Organic Food, The Marshmallow Test, Jogging Strollers – PediaCast 232
Join Dr Mike in the PediaCast Studio for another News and Listener edition of our program. News topics include organic food for kids, baby sleep advice (there’s an app for that!), risky street-crossing behavior, and the 40-year-old Marshmallow Test. We also answer YOUR questions on button batteries, jogging strollers, video games and memory, and newborn hearing screens.
Baby Sleep Advice (There’s an app for that!)
Risky Street-Crossing Behavior
The Marshmallow Test
Video Games and Memory
Newborn Hearing Screens
Announcer 1: This is PediaCast.
Announcer 2: Welcome to PediaCast, a pediatric podcast for parents. And now, direct from the campus of Nationwide Children's, here is your host, Dr. Mike!
Mike Patrick: Hello, everyone! And welcome once again to PediaCast, a pediatric podcast for moms and dads. This is Dr. Mike, coming to you from the the campus of Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. It's episode 232, 2-3-2 for November 7th, 2012.
We're calling this one organic food, the marshmallow test, and jogging strollers. Before we get to a rundown of exactly what these topics mean and the other ones that we'll be discussing, I do want to remind you Pinterest, we are on Pinterest now, so we're very excited about that.
If you have not been over to check us out, be sure to do so. It's easy to find us just go to Pinterest.com\pediacast. So easy to find us, and we have two boards over there, an Episodes board. So basically with each new episode comes out we'll put a pin up with a little description and a nice picture representing the episode.
And so we would encourage you to repin your favorite episode and show topics and share those with other Pinterest users. And then here's the board I'm really excited about, our News Parents Can Use board, we're going to have topics that aren't on the podcast. So if I could spend all day with you, which I know some of you are disappointed that I can't and others you know, it's kind of a big relief.
If I could spend all day here are the other topics that I would talk about that we don't have time for in the show, but they're still important topics. And just to give you a little sampling; Mother's kiss, this is a technique for removing foreign object from your child's nose. You got to see and hear the description to believe it. So I'll definitely check that out on the News Parents Can Use board over at Pinterest.
The effect of positive behavioral interventions in schools, preventing knee injuries in teenage athletes, new information on the HPV vaccine, and a slew of recall announcements including Evenflo booster seats, upholstered toddler chairs from Trend Lab, and Disney hoodies and t-shirts sold at Target stores.
So important stuff and you can find it on the News Parents Can Use board over at Pinterest, so just check us out Pediacast on Pinterest. Smucker's Uncrustable PB&J sandwiches, there's a recall that involves Uncrustables distributed to the school lunch program, not grocery stores, OK.
These are Uncrustables that your kids would get at school. And stick around for the end of the show we'll give you the details and tell you what you should do if your child has eaten an Uncrustable at school.
Also want to give a shout out to everyone who participated in the Nationwide Children's Hospital Columbus Marathon which included 25 patient-champions along the way, and more than a 100 bands and entertainers. Also our first ever trip to the home of the Buckeyes, the 105,000-seat Ohio stadium. It was the 33rd annual race for our Boston Marathon qualifying event, 5,470 runners and walkers finished the race, and they raised $875,000 dollars for Nationwide Children's Hospital.
So a big thanks to all of you who participated and congratulations are in order for Craig Curley of Tucson, Arizona. He plays first in the men's field of the full marathon finishing it in two hours, 19 minutes, and 3 seconds. Lauren Woodring of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania finished first place in the women's field for the full marathon at two hours, 45 minutes, 29 seconds.
Boy, it makes me tired just thinking about it. The 34th Annual Running will take place Sunday, October 20th, 2013,and you can find out more information at columbusmarathon.com, also look for the link in the Show notes.
All right. So what is up today? In the news department we have organic foods for kids, the American Academy of Pediatrics weighs in. We also have baby sleep advice as it turns out there's an app for that and we'll tell you about it. Also risky street crossing behavior and the marshmallow test, it's a 40-year-old test that test delayed gratification in preschoolers.
There's been an update to the 40-year-old test, so we're going to tell you about that plus it's just kind of fun to talk about a marshmallow test, you know what I'm saying. Then we're going to answer some of your questions on button batteries, jogging strollers, video games and memory, and newborn hearing screens.
Quick reminder if there's a topic that you would like to us to talk about, it's easy to get a hold of me, just head over to pediacast.org and click on the contact link. You can also email email@example.com or call the voice line at 347-404-KIDS, that's 347-404-K-I-D-S.
Also the information presented in every episode of PediaCast is for general educational purposes only. We do not diagnose medical conditions or formulate treatment plans for specific individuals. So if you do have a concern about your child's health, make sure you call your doctor and arrange a face to face interview and hands on physical examination.
