Childhood Vaccinations: Is it important to vaccinate children?

Vaccinations have become an important topic discussed throughout the country. Health professionals, parents and practitioners in the field have varying opinions on the importance of vaccinating children.

“Immunization is perhaps the single most important public health measure of the 20th century.” (Anderson, V)

MYTH Video 1:

Vaccines make children sick and have adverse reactions.

Two moms from Oregon report that they do not vaccinate their children at a young age and opt out of some vaccinations such as the MMR vaccine out of fear that it will make their children sick. These parents do not trust everything that doctor’s say, and do not want to harm their children for the sake of other children’s health.

Fact: Article 1

The article by the US Dept. of Health & Human Services, Five Important Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child outlines 5 positive reasons in support of vaccinations.

  1. Saves the lives of children
  2. Effective and safe
  3. Helps community at large and the people that a child comes in contact with
  4. Saves money and time
  5. Has a positive impact on future generations


  1. Vaccinations have completely eliminated some diseases and other diseases are close to being eliminated.
  2. Vaccinations are used after prolonged studies by researchers, doctors and health professionals. Rarely children have severe reactions; most often children are affected by discomfort at the injection site.
  3. Children need to be vaccinated because they come in contact with children that are unable to be immunized and are the most vulnerable.
  4. Vaccines are most often covered by insurance. If a child falls ill due to not being vaccinated, the family may experience financial hardship and time out of work.
  5. Today, if children are vaccinated, diseases will continue to be eliminated. One example includes Rubella. If children are consistently vaccinated against Rubella, then babies will not be exposed in utero by their mothers. Hence, future generations will not be vaccinated against a disease that no longer exists.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2006, October 11). Five Important Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child. Retrieved from   

Myth Video 2:

Vaccines cause autism.

This video shows President Trump claiming that vaccines cause autism along with a twitter post stating “No more massive injections. Tiny children are not horses—one vaccine at a time, over time.”

This video is a mom talking about her experiences regarding vaccinating her child. She claims:

  • Her child was typically developing until age two when he received 6 vaccines.
  • Her child is now unable to speak, wheel chair bound and is not considered typically developing.
  • She is convinced her child does not have autism and has a condition that is caused by vaccinations.

Fact: Article 2

The article Promoting Childhood Immunizations states the importance of immunizations while bringing to light parental concerns that are expressed in the media. The article focuses on using research to dispel parental fears of vaccines. According to the article, 1% to 2% of the parents nationally are not vaccinating their children, while 11% to 19% do not give vaccinations per timelines. The article addresses:

Why are vaccines combined?

  • Combined vaccines protect a child as early as possible.
  • Combined vaccines decrease the amount of injections.
  • Combined vaccines save money.

Are vaccines safe?

  • Vaccines can be tested up to 10 years from the start of the vaccine to licensing the vaccine. The FDA licenses all vaccines and monitors safety of vaccines after licensure.
  • Infants are exposed to bacteria and do not respond with infection. Infants have a very strong immune system, and combined vaccines will not overwhelm their bodies.

Do vaccines cause autism?

  • Many studies have proven that vaccines do not contribute to autism. In fact, the Institute of Medicine after a comprehensive review of the literature, reported that there is no evidence that there is a correlation between the MMR vaccine and autism.

Are the substances in vaccines safe?

  • Aluminum is a substance in vaccines that assists to increase an immune response. According to both FDA and Plotkin & Plotkin, evidence over a 60 year period does not support that aluminum is a safety concern.
  • Formaldehyde is a substance that weakens the virus or the toxicity of the bacteria in a vaccine. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, newborns have “….50 to 70 times more formaldehyde naturally in their bodies” (Anderson, V.L.) than what is in one dose of a vaccine.

V.L, Anderson. (2015). Promoting Childhood Immunizations.

Myth Video 3:

Vaccines, and substances found in vaccines are linked to autism.

In this video, Dr. Andrew Wakefield discusses how the CDC is misinformed about vaccines and autism. He specifically targets the MMR vaccine as having a correlation to autism with those children that receive the MMR vaccine and have a reaction to it.

Fact: Article 3

  • The Center for Disease Control (CDC) article, Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism states that there is no connection between autism and vaccines. This is an important article to reference because parents are not vaccinating children due to this fear.
  • The article mentions studies conducted by the Institute of Medicine that found that vaccines are safe. The CDC has also performed research specifically related to the ingredients found in vaccines and found that there is no link between vaccines and autism.
  • A study conducted in 2013 found on the CDC webpage, Increasing Exposure to Antibody-Stimulating Protein and Ploysaccharides in Vaccines Is Not Associated with Risk of Autism by DeStefano, Price and Weibtraub, discusses the substances found in vaccines and how the results concluded that the substances that cause the body to produce antibodies to fight disease, were the same between children with autism and those without (2012).
  • As stated in the CDC, nine studies were conducted in 2003, also finding no correlation between substances found in vaccines such as the Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) and autism.

Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. (October, 2015). Vaccinations Do Not Cause Harm.   

DeStefano, F., MD. Price, C.S., & Weintraub, E.S. (2012). Increasing exposure to Antibody-Stimulating Proteins and Polysaccharides in Vaccines Is Not Associated with Risk of Autism. The Journal Of Pediatrics

In conclusion: 

The peer reviewed articles mentioned discuss the positive affects of vaccinations on children while clearly dispelling the myth that vaccines cause autism and are unsafe. Noted in the research, there has a been a decline in vaccinating children at a young age due to a parent’s fear of the potential negative effects on the child. Vaccinations protect children from viruses that may be potentially deadly to those that come into contact with the virus. It is important for all parties concerned to continue to keep updated on the wealth of information related to this topic.

Work Cited

(2018, December 01). Retrieved February 20, 2019,

(2015, February 04). Retrieved February 20, 2019, from’t-vaccinate.cnn

Buncombe, A. (2018, May 05). Retrieved February 20,2019, from

Cook, L. (2016, June 10). Vaccines Caused My Child’s Autism and Are Destroying Our Children. Retrieved February 20, 2019, from

Cook, L. (2016, May). How the MMR Vaccine Is Linked To Autism and The CDC Cover-Up: Andew Wakefield. Retrieved February 20, 2019 from

Is Screen Media Affecting your child?

Are we impairing our children by putting the phone in their hands?

Research shows that too much screen exposure causes cognitive and emotional delays

What is the real effect of screen media on your children?

The long term effects can be behavioral as well as impact a child’s’ developmental health

What are the scholars saying?

The American Academy of Pediatrics Guidelines suggest that children under the age of 1 cannot learn from screen media without important parental cues.

Children under the age of 2 may suffer no effect from over exposure to screen media aside from the displaced time from caregiver exposure.

Children over the age of 2 greatly respond to the quality of the material.

Replacing entertainment with educational material has lasting effects

Long term effects of increased screen media exposure at early ages include depression, childhood obesity/ hypertension/ diabetes.  These conditions contribute to each other



AAP Council on Communications and Media. (2016). Media and young minds. Pediatrics, 138(5). doi:10.1542/peds.2016-2591

Aftosmes-Tobio, A., Ganter, C., Gicevic, S., Newlan, S., Simon, C. L., Davison, K. K., & Mananello, J. A. (2016). A systematic review of media parenting in the contect of childhood obesity research. BMC Public Health, 16(320), 1-9. doi:10.1186/s12889-016-2981-5

Anderson, D. R., & Subrahmanyam, K. (2017). Digital Screen Media and. PEDIATRICS, 140(2), s57-s61. Retrieved from https:// doi. org/ 10. 1542/ peds. 2016- 1758C

Duch, H., Fisher, E. M., Ensari, I., & Harrington, A. (2013). Screen time use in children under 3 years old: a systematic review of correlates. International Journal of Behavioral Nutritional and Physical Activity, 10(102), 1-10. Retrieved from

Dunkel, C. S., & Harbke, C. (2017). A review of measures of Erikson’s stages of psycosocial development: Evoidence for a general factor. Journal of Adult Development, 24, 58-76. doi:10.1007/s10804-016-9247-4

Giedd, J. N., Blumenthal, J., Jeffries, N. O., Castellanos, F. X., Liu, H., Zijdenbos, A., . . . Rapoport, J. L. (1999). Brain development during childhood and adolescence: a longitudinal MRI study. Nature Neuroscience, 2(10), 861-863.

Napier, C. (2014). How use of screen media affects the emotional development of infants. Primary Health Care, 24(2), 18-25.

Radesky, J. S., & Christakis, D. A. (2016). Increased Screen Time Implications for Early Childhood Development and Behavior. Pediatric Clinics of North America, 827-839. doi:

Ribner, A., Fitzpatrick, C., & Blair, C. (2017). Family socioeconomic status moderates between television viewing and school readiness. Journal of Applied Psychology, 38(3), 233-239.

Stierlin, A. S., De Lepeleere, S., Cardon, G., Dargent-Molina, P., Hoffman, B., Murphy, M. H., . . . De Craemer, M. (2015). A systematic review of determinants of sedentary behaviour in youth: a DEDIPAC study. International Jounral of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 12(133). doi:10.1186/s12966-015-0291-4

WHO. (n.d.). World Health Organzation. Retrieved February 23, 2017, from World Health Organzation:

Wyszynska, J., Podgorska-Bednarz, J., Deren, K., & Mazur, A. (2017). The relationship between physical activity and screen time with the risk of hypertension in children and adolescents with intellectual disability. BioMed Research International, 1-8. Retrieved from


Childhood Obesity: What is the real cause?

