Remember the bit I posted a while back about autism causing whooping cough? Some parents, afraid that vaccines caused autism despite plentiful evidence to the contrary and even outright debunking of the original “study” that first made the claim, have been deciding not to get their children immunized, including opting out of the whooping cough vaccine. Not surprisingly, that resulted in an increase in the incidence of the disease. That won’t be happening in California any more, however, thanks to a new law going into effect.
Archive for the ‘Health’ Category
Did you know that you’re not supposed to smoke marijuana while pregnant? I didn’t. My wife didn’t. No one told us during any of our three pregnancies. Not that it was an issue; neither of us uses marijuana. Still, given its prevalence and acceptance in California in general and the Bay Area in particular, I’m surprised it wasn’t part of the classes we took and that my wife’s doctors never mentioned it. Sadly, we’re not the only ones who didn’t know.
“I’m a trained risk assessor,” says one parent “and this is not a health and safety issue.” That’s the point of view most parents would take, I think. In fact, some pay a lot of money just so their kids can enjoy this activity. But what is this situation that is so dangerous that some schools in Scotland are banning it? Playing in the snow, of course, because snow is, well, wet and cold.
Soda, it’s pretty well agreed, isn’t good for kids, especially the younger ones. It rots teeth and, generally, contains caffeine, not to mention being a huge source of empty calories. Milk, well, it does a body good, but it too can be fattening — something, sadly, I know from personal experience. Of course, no one would recommend coffee for kids and, in the US at least, beer, wine, and other “adult” beverages are right out. So what’s left, if your kids want something other than water? Juice is one option — except that even that has problems now.
Like a lot of people, I did my time at McDonald’s, working at the Opera House McDonald’s restaurant here in San Francisco the summer before I started college. I am quite convinced that taking advantage of the free, unlimited access to soda was directly responsible for some serious dental issues I suffered subsequently. I don’t blame the company, however; it was completely my own fault. I should have known the damage excessive amounts of soda could do to my teeth and, perhaps more importantly, no one forced me to drink the soda. One store manager in Brazil, however, faced a different set of circumstances.
Whatever you might think about the idea of legalizing marijuana use for adults — California voters will decide next Tuesday whether or not to do just that — you probably don’t approve of giving pot to children, especially pre-teens. If you’re a parent who doesn’t want their kids trying weed until they reach adulthood (or something close to it, anyway), you might want to be extra careful about checking their treat bags when they get home from trick-or-treating tonight.
I’ve long been one of those snobs who simply won’t drink beer that comes in a can. Heck, in many cases, I won’t even call it beer. It turns out, now, that quality and taste of the beer is just one reason to avoid beer in cans. According to a study of Chinese factory workers, drinking beer (or, for that matter, soda) from cans will do more than reduce your chances of getting laid — it affects your ability to make anything happen if you do.
It seems that radio stations play the “talk to your kids about drugs” ads almost as much as they do music these days. Aside from the fact that they aren’t music, that’s not a bad thing. After all, I don’t think anyone would argue that parents shouldn’t talk to their kids about drugs or that doing so would lead to increased abuse. Mind you, it’s certainly not foolproof prevention, but it also certainly can’t hurt. So why is it that parents don’t feel the same way about sex?
When you look at your kids, do you ever wonder whether or not they’re real? Are they real children or just elaborate fakes, cheap imitations of the real thing, shadows of that which they pretend to be? That’s the question Cathy Lynn Grossman, writing in USA Today’s Faith and Reason section, posed regarding children conceived via in vitro fertilisation. Her query was prompted by the news that the Nobel Prize for Medicine was awarded to Robert Edwards, the British scientist who pioneered the process in 1977. “Do you think,” she asks, “a baby conceived in [a] test tube is still a child in the eyes of God?”
Did you know that today is International Walk to School day (at least, here in the US)? I did. I was made painfully aware of it because my kids’ school makes a big deal out of it and my kids begged me to walk the three-and-a-half miles from our house to their school. Given that they’re only six and eight years old and that I’d have the two-year-old in tow as well, it wasn’t going to happen. There was no way I was going to leave the house an hour or more early just so I could listen to them whining about being tired for the last three miles of the trip. But, as it turns out, we did participate in Walk to School day.