Mike Patrick: Our News Parents Can Use is brought to you in conjunction with news partner, Medical News Today, the largest independent health and medical news website, you can visit them online at medicalnewstoday.com.
Parents know it's important for children to eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, low-fat dairy products, and whole grains. But it's less whether spending the extra money on organic foods would bring a significant benefit to their child's health. Tougher guidance to parents and the pediatricians caring for their children.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has conducted an extensive analysis of scientific evidence surrounding organic produce, dairy products, and meat. Their conclusion well, it's mixed. While organic foods have the same vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, proteins, lipids, and other nutrients as conventional foods, and they also have lower pesticide levels which may be significant for children.
Organically raised animals are also less likely to be contaminated with drug-resistant bacteria because organic farming rules prohibit the non-therapeutic use of antibiotics, so that's the good news.
However, in the long-term there is currently no direct evidence that consuming an organic diet leads to improved health or lower risk of disease. No large studies in humans have been performed that specifically address this issue.
"What's most important is that children eat a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat or fat-free dairy products, whether those are conventional or organic foods. That type of diet has proven health benefits," so says Dr. Janet Silverstein, a member of the AAP Committee on Nutrition and one of the lead authors of the report.
She adds, "Many families have a limited food budget, and we do not want families to choose to consume smaller amounts of more expensive organic foods and thus reduce their overall intake of healthy foods like produce."
The AAP report called, "Organic Foods: Health and Environmental Advantages and Disadvantages," was released at the AAP National Conference & Exhibition in New Orleans and published in the November 2012 issue of Pediatrics.
The report outlines the research that has been conducted on organic foods, including convincing evidence of lower exposure to pesticides and less contamination of livestock with drug-resistant bacteria.
Dr. Joel Foreman a member of the AAP Council on Environmental Health and one of the lead authors of the AAP clinical report, says, "At this point, we simply do not have the scientific evidence to know whether the difference in pesticide levels will impact a person's health over a lifetime, though we do know that children – especially young children whose brains are developing – are uniquely vulnerable to chemical exposures."
Dr. Foreman adds, "If cost is a factor, families can be selective in choosing organic foods.". Some conventionally grown fruits and vegetables tend to have lower pesticide residues. The AAP cites organic shopper's guides like those provided by Consumer Reports and the Environmental Working Group as references for consumers.
The AAP found no individual health benefit from purchasing organic milk, but emphasizes that all milk should be pasteurized to reduce the risk of bacterial infections. Raw milk increases the risk of serious infection with bacteria including Salmonella, E. coli, Listeria, Campylobacter and Brucella.
Purchasing meat from organic farms that do not use antibiotics for non therapeutic uses has the potential to reduce antibiotic resistance in bacteria that infect people. The AAP calls for large, well-designed, prospective cohort studies that directly measure environmental exposures such as estrogen at low levels to understand the impact of hormonal exposure of children through milk and meat.
The AAP report also notes that the motivation to choose organic produce, meat and dairy products may be reasonably based on larger environmental issues, as well as human health impacts like pollution and global climate change.
Dr. Foreman says, "Pediatricians want families to have the information they need to make wise food choices, and we hope that additional research will improve our understanding of these issues, including large studies that measure environmental exposures and neurodevelopment."
So, the verdict is still out on organic foods, on the pro side studies do show less exposure to pesticide residues, antibiotics, and drug-resistant bacteria, but do those pros actually resulting better health?
You know, our hypothesis would be yes, but we don't have studies to prove it. Why should we prove it you ask? Well, not everyone can afford to go organic, so you have to factor in cost and if the theoretical advantages don't translate into real life improved health, then the cost may not be worth the benefit.
So as time goes on I think we'll see more research in this area and as results become available, we'll be sure to pull you in here on PediaCast. In the meantime, to help you -the parent decide what to do, we have some great resources for you in the Show notes for this episode 232 over at pediacast.org.
Those references and resources the AAP organic foods, health, and environmental advantages and disadvantages the entire text of it can be found through a link in the Show notes. And then consumer reports; their guide to antibiotics and meat, and the environmental working group their guide to pesticides and produce, all of that will be there for you, easy to find in the Show notes at pediacast.org, again for episode 232.
Many parents have questions about their child's sleep problems, and those questions usually come after 6 p.m. when professional assistance is not readily available, that's according to an abstract presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans.
Although when they presented the abstract, they might not have said it quite a snarky as I did. Their abstract is called, "An iPhone Application for Infant and Toddler Sleep: Characteristics and Concerns of Users," it reviewed information from nearly 8,000 users of a free iPhone app designed to aid sleep in young children.
