At the national conference of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), I got to hear Hillary Clinton talk about the AAP's partnership with her Too Small to Fail campaign. It made me happy -- and sad. The partnership is a great idea. It's all about improving early childhood literacy, which is way more crucial than most people realize. It's not just about an income gap when we talk about the ...

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With all the news about enterovirus 68 sending hundreds of children to hospitals, it's easy to panic when you hear about a case in your neighborhood -- or, even worse, if your child starts coughing. But please, don't panic. This virus has certainly caused trouble and tragedy. But enteroviruses are incredibly common, causing 10-15 million illnesses a year -- and usually, those illnesses are minor. This one, for reasons we ...

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that between January 1 and May 23 of this year, there were 288 cases of measles reported in the US. That's more than the total number of cases in any year since 2000, when measles was eliminated in the U.S.. We have got to get more people immunized. Essentially all of the cases were linked to "importations," cases brought in from other countries ...

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These days, we hear a lot about the risks of vaccines. As a pediatrician, I talk to many parents who are very frightened about those risks -- and some choose not to vaccinate because of their fear. Some of the risks we hear about are real, but some of them aren't. I absolutely support the right of every parent to make what they feel is the best decision for their child. The ...

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I see it again and again in my practice: parents who seem to have forgotten that they are in charge. "You can say no," I find myself saying to family after family. Which is kind of an amazing thing to have to say, if you think about it. You'd think that parents would know that they can say no when their child asks for yet another toy, to watch more television, ...

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I flunk as a parent. I have no plans for my youngest kids this summer. The older ones are working. But the 13-year-old and 8-year-old, the ones at the formative stages of their academic and skill development (if you believe what everyone says), are doing squat. No camp. No enriching activities. No special trips. Well, we do rent a house at the beach for two weeks every summer, that's something, but ...

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I so wish I could say: Daddy, thank you so much for the stories. When my sister and I were little, we had an almost daily ritual with my father: drawing stories. He would sit us on his lap and get out his clipboard, a piece of paper and his black click pen. He'd divide the paper into four parts, and draw as he told a story. Sometimes he drew old favorites and we knew what ...

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Adults are the ones who are supposed to be stressed, not kids. Childhood is supposed to be the stress-free part of life, right? Well, maybe not. At least not for teens. According to a recently released survey from the American Psychological Association, teens are actually more stressed than their parents. Researchers surveyed 1950 adults and 1,018 teens last summer and asked them a whole bunch of questions about the stress in their lives, and how ...

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Here’s a question I’m almost afraid to ask: when you go to a doctor (not one you see all the time), does the doctor usually introduce himself (or herself) and explain what they are there to do? And, do they sit down? I really hope that you are answering yes ... but I know that the answer is often no. In a study recently published in the Journal of Hospital Medicine, researchers observed 29 ...

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When it comes to the parts of parenthood that people dread, well, there’s so much to choose from. There are poopy diapers. Vomit. Tantrums. Nasty teenagers. But all of that pales in comparison with … The Talk. The talk about sex, that is. Nobody wants to talk to their kids about sex. Nobody wants to think about their kids having sex -- the same way nobody likes to think about their parents ...

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