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Behaviour and Discipline

Early Signs of Autism to Look Out For

Signs of Autism

By Lisa Pecos

Most children with autism don’t get a final diagnosis until the age of four. There is no specific medical test or blood test to diagnose autism the way you would a medical condition such as cancer or diabetes. Medical professionals base their diagnosis on a child’s behaviour and development. Since children without the condition can exhibit many of the same issues, getting a diagnosis is often delayed. Even so, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say that a diagnosis by an experienced professional by the age of two can be very reliable.

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Opioid Overdoses Triple Among Kids & Teens – How to Protect Your Kids

By Lisa Pecos

The Journal of the American Medical Associating (JAMA) Pediatrics recently published an alarming report stating that the number of young children and teens hospitalized in the U.S. for opioid overdose has almost tripled in recent years.

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Program to Prevent Teen Pregnancy with Virtual Babies Backfires

Teen pregnancy

By Lisa Pecos

It may seem like something out of an 80s sitcom, but giving teen girls lifelike baby dolls to care for as a way to dissuade them from getting pregnant is something that has been going on for years. A recent study out of Australia, however, has found that this may actually have the opposite effect on teen girls.

Virtual Babies

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How Much Sleep Do Your Kids and Teens Really Need?

Sleeping Teen in class AVV

By Lisa Pecos

Chances are that you’ve long been told that you should be aiming for 8 hours of sleep every night, but does that go for your children too? And if you struggle to get in a full 8 hours on most nights, is it realistic to expect that your child or teen can? Experts report that more than one third of the American population doesn’t get enough sleep and this includes children and teens.

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Helicopter Parenting – Are You Guilty of It?

AVV

By Jamell Andrews

It’s hard to imagine that a parent could take too much interest or responsibility for their child or give them too much attention. Isn’t that a parent’s job and right as the person responsible for bringing them into this world and loves them more than anything? It turns out that you could be walking the fine line from a good parent to a helicopter parent that is doing more harm than good.

What Is a Helicopter Parent?

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Puberty Woes or PCOS: Know the Signs

By Jamell Andrews

As a parent of an adolescent daughter, it’s easy to brush off acne and irregular periods as normal parts of puberty. While missed or heavy periods and acne are certainly common at this stage of a girl’s life, they can also be signs of a condition called Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS).

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Drinking in Movies and Teenage Drinking

teen_drinking

Teenagers Who Watch Actors Drinking Alcohol in Movies More Likely to Drink Themselves

A study published earlier this year in the journal Pediatrics found that young European teens who watched more scenes of actors drinking in Hollywood movies were more likely to binge-drink and otherwise abuse alcohol.

Researchers gave questionnaires to more than 5,000 15-year-olds from England, and found that youths who had watched the most minutes of drinking scenes in different movies were twice as likely to have problems relating to alcohol as teens who had watched the fewest minutes. Those who had watched the most minutes were also almost 2.5 times more likely to drink at least once a week and 70 percent more likely to binge-drink (that is, drink 5 or more drinks in a single day).

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Delaying School Start for Summer-Born and Premature Children

little tired boy sitting at a desk and holding hands to head

Delaying Start of School for Summer-Born or Premature Children Lowers Academic Performance, Says Study; Some Parents Disagree

Children who start school a year later due to summer birthdays or premature births may do worse academically later on, according to a British study published recently in the Journal of Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology.

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Helping Your Child Prepare for Tests

Elementary school children writing in class

12 Tips to Help Your Child Do Well on Tests

Other than making sure your child gets plenty of study time to prepare for a test, are there specific things that you and he or she can do, to insure they do their best on a test?

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Better Solutions to Discipline Children than Screaming!

Parents_Screaming

Let’s face it, what parent hasn’t lost his or her cool in the face of a defiant child or children, and started screaming. If you never have, you’re in a small minority. Nearly all parents — close to 90 percent — have yelled at their kids at some point, according to a survey of almost 1,000 parents by the Journal of Marriage and Family.

But if you’ve ever done it, you know that screaming leaves you, the parent, feeling mentally worn-out and even guilty afterwards. And your children may model your behavior and pick up the habit, themselves.

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Family Meals Keep Kids Slim?

Fight Childhood Obesity

Could Pleasant, Peaceful Family Meals Help Fight Childhood Obesity?

You might not think of it, but having peaceful, pleasant family meals could help maintain children at a healthy weight, according to a new study.

Researchers at the University of Minnesota gave 120 families iPads to record mealtimes for 8 days; half the families had overweight or obese children, and half did not.

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Use of Synthetic Growth Hormone by American Teens More than Doubled in a Year

Synthetic Growth Hormone

The Internet has made shopping for so many goods a lot easier and more practical. For parents, it is important to remember that teens may also avail themselves of the ease and convenience that shopping online affords. And unless parents educate and are vigilant over their teens, youths may be getting their hands on some products that could do them a lot of harm.

Such is the case with products that contain the synthetic human growth hormone hGH. This drug is used by doctors in injection form to treat a few medical conditions, such as diminished production of human growth hormone by a person’s pituitary gland, and to treat children whose doctors have determined will not achieve a normal height, unless there is medical intervention.

