The Gift of a Better Brain: Share Books with Your Child

Dr Navsaria reading to a babyBooks Build Better Brains.  Even better, those same books, when shared together with a child, become even more important to their development.  This is because social connections and relationships matter deeply.

For young children, being aware of books and familiar with their conventions is key — despite not being able to “read” yet, the positive associations of being read to regularly, of understanding that books contain delightful stories, and of the critical idea that print conveys information, all together leads to their brains wiring in the best possible way for school readiness.  The research is clear: children who are read to on a daily basis have improved language scores and will enter kindergarten with higher letter recognition.

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Philanthropy at American Family Children’s Hospital

As you sift through an inbox full of holiday sales and last minute shopping ideas, you’ll also encounter a few emails asking for a year-end gift. As you consider where to donate this holiday season, consider American Family Children’s Hospital.

Located in Madison, Wisconsin, American Family Children’s Hospital was built without any state taxpayer dollars and operates without any state subsidy. Since its opening in 2007, more than 500,000 patients have been treated either through the clinics or inpatient stays. It’s a state-of-the-art facility with more than 150 pediatric specialists and surgeons. But, we care for more than just the patients.

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Small Items Can Pose the Most Danger: Preventing Choking in Infants and Toddlers

Gus was born in February – he’s our first child. My wife and I truly enjoy being parents. One of the most amazing things has been watching Gus develop. At times it seems he learns to do something entirely new every day or two. He has become very interested in the world around him, and his manual dexterity has improved to allow him to interact with his environment. At this stage, as part of the process of discovery, everything he gets his hands on goes directly into his mouth. Unfortunately, his swallowing coordination and his ability to judge what is safe to ingest (and what is not) have not developed yet.

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Should Kids Have Their Cholesterol Checked?

Three GirlsWhen we think of cholesterol screening, we think in terms of ourselves – not our nine-year-old son or daughter. But new recommendations from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) are suggesting children between the ages of 9 and 11 should have their cholesterol checked, and again between ages 17 and 21, regardless of their risk.

Previously, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advised screening children with a family history of early heart disease or high cholesterol, or those children who are obese, have diabetes or high blood pressure. But those guidelines may have resulted in some children with high cholesterol going undiagnosed.

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Super Safety Mom

Trick or Treater

There are a lot of things to look forward to at Halloween – the candy, the decorations, the costumes and did I mention, the candy.

It is fun to be a child at Halloween.

Still, as the pediatrician who is not so endearingly nicknamed “super-safety-mom,” I feel it is important to take a moment and remind everyone about staying safe.

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