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5 Sites to Learn About Children’s Health

January 22, 2009
by Emily Coakley
It seems to be an almost unwritten rule of parenting: children get sick late at night or on a weekend, when the doctor is out of the office. The Web can help you cope when no professionals are immediately available. Here are some of the top sites providing reliable information about various children’s health issues.

Kid’s Health Overview

The New York Online Access to Health has a collection of links gathered from all over the world that address different facets of children’s health. The page is divided into topics, such as “sleep issues,” “common cold” and “chicken pox.” Clicking on the link takes you to a page that briefly describes the link, and tells you whether the link is geared toward children or adults. Some links are also available in Spanish. The sites are selected from reputable organizations, such as medical associations, federal agencies and foundations.

Health Information for Children

The Nemours Foundation has created KidsHealth, an extensive Web site for parents and children. This particular page has information written for kids on everyday illnesses and injuries. Click on links like “Hey! A Bee Stung Me!” and “How Stitches Help Kids Heal.” The pages devoted to these illnesses and injuries describe what each condition is and how someone can get it. KidsHealth also explains anatomy to children, and addresses a wide range of emotional health topics, such as “How Cliques Make Kids Feel Left Out” and “A Kid’s Guide to Divorce.” Click on the KidsHealth icon at the top of every page to access the parents’ site.

Health Topics Teens Need to Know About

TeenFX was established by Atlantic Health System, which runs hospitals in New Jersey, and Goryeb Children’s Hospital. This site addresses a variety of health issues for teens in question-and-answer format, divided into specific topics such as “Does Popping Pimples Actually Help?” and “Unhappy About Birthmarks.” Besides health issues, TeenFX answers questions about tobacco and alcohol, relationships, and emotional health. The site also has a tab with emergency numbers. Under the “Links” tab, you’ll find Web sites that deal in depth with such issues as smoking and eating disorders.

Helping Kids and Teens Stay Fit

To address concerns about children’s health, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention developed Body and Mind, or BAM, for kids and teens. The physical activity page has a “Go for activities you like to do” box at the bottom of the page that helps your child determine what kind of sport or activity he or she would enjoy. The “Activity Cards” link on the left side of the page takes you to a list of more than 30 activities, such as soccer and ballet. Each activity has its own page where you can read the story of a child who participates in that activity, learn what gear is needed to play the activity and find out how to play it.

Making Sure Kids Eat Right

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts offers a page devoted to children’s nutrition, fitness and weight control. This page links to articles that address such topics as picky eaters, healthy meal ideas and getting your child to eat more vegetables and fruits. There’s also a seven-question quiz to help you assess how healthy your child’s diet is. On the right side of the page is a news feed with the latest HealthDay articles related to children, exercise and nutrition. Links to other reputable sites are at the bottom of the page.

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