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American Children Eat Too Much Salt and Sugar, According to Two Studies

Child_salt

Two recent studies examined sugar and salt consumption among American children, and found that American youths tend to eat too much of both.

One study, published recently in the journal BMC Public Health, found that 60 to 90 percent of school-age children develop cavities, and the researchers concluded that sugar is the number-one reason for that tooth decay. (Adults have an even higher rate: according to an article published in TIME, 92 percent of adults aged 20 to 60 have had tooth decay in at least one tooth.)

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Do ADHD Drugs Increase Risk of Cardiac Disease in Children?

Attention disorder medicines

Like other diseases and conditions in our modern world, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnoses in children have increased markedly, globally and in the United States, in recent years. More children and teens with ADHD are taking pharmaceutical drugs to treat this condition.

Millions of American children are now being treated with these stimulant drugs, which improve symptoms for some but not for others. And aside from whether or not ADHD drugs will work for a particular child, there are also valid concerns from many parents about putting strange laboratory chemicals into their young ones’ systems.

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Many U.S. Kids Still Getting Too Much Daily Screen Time, Says CDC

Screen Time

For years, doctors have been advising parents to limit the time their children spend daily watching television or on a computer — the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children get no more than two hours a day of non-school-related ‘screen time.’ But the message isn’t getting through to all families.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducted two national surveys among children between 12 and 15 years of age. Close to three quarters of all the youths reported spending at least two hours in front of the TV and using a computer. Fifteen percent of those surveyed said they spent four or more hours watching TV every day; while 12 percent used a computer for four or more hours a day. The survey did not ask about use of smartphones.

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Could Regular Exercise Make Children Smarter?

Exercise Make Children Smarter

We know that adults can improve their concentration and help guard against memory loss as they age, when they get regular exercise. Similarly, a new study found that kids may gain cognitive benefits from being physically fit, as well.

Researchers at the University of Illinois found that children who are in better physical shape tend to have better language skills than their lesser fit peers. The brains of the fitter kids responded faster and more strongly during reading, which translated into better reading performance and comprehension.

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Having a Dog Can Help Ease Symptoms, Improve Behavior in Children with Autism

Dog_Kid

Parents of autistic children know how difficult it is at times to manage all of life’s responsibilities, and to care for a child with special needs. Autism has aspects that can make parenting and teaching autistic children that much harder. Many parents are turning to dogs to help their autistic children: dogs can make an autistic child happier, less prone to throw tantrums, and strengthen the child’s sense of security.

Centers have opened in some American cities to specifically train dogs as companions for children with autism spectrum disorders; still other centers that train dogs for special-needs children now also train canines for autistic children.

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Violent Video Games Linked to Aggression in Children, Says Study

Emotions during the computer game

A study of more than 3,000 school-age children found that playing violent video games a lot seems to increase the odds that children and teenagers will engage in aggressive behaviors in real life.

Researchers said that frequent exposure to the violence in these games causes children to start seeing their world in a ‘more aggressive way,’ with children being more apt to expect others to behave aggressively toward them; kids who often play violent video games are also more likely to think that violence is an acceptable way to solve problems.

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Energy Drinks and Sports Drinks Linked to Unhealthy Behaviors in Teenagers

Teenage_behavior

A new study has found that teenagers who regularly consume energy drinks and sports drinks are more likely to engage in unhealthy behaviors. Teens who often drank energy drinks like Red Bull and ROCKSTAR were more apt to smoke, use illicit drugs and drink alcohol. And teens who drank either energy or sports drinks regularly tended to spend more hours watching TV and playing video games.

The study was published online recently in the Journal of Nutrition, Education and Behavior; it’s one of the first studies to show that consumption of these drinks may be part of an overall pattern of unhealthy behaviors for growing numbers of teenagers.

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Autism Rates Increasing Rapidly: CDC

Angry girl

Autism rates in the United States rose by 30% between 2008 and 2010, and by 120% between 2000 and 2010, according to a new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. One in 68 8-year-old children had been diagnosed with autism by 2010, up from 1 in 88 two years earlier, says the report. These are staggering statistics, compared to the 1 in thousands ratio of American children who had been diagnosed as autistic in 1970.

The study, published online in late March, 2014, found that five times as many boys as girls are being diagnosed with autism. The CDC estimates that 1 in 42 boys has autism, and 1 in 189 girls. Caucasian children are diagnosed most frequently, followed by Hispanics, then African-Americans. The average age at which children are diagnosed has fallen, but remains above age 4 (diagnosis is possible by age 2).

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Spanking Young Children Is Tied to Problem Behavior Later

Spanking

Parenting styles differ, but we have become increasingly aware in the last few decades that physical punishment backfires and does more harm than good, when trying to get children to behave.

A new study adds to the scientific evidence that researches have amassed, which shows that corporal punishment — in this case, spanking — has long-lasting, damaging effects in children.

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To Get Your Child and Teenagers to Listen About Health Dangers, Try Using Positive Messages

Teenage Couple Taking Drugs At Home

A new study found that when it comes to getting through to young people, you may be better off focusing on the positive, rather than using scare tactics.