Childhood obesity has become and epidemic effecting 1 out of 5 children in the world. 

  • Childhood obesity is recognized by percentiles rather than BMI’s which adults are use to.
  •  A Child is considered to be overweight when they have a BMI between the 85th and 94th percentile. ‘
  • A child is considered to be obese when their BMI is greater than the 95th percentile.
  • This number is found by taking the child’s height and weight.
  • Childhood obesity is highest amongst children of minority and lower socioeconomic status.

Causes of childhood obesity

  • Genetic predisposition
  • Behavioral patterns (Dietary habits, physical activity, inactivity and medication use)
  • Environmental factors
  • Food marketing and promotion
  • Availability of foods at school and home
  • Lack of opportunities for activity
  • Education level of both children and parents

Childhood Obesity In the Media

Within this video clip Pediatrician Corinn Cross, MD talks about the factors leading to childhood obesity which include:

  • Increased caloric intake
  • Decreased physical activity
  • Greater than 2 hours/day of screen time
  • Increased utilization of fast food restaurants/ dining out
  • Accessibility of unhealthy snacks/healthy snacks.
  • Increased consumption of sugary beverages

This news clip main points include:

  • BMI charts are used to measure childhood weight status. A weight in the 85 percentiles means overweight and a weight in the 95 percentile would classify a child as obese.
  • Obesity can start as early as birth
  • When a child is able to eat solids they should be introduced to a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and protein.
  • Delay giving children sugary drinks and snacks as long as possible.
  • Children eat less than adults, do not be concerned if they do not eat as much as adults do.
  • Limit screen time and encourage physical exercise.

This PBS clip focuses around a child who is overweight. When sent to a clinic at Boston Children’s Hospital he is taught some main points about childhood obesity:

  • Foods labeled as good for you are not always whats best…Always read the labels.
  • Childhood obesity has doubled within the last thirty years
  • The incidence of type II diabetes mellitus is increasing in children.

What we know about childhood obesity

Childhood obesity is a serious epidemic that has implications on children’s health, body image, and self-esteem. Childhood obesity is condition that can be changed at any point in a child’s life given the right resources. Throughout the following three articles information has been founded in support of the claims and facts presented in the previous videos that can bring to understand to the topic and seriousness of childhood obesity.

Durbin, J. (2018). Pediatric Obesity in Primary Practice: A Review of the Literature. Pediatric Nursing, 44(4), 202–206. Retrieved from

This article written by the Pediatric nursing journal bring forth validation to the information presented in the previous video. This article talks about how the incidence of childhood obesity have tripled throughout the last four decades. There is also an increase in the number of diseases that would normally present in older adults now being seen in children. These diseases would include type II diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and kidney disease. With increase in body weight children are putting increased strain to their bodied and organ causes things that normally develop after many decades on life. Durbin (2018) states that if there is no change in the habits of children now and prevention is not put into place then the number of obese infants and young children will likely increase to 70 million by the year 2025 worldwide. These children are not only subject to these type of medical condition but are also at higher risk for social isolation, depression, and lower self- esteem. This is a result of being subject to a higher rate of bullying and teasing by other children as compared to children of a normal weight. The best way to avoid permeate health complications for this condition is to try and correct the childhood obesity at the earliest stage possible. The recommendations for Toddlers 2 to 4 years of age with BMI less than 85th to 95th percentile should eat 1 to 1.5 cups of fruits/vegetables per day, and have less than 2 hours of screen time per day. For those who have a BMI in the 95th percentile and higher are encouraged to limit their carbohydrates and should be limited to 1 hour or less of screen time daily. For children from the ages of 5 throughout the adolescent years regardless of weight percentile they are recommended to avoiding sugar-sweetened beverages and engaging in 60 minutes of age appropriate exercise daily. Some type of beneficial exercise for these children include catching, throwing, running, walking, dancing, swimming, bicycling, and playing sports. Putting into action these recommendations for the proper age group childhood obesity can be stopped and reversed in order to limit the health consequence of children.

