Car seat safety: 3 easy steps to ensure your child is riding safely

Summer is almost officially here and that means many families will be hitting the road for summer vacation. Before you leave, make sure your family is riding safely.

As a child safety advocate and certified car seat technician, I meet many families who think their children are riding safely, but they’re not. The most frequent mistake I see …Continue reading →

Parents beware of the latest teen dare: The Cinnamon Challenge

Parents beware of the latest teen dare: The Cinnamon Challenge

Some teens are being dared to swallow a spoonful of ground cinnamon.

With more teenagers home during the summer, be on the lookout for the Cinnamon Challenge. It begins with a teen being dared to swallow a spoonful of ground cinnamon without drinking water.

The cinnamon coats and dries the mouth and throat, causing gagging, vomiting, coughing, choking and throat irritation. People with asthma or other respiratory conditions are at greater risk of having …Continue reading →

How helmets can help prevent tragedies during “trauma season”

At Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, summer is “trauma season.” Birds are chirping, flowers are sprouting and kids are falling — off their bikes, scooters and while on their in-line skates. Last weekend, our Emergency Department admitted 12 kids with injuries related to summer activities. Half of them were bicycle injuries.

As a parent, we have many responsibilities, but none is more important than being a role model. Trust me — kids are watching. A couple of weeks ago, I bought my daughter a pair of in-line skates for her birthday. I have been blading for years, and she was excited to join …Continue reading →

Medicine Collection Day: Helping keep the earth clean and prevent poisonings

Medicine Collection DayA great way to get rid of outdated or unneeded medications, keep dangerous drugs out of the hands of our children and protect our drinking water is to participate in Medicine Collection Day on Saturday, April 27.

In 2012, 48 percent of calls to Wisconsin Poison Center involved either prescription or over-the-counter medications. By bringing these drugs in, you will help keep them from getting into the wrong hands or our local water supply. Remember, never flush or pour unused …Continue reading →

Laundry detergent packets: How dangerous are they to kids?

Laundry detergent packets: How dangerous are they to kids?Convenient and easy to use, detergent packets like Tide Pods, All mighty pacs or Purex Ultrapacks often are found in homes with young children. The packets are designed to dissolve quickly when exposed to water in the washing machine. They are colorful and squishy — some even look like candy or a toy — making them attractive to kids.

Poison centers receive many calls each year about children getting into laundry …Continue reading →

Five ways to keep your family safe while riding bikes

Every day, more than 600 children are injured due to bicycle-related crashes. Younger children are at higher risk, but even experienced teenagers, like my son, can be in danger. This summer it will be 10 years since we lost our son due to a bicycle/vehicle crash. Don’t think it can’t happen to your family.

With spring just around the corner, now is the time to start tuning up your bikes, checking helmet sizes and reviewing the rules of the road. Bike safety is a passion for my family …Continue reading →

Stopping the cycle of violence: Project Ujima and emergency care at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

In the Emergency Department/Trauma Center at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, we offer world-class medical care to children and comfort to families who may be facing the most traumatic situations of their lives. Our team considers it a privilege to support …Continue reading →

Car seat safety: What your child wears this winter makes a difference

installing a car seat

Have your car or booster seat checked to be sure it’s properly installed.

Don’t you just love the scene from A Christmas Story when Ralphie’s mom is bundling up his little brother, Randy, to go to school? She dresses the little boy in so many layers he can’t even bend his arms. Then, she tops him off with a scarf she wraps around and around and around his neck. I just laugh every time I see that scene!

Gone are the days of dressing my kids. Today, I just remind them to wear …Continue reading →

Learn what ages children should start doing more things on their own

Girl smilingI work as an occupational therapist at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin’s Fox Valley specialty clinic. I also have a Montessori preschool teaching background. One thing I’m passionate about is sharing the benefits of having kids learn to do things for themselves.

As adults we often don’t think about all the things kids can do themselves. Even at very young ages — as soon as kids are able to walk, grab and move — there are things kids can do …Continue reading →