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The Family Center: Resources for Families, Individuals and Professionals

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

Help for Seasonal Allergies

Ask the Experts by Milind Pansare, M.D.

Q: My son has seasonal allergies and this year has been particularly rough for him. What are some things I can do at home to help alleviate his symptoms?

A: According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, allergies are the third most common chronic disease among children and adolescents. Asthma is also a major cause of hospitalization in children and the leading cause of school absenteeism.

The most effective ways to treat allergies are avoidance, ...

Read more: Help for Seasonal Allergies


Children with Autism or Special Needs Face Greater Risk of Bullying in School

Ask the Experts by Kristy Piana Schena

Q: With so much focus on anti-bullying in the media today, I am surprised by a recent statistic I just heard - that nearly 1 in 4 students report being bullied during the school year. That number is even greater for students diagnosed with Autism or students with special needs. What can we do as parents on a local level?

A: We can begin by teaching our children at an early age that not everyone learns the same way. It is our job as parents to help our ...

Read more: Children with Autism or Special Needs Face Greater Risk of Bullying in School


Get Better Post-Surgery Results with Specialized Therapy Services

Ask the Experts by Rachel Schafer

Q: I am a 65 year-old male and have just scheduled an elective orthopedic knee replacement. The hospital is telling me I may need to go somewhere after for therapy before returning home. Why would I do that? I am not going to a "nursing home."  I have a wife and kids at home that can take care of me after surgery.

A: It's no secret that when a patient is discharging from the hospital their number one priority is getting home as soon as possible. After a ...

Read more: Get Better Post-Surgery Results with Specialized Therapy Services


Avoiding "Brain Drain" on Summer Vacation

Ask the Experts by Angelina Spiteri

Q: Now that my children are on summer break, how do we best avoid the "brain drain" and encourage them to keep learning throughout the vacation?

A: We never want to take away the simple joys of a child's summer vacation. At the same time, summers come and go. The demands of next school year will be here before we know it, and we don't want any of our progress from last school year to fade.

Children enjoy having structure, and it is possible to maintain a learning ...

Read more: Avoiding "Brain Drain" on Summer Vacation


Talking About Mass Violence and Terrorist Attacks

Ask the Experts by Amy Lawrence

Q: How do I talk to my children about mass violence and terrorist attacks?

A: An added task to modern day parenthood, is answering questions centered on violence and terrorism.

Although challenging, these conversations are vitally important to help children feel secure and safeguard their well-being. The most important steps parents can take in helping their children understand and cope with the confusion and fear these incidents invoke comes down to 3 basic ...

Read more: Talking About Mass Violence and Terrorist Attacks


The Value of an Orthodontic Evaluation for Children

Ask the Experts by Dr. Craig Hadgis

Q: Our dentist hasn't yet said anything about orthodontics for my 6 year old. Does that mean he won't need it, or should I have him evaluated on our own?

A: I recommend evaluation for all children no later than 7 by an orthodontist. Although many people associate orthodontic treatment with young teens, most orthodontists can spot subtle problems with jaw growth even when "baby" teeth are present. Your child's teeth may appear straight, however, there could ...

Read more: The Value of an Orthodontic Evaluation for Children


Talking with Kids About Grief and Loss

Ask the Experts by Mary Beth Garvey

Q: How can I talk with my children about a recent death when I am struggling to deal with my own feelings of grief?

A: As a parent, it is our instinct to protect our kids from pain and minimize the loss they experience. There are many ways to comfort our children during difficult periods, but often we feel we have to mask our own response to grief as a way of protecting them.

Though understandable, given how vulnerable we feel after a loss, it undermines the powerful ...

Read more: Talking with Kids About Grief and Loss


Help for Sleep-deprived Parents of Newborns

Ask the Experts by Patty Werner

Q: My husband and I have a 4-1/2 month-old baby who is not sleeping well. We are becoming very short with each other as sleep deprivation sets in. How can we avoid fighting all the time?

A: It is very common for mom and dad to take frustrations out on each other when sleep is scarce and partners are overtired. Here are 3 things you can do to help ease the conflict:

1. Get Back On the Same Page: During your pregnancy, you likely experienced feelings of excitement ...

Read more: Help for Sleep-deprived Parents of Newborns


Choosing a Home Care Agency

Ask The Experts by Anne Marie Gattari

Q: I think it might be time to start looking for options for my mother and extra care in her home. How do I know for sure and where do I begin?

A: Are there signs she may be lonely or not adequately taking care of her daily needs? Is she eating and drinking well or keeping up with her hygiene? Is she managing housekeeping chores?

Sometimes even a few hours a week can make a big difference in energy level and emotional well-being of your loved one.

Once ...

Read more: Choosing a Home Care Agency


Making Dinner Time Family Time

Ask the Experts by Chef Bobby Nahra

Q: I'm a working mother with young children. When I come home from work getting dinner on the table is a stressful chore. I would like to turn it into a learning activity - to teach them cooking skills and healthy eating habits - but finding the time and ways to do so is so difficult in our active schedule. Please share your tips!

A: Try not to look at making dinner as a dreaded task. You can do some simple things ahead of time to make the process more fun ...

Read more: Making Dinner Time Family Time


Behavior Changes Can Signal Depression in Teens

Ask the Experts by Valerie Southall

Q: I've recently noticed a friend of mine has been acting withdrawn and different than he used to. He's been missing school more and not participating in social outings or responding to texts when I ask him to get together. I'm worried that he may be depressed and I don't know how to help him. Are there things I can do, or ways I can reach out to get him help?

A: Being a teenager is very hard. Your body starts to change as well as your voice and appearance. ...

Read more: Behavior Changes Can Signal Depression in Teens


In-home Physicians Services are Available

Ask the Experts by Dr. Farzin Namei

Q: My husband is ill and often immobile. It's very hard for me to get him to his medical appointments. I've heard of some organizations offering home visits - how do I know if we are eligible and what kind of care is offered?

A: From what you describe, your husband could benefit from a home care physicians service. These services are like the old-school medical house calls.

Comprehensive health maintenance and preventative care and treatments for acute and ...

Read more: In-home Physicians Services are Available


About Power of Attorney Documents

Ask the Experts by Mike Kelly

Q: What is a power of attorney and how do I know if I need one for my elderly father?

A: A power of attorney (POA) is a legal document that provides authority from one person, called a Principal, which allows another person to take actions on behalf of that Principal. A POA can be specifically limited to time and scope or it can be very general and be unlimited as to time and scope.

The most commonly used POAs are called Durable Financial Powers of Attorney and ...

Read more: About Power of Attorney Documents


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