The Child Mind BlogBrainstorm
Milestones In Your Baby's Language Development
Feb. 7, 2011 CNN
The editors of BabyTalk magazine compiled a list of milestones in a baby's language development. Read the experts' explanation of what to expect from your child's language skill development at every step, from birth to fifteen months. Also included in the article: tips on how to help your child reach each milestone.
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ADHD Symptoms Connected to What You Eat
Feb. 4, 2011 HealthDay
A new study published in the Lancet suggests a link between foods and ADHD symptoms. A group of 100 children diagnosed with ADHD were given an "elimination diet" as well as other dietary restrictions and their progress was monitored over a period of five weeks. Although scientists are hard-pressed to say which foods exactly cause ADHD symptoms, they observed that 78 percent of the group had a reduction of ADHD-specific behaviors. It is not recommended that anyone try this "elimination diet" until further studies are done.
For more information on the cost of not treating ADHD in children, click here.View Comments | Add Comment
Teenagers, Friends and Bad Decisions
Feb. 3, 2011 New York Times
Researchers used fMRIs to scan the brains of teenagers and adults to compare an individual's risk-taking behavior when he is alone versus when he is with friends. Among college students and young adults there was no discernable difference in risk-taking behavior, but young teens took more risks when they were told that their peers were watching them. The fMRIs of the adolescents confirmed that peer pressure had an effect on the brain signals involving risk and reward. Psychologists say this explains why young people are more likely to take risks while their friends are watching.
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New Test Offers Rare, Early Glimpse of Concussion
Feb. 2, 2011 CNN
There is a new test to determine whether or not a person has experienced a concussion. The test, called the "King-Devick," tests a person's vision by timing how long it takes him to read rows of numbers arrayed on a page before and after experiencing head trauma. Researchers are particularly excited about the King-Devick test because it provides a rare, early opportunity to detect concussion, and can be easily administered by trainers, physical therapists or volunteers. Still, study authors caution that the new test should be used in conjunction with a more comprehensive analysis done by an experienced clinician.
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Henry's Demons: A Memoir About Living with Schizophrenia
Feb. 2, 2011 New York Times
Written mostly by world-renowned journalist Patrick Cockburn, Henry's Demons is a memoir about the struggles of his son, Henry, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia at age 20. The book chronicles his descent into the depths of his illness; talking trees, insect-infested body parts, mental institutions. Henry contributes chapters about his life and his perspectives, a rambling first-person narrative interrupted periodically with his parent's voice. The account is devastatingly real, an entire family's struggle to come to terms and cope with his illness. Henry, spending years in and out of institutions oftentimes refusing to take medication, eventually becomes a somewhat success story of the British health care system. By the end of the book, he has improved, but the message is clear: his family is, and will be, there for him.
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Video Games Are Good for Girls
Feb. 1, 2011 Wall Street Journal
Video games get a bad rap around parents. They're blamed for inciting violence and they're even being called "addicting" by some. But new research suggests that teen girls may actually benefit from playing video games—as long as the games are age-appropriate and played with parents. According to the study, girls who played with parents behaved better, felt more connected to their families, and had better overall mental health than girls who played with friends or on their own. Boys were also studied, although they didn't experience the same improvement. Researchers suggested that boys play more video games than girls on average, possibly making the impact of playing with family negligible.
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Walmart Is Introducing Geo-Girl, a New Makeup Line for 8-12 Year Olds
Jan. 31, 2011 ABC News
Walmart has unveiled a new line of cosmetics aimed at the tween population – that is eight to twelve year olds. Geo-girl, an eco-friendly product, will include items that no tween should need, such as anti-aging creams and facial exfoliants. The potential to cause irreparable harm by marketing makeup to pre-teen girls is not being overlooked. Some experts believe these products could contribute to lower self-esteem and unhealthy preoccupations about appearance. Studies show girls as young as ten have begun dieting and are face to face with "teen" issues like sex and dating. These products could be devastating for girls with already low levels of self-esteem. The tween makeup market is now a fast-growing sector, raking in $24 million a year, and Walmart is looking to bring it to the masses with price points under ten dollars.
For more information on nuturing healthy body image in your daughter, click here.View Comments | Add Comment
Science Should Trump Belief on Autism and Vaccines
Jan. 31, 2011 Chicago Tribune
To Trine Tsouderos, science and medical reporter for the Chicago Tribune, the question of whether or not to vaccinate your child does not even warrant discussion. But the effect of the vaccine scare—children dying of preventable diseases—is tragic, she notes, as she writes about two recently published books, Deadly Choices: How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All and The Panic Virus: A True Story of Medicine, Science and Fear, that she considers must-reads on the topic. Both books, she points out, blame the media for covering the issue "with a sort of false balance—a 'one-hand, other-hand' approach that implies both sides are backed by approximately equal evidence."
Even after the original link between vaccine and autism was throroughly debunked, journalists continue to pair scientists who've done huge studies with parents who believe their children developed autism after a vaccination. As journalist and author of The Panic Virus Seth Mnookin writes, "Anecdotes and suppositions, no matter how right they feel, don't lead to universal truths; experiments that can be independently confirmed by impartial observers do. Intuition leads to the flat earth society and bloodletting; experiments lead men to the moon and microsurgery."
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10 Reasons Play Makes Babies Smarter
Jan. 31, 2011 CNN
Playtime is fun, but it can also be hard work for kids. Fortunately it pays off, since playing is the primary way that children begin learning important life skills. CNN reports on the positive effect that play has on intelligence, social development, attention span, and more. The article also includes tips on what a parent can do to foster healthy development through play. The first step: forget about those educational DVDs and television programs; children learn much more through simple toys like balls and bubbles.
Click here to learn about important developmental milestones for your baby.View Comments | Add Comment