For media inquiries, please contact:


Opening of the Healthy Brain Network Center in central Harlem

August 19, 2019

This morning, we officially opened the Healthy Brain Network Center in central Harlem with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by Congressman Adriano Espaillat. Congressman Espaillat said in his remarks, “This is a service that is needed by many members and families in the Harlem community, and very often I am sure that families don’t know where to go, or when they need it. This will provide a great service for families to better understand the needs of their children. I think it’s important that we begin to tackle mental health disorders, begin to tackle the unknown pathways and tunnels of what’s happening inside of a child’s mind. Thank you so much for coming to Harlem, and I wish you the very best."   Now with three locations, the Healthy Brain Network has seen more than 4,000 participants with hundreds more on the waiting list. The new Harlem Center will help meet the tremendous community demand for mental health and learning evaluations while deepening and diversifying this vital data set.  

Press Mentions

Do Tech Toys Hurt Baby’s Language Development?

August 19, 2019

“Imaginative play helps babies with new ideas,” says Laura Phillips, PsyD, ABPdN, a clinical neuropsychologist at the Child Mind Institute. She mentions one of the best types of toys for brain development: wooden blocks. Not only do blocks improve fine motor skills, they also encourage your child to problem solve and use her imagination. Other noteworthy toy options include stacking cups, coloring books, and spoons.
Dr. Phillips backs this up: “Emerging research suggests that language develops optimally in an interpersonal context,” she says. “There are studies showing that children acquire more vocabulary terms when talking with parents than listening to ebooks or TV shows.” Little kids seem to learn best from human interaction—not interaction with iPads, video games, and other flashy technology objects.

More at
Press Mentions

Do Blinking, Singing Toys Really Teach Babies?

August 19, 2019

Babies love the audio and visual simulation of electronic toys—but are these flashy playthings really beneficial for brain development?
There’s no question that play is tremendously important for babies and children. “It allows them to develop a sensory understanding of the world through things like textures, smells, and shades of color,” says Laura Phillips, PsyD, ABPdN, a clinical neuropsychologist at the Child Mind Institute. Play also has tremendous benefits for an infant's fine motor skills, problem solving, critical thinking, coordination, and much more. And although Dr. Phillips says an infant’s brain will develop naturally whether you simulate it or not, certain toys may help the process. But how do blinking, talking, and singing toys—the ones that undoubtedly catch your baby's attention in the store—stack up?

More at
Press Mentions

School Shootings and Lockdowns: How do Kids Cope?

August 16, 2019

When done right, lockdown drills let kids practice skills that could save their lives. "They can actually make kids feel a little safer and more in control, and have a sense of competence that they know how to handle a potentially harmful situation," says Jamie Howard, PhD, a clinical psychologist with the Direct Trauma and Resilience Program at the Child Mind Institute.

More at WebMD
Press Mentions

Heavy social media use affects girls’ mental health differently than boys

August 13, 2019

Social media itself doesn’t cause harm, but it can disrupt healthy habits that boost mental health, especially in girls, a new study found. “The idea is to promote other positive habits rather than saying to kids, ‘You can’t be on social media as much,’” Jill Emanuele, senior director of the Mood Disorders Center at the Child Mind Institute in New York, told TODAY.   Her advice to parents:

  • Everything in moderation, including social media. “We do know that anything in extreme is not good,” she said. “What we’re really trying to understand is: How much is it actually affecting our children?”
  • Kids should be off their screens before they go to bed. That way, they wind down for the day and don't have their sleep disrupted by their friends' photos and posts.
  • Find ways to reinforce positive habits, like getting enough sleep and exercise, rather than declaring social media off-limits. “The first reaction parents will have is to say [to kids], ‘You can’t be on social media as much.’ When you tell a kid to not do something, they’re going to do it more.”
  • Encourage kids to track the number of hours they spend on social media: Many don’t actually know and some would probably be surprised.

More at
Press Mentions

Media Coverage: Sales of Bulletproof Backpacks Soaring

August 7, 2019

Dr. David Anderson comments on Tuffypacks, which makes bulletproof inserts for backpacks. The company says they have seen sales spike at least 200%, and Bullet Blocker say sales have doubled in the past couple of days.
WNBC: Nightly News
WABC-TV: Good Morning America
WNBC-TV: Today Show, What you need to know about bulletproof backpacks (Video), Bulletproof backpack sales up 200% after mass shootings

More at WNBC
Press Mentions

How to Talk to Children About Mass Shootings

August 6, 2019

Dr. Jill Emanuele of the Child Mind Institute joins Errol Louis to discuss the ways to talk to children about this weekend's horrific tragedies in El Paso and Dayton.

More at NY1
Press Mentions

How To Talk To Your Children And Prepare For An Active Shooter Emergency

August 5, 2019

Dr. Dave Anderson is a clinical psychologist at the Child Mind Institute.He says if it’s likely your child will somehow hear about a mass shooting, no matter how old they are, it’s best they hear it from a parent or trusted adult in a few sentences.
“It’s one of these things where, you want to give them the facts of at least what happened, but then you want to just open it up,” said Anderson, adding that it’s OK for children and parents to talk about their feelings.He says parents should also assure them, for the most part, kids are safe.

More at CBS New York
Press Mentions

Pampers is making a ‘smart’ diaper. Yes, really

July 19, 2019

"Undoubtedly, for those parents who are concerned about their newborn's bathroom functions — to inform something like constipation or if a kid is hydrated enough when they're sick — this data could be very useful over brief periods," said David Anderson, senior director at the Child Mind Institute. "Not to mention that it may even be useful for potty-training parents."

More at CNN
Press Mentions

Is All Screen Time Harmful to Teen Mental Health?

July 15, 2019

What this study brings to the table is a conceptually-driven approach that details not just whether, but how certain forms of media use impact teenage mood, said Mark Reinecke, PhD, of the Child Mind Institute, who was not involved with this study.
Reinecke cautioned against assuming causation in this study. For example, social media could be causing or mediating increases in depression, while an adolescent's quality of friendships or family relationships could be serving as "buffers" to the effects of media on mood, he said.
"With this in mind, it would be interesting to extend this study by looking at social media and mood among clinically depressed youth, to examine the specific types of social media they're selecting, and to look at relations between social media exposure and the range of factors which influence a teen's mood," Reinecke told MedPage Today in an email. "It appears social media can have an effect. It's just one part, though, of a teens life."

More at MedPage