Public Health

How to talk to your kids about tragedy

How can parents and guardians best help kids understand and process tragedy? What does a “normal” reaction look like? Below, OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital Child Psychiatrist Ajit Jetmalani, M.D., provides guidance for families in the days and weeks following a high-profile disaster or tragedy. Parents should be aware of their own reactions to these tragedies and attempt to refrain from alarming their children through verbal or non-verbal cues. Children often become concerned about their own safety … Read More

Get smart, stay safe: a back-to-school checklist

Lunchbox? Check. School supplies purchased? Check. Perfect first-day-of-school outfit planned? Check. Back-to-school season is, once again, upon us. Below, we share a few important health and safety tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics and Dr. Ben Hoffman, director of our Tom Sargent Children’s Safety Center. Add these to your back-to-school list! Update your child’s vaccinations: Oregon state law requires immunization records for children attending public and private schools, preschools, childcare facilities and Head Start … Read More

Summertime food tips

For many children, summer break means lazy mornings and afternoon swims. But for others, summer brings grumbling bellies and the pain of hunger. It’s estimated that 15 percent of Oregon families are food insecure. In the U.S., it’s estimated that 16 million children do not have enough to eat each day, skip meals, eat watered-down food or go hungry. Summertime brings an added challenge for parents because many school-aged children no longer have access to free- or reduced-price breakfast and lunch, and money … Read More

The vaccine every teenager needs

Odds are, you or someone you know has been infected with human papillomavirus, or HPV. It’s the most common sexually transmitted disease (STD) in the US, infecting more than 79 million Americans. More than 14 million people, including teens, become infected with HPV each year. HPV is also responsible for 70 percent of cervical cancer diagnoses, and can also be responsible for throat, penile and rectal cancer. The good news is there’s a vaccine that … Read More

Preventing child abuse: Protecting our children from one another

Physical abuse, sexual abuse, violence in the home and exposure to substance abuse are all adverse events that can occur in the life of a child and may lead to negative health outcomes into adulthood. Research demonstrates how adults’ bad behavior can have a significant impact on the growing and developing mind and body of a child. We are also learning more about how actions of our children’s peers can also have a significant impact … Read More

Doernbecher offers free flu vaccine to its patients’ parents, close family contacts

OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital is offering free flu shots to the parents and close family contacts of its established patients. The “Free Vaccine for Parents Cocooning Project” is intended to protect OHSU Doernbecher’s youngest and most vulnerable patients. Babies younger than 6 months, for example, cannot receive the flu vaccine.The next best means of protection is to “cocoon” the infants, or insulate them from infection, by immunizing their family members. Providing free vaccine to pediatric … Read More

Water, water everywhere: How to reduce your child’s risk of drowning

Although summer swimming season is upon us, drowning is a risk in any weather. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about one in five people who die from drowning are children 14 or younger, with children from 1 to 4 having the highest drowning rates. Water-related accidents don’t just happen around the pool: They can occur even inside your house. Drownings can be fatal, or near fatal. A common location in the … Read More

Weight management most effective way to prevent type 2 diabetes in kids

The most common type of diabetes seen in children used to be type 1 diabetes, also known as ”juvenile diabetes,” a condition caused by autoimmune reaction that leads to destruction of insulin producing beta cells of the pancreas. But since the mid-1990’s, we have noticed a new pattern emerging – more children and adolescents are being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, a condition that used to be the disease of adults only. Type 2 diabetes … Read More

Let’s Get Healthy! Teaching children about healthy food choices

We’ve learned that good nutrition in early life is critical to children’s health as they grow up and as adults. There are simple steps you can take to help your children eat well: Eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains; your children will follow your example. Create games to teach your children about healthy foods. Involve your children in cooking at home. Grow a garden at home, or participate in a community garden. You can … Read More

Pack a nutritious school lunch that’s fun to eat!

Q. What can I pack in my son’s school lunch that is nutritious and fun to eat? A. Sandwiches made on whole-grain bread with a lean protein like turkey ham or chicken are easy to make, affordable and convenient  to take to school. Some children like lettuce or sliced cucumber on sandwiches, but many are picky about vegetables. Try offering small vegetables like baby carrots, cherry tomatoes and sugar snap peas to dip in a … Read More

Doernbecher Best in the Country U.S. News & World Report

Doernbecher Best in the Country U.S. News & World Report


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