child development

How To Help A Kid Survive Early Puberty

May 16, 2019

From surging hormones and acne to body hair and body odor, puberty can be a rocky transition for any kid. But girls and boys who start physically developing sooner than their peers face particular social and emotional challenges, researchers find.

"Puberty is a pivotal time in kids' lives, and early maturing boys and girls may be more likely to struggle psychologically," says Jane Mendle, a psychologist and associate professor at Cornell University.

It may be a new school year, yet I come to sing the praises of trampolines and bubble-blowing, pillow forts and peekaboo, Monopoly and Marco Polo.

Learning disabilities and other special education needs are common in children born with opioid-related symptoms from their mother's drug use while pregnant, according to the first big U.S. study to examine potential long-term problems in these infants.

Everybody loves a winner — even toddlers, according to a study published Monday. But even though kiddos tend to like high-status individuals, they don't like those who win conflicts by using force.

"It seems like toddlers care about who wins, but they also care about how they win," says Ashley Thomas, now a researcher in cognitive development at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard.

What kind of heart check-up do young athletes need to make the team? A large study of teenage soccer players in England found in-depth screening didn't detect signs of trouble in some athletes who later died — yet allowed others at risk to get treated and back in the game.

Airman 1st Class Stephany Miller / Courtesy U.S. Air Force

Ah, the inevitable sign that summer break is coming to an end: back-to-school advertisements. As beneficial as they are for a parent's wallet, they may be triggering anxiety in their children as they prepare to return to school. 

"For children, as it pertains to school, it's normal to feel scared about something that is coming new," said  Miami-based psychologist Lina Acosta Sandaal,  founder of Stop Parenting Alone, an organization dedicated to sharing information about child development with parents. 

Since Zika emerged as a threat to babies, it has been a mystery exactly how much of a danger the mosquito-borne virus poses to children.

But now, the largest study to follow kids who were exposed to the virus in the womb is providing more answers.

The study involved 1,450 babies who had been exposed to the virus, and who were 1-year-old by February 2018. Six percent were born with birth defects, and 14 percent developed problems that could be blamed on the virus by the time they turned 1, the study found.