A check on the evidence behind the latest news and advice about children. As a psychologist, former researcher and disgruntled consumer of the parenting media I debunk the latest claims about kids from breastfeeding and bullying to autism and attention deficits.
Momma Data's Latest Posts
Can you boost your child's IQ? I almost made it through the day without thinking about this question. That's the good news. The bad news, WebMD dropped that question into my inbox and I took the bait because it was 6:30pm, I can't get the new toner cartridge into the printer and my blood glucose level is low, so obviously my self-discipline and cognitive judgment are impaired. Here was the mess that awaited my starving, slow brain on the commercial site masquerading as a health […]
Children are slimming down. At least that's the message from a large national study playing in the media last week. Results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey published last week in JAMA show obesity rates in 2- to 5-year old children dropped by 43% from 2004 to 2012.The sharp decrease sounds encouraging, remarkable even until you consider a few more facts and figures. Dramatic changes run the risk of sounding more impressive untethered from the raw data especially when […]
Parents, pay attention. You could cause substantial developmental delays not to mention severe irreversible psychological and cognitive troubles for your child. In other words, brain damage. How? Well you'd have to abandon the child as an infant. Not just give the kid up to a doting adoptive family but really ruin the kid by leaving him or her in an institution, say an orphanage.When researchers thought to study the brains of children left in Romanian orphanages they discovered diminished […]
I awoke yesterday with SATs and GPAs on my mind. It wasn't a nightmare that pulled me from sleep but a segment on NPR's Morning Edition questioning college entrance exams. Though half-asleep I caught the gist - some new study saying high school grades predict college grades as well as the usual test suspects. Got me out of bed fast, a rarity.Grades, standardized tests. Go ahead, find another controversial issue speaking to this nation's ambivalent relationship with education, standardized […]
Some potential pleasure reading for those women fresh off dinner-laundry-duty. Does a More Equal Marriage Mean Less Sex? in the NY Times. Read it and weep, though, my feminist, husband-at-food-market friends. If you can't stomach reading it, let me break it to you gently. Clinical psychologist and auteur, Lori Gottlieb argues men who routinely pitch in on the more traditional girly chores kill the sex life. In a surprise to no one here, this critically important sociological phenomenon […]
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