by Jennifer Shakeel

sick little girl at the doctorsMRSA stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, which is a newly resistant strain of the staph infection. Specifically, this strain is resistant to methicillin, the conventional antibiotic used to treat the most common Staphylococcus disease: the staph infection. Therefore, MRSA is now one of the newest “superbugs” that are resistant against traditional medications. For that reason, they should be taken with utmost caution.

As a parent, you are probably concerned that your child may come into contact with MRSA. The first thing to know about MRSA is that it is usually contracted in medical centers, especially hospitals, dialysis centers, and nursing homes. That is because people whose immune systems have been compromised—such as through chemotherapy and surgeries—are particularly vulnerable to MRSA. Fortunately, it is rare for children to become infected with MRSA because their immune systems are more robust. However, if a child has a weak immune system due to another illness or condition, he may be more prone to MRSA. READ More on MRS – What Parents Should Know

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Judy Converse Author of Special-Needs Kids Eat Right: Strategies to Help Kids on the Autism Spectrum Focus, Learn, and ThriveBy Judy Converse, MPH, RD, LD
Many children with autism, Asperger’s, ADHD, sensory processing disorders, learning disabilities, or mood/behavior issues have nutrition problems stemming from malabsorption, bowel problems, and/or inadequate diet. These impede learning, growth, behavior, and functioning in all children—not just special needs children. Not surprisingly, when you address the nutrition problems of these kids, the symptoms of their disorder lessen and, in some cases, disappear.
The medical establishment is just now beginning to acknowledge the link between nutrition problems and learning and behavior disorders. Most physicians still regard autism or other learning and developmental diagnoses as brain problems, not whole body problems. They may resist the idea that nutrition supports apply to these conditions, seeing them as static, inflexible afflictions.
My clinical experience with hundreds of special needs children has proven differently. 
How to Engage a Reluctant Provider
If your doctor is not onboard with your interest in nutrition supports for your child, you might succeed with a few tactful efforts at bridging the gap. Here are some suggestions. READ More on Doc, Can You Give My Special Needs Child Nutritional Help?

by Jennifer Shakeel

is your child gifted?It wasn’t until I became a parent of a child with Attention Deficit Disorder that I ever thought about whether or not my son was gifted or not. I knew that he was incredibly intelligent, and I remember in first grade telling his teacher that it wasn’t that he couldn’t focus, but rather that he was board with what was going on in class.

Many people, including teachers and medical professionals do not realize that giftedness is associated with feelings of anger and frustration, underachievement, fidgeting, impulsive behaviors, intensity, high energy, stubbornness, nonconforming, individualistic, sloppiness, poor handwriting, disorganization, absentmindedness, forgetfulness, daydreaming, moodiness and a low interest in details. Now if you are sitting there thinking that this sounds like your child when they are not on their pills, read on.

I want to explain to you what “gifted” means and this is why if you child has not gone through a psychological evaluation by a psychologist you may want to consider having it done now. You may be medicating your child when he or she really doesn’t need the medication.

READ More on ADHD and Giftedness

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avoiding childhood obesity: the family that exercises together stays thin togetherIf your child is overweight or obese, it’s not just your child’s problem but your whole family’s. There are many reasons a child develops a weight problem, but genetics and family environment definitely plays a factor. In fact, if a child has one parent who is obese, that child has a 50 percent chance of also being obese; the risk increases to 80 percent if both parents are obese.
How can you help decrease your child’s risk of developing a weight problem? First, you should always consult a doctor to rule out medical issues that might be related to your child’s weight gain. Your doctor can also advise you on improving your family’s eating habits and increasing your physical activity. 

The key to helping your child beat obesity is to develop healthier habits for your whole family. Your child will not succeed at losing weight if he is munching carrot sticks while everyone else slurps chocolate milk shakes! In addition, change your habits slowly so that everyone has time to adjust to the new routines. Specific areas to focus on include better eating habits and more physical activity, as the only way to lose weight is to reduce the number of calories eaten and to increase physical activity. 

READ More on A Family Solution to Childhood Obesity

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mom searching the internet for information on ADHDFinding out that your child has Attention Deficit Disorder is not easy for you or your child. Dealing with it isn’t easy either. The frustration that you feel when dealing with family members, teachers, care givers, doctors and yes even your child can be overwhelming. The success of your child and how well they deal with ADD will depend greatly on you and how well you handle it. The good news is that you don’t have to go at it alone. There are support groups you can join.

