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More Kids, Teens May Be Diagnosed With Hypertension

Based on new AAP guidelines that seek to spur early prevention and intervention

(Newser) - Parents bringing their kids to their well visits will likely review their height, weight, vaccinations, and now ... blood pressure. CNN reports on new guidelines issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics and printed in the September issue of the Pediatrics journal that include updated diagnosis tables based on kids within... More »

Big ER Diagnosis for Kids: Constipation

Study finds it's the No. 1 diagnosis for kids with abdominal pain

(Newser) - Researchers recently looked at nearly 10,000 emergency room visits at one hospital by children who were experiencing abdominal pain, and what they found may surprise you: The most common diagnosis, found in more than 25% of the kids who were diagnosed with anything, was constipation. "Parents are shocked... More »

Parents Who Lick Kids' Pacifiers Thwart Allergies

Exposure to harmless bacteria may help ward off allergies

(Newser) - If your child's pacifier falls on the floor, a new study suggests you're doing the kid a disservice by rinsing it off in the sink. Instead, you might just want to pop it in your own mouth before giving it back to Junior. Parents who did that saw... More »

Almost 20% of High School Boys Diagnosed With ADHD

Diagnoses shot up 53% in the last decade

(Newser) - Roughly 6.4 million American children aged 4 through 17 have been diagnosed with ADHD—or about 11% of all children, according to new figures from the CDC, which shows that diagnoses for the disorder have exploded in the last decade. The problem is particularly pronounced among boys, nearly one... More »

Latest Gay-Marriage Backer: America's Pediatricians

They believe such unions are in children's best interests

(Newser) - America's pediatricians have come out in support of gay marriage. In an announcement published today, the American Academy of Pediatrics, which is comprised of 60,000 such doctors, expressed that such unions benefit children, providing them with legal and financial security. It also backed adoption and foster care rights... More »

Ex-Surgeon General Koop Dead at 96

Conservative shocked America by spreading information on AIDS

(Newser) - C. Everett Koop, the best-known surgeon general of the 20th century, died today in Hanover, NH, at the age of 96, the Washington Post reports. Recognized for his appearance—an epauleted uniform and grim expression that harked back to the Civil War—he also waged a fierce war on tobacco... More »

Recess as Essential as Class: Doctors

Great for kids' brains, bodies

(Newser) - Great news, though it comes too late for most of us: Doctors are taking a stand on the benefits of recess, and not just for the exercise. It's just as important to children's development as class time is, the American Academy of Pediatrics says. The organization is officially... More »

Another Study Urges: No TV for Toddlers

Keep kids under 3 away from screens, pediatricians urge

(Newser) - Yet more experts are pointing out that it's not a great idea for parents to plunk their children down in front of TV or computer screens. A group of pediatricians published a paper in an influential British medical journal this week formally asking that doctors and government officials set... More »

New Infant Guidelines: No Bumper Pads, No TV

Doctors' group also says breastfeeding cuts SIDS risk

(Newser) - The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued new guidelines for infants to cut down on sleep-related deaths and reduce TV time. The new sleep guidelines now recommend against all types of bumper pads, noting that “there is a potential risk of suffocation, strangulation or entrapment.” They also urge... More »

'Chaotic' Breastfeeder Loses Custody of Baby

Spanish case attracts international attention

(Newser) - Child-care experts are backing supporters of a young Spanish mom whose baby was taken away from her by authorities who complained about her "chaotic" on-demand breastfeeding patterns and habit of taking her baby into her bed at night. She "uses breastfeeding as a pacifier and a toy, offering... More »

1 in 13 US Kids Has Food Allergy

New research doubles government estimate

(Newser) - One in 13 American kids suffers from food allergies, a study finds: That’s 6 million children, double the number most recently estimated by the CDC. Some 40% of them have severe reactions to the foods in question, most commonly peanuts and milk, a figure researchers say emphasizes the fact... More »

Doctors Warn: Energy Drinks Can Kill Kids

Caffeine and other chemicals could be harmful, says report

(Newser) - Doctors are warning that children should not use energy drinks, which they call understudied and possibly dangerous, reports AP . The chief danger? The drinks' caffeine and caffeine-related content, which can be four or five times greater than a normal soda and can cause heart trouble, strokes, seizures, nausea, diarrhea, and... More »

Anti-Vaccine Push Threatens Kid Health

'Pseudo-science' campaign blamed for rising rates of child illnesses

(Newser) - A flourishing anti-vaccination movement based on bad science and distrust of Big Pharma is pressing the rewind button on decades of advances in reducing child illness, writes Amy Wallace. Parents who believe—despite the lack of credible evidence—that vaccines harm children are endangering other people's children as well as... More »

15% of Teens Expect to Die Young

Expectation linked to risky behavior

(Newser) - Teenagers who engage in risky behavior may do so because they believe they’re going to die young anyway, and may create a self-fulfilling prophecy with that belief, reports the Minneapolis Star Tribune. A study that tracked 20,000 kids in grades 7 through 12 found that 15% thought they... More »

Depression Screening for All Teens Worries Parents

Task force calls for adolescent testing with focus on psychotherapy instead of drugs

(Newser) - A federal task force recommendation that all adolescents between the ages of 12 and 18 be screened for depression is causing controversy among parents and pediatricians, the Washington Post reports. Critics fear the amount of antidepressant drugs prescribed to teens will rise massively, although the Preventive Services Task Force stressed... More »

Obese Kids Have Middle-Aged Arteries

Scientists warn childhood obesity epidemic may lead to much shorter lifespans

(Newser) - Arteries of seriously overweight teenagers are as clogged as those of middle-aged people, according to US News & World Report. Researchers used ultrasound to measure the neck arteries of chubby kids at risk of heart trouble and were alarmed to find that their "vascular age" was an average of... More »

Fans Linked to Lower Risk of Infant Death

72% fewer SIDS deaths in bedrooms with better air circulation

(Newser) - A simple fan could be the key to reducing the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, reports ABC News. Researchers discovered that babies who slept in a room with a fan were 72% less likely to die from SIDS, according to the study published in the Archives of Pediatrics and ... More »

TV Not All Bad for Kids, Study Discovers

Some couch potatoes apparently got wise watching boob tube

(Newser) - TV has long been blamed for social ills from childhood obesity to plunging SAT scores, but a pair of researchers say the "idiot box" could actually be doing kids some good, the Wall Street Journal reports. Examined test data from 1965 showed that children with more access to TV... More »

Docs Push Cholesterol Tests for Kids

New rules advise testing as young as 2, treating with statins at 8

(Newser) - With 30% of US children overweight, pediatricians are now recommending cholesterol screenings for kids as young as 2, and the use of cholesterol-fighting drugs in youngsters 8 and up, in order to stave off diabetes and early heart attacks. Some 30%-60% of children with high cholesterol aren’t being treated,... More »

Puberty Starting for Girls as Young as 6

Shortened childhoods for little girls have experts worried

(Newser) - The first signs of puberty are appearing earlier and earlier in American girls, reports the Los Angeles Times. Early breast development is becoming so common that some experts are suggesting that the age at which it is considered abnormal be shifted down to 6 years of age for African-American girls... More »

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