Browsing Tag

Abuse

Can Bleach, Turpentine or Miracle Mineral Solution Cure Childhood Ailments?

By February 16, 2016 4 Comments
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Would you ever consider swallowing bleach or turpentine? What about giving yourself an enema with bleach? To most of us this sounds horrible, but a small group of well-meaning but terribly misguided parents is choosing to feed their children these toxic substances in hopes of curing everything from the common cold to autism.

While small amounts of bleach can get your white clothes white, and turpentine can strip paint and varnish off furniture, no adult or child should ever ingest either of these substances in any form. As a pediatrician and a parent I can’t imagine ever feeding my child or a patient bleach or turpentine. I’ve struggled to understand why any loving parent would ever feed them to their children.

What’s most concerning about this trend for me is that parents are doing this because they believe bleach or turpentine will cure their children.  In addition many parents mistake the signs of significant damage (chemical burns, shedding of the intestinal lining, lethargy etc…) as signs that the bleach and turpentine are effectively ridding their child’s body of ‘toxins’. In fact it’s just the opposite.

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Categories: Accidents, Injuries, + Abuse, Disability + Disability Advocacy, Science 101 + Mythbusting

Just Because You Disagree, Doesn’t Make it Child Abuse

By January 11, 2016 1 Comment
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Humans are terrible judges of risk.  We are all awful at it, and it’s not our fault, our brains are hardwired to struggle with risk.  In addition, our risk thresholds are all different.  For example, there is a pine tree in our neighborhood that kids love to play under.  One mother won’t allow her daughter to touch the needles out of fear that she’ll prick herself and will then be afraid of the tree.  I’m OK with my son touching the needles on the tree.  I’ve judged the risk that he will injure himself and the associated trauma as low, and the other mother has judged the risk of injury and trauma as high.

Neither of us are right and neither of us are wrong.  Neither of us are bad parents.  Neither of us love our children any less than the other.  We’ve each simply made an assessment of risk and our threshold is different.

When I told a friend about the pine needles her response was, “that’s child abuse.  She’s not letting her have a full childhood, she’s teaching her kid to live in fear of nothing.”  The other mother may have been what others consider to be over protective, but it was far from child abuse.

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Categories: Accidents, Injuries, + Abuse