Miscellaneous Health Issues

Fluoride and Dental Health

Is there enough fluoride in your drinking water?
Populations Receiving Optimally Fluoridated Public Drinking Water (United States, 2000) - A report

Head Lice

New (pesticide) therapies against lice - Article (free but you need to sign in for access)

Beware of Pesticide Resistance (if you don't use the products correctly, the bugs can become resistant and therefore VERY difficult to get rid of!)

Alternative Therapies (that don't use pesticides like Malathion) - I've heard of several therapies (none of which seem to have research to back them up) but they are worth a try if you feel strongly about not using pesticides on your child (like I do):

Rubbing sweet almond oil (mixed with a combination of any or all of the following essential oils: lavender, lemon, camomille). In particular, lavender has been mentioned as an oil that lice don't like. Some say that ANY oil discourages the reproduction and biting of lice.

Using LARGE quantities of any hair conditioner. Glob large quantities of it on the scalp and using a LICE fine-toothed comb, comb through the hair, rinsing/observing each time you go through the hair to see if any lice have been removed. I never knew where the term "nit-picking" came from until my daughter came down with lice. The best and surest way to get rid of them is to sit under a bright light, while your child watches a video, and pick each egg/larvae out one by one, once a day for at least a week and then weekly for at least a month after that. The conditioner treatment is helpful as a preventative measure to be done every 4-8 weeks.

Remember that all bedding, hats and clothing should be washed at a temperature of at least 65°C as well, to get rid of lice and eggs that could be hiding in them.

Poison treatment

Ipecac (a syrup often used to provoke vomiting) is no longer recommended by AAP as poison treatment

The AAP issued these recommendations in their policy statement:

°Syrup of ipecac should no longer be used routinely for poison control in the home (it was never proven to be truly effective as a poison treatment).
°Pediatricians and other health care professionals should advise parents to safely dispose of ipecac in their homes.
°Current research does not support the routine use of activated charcoal in the home as its safety has not been demonstrated.
°Parents or caregivers that suspect a child has ingested a toxic substance should first consult with a local poison center by calling (800) 222-1222 (for the U.S.).
°If you live in a different country, keep the phone number of your local poison control center handy.

Advances in Multiple Sclerosis treatment

Statins- article contains links to other treatments under development (requires paid subscription to the journal Nature)

Environmental Health & Children

Children's Health and The Environment: Environmentally Healthy Homes and Communities - A report (free but must sign in for access)

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) in Teens

The CDC in the US estimates that 9.1 million cases of 8 sexually transmitted diseases (human papilloma virus, trichomoniasis, chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, genital herpes, hepatitis B and HIV) occurred in youth aged 15 to 24 in 2000. Some of these diseases can cause serious problems including cervical cancer and infertility.

They often show no symptoms!!!!!

PLEASE consider talking with your children regularly (in an age-appropriate fashion, of course) about the prevention of pregnancy and STDs. The only way to beat these diseases in EDUCATION and DIALOGUE!

Skin Cancer

CDC guidelines for education and prevention of skin cancer:
Guidelines for School Programs To Prevent Skin Cancer
Public Health Action Steps from the International Agency for Research on Cancer
Sunscreen: How To Select, Apply, and Use It Correctly
Skin Cancer Education Resources
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