Posted in blogging, blogging to get well, digital kids, digital parenting, parents and technology, technology and health problems

A Thoughtful Teen Describes His Healthcare Journey

I’ve been following a well-written blog by a young man named Josh, in his teens, who describes his experiences during the discovery of a brain tumor, the surgery to remove it, and his subsequent chemotherapy treatments (still going on). Believe me, these posts, on his blog called Josh’s Journey, are compelling and riveting to read, largely because he is a careful observer and a good writer.

Visit Josh's blog.
Visit Josh’s blog.

Josh assumes the role of a journalist, focusing on details, experiences, and his reactions as his medical team goes about providing his care. Readers learn what it’s actually like to proceed, step-by-step first with surgery and then with subsequent medical treatments at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).

Writing must be helpful, perhaps even therapeutic, as Josh confronts uncomfortable medical procedures, but it’s extraordinary that he sustains his writer’s voice, objectively sharing observations and perspectives about the challenging process of fighting a tumor.

Continue reading “A Thoughtful Teen Describes His Healthcare Journey”

Posted in digital parenting, hearing loss, iPhones and iPads, parents and technology, technology and health problems

App Demonstrates How Hearing Can Be Impaired

Check out your hearing!

It’s a fact of life. We all spend lots of time attached to headphones.

Most of us know enough to take care with the volume, but are we really doing it? Moreover, what can we do to ensure that our kids are regulating the volume as they listen to music?  It doesn’t help that many pre-teens and adolescents don’t always listen to their parents.

Now a new app, Auto-Old My Music, may be able to communicate the dangers of extremely loud music better than we can. This app, available for iPhone and iPod, plays the music differently — it’s muffled and not particularly clear — just the way it might sound to a person who is hearing impaired.

Now that might successfully drive the point home.

The Auto-Old My Music app, designed by the Baptist Memorial Health Care in Memphis, Tennessee, is a response to research, Change in Prevalence of Hearing Loss in U.S. Adolescents, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Read the full article in PDF format.

Articles to Check Out

You can also read my 2010 post, Teens and Hearing Loss.

Posted in parents and technology, technology and health problems, technology in bedrooms

TV in Your Child’s Bedroom? Research to Consider

Are you tempted to allow a television in your child’s bedroom?

Recently the journal Preventive Medicine published research that explores the potential impacts of placing a television in a child’s bedroom. By evaluating existing health survey data researchers sought to discover whether certain behavioral and social characteristics were especially associated  with the presence of a television in a child’s bedroom (bedroom television or BTV). The article, TV’s in the Bedrooms of Children: Does it Impact Health and Behavior? (abstract), is not freely available on the web, but it can be purchased or read at a medical library.

To understand more about how BTV use might affect a child’s behavior the researchers used data from the 2007 U.S. National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH), which gathered information through interviews of 46,687 family with children ages 6-17. As a part of the NSCH, parents were asked to estimate the amount of time their child spends watching television on an average weekday.  Continue reading “TV in Your Child’s Bedroom? Research to Consider”

Posted in healthy media images, media literacy, parent education, parents and technology, technology and health problems, teens and technology

Pediatricians’ Policy Statement on Media Education – September 2010

Listen to these docs!

The September 27, 2010 edition of Pediatrics, the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), includes an updated policy statement on media education. Full text is available, as the journal and its editors appear committed to providing easy access to articles on media and other topics that may be of interest to parents and educators.

The updated policy statement, written by media education advocate and lead author Victor Strasburger, M.D.,together with a veritable who’s who of like-minded pediatricians, addresses the health concern that arise when children are over-exposed to media. Easy-to-read and jammed-packed with information, the document provides an overview of physician concerns about the media literacy of their young patients. With 93 footnotes, the policy statement also connects readers with pertinent scientific research so that readers, if they choose, can search for research abstracts about media education and children’s health (check PubMed for the abstracts).

The policy statement addresses the following topics — all of considerable interest to families with children — and includes recommendation to pass on to parents: Continue reading “Pediatricians’ Policy Statement on Media Education – September 2010”