We are swimming in muddy waters

We are swimming in muddy waters

Guess what!  Now it’s ok to eat peanuts or tree nuts during pregnancy!  A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association documented that eating nut products during pregnancy actually does not increase an unborn child’s eventual risk of developing nut allergies.

Guess what!  All plastic products for infants and children no longer contain the dreaded ‘BPA’ (bisphenol  A), which had been found to cause hormonal changes and potential cancer down the road.  Now they contain BPS! (bisphenol S).  Stay tuned in a couple of years regarding BPS toxicities.

Guess what! Some video game time can actually be good for kids, and studies have shown that mini blaster attack practice may make those tots into better surgeons in the future!

Guess what! Despite the increased use of helmets on skiers, there has been no decline in closed head injuries on those slippery slopes.

Guess what!  The Los Angeles Unified School District, the second largest public school district in the country, issued iPads to all of its high school students.  Weeks later, the entire system was hacked by the students themselves.  And who said that kids weren’t computer-savvy?

Guess what! Organic milk really is better than non-organic milk.

Guess what!  Vitamin supplements are bad.  I mean good.  I mean some are good and some are bad. Some of the time.  Maybe on Tuesdays, but not on Thursdays.

And last but not least, the esteemed Professor Jenny McCarthy is beginning to think that autism and vaccines have no link. Phew.

We are bombarded with information overload.  And, unlike in the not-too-distant past, when a research study would be done, and, months later, the information would trickle to the lay public, these days, the study is barely in the academic literature before it hits all of the news sites, twitter feeds, and facebook pages.  We literally can longer keep up with the data coming at us.  In the medical world, we still quote ‘classic’ studies from years past, but are trying to keep our heads above the Googley waters.

But let’s all take a tiny step back.  Because there is so much coming at us, we try to keep up with the information, in order to gain some control of our environments, especially when it comes to our kids.  The problem is, because so many parents are swimming in the Googley pond, the basics are getting muddied.  I cannot tell you how many kids I see riding their bikes without helmets (these studies, by the way, do show that helmets on bikers do cut down on head injuries), young kids bopping around front seats of cars without seatbelts, let alone without car seats, or kids glued to some form of technology at a ‘family’ dinner at a restaurant.  These are the unimmunized kids who are drinking organic milk, eating the right brand of peanut butter, and using the ‘safest’ plastic drinking bottle.   They may even be our surgeons of the future.



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