If you’re a parent, you may at times get frustrated by how hard it is to get your children to listen to you when you warn them about the dangers of smoking, drinking alcohol, speeding when driving, or whatever the possible danger is.

The study, done at University College London in England, involved participants between 9 and 26 years old, who were asked to estimate their risk of suffering certain bad events, like being in a car accident or getting lung disease (from smoking). They were then told the actual statistics for those events.

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Is Playing Sports Good for a Child with ADHD?

Sports_ADHD

Yes, it is. Child experts agree that playing sports is a great way for children who suffer from attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) to build self-esteem, get exercise, enhance social skills and make friends. Playing sports helps boost a child’s self-confidence, something with which ADHD kids often struggle. Signing up your child for a sport offers the added benefit of steering him or her toward a more active routine, thus decreasing or discouraging more sedentary activities such as TV-watching or playing video games, and that’s a good step for any child.

Helping Your Child Choose a Sport

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Does Drinking Sodas Cause Problem Behavior and Aggression in Young Children?

Soda-Kid

We’ve all heard the warnings: soda pop is bad for us. Many studies have linked moderate-to-heavy soda-drinking to obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, gastrointestinal cancers and other serious illnesses. Even light soda-drinking (defined as 2 or more sodas a week) was found in one study to be linked to pancreatic cancer, one of the deadliest and hardest-to-cure cancers. Diet sodas are also bad; they have been linked to even more disease than regular sodas, by some estimates; which makes sense, since they have an even greater number of toxic chemicals than regular sodas.

The fact is, for those of us who aim to eat natural diets and be conscientious consumers, sodas are a complete no-no. The ingredients are more times than not a long assortment of artificial chemicals and preservatives that don’t belong in anyone’s body — least of all, a child’s.

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Having “The Talk” with Your Child: Tips on Talking to Your Pre-Teen or Teenager About Sex

If you feel uncomfortable even bringing up the subject of sex with your pre-teen or teenage son or daughter, you are not alone. More than one parent has elected to avoid having that talk altogether because they didn’t feel comfortable. However, given the potentially very serious and life-changing consequences of sex, it is a subject that parents ought to discuss.

At no other time have children of all ages been exposed to so much gratuitous sex as today’s children. Sexual messages abound in television, movies, music and advertisements, while the Internet is a new source of ready sexual content for children who are not being carefully supervised. Today, more than ever, it is important to bring up the subject of sex with your son or daughter, instead of relying only on school to teach them what they need to know.

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How to Talk to Young Children so They’ll Listen

Getting a young child to give you his or her undivided attention while you talk to them is sometimes tricky, as any parent knows; but there are specific things that you can do to better your chances of being heard.

Even with a very young child, a parent or caregiver should take steps to establish a loving and nurturing relationship. Hugs, compliments, mock tummy tickles, enlisting your little helper in jobs around the house — these are all ways in which you can instill in the child the feeling that you love and appreciate him or her. The more time you spend together, the more “in tune” you will be with your child’s temperament, and how to go about teaching discipline, obedience and good social behavior.

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Pediatric Hypertension

According to the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), the development of a national database on high blood pressure in children has contributed to the recognition that there is indeed a rise in the number of children with elevated blood pressure. The complications associated with continued high blood pressure, like heart attack and stroke, make diagnosis and treatment of the condition a priority for parents.

There are numerous primary causes for pediatric hypertension, with obesity and renal problems accounting for the vast majority of cases. But one rarely identified factor is the “white-coat syndrome.”

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How to Talk to Teenagers so They’ll Listen

The teenage years are a dreaded time for many parents, as teens begin to rebel and dismiss their parents’ good counsel, reaching out for approval from their peers instead. But there are things that you as a parent can do to strengthen the quality of your relationship with your teen, and thus make him or her more receptive to your advice and instruction.

Perhaps the most fundamental step to getting your teenage son or daughter to trust you and listen to you is to be loving and kind to your child. If you strive to have a harmonious and respectful relationship with your child, fewer conflicts will arise. That does not mean not disciplining your child, because correcting a child when they do wrong (in a compassionate, thoughtful manner) is every bit as important as giving them your love, your attention, and providing for them.

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The Hygiene Hypothesis — Is a Little Dirt Good for Your Child?

You may have heard the term human microbiome or microbiota, which refers to the thousands of species of microscopic organisms that inhabit the bodies of both healthy and diseased humans. These beneficial or “friendly” bacteria and fungi play vital roles in keeping us healthy and helping with normal processes such as digestion of the foods that we eat. Friendly flora can be found on our skins, in the skin’s deeper layers, our mouths, parts of our eyes, and our gastrointestinal tract.

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Before You Give Your Child Stimulants for ADHD, Try Some Dietary Changes

The American Psychiatric Association estimates that between 3 and 7 percent of American children suffer from attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder, ADHD, though some studies show even higher rates. ADHD diagnoses have increased by an astounding 66 percent since 2000.

Many children now take prescription drugs, chiefly stimulants, to combat the symptoms of ADHD — hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattention.

