Reading To Your Baby Early Has Benefits

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Many parents spend countless hours reading bed-time stories to their babies. Does it help?

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Sure does, according to new research. Reading books to infants can boost vocabulary and reading skills for years to come.

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Kimberly Giuliano, M.D., of Cleveland Clinic Children’’s did not take part in the study, but encourages parents to start reading to their babies “as soon as possible.”

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“Dr. Giuliano says, “It’s never too early to start. If you want to read to your newborn – that’’s great. “They get in your arms, they’’re comforted, they hear your voice and it’’s a wonderful bonding experience for parents and babies alike.””

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Researchers monitored 250 pairs of mothers and babies for four years and found book-reading quality during infancy was a good predictor of early-reading skills.

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They also found a combination of book-reading quality and quantity during toddler years was a good predictor of literacy skills, such as name-writing, by age four.

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WHEN IS A GOOD TIME TO START?

Dr. Giuliano says once babies begin opening their eyes more and become more reactive to the world around them, they’’re more than ready for books.

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She says even if they’’re only a few months old, they can still learn.

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“”Young babies, especially those under the age of one, love books that have a little bit more of a sensory feedback to them,” says Dr. Giuliano. “

She adds, “They learn by developing all different types of senses, so if they can hear, see, and touch, it really helps them to understand the concepts that are being presented to them in the book.” It’s important for kids of all ages to spend time relaxing and reading every day.”

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“”The more we engage our brains actively in reading, the better children do academically, the longer their attention spans are, and the more success they’’re likely to have in school,”” says Dr. Giuliano.

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‘Early Reading Matters: Long-term Impacts of Shared Bookreading with Infants and Toddlers on Language and Literacy Outcomes’ was originally presented at the 2017 Pediatric Academies Society Meeting on May 8, 2017.

 

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MEDIA:  See Cleveland Clinic Pathfire for b-roll and soundbites

 

No Flu For You! How To Tell If Your Kid Has the Flu or Worse

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It’s that time of year.   Fun.  Fun.  Fun.

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In the Cold, Cold, Cold.   Right?  Or NOT.   Freezing temps can lead to not so fun aches from a cold, the flu or worse.

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When it’s your child feeling lousy, you’ll want to pay extra attention to their symptoms.

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Sniffles.  Sneezes.  Coughs.  Temperatures.
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Pay attention for wheezing. Dr. Carolyn Clear tells me that’s the warning sign.
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 Keeping kids healthy is a priority.
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When kids get sick it can spread to make the whole family miserable.
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First, let’s distinguish between a cold or the flu.
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Since a lot of folks confuse the two, here is a comparison of symptoms:
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Next, let’s look at what to do if you get either:
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 How can you tell if your kid has something WORSE than the flu?
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TODAY, I talk to Dr. Carolyn Clear fromWest Depford Pediatrics in West Depford, NJ and parent advocate Lindsay Mathis to discuss the flu, RSV, and the differences between the viruses. 
LINK TO INTERVIEW with DR. CAROLYN CLEAR and LINDSAY MATHIS:
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They provide essential information about seasonal viruses and how all parents can protect their children this winter.
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Learn how to tell if your child is suffering from flu symptoms or different seasonal contagious virus.   
At the height of winter and cold and flu season, children are at an increased risk for contagious seasonal viruses.
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By following a simple checklist, parents can be proactive about their family’s health and renew their commitment to healthy living.
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According to the recent announcement by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu is now at epidemic levels, with more than 21 pediatric deaths as a result of the virus across the country.
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The CDC says the epidemic is spreading and the number of states with a high amount of influenza-like activity increasing. Children are especially vulnerable.
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While the flu and Enterovirus have been at the forefront of the infectious disease conversation, what may not be top-of-mind is RSV, a common virus contracted by nearly 100 percent of babies by their second birthday.
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Often mistaken as a common cold, RSV can bring serious complications, is the leading cause of infant hospitalization, and is responsible for approximately 8 times more infant deaths each year than the flu.
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Doctors say it’s typical to see a spike in RSV cases in the winter, as we’re in the height of “RSV season,” which typically runs from November through March.
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While every baby is at risk of contracting RSV, premature babies are at an increased risk for developing severe RSV disease due to their underdeveloped lungs and immature immune systems.
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RSV is very contagious and can live on skin and surfaces for hours.
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So parents should remember to:
·       Wash your hands and ask others to do the same
·       Keep toys, clothes, blankets, and sheets clean
·       Avoid crowds and other young children during RSV season
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Parents can fulfill their commitment to better health this winter by educating themselves about common circulating viruses and following a simple checklist to help protect their families:
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 See your children’s primary care physician for an annual checkup Work with your children’s doctor to determine what seasonal vaccinations, such as the flu vaccine, your children are eligible for.
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Know the signs and symptoms of several of the most common winter illnesses, including:
o   Cold
o   Flu
o   Enterovirus
o   Sore throat
o   Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)
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Remember a strong immune system is built by eating right, avoiding sugars, junk food and processed food, toxic beverages, getting enough sleep each night, daily exercise and good hygiene.
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 You CAN make it through with NO flu or virus for you!!!
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For more information please visit http://www.rsvprotection.com
 
headshot1  Maria Dorfner is the founder MedCrunch, a division of Healthy Within Network (HWN).