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.
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. More at Parents.com
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.
August 19, 2019
Babies love the audio and visual simulation of electronic toys—but are these flashy playthings really beneficial for brain development? More at Parents.com
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?
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
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:
More at TODAY.com
- 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.
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. More at WNBC
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Today.com, What you need to know about bulletproof backpacks
Today.com (Video), Bulletproof backpack sales up 200% after 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
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. More at CBS New York
“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.
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
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. More at MedPage
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."