Of those users, 365 or 4.6% submitted a question to an "Ask the Expert" feature over a three-month period. The app users were typically moms 69% with an average age of 28. Their children were primarily infants three to 11 months of age, 68%, followed by newborns, 0-2 months of age 12%, and toddlers,12 to 36 months of age 2%.
The most frequent questions involved night wakings, sleep problems and general sleep. Less frequently, questions related to napping, bedtime and sleep safety. Questions were most frequently submitted between midnight and 6 a.m. that was 37% of them, and 6 p.m. and midnight, 22%.
Study author Dr. Jodi A. Mindell says, "Our results found that the most common questions that parents ask pertain to sleep problems and night waking. These questions are most often submitted in the evening and even overnight – times when professional help is typically not available."
She adds, "Research has shown that behaviorally based interventions are highly effective for infant and toddler sleep disturbances, and yet they do require personal contact with a trained professional and as a result many children go untreated."
While the iPhone application provides widespread access to some assistance for families, the study supports the need for greater accessibility to health, and in particular, sleep-related information.
All right. So what is the iPhone app that this study used? Because I think weary moms want to know. Quick disclaimer -the app was funded by the Johnson & Johnson company, so they did get naming rights. It's called Johnson bedtime baby sleep, and we'll put a link to it in the Show notes over at pediacast.org for this episode 232.
The app is free and you know, I wanted to check out the user experience for myself, so I downloaded it, signed up for an account which will probably result in some email promotions from a certain company. You can chose if you want to participate in the sleep study, app information is anonymously sent to the researchers if you want to do that. And by the way, if you're wondering should I participate or not?
The details of the research are available to you so that you can read exactly what you'll be sharing and what the researchers are going to do with it, and the confidentiality, and all that business -the details are available so you can read before you choose.
You don't have to participate in the research study, but it's kind of cool. And then you put in your parent details, so your name, age, your sex, where you're from and that sort of thing. And then you put in your child's details -their name and age. And then once you got all that information in the app, you're presented with several options; first is a sleep log, so you and the researchers can keep track of your baby's sleep habits and hopefully you'll be able to see the improvement in their sleep habits.
There's also a suggested sleep routine that you can follow which OK in fair disclosure here does make use of a certain Johnson & Johnson product. And then the cool part is 'Ask the Expert' and that allows you to ask a sleep related question directly to a sleep expert. Now, they have the app wired right now, you don't get an answer right away, the answer may take up to 48 hours to find its way to you, but that's not too bad because they do have an archive of all the questions and answers that have been previously asked.
So you can prose this archive and probably find an answer to your question right away. But if you're question is one that hasn't been addressed before, you will get an answer but it may take up to 48 hours again for it to find its way to you.
Then they have a Mommy forum which takes you to a bulletin board style support community, and it's called the Mommy Forum. You know, apparently dad's aren't invited, so that's a little annoying. I mean, dads deal with sleep problems in kids too, why call it a Mommy Forum? I don't know, call it like Mommy and Daddy Forum. Anyway, it's there and even dads can probably can participate, I don't know, maybe they'll kick you off,I don't know what the rules are for Daddy and Mommy forums. All right. I'm getting way off track.
Sleep habits -this is another part of it where it allows you to record answers -specific answers to sleep habit questions and you can document milestones that your kids are making through their sleep and journey. That also helps you to identify the areas that your kid needs work and you can keep track of progress.
And then finally the last section of the app is called 'Lullabies and more', and it features playable lullabies and ambient sounds to help your child's sleep. So despite the commercial aspects of this app, I think many parents will find it useful, it's free, and it connects you directly to a research project which in my mind is definitely cool.
Again, the app is called 'Johnson's Bedtime Baby Sleep', and we'll put a link to it in the Show notes pediacast 232 so you can find it easily. And just to let you know, the Johnson company, they didn't contact me, I've had no contact with them whatsoever, so I think it's a cool thing and just wanted to tell you about it.
All right. An abstract presented another one at the American Academy of Pediatrics national Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans highlights the risky behaviors of pedestrians who are struck by cars. The most common risky behavior for toddlers, school-aged children, and teens include darting into the street, crossing in the middle of the block, and crossing while using an electronic device.
The abstract is called "Risky Behaviors of Pediatric Pedestrians Who are Struck by Motor Vehicles", and it includes collected data on all pedestrians who were injured by a motor vehicle and presented to a Level I trauma center in New York City between 2008 and 2011.
Of the 1,075 patients, 145 or 13% were under the age of 18. Children age 6 and younger were most often injured when darting into the street 44%, or crossing in the middle of the street 36%. For children ages 7 to 12-years, unsupervised activity accounted for 53 percent of the accidents, followed by mid-block crossing 47%, and darting into the street 25%.