I am going to go over a couple of the different support groups that are out there on a national level and on the internet. For some parents being able to chat online is enough, just knowing that they aren’t alone and being able to read other people’s stories will help. That is part of the reason that I write these articles. I want you to know that you aren’t alone, I want you to know that there is another parent out there that is going through or has gone through what you are and see how I handled it. Not that my way is the best way all the time, but it is what has worked for our family. It’s important when you feel stuck, frustrated and overwhelmed that you know there are options… there are ways out.

Here is a list of a few online ADHD support groups that you can join via email.

READ More on Online Support Groups for Parents of Children with Attention Deficit Disorders

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not too happy vegetable eaterMake it a New Years resolution for healthier family meals! Here are some tips and recipes to help get kids to eat their veggies

Eating plenty of veggies is important to a healthy diet. However, getting kids to eat vegetables is often difficult. Kids that are growing especially need to get the nutrition that are in vegetables and fruits, and even little toddlers need to get plenty of veggies in their diet. It can definitely be hard to get kids to eat their vegetables. The best time to introduce newer foods is while children are younger. Once they get beyond the age of four, it can be more difficult to introduce new foods. So, if you are trying to make sure that your kids eat a healthy diet and that they get plenty of vegetables, here are some top tips to help and some ideas for adding veggies into other recipes.

Tip #1 – Eat Veggies Yourself – First of all, if you really want your kids to eat their veggies, you are going to have to make sure that you eat some veggies yourself. After all, you’ll that your kids aren’t going to want to eat something that you are not going to eat. So, when you sit down to dinner, make sure that you don’t push away the veggies or your kids are going to do the very same thing. If they see you eating the veggies, they will be more likely to eat the veggies too.

READ More on Getting Kids to Eat Their Vegetables – Tips and Recipes

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golden retriever carrying a first aid kitCreating a family first aid kit is an essential to ensuring that in the event of any type of emergency, you can have the supplies that are necessary to treat injuries and any type of sickness that may occur. There are many devastating events that may occur in an unexpected manner when it comes to you, your spouse, and your children. These events may include mild to serious burns, falls, slips, cuts, and even an assortment of sicknesses that are viral or bacterial in basis. There are certain types of situations that simply do not require the attention of a doctor, but do require immediate attention to prevent future complications. This is where a first aid kit comes in handy. In this how-to manual, I will share with you how to go about creating a family first aid kit that can come in handy in the event of these situations.

READ More on Creating a First Aid Kit for your Family

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autistic girl at doctorsIf you are a parent looking for an in-depth look at PANDAS in children, you have come to the right place. If you are reading this material, it is quite likely that you either suspect that your child has this, or you have recently been informed by your child’s pediatrician that they have this condition. It is likely that you are confused, fearful, and emotionally distraught over this. It is normal to feel this way. This is especially true when it comes to PANDAS. There is a relatively new condition that has emerged, and there is not a lot of information surrounding the condition. However, in this helpful and informative guide, I will provide you with that in-depth look at PANDAS that you have so desperately been searching for.

What is PANDAS? READ More on An In-Depth Look at PANDAS (Autism Spectrum Disorder) in Children

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by Stacey Schifferdecker

young girl with severe allergies sneezingWhen I was a child growing up in Colorado, none of my friends had allergies or asthma. Now, as a parent in Oklahoma, most of my friends’ children suffer from some types of allergies. I’m sure the different climate accounts for some of the difference, but it is also a fact that allergic diseases have increased in Western countries over the last 20 to 30 years. Why are allergies on the rise and how can we deal with them?

Why are allergies on the rise in children?

Ironically enough, it may be the cleanliness of our lifestyles that are causing the rise of some allergies. If children are underexposed to minor environmental threats early in life, their immune systems do not develop properly and can overreact to perceived threats. This doesn’t mean you need to deliberately expose your children to dangerous viruses and bacteria. Simple childhood activities like playing in the dirt, building roads in a sandbox, rolling in the grass, and living with a pet can strengthen your children’s immune systems and help protect them from allergies.

READ More on Preventing and Reducing Allergies

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Easy, at-home ways of using yoga to alleviate tension in the younger set

by Charlotte Bradley,  

yoga with kids: down dog momIt may look like child’s play, but growing up in today’s world can be a major challenge. What with global warming, terrorism, and the political climate, not to mention daily problems like family strife or trouble at school, it’s no wonder that today’s kids are stressed out.

As parents, we struggle to ensure our children’s health and happiness. Knowing how to respond when your son or daughter is exhibiting signs of stress can be daunting. But there is a simple way to help our kids take on life’s challenges while getting physically and emotionally stronger – the ancient practice of yoga.

READ More on Yoga Help for Stressed-Out Kids

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