Health Notes

Baby’s First Food? Maybe Skip the Rice…

by Dr. Elizabeth Walenz on May 10, 2016

There’s an ingredient you probably don’t know about or want in your rice: arsenic. Now the FDA is proposing new limits on just how much is in your baby’s rice cereal.

Arsenic can come in two forms: organic and inorganic. The inorganic form of arsenic is more toxic and is a known carcinogen.  As rice plants grow, they absorb more of the inorganic arsenic.  Pregnancy, infancy and early childhood are periods of greater susceptibility to adverse outcomes related to inorganic arsenic.

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Making Test Day the Best Day Possible

by Dr. Elizabeth Walenz on April 19, 2016

‘Tis the season for state testing in the schools, as well as ACT and SAT testing. How can you make sure your child is well prepared and will test to the best of their ability?

Rest.  Not just the night before, but the week leading up to the testing, make sure your child, pre-teen or teen is going to bed at an appropriate time each night. Make sure that he is practicing good sleep hygiene – falling asleep in an environment free of distractions. Phones should be plugged in in the kitchen, televisions and computers should be removed from the bedroom. Bedtime should be between 8:30-9:30 p.m., which means preparations should be completed by that time. Limit how much caffeine they drink or eat during the day to help promote good and adequate sleep.

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Raising Kids to Thrive

March 8, 2016
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There are all kinds of parents. Understanding your style and how best to mold your little ones sometimes comes with a little guidance. There are many different styles of parenting: Helicopter parents are very involved with their children, but mostly to protect them from disappointment, failure and conflict. Free range parents give their children autonomy at […]

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Heavy Metal: The Danger of Lead

February 23, 2016
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Flint, Michigan, has been in the news quite a bit recently. A change in the city’s water source led to a massive contamination of lead in the water supply, creating a serious public health danger. The outreach to help people of Flint has been great. Omaha and many volunteer groups within the city have held […]

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Top Six Questions about Colds and What You Need to Know

February 9, 2016
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If you have kids, it’s more than likely the last couple of months have been filled with stuffy or runny noses and even a cough or two. In the first two years of life, most children will experience 8-10 upper respiratory viral infections. It can seem like a constant drip, drip, drip… There will be […]

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What Should I Do About Baby’s Flat Head?

January 26, 2016
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In the first few months of life, we can start to notice flat spots developing on a baby’s head. This is called positional plagiocephaly, or flattening of the skull related to position. We’ve seen it more and more over the last few years with the onset of the Back to Sleep campaign. We know babies […]

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Success for the Second Semester

January 12, 2016
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Second semester has begun. It is a new year and can be a new outlook on school for kids with new goals. For some children with ADHD, school can be even more of a challenge. There are medications for ADHD to help with focus; however medication alone is not the answer. A child/teen has to […]

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(Grand)Parenting for the Next Generation

January 8, 2016
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Today’s grandparents are so much more than “nana and papa.” Whether acting as full-time babysitters or primary caregivers, many are playing a bigger role in their grandchildren’s lives. While raising children the “second time around” can be rewarding, it can also be a challenge. The game has changed from the way parents reared their children […]

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What’s New on the Field: Concussion Safety

December 22, 2015
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It’s December, but sign up for spring sports has already begun. Before you sign the dotted line, there are things you should know about keeping your kid safe from concussions. The movie “Concussion” starring Will Smith opens this holiday season. The movie is about a forensic pathologist who discovers chronic traumatic encephalopathy or brain injury […]

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Dr. Google: Smart Searching on the World Wide Web

December 8, 2015
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We have all done it. Whenever we need an answer, the first move is to “Just Google it.” My oldest son asked me, “When did Nebraska last win a championship game?” “Why don’t you Google it?” Unfortunately, we can run into trouble with Google. Google pulls up the most popular answers, and they’re not always […]

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