Because it’s a growing problem, studies continue being done to try to determine if there are More »

Effective Ways to Handle Children’s Tantrums

We’ve all experienced it: we’re at the grocery store, or even a department store … when out of nowhere, a child starts letting out nerve-congealing screams that quickly direct our attention to the source — a toddler or slightly older child is upset that he or she can’t have some enticing-looking goody they’ve come across, and they’re letting the whole world know they’re upset.

Very often, the parent accompanying the child More »

Sibling Rivalries in Children

Relatively few children are fortunate enough to be close friends with their siblings — in few cases, siblings can even be best friends.  But in the majority of cases, routine quabbles, and even drag-out fights, are a fact of life in the lives of brothers and sisters. Sibling rivalries can often More »

What to do About a Child Who Lies

Every child lies, just as every adult lies. These might be difficult truths to accept, but if you search your own past and examine your actions honestly, you will no doubt find that there have been many situations where you found it useful to lie. Children are no different, except that they are often poor liars and tend to do it even when there is little chance they will get away with it. There are many reasons that they do this, but the most important thing parents need to know is More »

Teaching Your Kids a Good Work Ethic

Many children are not predisposed to working hard and carrying out their responsibilities with enthusiasm. In fact, most kids must be taught these things, often with great hardship and frustration for the parents. Kids want to play and enjoy their idle time—which is perfectly natural and even healthy to some degree—and typically do not take well to being More »

Help! My Toddler Is Swearing!

You may be stunned to hear your little angel say a swear word! Many parents experience these shocks at some point so do not fret! This often happens as children begin to explore language. It happens because they have heard someone else say it in frustration and they want to express the same emotion or they do it because they know it achieves a reaction and therefore think that it is funny.

The best action to take straight away is to More »

How to Keep Your Teen Out of Trouble: 10 Tips

Teens are naturally rebellious, and when you combine this with all the potentially destructive influences that today’s teens are exposed to, it is not surprising that the percentage of young people who have been arrested at least once has grown in recent years. And these incidents can have lifelong repercussions. Even a minor offense such as shoplifting or drug possession can set a young person back and shut opportunities to them. And of course, there are many much more serious crimes that can taint records permanently and even ruin lives.

Sadly, much of what teens do must be out of their parents’ hands. We cannot watch our children every second of the day, and the teenage years are a time when kids need an increasing amount of freedom in order to find themselves and become independent people. But while you cannot control your child’s actions, what you can do is More »

Had Enough of the Backchat?

Do you feel exasperated dealing with backchat and disrespectful behaviour from your children? It can be difficult to handle your children’s bad manners, rudeness, swearing, sarcasm or cheekiness and most parents complain about it at some point. Think about why your child might be behaving this way as there are More »

Alcohol and Your Teenager

Alcohol is considered socially acceptable as long as it is drunk moderately but it can cause mixed messages being communicated to our young people. We tell our children drinking is bad for them but they then see us consuming alcohol and sometimes too much at social occasions. What do you do if you discover your child is drinking excessively? What do you say without seeming hypocritical or risk your children losing their trust in you?

Many children have their first sip of an alcoholic drink at around More »

Children’s Growing Pains: What Can Parents Do?

That kids experience growing pains is no myth. At times of growth (and kids do grow at uneven rates), to feel actual pain in the bones, muscles, and joints is quite common. Its prevalence is difficult to measure, but it is believed that as many as half of all children experience growing pains regularly. As grownups, we may not remember just how uncomfortable these pains can be, but they are significant enough to disrupt sleep, make it hard to focus in school, and cause irritability.

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Parenting Tactics That Damage Your Child’s Self Esteem

Be aware that even though you feel you are doing your very best raising your child, sometimes your parenting strategies can be damaging to your child’s self-esteem and the parent-child relationship. Your child needs to grow up with a healthy level of self-esteem to be more resilient to the lessons learnt and the knocks taken in life. A good self-esteem enables your child in decision making, having confidence in the judgements she makes, knowing what is right and wrong and having an ability to ‘bounce back’ after a knock. Healthy self-esteem is especially important during your child’s adolescent years when the chances are she will experience peer pressure to experiment with cigarettes, drugs and alcohol.

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Does My Child Have OCD?

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is an anxiety disorder and is characterised by repetitive and unwanted thoughts. These obsessions create actions made by the sufferer as they try to eradicate the anxious thoughts which are compulsions. OCD cases vary from mild to severe and manifest in different ways. With children suffering from OCD their obsessive thoughts can cause high levels of distress and anxiety often dominating their time and ability to focus and hold their attention on things. Research carried out estimates that 1.9% to 3% of children have OCD so out of 1000 children in a school 19 to 30 of them will probably have this disorder. OCD does not discriminate between ethnicities or social groups.

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Is My Child A Bully?

In the UK alone approximately sixteen children a year commit suicide because of the trauma they endure due to bullying. The offending children who have tirelessly bullied their victims know exactly what they are doing but it seems that sometimes, the people in authority such as school teachers claim they did not know the bullying was taking place. Friends of the bullies also probably knew what was happening. Before a child has to have medical treatment or dies, people need to speak up if they suspect such bullying.

