Eight Parenting Mistakes
In this era of two-earner couples and single parents, when 9-year-olds have cellphones, 12-year-olds are having oral sex, and there is evidence that teens are more fearful and depressed than ever, the challenges of rearing competent and loving human beings are enough to make a parent seek help from Supernanny, writes s parenting columnist Nancy Shute. Science may be even better, Shute suggests in a story that looks at eight ways that parents can go wrong when disciplining their children. The first three: failing to set limits, being overprotective, and nagging. Check out Shute’s On Parenting blog for more parenting stories, including this recent post about the controversy over spanking.
Criticism Intensifies as Salmonella Lingers
A lingering salmonella outbreak associated with tomatoes has revived debate about food safety, ABC reports. Angry lawmakers are lambasting the Food and Drug Administration, nearly two weeks after first identifying the problem, for appearing unable to specify where the outbreak began. It’s hardly the first time the FDA has come under fire about food safety from Congress. According to ABC, the House Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations has held eight hearings on the agency's food safety shortcomings since 1998.
While lawmakers grapple with the source of the salmonella scare, U.S News suggests that consumers cook their tomatoes to foil salmonella. A cover story about food safety published last summer explains other ways that families can try to keep their food supply safe.
Pot More Potent Than Ever
A new study shows that the amount of THC in marijuana has doubled since 1983, CNN reports. THC, an abbreviation for delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, is the main component responsible for the drug’s mind-altering effect. President Bush’s “drug czar”, John Walters, and other federal officials have expressed considerable concern about the trend. They say that teens especially may set themselves up for various psychological conditions, cognitive deficits, and respiratory problems because of marijuana use. This latest study follows another report released last month by the White House suggesting that marijuana use can worsen depression.
Silver Fillings May Pose Health Concern
The FDA has warned that silver dental fillings may pose a safety concern for pregnant women and young children, the AP reports. Silver fillings, according to the warning, contain mercury and may damage the nervous systems of developing children and fetuses. Scientifically, it isn’t entirely clear that silver fillings, formally called dental amalgams, actually cause neurological problems; the FDA actually posted the warning to settle a lawsuit. The agency offers more information about this topic here in a question and answer format.
For information on keeping your teeth healthy, check out the U.S. News guide to the latest developments in oral health.
- Adam Voiland