Teens plus drowsy driving equals a dangerous situation

Sleepy drivingFor many high school students, summer vacation means late nights out with friends, summer jobs, sports tournaments and overnight camps. Juggling all the summer activities can add up to irregular sleep schedules and too little sleep, putting teens at risk for drowsy driving.

Teen drivers are new to the road and need to be alert and free of distractions when driving. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, teen drivers are four times more likely to be in a fatal car accident. That statistic would probably be higher if it …Click here to continue reading

These ABCs will help your baby stay safe while sleeping

Recently, there have been a lot of TV programs and newspaper stories discussing infant safe sleep, especially the debate about co-sleeping. Despite much research, we still aren’t sure why some babies die during co-sleeping and others don’t. Every infant death is tragic and involves a unique set of circumstances.

Here’s what we do know: between 2005 and 2008, 88 babies in the Milwaukee area died from accidental overlay, suffocation or sudden infant death syndrome. These cases involved boys and girls of all …Continue reading this post

Safe sleep saves lives

There is nothing more innocent than a sleeping baby. There is nothing more tragic than a baby who dies in his or her sleep. Fortunately, research shows that many of these deaths can be prevented.

As a doctor at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, I see the good and the bad. I see smiling babies toddling down our hallways and giggling infants squealing with delight. But, I also …Click here to continue reading

Spring into good sleep habits

Spring is here! It’s so nice to have brighter, longer days, but it might mean that you’re having a hard time getting your kids to sleep in the evening.

You probably know that adults need 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night. But how much sleep do kids need?

  • Infants (birth to 12 months old) – 10 ½ to 18 hours (total of nighttime and naps)
  • Toddlers (1 to 3 years old) – 12 to 14 hours (total of nighttime and naps)
  • Preschoolers (3 to 5 years old) – 11 to 13 hours
  • School-age kids (6 to 12 years old) – 10 to 11 hours
  • Teens (13 to 18 years old) – 9 to 9 ½  hours

Here’s a helpful sleep checklist: …Click here to continue reading

Helping baby back to sleep

Several times a week, we find ourselves sitting in meetings discussing the best way to keep babies safe while sleeping. At Children’s Health Alliance of Wisconsin one of our initiatives focuses on injury prevention and death review. Additionally, we provide grief and bereavement services for families who have experienced the unexpected death of an infant. Our work keeps us motivated to find ways to keep babies safe and parents well rested!

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents follow the ABC’s of safe …Click here to continue reading

Smoke alarms don’t always wake a sleeping child

During the cold, snowy Wisconsin winter nights, I like to enjoy a cozy fire in our fireplace, sip hot cocoa and bundle up in a warm sweater. Sadly, winter also means a higher risk of home fires.

Did you know that over half of home fires happen late at night when people are sleeping? A nighttime house fire can be devastating, but knowing a few facts may protect your family if you wake up in the middle of the night and smell smoke.

Kids sleep more deeply than adults, and that may make it more difficult to wake them during an emergency. I recently read a study that said young children often sleep through …Click here to continue reading

Teens — too wired to sleep

Only 20 percent of all teens get the recommended nine hours of sleep per night. Yet more than half of all teens report feeling sleepy during the day.  The impact of this includes being late to school or falling asleep in school, being too tired to exercise or driving while drowsy.

According to a new study, electronic devices may contribute to teens not getting enough sleep at night. In the study, 100 teens filled out questionnaires about how much time after 9 p.m. they spent with various electronic devices.  The results were eye-opening: 82 percent reported …Click here to continue reading

Bad dreams and nighttime screams

With Halloween around the corner this month, horror movies are filling our theaters and TV guides. If your child has bad dreams, avoid these films and pay attention to what your child watches on TV.

Nightmares occur at all ages, but the peak ages are between 3 and 6 years old, when most children’s imaginations blossom. The content of these dreams varies across the age groups. Younger children may dream about separation from parents, shots at the doctor’s office or scary monsters. Older children may have nightmares about stories they’ve seen …Click here to continue reading

Safe sleep for babies

October is SIDS Awareness Month, so it’s a good time to review safe sleep practice for babies. Babies need to sleep safely and develop a healthy bond with their mothers. These two essential newborn needs must occur in the first months of an infant’s life, but they do not occur simultaneously.

How can a loving parent provide the safest possible sleep environment for that beautiful little infant? The most important advice has been repeated since 1992: Always place your baby on his or her back to sleep. This has cut the number of infant deaths from sudden infant death syndrome in half.

Unfortunately, 50 percent of babies still are dying. A close look at the deaths has revealed that many of these babies who died were sleeping in unsafe places. We don’t know all of the answers to the question of why these babies die. But we do know the chance of death would have been reduced if those babies were placed to sleep in the way recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

…Click here to continue reading

Back-to-school checklist: school supplies, clothes, sleep!

School will be starting soon. It’s time to help get your kids on a healthy back to school sleep schedule.

Kids need more sleep than adults. Children ages 6 to 12 years old need 10 to 11 hours of sleep at night. Teenagers need at least nine hours of sleep.

It’s important to get enough sleep because chronic sleep deprivation has been linked to poor school performance, behavioral, developmental and mood problems, weight gain and …Click here to continue reading