A couple of weeks ago, my family was traveling out of town. I was driving and my wife and almost 2-year-old daughter were buckled up in the back seat playing with some toys. My wife pulled out a brand new container of Play-Doh. As my daughter was preparing to pull the lid off to see what was inside, I drove through a section on the interstate where there was a ...

Read more...

It was an ordinary summer day.  People were milling on the main thoroughfare, bikes zig-zagging through traffic, cafés and pubs spilling onto the sidewalk, patrons sipping their way through a lazy Friday afternoon. We were ordinary that day too.  Just another family, managing the hectic jumble of kids’ lessons, bills, our careers, endless streams of birthday parties, too little sleep and the occasional date night out. But it was all shattered with ...

Read more...

“Is it weird that I cut myself on purpose?” A 14-year-old girl from a local middle school asked me this question at work last week. In my years as a Teen Xpress counselor, I have been asked about self-injurious behaviors many times. They ask: “What is it about?” “Isn’t it just a way to get attention?” “Why would someone do that?” “Are they trying to kill themselves?” It’s not only teens that ask about self-injury. I’ve ...

Read more...

Before you jump all over me, I have already outlined why I think we (doctors and medical offices) are the biggest part of the wait time problem. But, patients can help. Here are 3 ways you can help avoid long wait times at the doctor’s office. 1. Don’t request peak times during the day. Every office has busier times and not as busy times throughout the day. If you don’t know ...

Read more...

I wrote recently about getting started with an evaluation for a child who’s not doing well in school. Don’t rush to just do ADHD testing: There are many reasons for attention problems, and it’s best to not just zero in on ADHD at the start. Still, there’s a time when confirmation and testing for an ADHD diagnosis is appropriate. What kinds of tests are available? A clinical history is, well, talking ...

Read more...

Toilet training can sometimes be a stressful process. This is particularly the case for children who achieve daytime dryness but continue to wet themselves, and the bed, overnight. It may leave you wondering what’s normal and what you can do to help your child. Nighttime wetting is one of the most common urologic conditions in childhood. The vast majority of cases are not related to a physical cause. Most commonly, nighttime ...

Read more...

When school boards fancy themselves health care providers I met Madelyn for the first time last month in clinic. Six months prior, she was an otherwise healthy 14-year-old girl. One afternoon, Madelyn’s phys ed teacher led a gym class aimed at completing fitness and health assessments on all of the children in the grade. One at a time, each child was asked to step up and onto a scale ...

Read more...

In this Daily Show segment, "An Outbreak of Liberal Idiocy," correspondent Samantha Bee likens the anti-vaccine crowd to right-leaning climate deniers.  I've been saying this for awhile: The anti-vaccine mentality crosses party lines.  Remember, Jenny McCarthy got her start from the progressive-leaning Huffington Post.

There is a new emerging health threat to our children: nicotine poisoning. The number of nicotine exposures in children reported to the National Poison Data System has more than tripled in the last year. Here’s the fact every parent should know: 1 tablespoon of nicotine oil can be lethal to a 60-pound child! When doctors were campaigning against tobacco companies through public health legislation, we did not foresee a resultant new market for ...

Read more...

As a parent, my words to and about my child will probably be one of the single most influential aspects of their development. Children learn to see themselves through their parents’ eyes, and what we tell them they are, they are likely to become. The labels we place on them often tend to be a self-fulfilling prophecy. I’ve seen this play out in my own life and in the lives of ...

Read more...

Most Popular