What about teenagers -ages 13 to 17, well, 88% were struck by a motor vehicle while unsupervised, 32% while crossing mid-block, 18% while using an electronic device and 14% when darting into the street. And 4% of the teen accidents involved alcohol use.
What about grown-ups? 18% of accidents in those 18 years of age and older involved crossing in the middle of the street, 15% involved alcohol use and 9% involved the use of an electronic device.
Study author Dr. Nina E. Glass says, "While most other research on this type of population looked only at discharge data of those admitted to hospitals, one of the strengths of this study is that it looks at all patients presented to the emergency department". So if it was a minor injury, you know, still got counted we could find out what was causing these minor injuries.
She also notes, "While most of the young children in the study were supervised by a parent or guardian, these children still exhibited a lot of risky behaviors in terms of mid-block crossing and crossing against the signal."
In older children, there was a much higher incidence of using electronic devices, and listening to cell phones or music, compared to the adult population. Dr. Glass says, "Greater parental supervision, and safety tip reminders by pediatricians, could play an important role in preventing child pedestrian accidents."
See now, this was easier when I was a kid, you know, first we didn't have electronic devices, so that variable was definitely eliminated. \
And you know, we wouldn't think of crossing midblock or a jaywalking as we call it back then, or darting into the street. And the reason we wouldn't think of doing it is because we had a safety song drilled into us by no other than Jiminy Cricket, and it's not a song you can easily find today which is kind of unfortunate I think.
I really looked high and low on the internet for this, and I only found it on Vinyl, it really show on my age -with a Disneyland records label. And as I think back, that's probably how I did listened to this thing. And even You Tube wasn't much of a help, so you just couldn't find it.
So what song am I talking about? It's called "Stop, Look, and Listen", the Stop, Look, and Listen song it's a part of the I'm no Fool educational series from Disney back in the 60's and 70's. Here's a taste of what I'm talking about;
[Stop, Look, and Listen]
Mike Patrick: All right. We'd better cut into it here to keep us compliant with fair use, but that's how the song went. And for a kid back in the day, it was catchy, and it kept us on our toes. So the take home here is no darting into the street, no crossing midblock, please turn off and put away the electronic devices when crossing the street.
Also parents supervise your children, even your teenagers if they happen to be impulsive and are likely to dart, and of course alcohol and street crossing don't mix, so be careful there. And as Jiminy Cricket used to say, "Stop, Look, and Listen."
All right. let's move on to our final news item, the marshmallow test. The "marshmallow test" is an experiment which measures how much self-control preschooler have – will they eat one enticing marshmallow now, or will they hold back and wait for the promised two? It is an experiment that's 40-years-old, kind of like our Jiminy Cricket tune, we're going back and doing it old school today folks.
The marshmallow test was said to reflect how well preschoolers are likely to do later in life if they went for the one marshmallow -bad sign, if they waited for the two -well you know what they say, 'good things comes to those who wait.' But do they really?
Researchers from the University of Rochester report on a new marshmallow experiment in the journal Cognition. They say their study shows the ability to delay gratification is influenced by two things: an innate ability to wait, and the person's environment.
They found young kids who had been exposed to reliable environments would wait 12 minutes for the two promised marshmallows, compared to children in unreliable environments who waited just three minutes.
Lead author, Celeste Kidd, says, "Our results definitely temper the popular perception that marshmallow-like tasks are very powerful diagnostics for self-control capacity. Being able to delay gratification – in this case to wait 15 difficult minutes to earn two marshmallows – not only reflects a child's capacity for self-control, it also reflects their ability about the practicality of waiting," She adds,"Delaying gratification is the rational choice only if the child believes two marshmallows really will be delivered after a reasonably short delay."
Coauthor Richard Aslin says, "The findings remind us how complex human behavior is." He says, "This study is an example of both nature and nurture playing a role. We know that to some extent, temperament is clearly inherited, because infants differ in their behaviors from birth. But this experiment provides robust evidence that young children's actions are also based on rational decisions about their environment."
Marshmallow studies started off at Stanford University in the 1960s, and the current research builds on those studies and subsequent ones. In the original marshmallow study, Dr. Walter Mischel demonstrated that young children who were able to delay gratification tended to be more successful later in life.
Preschoolers who waited longer tended to subsequently have higher SAT scores, were less likely to be involved in substance abuse, and had better social skills according to parental reports.
The marshmallow studies have often been quoted as evidence that rather than intelligence or IQ, self-control matters more when navigating toward a successful life.
