January 27, 2009

Salmonella Outbreak Worrisome

Nancy Shute, expert writer on all things parenting for US News and World Report, has just described the current salmonella outbreak as the ’scariest’ she’s ever seen. Her fears don’t stem from the number of people sickened (491 and counting) or killed (seven so far) or the widespread geographical scope of the outbreak (43 states and Canada). Her concern is for the extremely large number of common supermarket items that are made from peanuts, peanut butter, or peanut paste.

Many items under suspicion of contamination are common products easily kept at room temperature, don’t require cooking, and are packaged to make them so easy to keep handy. Those same characteristics create an ideal living environment for the bacteria that is making so many people so sick.

Full story: Parenting Expert Says Current Salmonella Outbreak is ‘Scariest’ Ever

January 26, 2009

Sharing Bed With Infants A Bad Idea

The rate of accidental suffocation deaths among babies increased fourfold over the past two decades, according to a new study, despite a national campaign to encourage safe infant sleeping.

Authors of the study, which appears today in the journal Pediatrics, say the nationwide increase probably is the result of more thorough investigations and changes in how deaths are classified. Nevertheless, the researchers and local medical experts said the figures reflect a continuing problem and highlight concerns about whether babies should sleep in the same beds as their parents or siblings.

“These deaths are likely preventable,” said Carrie K. Shapiro-Mendoza, an epidemiologist at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and lead author of the study. “So this problem is ongoing, and we should not divert our attention. … We need an infusion of more efforts to make them reduce further.”

Researchers have long studied Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, a term that refers to infant deaths that cannot be explained after a medical investigation. Shapiro-Mendoza’s study sought to find out if a newer, more specific category of infant death – by strangulation or suffocation – was increasing.

Full story: Don’t share bed with infant, parents told

January 23, 2008

OTC Cough And Cold Medicines Not Recommended For Infants Says FDA

Over the counter (OTC) cough and cold medicines could have possible life-threatening side effects on infants.

Here are some links to this important news:

FDA Confirms Infant-Meds Recall

Warning on kids’ OTC cold products

Stores stop selling cough, cold medicines for infants