The Family Center: Resources for Families, Individuals and Professionals

Serving our community through programs and resources vital to today’s families.

Time to Take Away the Keys?

Ask the Experts by Mary Ellen Brayton

Q. My mother is a very independent woman but she’s not as mentally sharp as she used to be. It took her getting lost for me to realize that we needed to hire someone to help drive her around. It’s hard for me to take off work to take her to doctor’s appointments during the day. What can I do?

A. This is a common issue facing the children of aging parents. It's not an easy time for you I'm sure because this decision affects your mother'...

Read more: Time to Take Away the Keys?


Executive Functioning: What is it & What Can I do to Help?

Ask the Experts by Dona Johnson-Beach

Q: My child is bright but lives in the moment. My teen completes homework and then forgets to turn it in and gets frustrated. I don't understand what the problem might be. Can anything be done to address these issues?

A: Your child's difficulties could involve executive skills deficits. Executive functioning allows people to problem solve and engage in goal-directed activities. In other words - the control processes of the brain.

The frontal lobe is considered ...

Read more: Executive Functioning: What is it & What Can I do to Help?


Finding "Normal" in the Middle School Years

Ask the Experts by Michael Dib

Q: What is considered a normal middle school student?

A: Many times parents are worried by changes in their middle school aged child. Please keep in mind that there will be many internal chemical and hormonal changes that occur during adolescence. You will experience behaviors that were not prevalent or observable during elementary school. 

Adolescents are constantly struggling with their sense of identity as they move toward independence. Middle school students ...

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Overcoming Grief in a Healthy Way

Ask the Experts by Mary Petersen

Q: We have had a recent loss in our family. What will help us all recover in a healthy way? 

A: Every human being eventually will suffer some sort of loss, and the grief that results is normal. How we process that grief will determine how healthy we are as we come through the recovery. Additionally, processing sooner rather than later lends itself to the best outcome. 

It is imperative that we allow ourselves to move through the many stages of grief ...

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Hope and Healing with a Faith Community

Ask the Experts by Rev. Peter J. M. Henry

Q: What role can a faith community play in my life if I am not really that religious?

A: I can't speak for every faith tradition, but in many congregations one does not have to be a member to attend worship, educational, pastoral and fellowship events. Most faith traditions have a interest in and commitment to the health of all people. This includes mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health and the desire to support others extends to anyone seeking ...

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Self-Care Skills for Coping with Grief

Ask the Experts by Mary Beth Garvey

Q: I've recently had a loss in my life and I'm getting a lot of advice about how I should be coping. Despite good intentions, people don't know what I'm experiencing or what feels right for me. Is there a "right way" to deal with grief?

A. There are many misconceptions about the grief process, but there are some basic self-care skills which are beneficial for anyone who is coping with a loss. 

It is particularly important to attend to your physical health...

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Keeping The Family Home Out Of Probate -The Deed in a Drawer Dilemma

Ask the Experts by Michael Kelly

Q. I heard from a friend that you can quitclaim your home to a loved one, never record it at the Register of Deeds, and then file it away in a dresser drawer or other location and let the loved one know where to find it when you pass on. The loved one can then record it and enjoy title to the property. Is this true?

A. For a very long time it has been commonplace in estate planning to use the "Deed in a Drawer" to pass real estate on after death without going ...

Read more: Keeping The Family Home Out Of Probate -The Deed in a Drawer Dilemma


Mental Health First Aid Training Sessions to be Offered Through The Family Center

Ask the Experts by Pam Moffitt

Q: Can you tell me about the Mental Health First Aid training sessions that will be offered through The Family Center this Fall?

A: The Family Center, in partnership with the Tree of Hope Foundation and The Grosse Pointe Academy, will be offering certified Mental Health First Aid training. Just like First Aid and CPR training provide lay people with the skills to help someone experiencing a physical health crisis, Mental Health First Aid is a course, designed for ...

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Sports Injury Information

Ask the Experts by Edward Dabrowski, M.D.

Q: My 9-year-old son wants to play football next school year. Should I let him play?

A: Some sports are more dangerous than others. Contact sports such as football are more likely to result in a higher number of injuries than a noncontact sport such as swimming. However, all types of sports have a potential for injury from contact with other players or from overuse or misuse of the body.

Sprains and strains, tennis elbow, dislocations and illness due ...

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Help Your Kids Develop Good Sleep Habits

Ask the Experts by Mohsin Maqbool, M.D.

Q. How can I get my kids to have good sleep habits?

A. When it comes to good sleep habits, the old saying "early to bed, early to rise, makes a person healthy, wealthy and wise" has never been truer.

The amount of sleep needed for optimal brain development in children varies with age. Newborns sleep up to 20 hours per day. The sleep requirement decreases in toddlers down to 12 to 14 hours of nightly sleep with naps during the day.

Tips to maximize good ...

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Help for Aging Parents

Ask the Experts by Mary Ellen Brayton

Q: My mom is 85 years old and lives with me now. I take care of her practically 24 hours per day. I have an opportunity for a new job, but I don't know what to do with mom and can't afford 12 hours a day care at my home.

A: We hear stories like this all the time when talking with families. An option that might work well for some seniors and their families is combining in-home care with an Adult Day Center. A professional in-home caregiver could help get ...

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About Hookah Smoking

Ask the Experts by Samuel Fawaz, M.D.

Q. There is a lot of talk about the dangers of hookah smoking. What is hookah?

A. Hookah is a single or multi-stemmed water pipe for smoking tobacco, where smoke passes through a water basin and is then inhaled into the lungs. 

Q. My teenage son doesn't smoke tobacco, but he says his friends are hookah smoking. Should I be concerned?

A. Yes. According to the World Health Organization, hookah smoking is becoming the largest public health concern in ...

Read more: About Hookah Smoking


Enhance Your Brain Health

Ask the Experts by Mary Ellen Brayton

Q: My husband and I are grandparents and want to keep up with our grandchildren. What are some suggestions to help us enhance our brain health?

A: Listed below are some helpful hints:

Maintain a healthy diet. A heart-healthy diet is the same sort of diet that keeps the brain healthy. Some examples: control your portion size, eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains, limit unhealthy fats and cholesterol, chose low-fat protein sources like lean meat, ...

Read more: Enhance Your Brain Health


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