In the present experiment, Celeste Kidd and her team wanted to determine more closely why some preschoolers can resist the tempting marshmallow while others succumb to nibbling, licking and even gobbling up the tasty treat.
The researchers randomly selected 28 children ages 3 to 5 years into two environments, a reliable one and an unreliable one. They had expected to start with a small sample sized and then repeat the experiment with a larger sample. However, the results were so compellingly clear they did not need a larger group to get the study published in AP Review Journal.
So what happened in the Rochester experiment? Well, all the children were given a create-your-own-cup kit. They had to decorate a blank sheet of paper that would then go into the cup. In the unreliable condition group – the children received a container of old, used and partly broken crayons. The researcher said that if they waited a bit, they would soon be provided with a bigger and much nicer set of new art supplies.
Two-and-a-half minutes later, the researcher came back and said "Oops, I'm sorry, we made a mistake. We don't have any other art supplies after all. But why don't you use these old icky ones instead?"
Then the researchers placed a quarter-inch sticker on the table in front of each child. So think about that, a quarter-inch sticker, so just a little itty bitty one. And they were told that the researchers would soon come back with lots of better stickers they could use, but the kids waited the same length of time and you guessed it, the researchers came back empty-handed.
For the reliable condition group – the same set up was presented to the children as in the unreliable group. However, for these kids the researchers came back after a while with better art supplies and many large stickers.
All right. Now that the researchers pre-conditioned the two groups, it was time for the marshmallow task. The researchers told each child in both groups, "You can have one marshmallow right now or you can wait for me to get more marshmallows from the other room and then you can have two marshmallows to eat instead, you just have to wait.
All the art supplies were removed and a single marshmallow was placed in front of each child in a small desert dish four inches from the edge of the table because they all wanted the two. All of them said, 'yeah we will wait for two'.
The researchers left the room and along with the parents observed the children for 15 minutes through a remote video system. At that point they returned, apparently because they felt guilty for putting the children through their little experiment and they gave each kid three extra marshmallows.
Co-author, Holly Palmeri, described observing the children as they attempted to wait as long as they could, as "quite entertaining". Many of them took a little bite from the underside of the marshmallow and carefully placed it back in the desert cup so that nobody would notice. A smaller number nibbled bits off the top as well, forgetting it would be impossible to hide the evidence because both ends had bite marks.
Ms. Kidd said, "We had one little boy who grabbed the marshmallow immediately and we thought he was going to eat it. Instead he sat on it. Instead of covering his eyes, he covered the marshmallow."
So how did the two groups do in comparison with one another? Well, the unreliable situation group – the children waited an average of three minutes and two seconds before eating the sweet and only one of them waited the entire 15 minutes.
In the reliable situation group – the kids waited an average of 12 minutes and two seconds, and nine of them waited the full 15 minutes.
Mr. Aslin says, "I was astonished the effect was so large. I thought we might get a difference of maybe a minute. You don't see effects like this very often."
In previous research, where kids were not exposed to reliable or unreliable situations, they waited an average of 5 to 6 minutes. By manipulating the environment, children's waiting times could be doubled or halved. In those studies they found that if the treat was hidden, their waiting times increased by 4 minutes, while reminding the kids about the larger reward extended their waiting times by 2 to 3 minutes.
The current study demonstrates waiting times also reflect rational decision-making regarding the likelihood of reward. Other studies have shown kids are sensitive to certainty or uncertainty in future rewards. According to one previous study, children with no father in the house prefer more immediate rewards than larger ones they have to wait for.
Ms. Kidd says her present findings are reassuring. Why? Because the predictive power of earlier experiments all those years ago were "depressing" for her. But then, while working as a volunteer in a family homeless shelter in Santa Ana, California. Ms. Kidd made an astute observation. She recalls, "There were lots of kids staying there with their families.
Everyone shared one big area, so keeping personal possessions safe was difficult. When one child got a toy or treat, there was a real risk of a bigger, faster kid taking it away. I read about these marshmallow studies and I thought, you know, all of these kids that I'm seeing here would eat the marshmallow right away."
If you are used to getting things taken away from you, not waiting is the rational choice. Then it occurred to me that the marshmallow task might be correlated with something else that the child already knows – like having a stable environment.
Ms. Kidd urges parents not to try the marshmallow test at home and then draw conclusions about their child. Being a parent in the study is already a factor which makes the findings unreliable because your child already has expectations for what a loved one is likely to do.
By the way, in August 2011, an article in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences followed up some of the original marshmallow kids forty years later. What did they find? Those who had been able to delay gratification remained able to do so, while those who wanted their treat straight away had not changed much either.