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Sibling Rivalry: What Can Parents Do?

Sibling rivalry can take many forms over the years. When the second child is first born, it can take the form of acting out, regression, and fussiness on the part of the older child. And as the kids grow up, it can turn into arguing, physical fighting, and deep feelings of jealousy and resentment. Most sibling rivalry is more of an annoyance than a serious problem, but it can become emotionally taxing to parents who had hoped their children would get along and love each other.

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Are You Worried About Your Child’s Speech?

You may be concerned that your child is having difficulty with his speech. There are common problems that are often diagnosed and this is a guide to how you can detect them, how to help your child and also how you can seek professional help.

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How to Raise a Musical Child

When it comes to educating children, a lot of focus is placed on practical skills like reading and math, which are undoubtedly important. But we should raise our children to be well-rounded individuals, and this involves teaching them forms of creative self-expression. While different kids have different talents-some are good at drawing, some can dance well, and some are most talented in non-artistic areas-music should be integral to every child’s life. And even if your child does not develop into a musical prodigy, it is a good idea to have cultivate familiarity with the art form.

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Should Kids Get Their Own Cell Phones?

By Marc Courtiol

Although it may sometimes be hard to imagine life without cellphones, most grownups can recall a time when we were not all in constant touch with one another, and when every household shared a single stationary phone. And because most of today’s parents grew up in that world, many have a somewhat traditionalist attitude when it comes to whether to give their own kids cellphones. Many feel there is no reason a child needs a cellphone, while some take a more modest approach, allowing that it may be a good idea to provide their kids cellphones at, say, 14 or 15, when the social life picks up.

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Welcoming a Second Child: How to Handle the Change

By Lisa Pecos

Having a first child is one of the most difficult things you will ever have to do. From the middle stages of pregnancy until those blessed later months of the first year when the baby gets less fussy and more predictable, you are put through a series of challenges that test every fiber of your being. So it is a wonder that anyone would make a conscious choice to complicate things further by bringing a second child into the picture. Yet people do it all the time. And yes, many aspects of having a baby are easier the second time around, but in many ways you will feel just as challenged and bewildered as you did the first time.

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The Negative Effects of the Media on Teens

By Lisa Pecos

Today’s kids plug into media at an earlier age than their predecessors, and the amount of media they consume is staggering compared to the habits of past generations. According to a recent study by the Kaiser Family Foundation, the average child between the age of eight and 18 consumes media for seven hours and 38 minutes every day-and the real rate for teens is much higher. As parents, there is good reason to be disturbed by these figures. Granted, certain types of media have benefits, but the negative effects of media overconsumption are considerable. The good news is there are things responsible parents can do to moderate these effects.

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What to Do About a Shy Child

By Jamell Andrews

Most children experience some degree of shyness in certain social situations. For example, some young kids are naturally afraid of grownup strangers, and some are shy around kids of the opposite sex. For others, the problem can be more general; they may seem to lag behind their peers in social development, and this may cause them to have trouble making friends, which in turn causes them to fall further behind. If your child falls into this category, there are steps you can take to help her outgrow her shyness.

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Setting and Enforcing Kids’ Bedtime

By Jamell Andrews

For parents, getting kids to go to bed at certain times is one of those ongoing struggles that over the years can reach epic proportions. Kids have a powerful, seemingly inborn desire to guide their own sleeping patterns, and for parents there is just no easy way to subvert this force. Granted, some kids are more obedient than others and are perfectly content to head to bed when asked, but these are the exceptions. For most parents, it becomes an issue early in the child’s life, and you continuously have to work with your child to make the household sleep situation consistently positive.

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It’s OK to be Different

Our son Michael was potty trained at nine months and spoke in sentences at 12 months old. At age two, he would listen to Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite over and over. When a friend gave my husband and I tickets to see the Nutcracker one holiday season, I cringed! Mike did stand up comedy at the age of three, and we thought it was necessary to put him into Pre-School to learn to read and write his own first name.

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8 Tips for Teaching Your Kids Good Manners

After a generations-long decline in the emphasis on manners when raising children, many 21st-century parents are rediscovering the importance of instilling values of politeness and decorum in their kids. Children who have good manners are better behaved in general, but they also tend to go far in the world because they know how to ingratiate themselves to others in all types of social situations. And ultimately, manners are not just arbitrary rules imposed for no good reason. They help create an ordered society of mutually respectful individuals. So even if you find that manners are not what they used to be, parents can still make a positive difference one child at a time.

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Are You a Helicopter Parent?

Over the past several years, the phrase “helicopter parenting” has emerged in the media as a term for parenting styles that involve excessive intervention, attention, and guidance on the part of parents toward their children. The term is metaphorical; the parent is a helicopter constantly hovering over the child. It is often used pejoratively, and it tends to bring to mind images of parents completely sanitizing their children’s worlds, going to the hospital for every bruise or scratch, and acting in an excessively entitled manner on behalf of their kids.

