Navigating Post-Divorce Dating

Dating after divorce is quite a normal thing. It can feel wonderful. It’s a time of self-discovery, a return to internal values, and the thrill of meeting new people. None of this makes you a bad parent.

Aftereffects of Divorce on Children

Aftereffects of Divorce on Children

The US has been a “leader” in family change with an early (rising in the late 1960s) and high increase in divorce, followed by an explosion in non‐marital birth with or without cohabitation.

Meta News

Changes for Teens on Meta Social Media Platforms

Over forty states have sued social media giant, Meta because of its lack of safety protections for teens who use its platforms. As a result, Meta has come out with new changes to filter harmful content away from the newsfeeds of teens.

Mental Health, Sleep, & Screen Time

Mental Health, Sleep, & Screen Time

Did you know screen time is contributing to sleep deprivation in kids? In this Fast Company article, they discuss the links between mental health, sleep, and screen time.

social language group

Social Language Group

Plum Tree Child & Adolescent Psychology and Beyond Words Speech Therapy have teamed up to offer a social language group to children ages 5-8.

This group will focus on helping children achieve the following skills: Managing peer conflict, Self-assertion, Sharing, Friendship skills, Reading social cues

Social Language Group

 

For More Information: 630.549.6245 or ann@www.theplumtree.net

Can Your Child’s IQ Improve?

Pesticides Linked to ADHD Symptoms

Pesticides Linked to ADHD Symptoms

The “organic movement” has roots (pardon the pun) in studies about harmful effects of pesticides. Pesticides Linked to ADHD Symptoms. A new study (conducted by Canadian researchers used data collected from nearly 1,140 children participating in the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) suggests more bad news about pesticides. There seems to be a link between level of exposure to pesticides and the development of ADHD symptoms. This MSN Childhood Health article (by Leah Zerbe Rodale) states that “this study is the first to look at everyday exposure levels in children from around the country. And as it turns out, U.S. kids are exposed to harmful levels of pesticides in their food, day in and day out.” The take-home message is: avoid using pesticides around your own lawn, and–if possible–try to buy organic foods.

BFFs are Good for Kids

BFFs are Good for Kids

Social Media Effects on Children

Social Media Effects on Children

A CNN article reviews the role of electronic media in children’s lives—the good, the bad, and the narcissistic. The research was conducted by Larry D. Rosen, Ph.D., professor of psychology at California State University, Dominguez Hills, and technology researcher. Below is a summary of the major trends observed by Dr. Rosen. Social Media Effects on Children.

Positive Results

– Social media is a great tool for engaging and captivating children
– Online networking can teach socialization
– Online users show more “virtual empathy”
– Social Media can help children establish a sense of self

Negative Results

– Students using social media during study breaks received lower grades
– Children who use social media tend to be more narcissistic
– Research suggests social media can increase anxiety and depression in children

Dr. Weller suggests that parents stay up-to-date on social media trends. Become familiar with what sites your child uses. (St. Charles school district has recently offered teen-led classes to parents for help with this). Like anything done in mindful moderation, social media can play a role in a well-balanced life.

Healthy Eating

Healthy Eating

The American Psychological Association (APA) posted an article about helping children develop better eating and exercise habits. Below are the benefits of good nutrition and daily exercise, according to the APA.

Good nutrition is essential to healthy brain development in children which is, of course, critical to learning.

Mental and behavioral benefits

– perform better academically
– feel better about themselves, their bodies, and their abilities
– cope with stress and regulate their emotions better
– avoid feelings of low self-esteem, anxiety, and depression.

Establishing healthy eating and exercise habits early in life can lead to long term healthy behavior in adulthood.

Physical benefits

Children need a wide variety of nutrients (e.g., protein, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, minerals, vitamins) to assist in their daily growth and development and to protect them from childhood illnesses.

Daily exercise also helps children to build stronger muscles and bones and limit excess body fat.

Healthy eating also cuts down on risk for cavities, eating disorders and unhealthy weight control behaviors (i.e., fasting, skipping meals, eating very little food, vomiting, using diet pills, laxatives, or diuretics), malnutrition, and iron deficiency.

Healthy eating and consistent physical activity help to prevent chronic illnesses that appear in adulthood associated with obesity, e.g., heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and several forms of cancer.

The relationship between a healthy diet and a healthy mind is perhaps intuitive. But scientists are discovering more every day about how what-children-eat is related to their behaviors. Particularly ADHD research shows how food allergies and sensitivities can mimic ADHD sypmptoms. Before starting any medication, Dr. Weller recommends ruling-out food-related issues. A visit to a Registered Dietician is a good first step.