stitches & scars
Feb18

That’s gonna leave a mark: Cuts, stitches & scars

When is a Band-Aid (or a kiss) not enough? A cut (or skin laceration) needs professional medical treatment if the edges of the wound don’t stay together easily or if you can’t stop the bleeding. That’s it. The same principle applies to tongue injuries and other cuts inside the lip or mouth. If a wound inside the mouth flaps around when a child eats, or speaks, it needs repair. But if a child can eat and the mouth isn’t bleeding after...

Read More
Baby’s soft spot protects brain and more!
Feb11

Baby’s soft spot protects brain and more!

I gladly oblige when parents ask me to check their baby’s soft spot; and then I pronounce it’s just fine. But the truth is that I don’t know what I’m checking. Nobody does. The tough tissue of the soft spot is so strong that it really won’t even stretch much if there is a brain problem1. And the pulsations from the soft spot, which are admittedly a little freaky, are not understood at all. What we do know is that the flexible...

Read More
Handle a baby tooth injury with ease
Dec28

Handle a baby tooth injury with ease

At least half of all kids will damage a baby tooth in a toddler fall. And 99% of those will occur on Christmas Eve, Easter or any other time dentist offices are closed. I got a text message from a friend this year on Christmas Eve after her daughter hit her front tooth. She was worried that the tooth would fall out and she’d be staring at a prize-fighter-looking baby for the next 3 years. Don’t worry about the cosmetic effect of a...

Read More