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What to Do With a Child Who Whines

Pre-verbal children use crying to get what they need. After learning to talk, many children have trouble breaking this habit. In fact, some develop a rather complex system of sounds and gestures that sometimes includes crying, sometimes pouting, sometimes tantrums, and sometimes a loud, whiny voice. For parents, as much as we love our children, these behaviors can be infuriating, not to mention embarrassing when they happen in public.

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What to Do if Your Child Stutters

Stutters or Stuttering, also known as stammering, is a speech disorder most commonly affecting children between the ages of 2 and 5, though it appears in people of all ages. There are many forms of stuttering, which itself is only one of a variety of similar speech disorders. It usually involves the involuntary repetition of syllables, the prolonging of words, or mid-word interruptions. The speech difficulties are often accompanied by additional tics such as rapid blinking, lip tremors, and muscular tension in the face, jaw, or upper body. The problems often worsen when the stutterer is excited or under stress.

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How To Keep The Internet Safe For Your Kids And Home

By Liz Krause

When it comes to the internet, gone are the days when parents know more than the kids – or so it seems. The fact of the matter is, although a child may know how to use the internet faster and quicker, it is the parents’ responsibility to protect them from the dark side of the web.

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Encouraging Your Toddlers Caring Side

You probably find that little toddlers can be very kind and sweet but this is not always the case. How do you encourage their sympathetic side?

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How To Cope With Sibling Jealousy

Sibling jealousy is incredibly common. To the older child it can be an overwhelming and confusing feeling when confronted with a young sibling and parents need to be patient and understanding.

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Developing Your Child’s Important Motor Skills

Many parents do not realise how important the development of their child’s fine and gross motor skills are in terms of their academic and physical performances. There are lots of games and activities which parents can do with their children to enhance their motor skills.

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A Look at ADHD

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is thought to be caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. The parts affected control concentration, attention and impulsivity.

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Building Confidence in Children

Are you helping or hindering your child’s self-esteem and feeling of confidence? Say your child tries to carry their bowl of food and a beaker of juice across the room, then trips and spills everything. Do you say ‘I told you not to do that! Now see what you have done!’ It is tempting but it would be much more helpful to say something like ‘Oh dear, you tried, but it didn’t work. Don’t worry. Next time you can try carrying things one by one’. This way your child is not made to feel worse than he already does for failing at trying to do something. Also, it is important to bear in mind that it is not only what your child directly hears you saying but what he also overhears you telling other people like, ‘he’s so clumsy!’ or ‘he never learns’. This can leave the child feeling that this is the absolute unchangeable truth.

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The 6 Most Important Parent-Child Talks

No one said parenting was going to be easy. As children grow up, countless issues can arise, and as parents it is our job to try to guide our children through these times to the best of our abilities. An essential part of this job is to talk to our children about serious issues that kids face. These talks are not always easy, and they can be downright uncomfortable for both parent and child. However, they are crucial for a child’s development, and they are also useful for establishing the lines of communication.

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Helping Kids deal with Anger

Anger is something that kids learn. From too much violence on television, to video games, the internet, and music, violent images and words surround us all. While adults can listen to or view these things without having them directly impact the way they behave or treat others, children are an entirely different matter.

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The Importance of Teaching Kids About Money

These days, too many people do not learn about money and finance until it is far too late. Americans now hold more debt than ever before, and this is at least in part due to the fact that many of us have had no financial education. Sadly, this has led to millions of cases in which individuals do not begin to get serious about their finances until they are in their 30s or 40s and already thousands of dollars in the hole.

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Avoiding Sibling Rivalry: How to Prepare Your Child for a New Arrival

By Jamell Andrews

All kids are different, and not every first child responds poorly to the arrival of a second one. In fact, some young children do not show any signs of sibling rivalry at all, instead welcoming new additions to the family with open arms. While some children are temperamentally predisposed to welcoming younger siblings, parents need to be prepared for problems to arise, and there are certain things you can do beforehand to make sure your firstborn adjusts well.

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A Parent’s Guide to Cyberbullying

By Lisa Pecos

There have always been bullies, but the internet has given mean kids a whole new platform to bully others, and this new platform comes with some serious concerns that parents need to be aware of. Many people tend to think that being on the receiving end of occasional bullying is a normal part of childhood, and that it might even build character. But as recent events have shown, cyberbullying is a serious matter and needs to be treated as such.

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Dyslexia in Children

By Jamell Andrews

Dyslexia is an impairment of the brain that causes difficulty with translating written images into language. It is one of the most misunderstood learning disabilities in the United States, and it is also the most common one. It is believed that dyslexia affects approximately 15% of the United States population, though everyone who is affected by this disorder is not properly diagnosed.

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How to Beat the Childhood Obesity Epidemic

By Marc Courtiol

According to the latest figures from the Centers for Disease Control, nearly 20 percent of American children between the ages of 6 and 11 are now obese, and 18 percent of young people between ages 12 and 19 meet the criteria for obesity. These numbers are startling enough on their own, and they do not even take into account the children who are officially overweight but not obese. All in all, one third of American children are bigger than they should be.