So there you have it, the old and the new marshmallow experiments. All right. We're going to take a quick break. I couldn't help myself, it's a great story. We're going to take a quick break and we will be back to answer some of your questions, it's happening right after this.
Mike Patrick: All right. Next stop we have some answers to questions that you folks wrote in and as always very appreciative of those of you who participated in the program by doing so. First up is William in Sidney, Australia. Hi Dr. Mike! I follow your show each week, I play it through my iPod on the train to and from work each day.
Your show is very helpful and my work as a clinic coder using ICD10, the information in the episodes helps me better understand the meaning of the medical records that I code. I mostly like the medical science part of PediaCast. Also I'm a father of two wonderful children, a boy 5, and a girl 8, and this fact makes the whole show helpful. Kind regards, William.
Well, thanks William for your nice comments, you know, I hadn't considered PediaCast is being helpful for chart coders, but is certainly makes sense. And well you aren't the only listener down under, you know, as it turns out our third largest audience resides in Australia after the United States and Canada. So a quick shoutout to William and all of our Australian listeners. Thanks for supporting Pediacast, we really appreciate it.
Next stop is a little closer to home. Christie in Chattanooga, Tennessee says, "Hey, Dr. Mike! I just wanted to say that I found your podcast a couple of weeks ago and I am hooked. Thank you for providing such wonderful information to parents. Have you done a podcast about the dangers of button or watch batteries?
As a somewhat new parent, my daughter is 15months, I did not know the dangers associated with button batteries until my friend shared a blog post she had stumbled across. I was hoping you could share the dangers of these batteries on an upcoming podcast if you haven't shared it already. Thanks again for being a great resource to parents everywhere, Christie.
Well, welcome to the PediaCast family, Christie. We really do welcome you and are glad that you tried to show out and you're here. And thanks for writing in. We did cover the dangers of button batteries back in Pediacast 213, 2-1-3. And to help you find that episode easily, I'll put a link to it in the Show notes for this episode 232 over at pediacast.org.
Even though we have talked about button batteries before, I'm glad you brought it up Christie because as you said they are dangerous. So moms and dads if you haven't listened to our button battery show, be sure to check that out PediaCast 213.
All right. Next is Diana in Mississippi. Diana says, "Can my less than six-month-old baby ride in my jogging stroller with the car seat attachment so that his head is supported. I'm a runner, I want to get back to running and I think my baby might enjoy it. Thanks!
It's a great question, Diana. So here's the deal with jogging strollers, you know, you want to make sure your child fits within any age, weight, or length restrictions that are provided by the stroller manufacturer. In your case, Diana, as long as your baby properly fits in the attached car seat, you're good to go. You know, jogging is great exercise for you and I'll bet your young baby would love joining you. However a few words of caution are in order if you child is premature or has any underlying chronic health issues, be sure to ask your doctor.
Also think ahead, you know, about possible exposures or environmental factors that you may run into. Be sure you're jogging in a safe area, no weather is heading your way, dress your baby so here he's comfortable, and remember you're going to be hot and sweaty, but your baby isn't exercising and may actually be getting a cool breeze.
Young babies also have less fat and the tougher time regulating their body temperature, so again be mindful of their clothes and the weather. If you're using a snap on car seat type stroller, it's best to face your baby toward you so you can keep an eye on him as you run. Also stick with jogging trails if you can and avoid heavy traffic. And you want to be really careful with curbs and uneven sidewalks because jogging strollers are top heavy and can tip easily.
So there are dangers and the dangers are probably greater for younger babies, but who knows you know, someday we might see a research study on the dangers of jogging strollers along with the public push to discourage their use, but does that mean you absolutely shouldn't use jogging strollers with your baby?
No. You know, as I always say, as a parent you have to look at the risks versus the benefits of anything you do. Use some common sense and make a decision that is right for you and your family. So, thanks again for the question, Diana and hope that helps.
All right. Next stop we have Karen in Sidney, Ohio. Karen says, "Are video games affecting our ability to remember short term and are they bad for our memories? Also I recently took your posters to the doctor's office. Thanks and love your show."
All right. Thanks for your question Karen. And in full disclosure I have to tell you Karen is my aunt. So my Aunt Karen from Sidney, Ohio wrote in instead of picking up the phone to ask me about video games and memory, she chooses to use the pediacast contact page. But you know, in the end it's a good thing because I wouldn't have been able to answer her question right on the spot, it did require a little bit of research.
So I hopped over to PubMed, I threw in video games and memory as search terms, and you know, I don't think my Aunt Karen is going to like the answer that I found because I have a feeling there's a reason that she asked the question, right?
