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First with Kids, by Dr. Lewis First

May I share some tips for good manners with you?

Good manners are necessary for people to live together and get along in this world. They are a great way to instill values of kindness and respect in your children, values that will last a lifetime and which the world seems to need nowadays more than ever. Using them can also help a child be ...

Gear up for bike safety

With the weather getting nicer, I’d like to pedal some important information to help keep children safe when they go for a bike ride. Make sure your child’s bike fits properly. Don’t buy a bike that is too big with the expectation your child will grow into it, because they could lose ...

Allergies get kids sniffling and sneezing in spring

With the arrival of spring, parents have been itching to ask me how they can tell the difference between an allergy or a common cold, so here goes: ¯ Between 40 and 50 million Americans are affected by allergic diseases. While most children with colds and allergies will have noses that run, ...

Tips to chew on for parents of picky eaters

Parents have been picking my brain in regard to how to handle their picky eaters. Well, here’s a healthy mouthful of information. More than a quarter of 3-year-olds are picky eaters, according to recent studies, and a new food may have to be offered at least 10 to 15 times before a normal ...

A heads-up about fainting spells

Parents have been anything but faint of heart to ask me about what to do if their child or teenager should experience a fainting episode. Well, let me pass out some information on this particular topic. - What is fainting? - Fainting represents a temporary loss of consciousness as a ...

Preventing child abuse is everybody’s business

Since this month is national Child Abuse Prevention Month, I thought it wouldn’t be harmful for me to talk about this most serious topic. More than 1 million infants and children are abused every year in this country physically, sexually or emotionally. Additional sad facts are that ...

What to do when you catch your child stealing

Parents have been stealing lots of tips from me on what to do if they find their child stealing something. While stealing a base or a basketball from another player may be fair play in competition, when a child takes something that belongs to someone else, it isn’t fair — even if it’s ...

Could children be allergic to their jeans?

Parents have been itching to ask me if their child’s itchy rash, after wearing jeans with a metal button made from nickel, might be an allergy to the metal itself. Well let me do more than nickel-and-dime you by providing some important information on this topic. - What is a nickel ...

Breathe easier about your baby’s bronchiolitis

Parents have been all choked up, especially during this pandemic, asking me whether their baby or toddler might have a breathing problem called bronchiolitis. Well let me put everyone in the nose, or in the know, when it comes to learning about this illness. - What is ...

How to prepare your child for a blood test

Parents have been asking me some pointed questions as to how to better help their child deal with getting a blood test or injection — so let me see if I can make this topic a lot less painful for parents and children. Acknowledge that it’s OK to be worried about a blood test. Talking to ...

A colorful talk about what’s inside your infant’s diaper

Parents of infants have been asking me some colorful questions about the color and frequency of their baby’s poops or bowel movements. Well, let me see if I can flush out some information on this topic. - Most colors are OK - As it turns out, most babies produce bowel movements of ...

What parents need to know about teen suicide

Parents have been asking me some tough questions recently about their teenagers being stressed to the point they might try to hurt themselves or even try to commit suicide. This is a topic that should be stressed for all parents, so let me try to provide some helpful information. Suicide ...

Sign language for babies and toddlers

Baby sign language is a way to communicate with infants before they can express their needs verbally. In fact, it has long been observed that children can be taught to use their hands to talk long before they are able to speak, such as when they wave bye-bye. Baby sign language also offers a ...

Getting ahead of children’s headaches

Some of the most painful questions I get are about headaches in children and when parents should be concerned. Let me ease some of the tension surrounding this topic by providing some information. Most of the time, there is a good reason for your child’s head to ache, such as staying up ...

Big resolutions for our smallest loved ones

With New Year’s Day upon us, parents have been asking me to help them help their children with their resolutions. Here are a few suggestions to ring in 2021. ¯ Infants need to resolve to sleep on their backs to prevent them from being at risk for sudden unexpected infant death, and to ...

Simple safety tips to avoid holiday hazards

It’s the holiday season once again, and the perfect time to remind everyone of some simple things you can do to keep you and your children safe and sound. ¯ If you have a tree, secure it well to keep it from tipping. If it is a live tree, make sure it’s fresh, green, well watered, and ...

Translating the benefits of raising children to be bilingual

Parents who speak more than one language in their home have been asking me lots of questions about teaching their infants and toddlers to be bilingual and what to expect if they try to do this. Well let me translate those concerns into some helpful information about children who are taught or ...

Let’s focus on your child’s vision

Parents have been asking me to focus on what to do if they are concerned about their infant’s or child’s vision. Well, let me see what I can see and say about this topic. A newborn can see large shapes, faces and bright colors even at the time of birth. By 3 to 4 months of age, a baby ...

Talking turkey: feeling your best after the big feast

This year, as a result of the pandemic, Thanksgiving dinners may not involve as many guests and family members as you might have liked to have around the table, but parents are still cooking up a lot of questions about that Thanksgiving turkey and why everyone gets sleepy after a big ...

Scratching beneath the surface of dry skin

Parents have been itching to ask me questions about what to do for their babies and toddlers’ dry skin — especially with the cold winter season coming our way. Well, let me see if I can do more than scratch the surface on this topic. Young children tend to have thinner and more delicate ...