Archive for October, 2017

Why parents should save their baby’s cord blood — and give it away

Claire McCarthy, MD

Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Because blood cells from a newborn baby’s umbilical cord can be used to treat or cure a variety of diseases, the American Academy of Pediatrics is encouraging expectant parents to consider donating this blood to a public bank.

Fitting in fitness for busy people

Thinking about exercise differently, realizing that you don’t have to dedicate large blocks of time to workouts and classes, and that any activity is beneficial, makes it easier to find ways to incorporate physical activity into your day.

5 things parents and teachers need to know about ADHD

As many as 10% of children in the US have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, creating challenges for them as well as teachers, classmates, and family members. Understanding the condition is crucial to treating it successfully.

4 tips for teaching your child how to ride a bike “on the road”

Steve Calechman


Once you have taught a child the mechanics of riding a bicycle, the real challenge is teaching them how to ride safely on the streets. Our tips will help instill important safety and awareness practices in your young rider.

Contrary to popular belief, epidurals don’t prolong labor. Phew.

Hope Ricciotti, MD

Editor in Chief, Harvard Women's Health Watch

Challenging a long-held belief, a new study found that women who received epidural anesthesia during labor did not have prolonged labor or higher rates of cesarean births.

What parents should know — and do — about young children and mobile devices

Claire McCarthy, MD

Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Use of mobile devices by children up to age 8 has exploded in recent years. This isn’t necessarily bad, but parents should be aware of how much time their children are spending on devices daily, and make the effort to ensure they are being used responsibly and appropriately.

Activity trackers: Can they really help you get fit?

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Using an activity tracker to monitor the amount and intensity of a person’s daily movements may provide motivation for some people to make greater effort to improve their health. Further research may find that using these devices in innovative ways and with creative incentives could make them even more helpful.

Study investigates treatment regret among prostate cancer survivors

Charlie Schmidt

Editor, Harvard Medical School Annual Report on Prostate Diseases

Surveys of over 900 men who were diagnosed with prostate cancer in the 1990s found that approximately 15% had some regret over their treatment choices. Study authors encourage doctors and patients to have frank and thorough discussions about about the risks and benefits of various forms of treatment for prostate cancer.

Yoga could slow the harmful effects of stress and inflammation

Marlynn Wei, MD, JD

Contributing Editor

Because stress and inflammation are so harmful, researchers have been studying how yoga might help ease them. If you’re looking to de-stress, this breathing exercise is simple and can be done anywhere.

Urinary incontinence: Common and manageable

Nearly half of all women will experience some form of urinary incontinence during their lives. In addition to the discomfort, it can affect a person’s emotional health as well. But the condition can be managed for many women with lifestyle changes behavior therapy, or physical therapy.