I mean she's got a little agenda going, I understand that. And I don't think she's trying to justify her own gaming habits, you know, I have a feeling she wants some dirt on video games to discourage someone else from playing.
I could be wrong, but I have a feeling that that's the agenda of my Aunt Karen. So let's talk about video games and memory, but don't worry even though most study show video games actually help memory, I'll still give you some dirt on video games at the end of our discussion. OK.
So what did I find? Here are the titles for some of the abstracts I came across whose results tell a video games improving memory and other brain functions. So here's the title of some of these abstracts, playing first person shooter games associated with improvement in working memory.
Another one, video games strategy induced change in brain function during a complex visio motor task. A third one, learning in the fast lane, new insights into neuroplasticity.
Another action video game experience reduces the cost of switching tasks. Another virtual navigation for memory rehabilitation in a traumatic brain injured patient. And another action video game players formed more detailed representation of objects. Another enhancing visio-spatial performance through video game training leads to increase learning in visual-spatial science domains.
And finally, the effects of video game playing on attention memory in executive control. So all of these studies actually show an improvement of memory and brain function as a result of video game playing. So let's think about this because really it does sort of makes sense. Playing a video game you definitely exercise your brain, you've got lots of input and output going on.
You have to respond to visual cues, you have to process those cues, you have to translate those cues into meanings and you have to translate those meanings into responses which must quickly go out to muscles. And then the onscreen results of the motor activity provide a feedback as visual cues that then have to be processed.
So it's really an input-output thing that your brain is constantly working when you're playing video games. And memory gets to workout too because you have to store and recall lots of data often based on past failures in order to successfully navigate the game. So all these data I mentioned show video games as good for brain processing and memory.
So how about study showing video games as bad for memory? Well here's what I found supporting that idea.
What's with all the crickets in this episode? We start with Jiminy Cricket that just goes downhill from there. Now, with that in mind moderation is still the key, right? I mean, I wouldn't suggest anyone use this information to play video games all day long, everyday for hours on end, OK?
Video games count as screen time, and while playing video games you are robbed of significant physical activity except in the case of the movement games like Dance Dance Revolution which studies have shown to be beneficial for the health of kids and teens.
But let's face it, most kids aren't playing those types of activity games for hours on end. I don't know about you, but I won't last a few minutes with those which of course is a sad commentary on my physical health. But while playing video games, you're not only robbed the physical activity, you're also robbed of relationship time.
Now, I know there are cooperation games or fried work together and communicate either in the same room or across the network. But let's face it, those usually aren't the people we need to be fostered in relationships with. The person that we're gaming with is usually not our spouse or a parent, or a child.
So you know what I'm saying here, there's something said for getting outside and playing with friends, taking a family walk, reading together, playing board game or card game with your kids.
So, video games have benefits, they also have pitfalls. So play video games, but play them in moderation and know when to turn them off, and if your kids or grandkids don't know when to turn them off -or your nieces or nephews as in the case of my aunt, turn them off for them, you know get outside, move, walk, run, play, eat dinner together, talk to one another, read with one another, build with Play-doh and Lincoln logs, and Legos, bring out the board games or deck of cards.
Video games are a fine option, but they should not be your child's world and they should not be a parent's world, just part of your world, My Two Cents anyway. So hope that helps Aunt Karen and by the way a phone call would have been fine, but thanks for writing in.
All right. Next stop we have Andy in Manila, Philippines. She says, "Hi. When I gave birth to my daughter in June she got her hearing test twice before we were discharged from the hospital. They said it's normal for newborns to fail the test due to earwax, and we were asked to come back. But every time we're back in the hospital my baby's wide awake and won't sleep so they could not re-administer the test.
I don't want to stay that long in the hospital for fear she might catch some illness. She is now three months old and the free test that came with my delivery package is already expired. I don't see any problems though, she gets startled by loud noises like vehicles passing, shutting doors, or even heard her loud brother.
She turns her head when we call her name or the sound of my voice, she's very responsive to still think we need that test. Thanks and I hope to hear from you soon.
Thanks for the question Andy, appreciate you writing in from the Philippines. You know, I would persevere and get her hearing re-tested. Children with impaired hearing may respond normally to sounds, but those sounds might be softer or they're able to discriminate them in a way that's different than you or I are discriminating them. And that can have an effect on later language development.
Also it's possible there's only a problem in one ear, so your child may respond appropriately, but still have an impairment which must be addressed to avoid problems down the road. So keep checking, Andy, until your daughter passes a hearing test in both ears. And if she keeps failing I'll stop making excuses, you know, maybe she needs a referral to a pediatric audiologist or a pediatric otolaryngologist also known as an ENT or Ear, Nose and Throat doctor. Thanks for listening in the Philippines and thanks for the question.
