PANDAS: Not Just a Furry Zoo Animal

No, I am not writing a veterinary piece this week on zoo animals. I am referring to Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders related to Streptococal infections. PANDAS is a well-known acronym in the medical world for several decades, yet a still mysterious constellation of symptoms with even more mysterious mechanism by which it wrecks havoc in many children and families.

The Epic Battle of Nature versus Nurture at Its Core

Prior to the discovery of genetic’s mechanisms of passing family traits, humans from the beginning of time have recognized that children carry characteristics of their parents.  However, they simultaneously recognized that the chip off the old block sometimes fell further from the block than others.  At some point, the headline “Nature versus Nurture” offered good and bad natured debate as geneticists and social scientists argued over whether genes or the environment played a larger role in a person’s final work. 

Building a Baby’s Brain

Baby’s brains begin as a collection of cells inside a mother’s womb. They separate out from other cells destined for other purposes and begin forming the nervous systems. Both the internal instructions of DNA and the external influences of neighboring cells ultimately combine to shape the future brain. Where the cells finally reside in the brain and how they interact with synapses and axons (the connections and the wiring of the nerves) determine how well it functions as we grow up.

PANDAS: Not Just a Furry Zoo Animal

No, I am not writing a veterinary piece this week on zoo animals. I am referring to Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders related to Streptococal infections. PANDAS is a well-known acronym in the medical world for several decades, yet a still mysterious constellation of symptoms with even more mysterious mechanism by which it wrecks havoc in many children and families.

Early Childhood Trauma Affects Our Brains

Science has a habit of explaining what common sense has already revealed.  One might wonder why we do the science if common sense can tell us so much for a much lower cost.  Well, understanding how things are biologically connected does help us to work towards therapies and healing at times.  Science provides some tentative ground on which to develop an approach of restoration,

HOW TO HAVE A HEALTHY FAMILY TABLE

The American College of Pediatricians serves as an alternative to the mainstream and more well known American Academy of Pediatrics.  They are far more conservative and attempt to provide a voice of reason in several areas affecting parents and their children’s pediatricians.  Recently they asked their membership to share the attached handout about encouraging families to spend time together around the meal time table.