Hungry or Bored?

Children sometimes use food for reasons other than hunger to satisfy themselves.  These reasons may be in response to their emotions or feelings.  Many things can trigger hunger such as:

  • boredom
  • depression
  • stress
  • frustration
  • insecurity
  • loneliness
  • fatigue

One way to keep your child from eating out of boredom is to steer them towards activities that keep them busy.  Also make sure your child eats three well-balanced meals and one snack each day.

A few things to do instead of eating would be:

  • walk the dog
  • walk around the neighborhood
  • kicking a ball around
  • painting a picture
  • running through sprinklers

Showing your child love on Valentine’s Day!

Here are ways to show your child how much you love them on Valentine’s Day or every day.  

  1. Use plenty of positive and encouraging words with your child.
  2. Make an extra effort to set a good example about how to connect and talk with other people at home and in public.
  3. Respond promptly and lovingly to your child’s physical and emotional needs
  4. When your child is angry, grouchy, or in a bad mood, give him a quick hug, cuddle, pat, secret nod or other sign of affection he responds to and then consider talking with him about it when he’s feeling better.
  5. Use non-violent forms of discipline.
  6. Make plans to spend time alone with your young child or teen doing something she enjoys on a regular basis.
  7. Mark family game nights on your calendar so the entire family can look forward to having ways to enjoy spending time together.
  8. Consider owning a pet, if possible. Having a pet can help make some children, especially those with chronic illnesses and disabilities, feel better by increasing their physical activity, enhancing their overall feelings, and offering another way to connect with someone they care about.
  9. One of the best ways to have your child learn more about good food choices is to encourage him to cook with you.
  10. As your child grows up, she’ll spend most of her time improving upon a variety of skills and abilities that she gains in all areas of her life.
  11. Your child’s health depends a lot on the care and support you offer during his early years.
  12. Help your child foster positive relationships with friends, siblings and members of the community.
  13. One of your most important gifts as a parent is to help your child develop self-esteem.
  14. Don’t forget to say, “I love you” to children of all ages!

Mumps – What You Should Know

Mumps has been in the headlines lately, and for a good reason.  We are in the midst of a significant outbreak in several areas of our state, and cases of mumps have recently shown up in Northeast Arkansas. Here are a few facts about this disease:

  • Mumps is a viral illness spread by coughing and salivary contact.  It is present throughout the world and is uncommon in the USA because we immunize for it.  The virus infects our respiratory tract and salivary glands, lasts for several days, and usually resolves without complications. After a 2-3 week incubation period, children and adults typically develop cough and congestion, sometimes fever and headache, and about two thirds have salivary gland inflammation with tender, firm swelling over one or both cheeks.  When it is suspected, mumps can be tested with a cheek swab – the result may take several days.  
  • Thought the disease is usually relatively mild and self-limited, it can cause occasional severe complications including swollen testicles in adolescent or adult males, viral meningitis, encephalitis, arthritis, or other glandular inflammation.  For women in early pregnancy, there may be a slight increased risk of spontaneous miscarriages.
  • There is no specific treatment for mumps, so the only effective approaches are containment and prevention.  Infected children can pass on the virus well before, and for about 1 week after the symptoms show up, so isolation of sick or highly susceptible individuals is important.  Mumps vaccine is part of every child’s routine immunization regimen and is usually given at 1 and 4 years of age.  Most, but not all children who’ve had both doses are fully immune.  

More information, including detailed isolation advice, is presented in a recent Arkansas Department of Health Newsletter (see below), and you may feel free to contact us if you have questions or concerns.  


Front facing or Rear facing car seat?

Front facing or rear facing? Which one is the best?  When a child is placed front facing in the car seat injuries can be more severe.  This is because during a collision the child’s neck can be thrown forward, creating a stress on the spinal cord.  The spinal cord is very important and even the slightest damage can cause tremendous injuries, such as paralysis or even death.  When a child is rear facing in a car seat their bodies are cradled, supporting the head and neck securely. This keeps the head, neck, and spine fully aligned.  The longer a child can ride in the rear facing position, the better protected his or her spinal cord will be in a collision.    

Create Your Family’s Media Use Plan!

From TV to smartphones to social media, our lives are dominated by 24/7 media exposure. Despite this, many children and teens have few rules around their media use.

How to Plan a Balanced Thanksgiving Meal for Picky Eaters

Thanksgiving can be challenging for parents with picky eaters.  With a little planning, you can create a balanced Thanksgiving meal the whole family will enjoy.  Here are some tips to please your picky eaters without straying from Thanksgiving traditions or creating a lot of extra work.

  • Choose at least one food you know your child will like.
  • Engage your child in meal planning.
  • Engage your child in meal prep.
  • Use food bridges.
  • Make it look, smell, and taste delicious.
  • Keep the mealtime relaxing and enjoyable.



Jonesboro Occasions Readers’ Choice Award Best Pediatrician

Congratulations to Dr. Jane Sneed for winning the Jonesboro Occasions Readers’ Choice Award for Best Pedatrician. Also congrats to Dr. Kevin Rouse for winning Finalist in the Jonesboro Occasions Readers’ Choice Award for Best Pedatrician. The Children’s Clinic is fortunate to have you both on our team!