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It's not perfect. It's parenting.

Sometimes you need answers to the little everyday things that parents encounter. And sometimes, you just need someone to encourage you through all of the craziness and challenges of parenthood. Welcome to Parent-ish.

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Top 6 things the pros want you to know about antibiotics

When many of today’s parents were kids, they were prescribed antibiotics almost as often as they went to the doctor. A cough, an earache, or an upset stomach might all be treated with the same bubble-gum-flavored medicine. More recently, medical research has shown that antibiotics are most effective when they are prescribed more carefully, and not treated as a cure-all solution. These facts are intended to help families use antibiotics with maximum effectiveness and minimum side effects.

Returning to play

Since the COVID-19 pandemic has become part of our landscape, the virus has proven to serve as another variable for parents to consider when making decisions involving their kids. This is especially true in the youth sports world. Some common questions parents find themselves asking are: Are sports safe? What extra precautions should my athlete take? How do I handle the situation if my athlete has been exposed to COVID-19?

Better sleep, better parenting - Restless leg syndrome

Almost every parent will tell you sleepless nights are part of the job description, but sleep disorders are not. Sleep disorders are medical or behavioral conditions that prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep, and these common, chronic conditions can also keep you from being the best parent you can be.

Better sleep, better parenting - Sleep apnea

Sleep is a bodily function that affects every aspect of your life. But one of the most important is how you feel during the day. Improving your sleep will have a positive effect on your overall health. And your sleep affects those around you as well. You’re a better friend, partner and/or parent when you sleep better.  

Helping children learn to wear masks

Wearing a mask in public places is a new routine for almost all of us. For kids who are younger, have developmental differences like autism, or other behavioral or medical needs, we shouldn’t be surprised if they are having trouble adjusting to this new expectation. The truth is that learning to wear any kind of new clothes–like a new pair of shoes, brand-new dress clothes, or gloves and a coat in the winter–is a skill, and not one that is likely to improve just through explaining the “why” behind the new rule.

Healthy ways to talk to children about race

Recent events have brought racism to the forefront, increasing the need to have open and honest discussions with children of all ages. But how and when do we talk to our children about racism? First, we have to understand race and what it means to be anti-racist.

Happy family swimming together in a pool

7 ways to keep pools safe this summer

Summer is here! For me, it felt like summer would never come this year after such a cold winter, and the start of stay-at-home orders. But now, some city pools are opening and lakes and all types of fun water activities are an option!

Woman holding baby

Babysitters tell all

“So when he goes to sleep, do I sit in his room and watch him?” – my daughter, asking questions before her first babysitting job. My daughter had her first babysitting job at age 11. She watched a first-grade boy for an hour then helped him get to bed. Then she sat and watched TV until the parents came home. During this first “trial” babysitting job, the parents were next door at a neighborhood party.

Dad and grandpa smiling while holding newborn

Dads in the labor and delivery room

Giving birth began exactly how I always imagined it to be: Rushing to the hospital in the early morning hours, pushed in a wheelchair by my husband and feeling painful contractions that left me breathless. As instructed, we checked into the emergency department before heading up to the labor and delivery unit.

Frustrated mom holding child

How to avoid parenting burnout

Recent months have changed all our lives dramatically. For parents, we are balancing all the same roles in new ways and have added some new ones into our daily lives. Trying to balance our home lives while teaching our children, being productive at work and having limited social interactions adds significantly to our daily stress. To complicate matters, it is difficult to find time alone. We are surrounded by the people we love, but sometimes we all need time to be by ourselves.

Mom putting hand sanitizer in child's hand

Talking to kids about this phase of re-opening

As local authorities ease restrictions on businesses opening and people gathering, we all have questions about how to make smart decisions to keep our families safe. And if we grown-ups are scratching our heads, you can bet our kids have questions, too. As much as doctors wish we could provide all the answers, we just don’t have them. What we do have, though, are some helpful guidelines for making the best calls for your family.

Mom and daughter crafting face masks

Helping your child wear a mask

Since wearing a mask is currently required when social distancing isn't possible, it is important to help children understand why we're wearing masks and to help them feel as comfortable as possible. Below are some tips for you and your family to help your child with wearing a mask.

Mom showing son how to wear a face mask

Tips for helping children understand the new normal

In many places, the coronavirus stay-at-home orders are being lifted and people may return to work and social events in phases. We as adults may understand the new rules, so it may be easy for us to flip that switch and attempt to return to normal. But for kids it may be more difficult. Children might need some help grasping the rules changing… again. Here are a few tips that can help guide your conversation with your children.

Woman holding coffee mug

Gifts Moms really want for Mother’s Day

I never truly appreciated what my mother did for me until I became a mom myself. And now I know. Being a mother is the hardest, most beautiful and challenging role of all. But I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

Kid waving at person on computer

Birthdays in the time of COVID-19

My birthday is Nov. 27. It’s 1981, if you really want to know. Every year for my birthday growing up, my parents let me pick where we could go out to eat for dinner. I usually picked Oak Park Mall’s food court. It was the 80s and my parents had four kids, spaced two years apart. We rarely went out to eat. The mall and the food court was a favorite choice because that meant we could shop in the mall, too. We would come home for cake and ice cream and I would open presents from the family.