Don't forget for the rest of you out there, it's easy to get your question on the program, just head over to pediacast.org and click on the contact link. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the voice line at 347-404- KIDS, that's 347-404-K-I-D-S. All right we're going to take one more quick break and we'll be back to wrap up the show, I do want to tell you about those Uncrustables and the recall, and that's coming up right after this.
Mike Patrick: All right. We are back and I just want to remind you one more time we are on Pinterest, if you have check us out. I would encourage you to do so pinterest.com\pediacast, we have the Episode's board where we put up each new episode and allow you to repin and share those, we really appreciate it if you would do that. And then Our News Parents Can Use board, and don't forget Mother's kiss -it's a technique for removing foreign object from your child's nose.
Something you should know about, not something to necessarily try on your own at home, but just wanted to let you know what the Mother's kiss is, the effect of positive behavioral interventions in schools preventing knee injuries in teenage athletes, new information on the HPV vaccine, and a slew of recall announcements including Evenflo booster seats, upholstered toddler chairs from Trend Lab, and Disney hoodies and t-shirts sold at Target stores.
So you'll find all that and lots more on the News Parents Can Use board over at Pinterest. All right. So I mentioned this in the introduction Smucker's Uncrsutable PB and J sandwiches recall, it's due to salmonella in the peanut butter and if you bought the Uncrustables in the grocery store, you're fine.
The affected product was only distributed in 72 count bulk packages that went to schools under the school lunch program. Your school should have been notified and the product removed so any Uncrustables they get from this point forward should be OK at school. But what if you child ate an Uncrustables at school during the period of time that we were worried about here in the past.
Well, don't panic especially if your child does not have any symptoms, but if they do develop diarrhea especially if it's a prolonged diarrhea or it's particularly severe, or bloody, or if they have abdominal cramps, or vomiting, or fever be sure to contact your child's doctor and really you should do that anyway.
But if your child is fine even if they ate an Uncrustable, then there's really nothing to worry about, only if they develop symptoms. So you just want to know, just ask them, 'Hey, did you eat an Uncrustable at school?' Kind of make a note of that, and if they develop symptoms, then seek medical attention.
All right. So that does wrap up our show today. Want to thank all of you for listening and for taking time out of your day to be a part of PediaCast. iTunes reviews are helpful. We've had some people write in who are relatively new listeners and I would encourage you that if you found PediaCast through iTunes by reading the reviews, if you could just help is spread the word by writing a review of your own.
It's very helpful to have those. The other thing that would be helpful if you're going through the iTunes reviews is the ones that you agree with just click that they were helpful. Just go to a page or so of those.
The default of iTunes is to put the reviews in the order of most helpful to least helpful. Now you can click and change that to show me the most recent, but the default is which ones are most helpful. And so if you find a review helpful please click that it was helpful, and if you wanted to find one that's got lots, but it's like two pages back and you want to move it to the front, you might want to pick those.
Just a little helpful and for you that helps us. Links on your web pages, mentions in your blogs, on Facebook, and your tweets, and on Google + is always appreciated. And be sure to join our community by liking PediaCast on Facebook, following us on Twitter, and hanging out with us over on Google +, and you can now stop by our Pinterest boards and repin your favorite episodes and news stories.
You can also swing by the Show notes at pediacast.org, add your comments on today's show and of course we appreciate you telling your family, friends, and neighbors etcetera about the program. And don't forget to talk us up with your child's doctor at your next well check-up or sick office visit. In fact that's another one the really important things you can do to help spread the word about the program.
Doctors basically have little many audiences all around and we want to be a parent's first place that they go when their doctor is not around. So if you have a question about your child's health, we'd encourage you to go to the archives, we have a great search function there.
We know doctors know about this, of course you know, your doctor is the number one choice for finding out pediatric information, but when your doctor is not available and you have a question, we hope that your doctor uses us as resource.
And we have posters that you can download and hang up and if your doctor can do the same for exam rooms, and wherever else moms and dads hang out on bulletin boards, the YMCA, and gyms, and nurseries, and churches, and these sorts of places. And you can find those posters under the resources tab at pediacast.org.
I want to remind you if there's a topic that you would like us to talk about or you have show suggestion or you want to point us in the direction of a great new story, or if you have a question that you want us to answer, just head over to the contact page at pediacast.org.
You can also email email@example.com, or call the voice line at 347-404- KIDS, that's 347-404-K-I-D-S. And until next time, this is Dr. Mike saying stay safe, stay healthy, and stay involve with your kids. So long everybody.
Announcer 2: This program is a production of Nationwide Children's. Thanks for listening. We'll see you next time on PediaCast.