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Signs Your Child May Have ADHD

By Jamell Andrews

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is believed to affect about 4 million kids in the U.S. and millions more throughout the world. Over the last several years, ADHD has often been seen a trendy diagnosis, with many people dismissing it as a mere personality trait rather than a problem that warrants treatment. But while there are actually some benefits to mild ADHD, any parent of a severely ADHD child knows that this condition can be quite detrimental, especially when it comes to school. Kids with ADHD often have trouble focusing in class, and they tend to act up in ways that may earn them reputations as problem students.

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Parenting Through Play

by Ben Johnson

Anyone who has spent any amount of time around children know that all kids love to play. My three year old daughter will spend hours with a stuffed animal in one hand and a toy dinosaur in the other. I don’t always understand what each one is saying, but based on the excitement in her voice, they are having a very stimulating conversation. The only thing she seems to enjoy more is when I pick up a toy and join in with her.

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Dining Out With Children: Should It Ever Be Okay?

By Lisa Pecos

When it comes to dining with children, too many parents fall into the trap of thinking that the rest of the world should happily accommodate their children without complaint. Because we love our children so much, it is easy to forget that other people may not be as charmed by them. This is especially true in grownup restaurants, where diners expect to be able to have a quiet, relaxed meal without someone else’s loud kids running around and disrupting one’s meal.

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Discipline for a 4-Year-Old

My son is on the verge of turning 5, and we were having a small war in our home. Not over what kind of party he wanted, not over how many toys he needs, and not over what food to serve. In fact, it had nothing to do with his actual birthday at all. It was everything else. And I mean, practically – everything – else. I don’t know what was going on in his little mind, but my angel had turned into a wild man who liked to do such things as shout NO! and trip his sister on purpose. And me? I turned into a monster who felt like she was constantly shouting – screaming – really yelling – at the top of my lungs. No fun for anyone. More »

Signs of Depression in Children and Teens

By Marc Courtiol

While childhood depression can be triggered by events such as changing schools, divorce, moving, or a death in the family, there is a genetic component to depressive mood disorders, and some children are more predisposed to these feelings than others. In past generations childhood depression was often dismissed as normal growing pains, but now that we know more about the causes, symptoms and long-term effects of depression, early detection and treatment of depression have become important concerns.

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Teaching Kids about Money

By Marc Courtiol

While many parents often mention the fact that they wish they had learned more at an early age about how to handle money, many of them are surprisingly hesitant to discuss such matters with their own children. This seems a bit odd, since so many of us wish that our children had a better grasp of the reality that money does not grow on trees; nor is it available in an endless supply for the majority of us.

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Understanding Puberty

By Marc Courtiol

There are various stages of puberty that most of us are painfully familiar with. Even though the majority of us understand what happens to girls and boys as they hit puberty, many of us do not completely understand the science behind the changes that occur during that time.

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Do Kids NEED Cell Phones?

By Cyndra Neal

This is a question that many parents find themselves wondering about, often when their children are as young as eight or nine years old. Kids are asking for technological gadgets at increasingly early ages, claiming that they need things like cell phones, video games, iPods, and laptop computers.

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Guess How Children Learn

Children thrive in nurturing environments, so it is important that they be introduced to learning opportunities at a very young age. In fact, the earlier you start introducing your kids to different learning tools, the better off they will be in the long run.

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Getting your Kids to Eat Healthy Foods

By Jamell Andrews

Parents often have meal time battles with their children. The kids decide that they do not like what you are serving them, or they just decide that they would rather have something else. Whatever the reason, one of the worst things you can do as a parent is give in to your kids’ demands and fix something else for them to eat.

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Understanding Adult ADHD and Children ADHD

The first thing to understand about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is that it is a neurobiological condition. After depression, ADHD is the second most common mental health disorder in adults, affecting about 5% of the United States population.

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Bullying Prevention Skills and Techniques for Children

By Mark Lakewood, CEO

Child bullying is a big problem in our schools today. The main difference between child bullying today from the past is the nature of the bullying and the violence that occurs in the aftermath. Cyberbullying is becoming a popular and more destructive form of bullying than traditional bullying. More children today are bringing guns to school to seek revenge on others. Child bullying has been around and will probably remain for years to come. Unfortunately, we do not have the power to rid the world of bullying. The answer to the issue of child bullying rests within us, especially the victims of bullying. Victims of bullying are never responsible for being bullied. On the contrary, victims of child bullying have the power in themselves to think, behave, and react in ways that limits or eradicates bullying. As a society, we spend much of our energy identifying and punishing the bully that we fail to spend adequate time empowering the victims of child bullying. We should spend more of our energy on the things that we can control rather than the things that we have limited or no control over. We need to teach children about the power that they already possess. Let me elaborate on a few issues that parents should teach their children regarding bullying prevention.

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21 Days To Back-To-School Bliss

By Susan Kruger

Tips for getting your school-year off to a relaxed and productive start.

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Why I don’t like parent education:

By Evan Steele

As a clinical social worker, psychotherapist, parent educator, and parent, I have had the opportunity to be on “both sides of the couch,” and observe the current state of parent education. The following are some thoughts about what help is available, especially as it relates to difficult (ADHD, ODD, etc) children.

