Parents & Kids

Those were the words of Christian Dior, who may have recognized a connection between the volatiles around us and our behavior. As a parent and now grandfather, I must agree with my wife; there is something special about sniffing an infant's head. Is it something they release or that we have applied, like baby shampoo? A new study suggests an evolutionary role for the smell of an infant.
Awful parenting advice proliferates across the internet, especially as it relates to caring for a new baby. Here are a few things I've learned in the first few months of fatherhood.
A new report from a Congressional subcommittee concludes "that commercial baby foods contain dangerous levels of arsenic, lead, mercury, and cadmium." While these products inevitably contain tiny quantities of these heavy metals, which are ubiquitous in nature, baby foods generally pose minimal risk to young children.
How do you protect a baby who can't get vaccinated from relatives who won't get vaccinated? Scientific arguments don't work, but proper incentives and boundaries just might. Here's what I've discovered in my first few weeks of parenthood.
Pregnancy and pediatric "advice" comes from all directions when you're a soon-to-be parent, and most of it is scientifically dubious. In part one, I examined the potentially harmful suggestions my wife and I received from friends and family. This time, I'll cover the less deadly but still ridiculous recommendations.
When you have a baby on the way, everybody has "helpful" advice that isn't all that helpful. Most of it, in fact, is downright useless, and some of it is potentially very harmful. We'll start with the latter and revisit the useless in part two of this series.
Could your parents' social circles increase or decrease your lifespan? Are some really born with a “silver spoon” in their mouths?
With our first baby on the way, my wife and I were tempted to buy into common activist tropes about pesticides and food safety. Here's how we checked our fears as parents-to-be.
Whatever you might think of our educational system, there can be no doubt that almost a year of remote “learning” will turn out to be disastrous. That's especially true for those already educationally disadvantaged. The science increasingly says that schools, especially elementary schools, are not superspreader sites. Are we willing to follow the science?
"I disagree with @CDCgov on their very tough & expensive guidelines for opening schools. While they want them open, they are asking schools to do very impractical things. I will be meeting with them!!!" That, of course, is President Trump's summary of the CDC guidelines for opening schools. It ignited a predictable political back and forth fueled more by politics than facts. Let's take a minute to see what they recommended. You decide how tough they are. 
It has been some time since my children were in school, even longer since I was in high school let alone elementary school. One of the first realizations from COVID-19 was how our public schools have become the daily source of food for so many of our children. Education and feeding the hungry have become so intertwined. How has COVID-19 changed school and child care? These images are from a report by McKinsey and Co, Charting the path to the next normal.
The EPA does not regulate indoor air quality; its purview is the great outdoors. However, we spend a great deal of time inside. A new study looks at children: vulnerable individuals who may spend the most time in that environment. But does the study clear (or pollute) the air on indoor air quality? Let's take a look.