November 6, 2008

Vaccines: Separating fact from fiction

When Katie Shutters’s 13-month-old daughter, Averie, was born, she followed the recommended vaccine schedule for two months. Then she did some research and decided to hold off on additional shots until Averie turned 9 months old. “I liked the idea of my breast milk giving her the immunities she needs and allowing her body to work for her instead of some medicine,” says the stay-at-home mom from Indianapolis, Indiana. “She isn’t in daycare, and we don’t travel overseas. I had concerns about injecting her for no reason.”

Eventually Shutters found a doctor who would immunize according to her schedule: “We broke up the MMR [which protects against measles, mumps, and rubella] into three separate shots spread out over a year, and we’re skipping the chicken pox shot,” she says. “Instead, I’d love to find a kid who has chicken pox so we could expose Averie naturally.”

Full story

October 8, 2008

Annoy Your Teenager Without Being There

Ford has made parenting a little easier by introducing MyKey, a programmable ignition key for Ford automobiles that monitors teenage driving behavior. With MyKey in place, various driving habits that parents may consider unsafe, or merely obnoxious, can be curtailed.

It covers all the common parental complaints: The car’s speed cannot exceed 80mph. Radio volume is limited to 44 percent of maximum and, if seatbelts aren’t fastened, no sound will come from the speakers at all. Extra-careful and/or paranoid parents can place warning sounds at 45, 55, and 65mph, blasting a warning of potential reckless driving to the youthful driver.

Full story: MyKey Turns Your Ford Focus into Your Mom

October 3, 2008

Are You A Stone Cold Parent?

Pls don’t try this at home:

Yesterday, when courts docs surfaced revealing Sharon Stone’s desire to have her son’s smelly feet Botoxed, well I couldn’t help but wonder what other creative advice Stone might have for weathering the myriad annoyances and little inconveniences that come with raising a kid. Unwittingly, it seems Stone may have hit upon a new parenting model and I look forward to a lively, yet civil, discussion of these proposed Sharon Stone-inspired problems and solutions:

October 2, 2008

Heart breaker: Guard Families Fight War of Their Own

Really heart breaking to read stories like this:

MORE than anything, John and Adriana Roldan love each other and their two little boys, Brandon, 5, and Samuel, 1. And so now that Mr. Roldan, a mechanic and a building superintendent and a New Jersey National Guardsman, has been deployed to Iraq for the second time in three years, he and his wife will start lying to each other again, just as they lied their way through his first Iraq tour.

That first time, Mr. Roldan told Mrs. Roldan that as a mechanic, he never left the base in Iraq.

Full story: Guard Families Fight War of Their Own

September 29, 2008

Diaper Rash Or Yeast Infection?

The diaper area is dark, moist, and warm. Therefore, by the virtue of wearing diapers, infants are prone to develop diaper rashes and even yeast infections in the diaper area. It’s important to learn how to prevent diaper rashes, as well as how to tell a diaper rash from a yeast infection, to protect your baby’s skin integrity.

Prevention Is Key
You can keep your infant’s diaper area healthy by frequently changing her wet and soiled diapers, applying barrier ointments, such as petroleum jelly (Vaseline) or A & D ointment, and allowing the area to air out after every diaper change. Using cloth diapers decreases your infant’s risk for diaper rashes, because the air can circulate better through cloth than though a synthetic diaper.

Diaper Rash If you notice redness or pinkish red pimples in the diaper area, your infant has developed a diaper rash. You need to reach for over-the-counter zinc oxide cream like Desitin. Apply a thin layer to the diaper area 3-4 times daily, and then cover it with a thin layer of a barrier ointment. Continue to air out the area after each diaper change.

Yeast Infection
If the redness in the diaper area has spread to the bends of the legs and looks very red and shiny, most likely it is a yeast infection. You might have already tried the zinc oxide cream at this point without any results, so it is the time to consult with your infant’s health care provider. The best treatment for yeast infections in the diaper area is an anti-fungal cream applied 3-4 times a day for 7-10 days.

Contact your child’s health care provider if your infant has a rash and develops a fever, the rash is spreading, or you are concerned in any way with how the diaper area looks.

Dr. Hillary is a pediatric nurse practitioner with a doctoral degree in health promotion and risk reduction. She works as a pediatric clinician and writes for Plugged in Parents. Plugged In Parents provides up-to-date info on pediatric health, safety and nutrition along with movie reviews, recipes, tech-savvy tips, and a parent’s only forum. You can also contact Dr. Hillary for personal questions related to health and nutrition.

Please visit http://www.pluggedinparents.com

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