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Get Your Child to Listen the First Time!

By Toni Schutta

Shut the TV off. I said shut the TV off. I said SHUT THE TV OFF!!

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Managing Your Child’s Anger: 9 Possible Triggers and Solutions for Coping

By Toni Schutta

Has your child thrown a tantrum lately, thrown toys across the room or hit a sibling? Odds are that s/he has!

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Help Your Child Get Organized For School!

By Susan Kruger

Disorganization is the greatest complaint made by teachers and ranks as a very close second complaint from parents (rivaling fights and arguments over homework). Every teacher can tell stories about bright and intelligent students who are failing classes because they lack the organizational skills to keep track of their assignments. School counselors and psychologists talk about the huge caseloads of students that are referred to them for suspected learning disabilities, only to discover that a large percentage of these students simply lack organizational skills. It is a growing epidemic.

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Aw, Geez, Mom, Cut it Out! Good Parenting

By Kristen Taylor

Uh oh. I’ve become that parent. You know the one: I’m the mother who babies her growing children to the point of eye rolling and groaning; to the point where I’m embarrassing not only my kids, but myself as well.

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Stop Annoying Back Talk Now!

Let’s say you ask your child to do a simple task like feed the dog. The next thing you know, you hear “Why do I always have to feed the dog?”

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Parental Decisions Regarding Bed-Wetting and Diapers

By Colin Ellison

This sharepost is a response to Guest’s comments on my sharepost “Bed-Wetting: Should Older Children, Adolescents, and Teenagers Be Required to Wear Diapers?” I realize what I’ve said is very controversial and goes against the grain of most people’s thinking(both professional and non-professional) on this subject. The point of my original sharepost was to get people to see this issue in a whole new light.

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We All Have Our Quirks – Rare Phobia

By Sylvia Wells

The road to recovery is not always apparent, especially when you don’t realize there is something that requires recovering from. It wasn’t until about a year after my son developed a rare phobia that I finally realized he had a real and serious issue. My son has a fear, or should I say a hatred, of buttons. Yes, you read correct: buttons. The proper term in Koumpounophobia and he’s not alone. There are others and thank goodness for that. Otherwise I never would have known.

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Parental Leadership: The Mary Poppins Metaphor

By Brad Van Alstyne
California Institute Of Integral Studies
February 24, 2008

Existing theories on leadership are usually based on efforts we are familiar with in which leaders are easily defined (work, war, sports, etc). Little analysis to date has been placed on the role of parents as leaders outside of the social sciences where the focus of the research is usually an offshoot of psychology or childhood development. The parent as a leader is a unique focus in that there are several qualities of the parent role that are quite different from that of the typical supervisory roles we normally discuss, while at the same time it would be foolish to think of parents as anything but leaders. The disconnect in this idea is evident in the ways western society regards employment as it relates to parenthood, specifically pregnancy and the inequities with which “stay-home” parents are regarded. Few job sites provide adequate pregnancy leave, or childcare opportunities, and western society in general tends to regard stay at home parents with contempt in terms of their contribution to our vocation oriented society in which accolades are usually work achievement oriented. Society in general. The list below attempts to highlight a few significant differences which merit discussion.

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Attention Deficit Disorder: So Much More Than Just a Lack of Focus

By Eric Hale

In this day and age, terms like ADD (attention deficit disorder) and OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) are a regularly used part of kids’ vocabulary. In fact, teens these days seem to know more about disorders than I learned in my college level psychology course. These terms are used so frequently that these major behavioral disorders have lost all of their meaning. The term ADD has merely become an excuse for not paying attention. If a student is not listening the common response is “Oh, sorry I have A.D.D.” Since these words have infiltrated young teens’ culture, these serious psychological disorders have lost any legitimate concern or sympathy from our society.

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Parents as Teachers Program Once Again Shown to Improve School

By C. Dixon

School readiness predicts later school achievement, and possibly life success, study says….

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The Benefits of Fish Oils for Child Development

For many years millions of people have understood the benefits of taking cod liver oil as a supplement to their diet. Over the past few decades awareness into the foods we eat has increased and the importance of oils obtained from the body tissue of fatty fish, rather than the liver alone, has become more apparent. To achieve optimum health, food that is high in saturated fat or contains trans fats should be kept to a minimum and we are advised by medical experts to consume food which contains high levels of essential fatty acids.

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The truth about spanking: new evidence suggests that parents should spare the rod – Living Well Parenting

by Lori L. Tharps Tonya Andrews, * 28, remembers being spanked a lot as a girl. Andrews's father spanked his children for any infraction, ranging from being disrespectful to not eating their food,... More »

Book Review: Parenting Outside The Box

Written by child development specialist Diane Hawkins Summers, Parenting Outside The Box: Honoring the Spirit in Your Child is a comprehensive, step-by-step guide for parents to bolster the strengt... More »

Consoling a Crying Baby

You probably already know that crying is your baby’s way of communicating with you, but what do you do when your precious little one starts “communicating” and won’t stop? You’ll ha... More »