Setting the conditions for good long-term health

Last year at a camp in southern New Brunswick I met Evan. Before turning eight, he had bounced from foster home to foster home. He was sent to camp without a bathing suit or sufficient lunch. Regardless, Evan smiled constantly, excelled in school and had a striking sense of compassion. I still think about Evan all the time — what allowed him to thrive in spite of the cards he had been dealt?

Some of the most complex needs of my patients stem from poverty and not disease alone

A young girl is referred to a paediatrician’s office for inability to pay attention in the classroom. The child’s teacher is concerned she has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and possibly, a learning disability.

Canada needs to rethink approach to early childhood development

UNICEF recently released a report card ranking child well-being in the 29 richest countries on earth. Canada came 17th, placing us in the bottom half of the pack on factors such as child poverty, emotional well-being and life satisfaction.

Pourquoi le Canada fait-il mauvaise figure en matière de santé infantile?

Il y a quelque chose qui cloche au Canada. Un rapport publié par UNICEF en 2014 comparait la santé et le développement des enfants canadiens à ceux de 28 autres pays nantis.

Why does Canada do so poorly on children’s health rankings?

Something is amiss in Canada. A 2014 UNICEF report compared the health and development of children in Canada with 28 other wealthy nations. In spite of being a G8 country, Canada’s children rank number 17th, a status that has not budged in the last 10 years.

Dads important to baby’s development

It’s almost Father’s Day, a time when many of us reflect warmly on the role our fathers and grandfathers have played in our lives. It’s no secret that dads are important, and that their role as caregivers has, for many families, broadened in the last fifty years. But there’s one period of our development where dads tend to take a back seat — the first nine months, to be precise.

Prenatal stress can affect the fetal and infant brain

Last month, it was reported that an Edmonton woman was badly beaten by her spouse. Though the attack put her in the hospital, the police offered a silver lining by stating that her unborn baby, at least, wasn’t harmed. Sadly, this claim underestimates the profound effect severe stress can have on children’s development in their first years of life, including while they’re still in the womb.