Thursday, July 28, 2011

Playground Safety: Dr. Jen's Take on the New York Times Piece

A repost from

As a pediatrician with a sub-specialty in child abuse, and a mother of two sets of twins, I read the New York Times article Can a Playground Be Too Safe? with significant concern. In this piece, John Tierney explains the history of New York City’s playgrounds and safety. Specifically, regarding a 10-foot-high jungle gym in Manhattan near his childhood home, he explained that as long as he was the parks commissioner, the monkey bars were going to remain in place. This was despite researchers at the time, who cited accident statistics and the importance of safer playgrounds. Fast forward to 2011, and this article, in accordance with Mr. Stern’s 1990’s edict - critics saying that playgrounds may “stunt emotional development, leaving children with anxieties and fears that are ultimately worse than a broken bone”.

Wow, do I disagree.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Dr. Jen’s Favorite Grill Recipe

I cannot express enough how much I love going to the local farmer’s market, picking up whatever is fresh and abundant, and plunking it on the grill. Although I’m careful to avoid charring (not good for little ones!), I do grill veggies and serve to my kids. I also used to put veggies on the upper rack and serve as finger food (cut in small pieces) for my kids when they were toddlers. I do not recommend pureeing grilled veggies for baby food. Please read my posting on food safety.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Ticks & Lyme Disease FAQs

Here are answers to some commonly asked questions about Lyme Disease, thanks to the awesome American Academy of Pediatrics resource, Healthy Children!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Ticks & Lyme Disease

Lyme Disease and other tick-bourne illnesses are a serious health issue—and we can engage in activities that reduce the risk of getting bitten by a tick, and responding appropriately when we notice a tick. I chose to write about this topic on the One Sassy Doctor blog for two reasons—it’s a growing problem nationwide, and I have had personal experiences that have made spreading awareness about this topic very important to me.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Toddler Play & Fun Tips

A repost from

It’s not easy to be alone with a toddler all day long, but you can spice it up and still stick to the routines that are so important to children. Here are Dr. Jen’s tips on toddler play, fun ways to engage with your toddler more, and some ideas on toddler activities!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Dr. Jen's Tips for Water Play & Safety with Children

Summer time means more water play! One Sassy Doctor wants you to hear loud and clear: Water can be a lot of fun, but safety should be number one! (A rhyme, remember, bear with my goofy sense of humor!)

Here are Dr. Jen’s Tips for Water Play & Safety with Children:

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Dr. Jen’s Tips for Dealing with Stranger Anxiety

This is a repost from

An 11-month-old is in the peak period for stranger anxiety, and it’s a challenging phase. And it will end. As my grandma, my mother, and now I like to say when we face many of life’s challenges, “This too shall pass.”

Here are Dr. Jen’s Tips for Dealing with Stranger Anxiety:

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Outdoor Play

My husband often says, “When in doubt, let’s go out!” I believe getting outside, even for a brief period of the day, is a very important part of raising healthy, active, adventurous children.

But it’s not always easy! In my stomping ground, good old New York, it’s cold for a fair portion of the year. We all have our own reality—mine in the winter is:
  1. 12 boots 
  2. 12 gloves 
  3. 12 hats 
  4. 12 scarves 
  5. 12 coats 
Although we do engage in fun winter outdoor play (stay tuned, we’ll write about that on One Sassy Doctor in the future!)—the start of spring & summer really do boost the mood of the entire family. Welcome sunshine and warm weather! Whoo hoo!