Balkenbush, K. (2018). Childhood Obesity Prevention and Treatment. Today’s Dietitian, 20(8), 52–58. Retrieved from

In this article by Balkenbush (2018) the topics of prevention and treatment of childhood obesity are touched upon. It is stated that the incidence of childhood obesity has been increasing since the year 1980. It has doubled in children aged 2 to 5 and tripled among ages 6 to  to 19. Those who are more greatly effected by childhood obesity are those among minority and lower socioeconomic status. The reason for this is pointed at fewer amount of resources as well as unhealthy foods been cheaper and more easily accessible. It is discussed that children who are obese are more likely to remain obese as they go into adulthood where their degree of obesity and risk factors for diseases are more pronounced. Obese children are at greater risk for developing type II diabetes mellitus in their younger years but especially as they grow into adulthood. They are also more likely to develop things such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea and asthma. There are also mental health diseases more likely seen in these children such as depression, anxiety and eating disorders. Balkenbush (2018) talks about different ways to management and treat childhood obesity which include having a healthy balanced diet where they are receiving the proper calories from the right food groups. Recommendations made are children should get 45% to 65% calories from carbohydrates, 10% to 35% calories from protein, and 20% to 35% calories from fat. Following these guidelines can ensure a well balanced meal. Children should also limit the amount of high calorie/sugar added beverages such are juice and soda as well as limit the amount of eating out. A tip that should be followed is to never skip breakfast, as It truly is the most important meal of the day! Children should also limit the amount of screen time they have daily and increase exercise. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children  younger than two should avoid screen time all together and children older 2- years old should limit time to no more than one hour per day. Lastly, children should ensure they get enough sleep in order to rest and recover their bodies. These recommendations are put forth in order help prevent the ongoing increase in the incidence of childhood obesity.

Vittrup, B., & McClure, D. (2018). Barriers to Childhood Obesity Prevention: Parental Knowledge and Attitudes. Pediatric Nursing, 44(2), 81–94. Retrieved from

In this article written by Vittrup & McClure (2018) It is discussed how parents are the first influencers in a Childs life when It comes to food habits and preferences.  The amount a child eat is also determined by the parents and children are often told to eat everything given to them however, children need less of a portion than adults do. Children will usually eat until they are full so if the entire plate is not consumed It is important to realize they have had enough and to not encourage finishing the plate or compensating with high calorie snacks after dinner. The parents also control the child’s environment which include the activities they are encouraged to participate in and whether they are physically active or more sedentary. Several studies have found a link between increase in screen time and obesity. It was also found that children who are encouraged to play outside and are involved in more active play are less likely to be obese. Children are often unaware of their influence in their child’s habits of food and exercise, which later has a negative impact on the preferences of the child as they grow into adulthood. Having better education for parent during the prenatal period as well as into childhood can aid in better habits formed by their children as they grow and lead to lower rates of childhood obesity later in life.

By The Infant feeding network

After conducting my research I can say with certainty that the media of today is portraying childhood obesity in the correct light. The facts are truth and match the evidence given by scientific nursing journals. I believe that this information can be trusted as a way of education.

When The Heart Fails

When the Heart Fails

In the United States, it is estimated that 6.5 million people suffer from heart failure, with 50% having a survival rate of less than five years. Heart failure accounts for the most hospital readmissions, with up to 50% of patients readmitted within 3-6 months (Baptiste, Mark, Groff-Paris, & Taylor, 2014).

By: Internet Archive Book Images

Overview – From the “Experts”

Heart Failure: Diagnosis, Management and Utilization

Heart failure (HF) is a condition in which the heart is unable to pump enough blood to meet the demands of the body. When this occurs, the body does not get enough oxygen. There are different types of HF – systolic and diastolic. Heart failure can also be isolated to different areas of the heart, creating right-sided, left-sided, or biventricular heart failure. The signs and symptoms of HF include shortness of breath, fatigue, weakness, edema, increased heart rate, pedal edema, and abnormal lung sounds (Inamdar, & Inamdar, 2016).

Systolic HF

-The heart is unable to pump with enough force to circulate blood throughout the body.

Smaller & weaker muscles = less force

Diastolic HF

-The heart does not fill with enough blood to circulate throughout the body.

Bigger muscles = less filling

Left-Sided HF

-The left side of the body pumps oxygenated blood to the body. In left-sided failure, the left side of the heart is not able to pump oxygen-rich blood throughout the body. This leads to a backup of blood into the lungs, leading to “congestion”, and symptoms such as shortness of breath or wheezing.

Right-Sided HF

-The right side of the heart pumps blood to the lungs for oxygenation. In right-sided failure, the right side of the heart loses its ability or the ability to pump blood is decreased. This leads to a backup of blood into the veins of the body, causing symptoms such as edema.

This video from Khan Academy illustrates heart failure – systolic, diastolic, right/left-sided, as well as biventricular. The drawings clearly show the impaired function of the heart in the presence of HF.


Let’s take a look at the causes of heart failure, more signs and symptoms, and how it’s diagnosed.


So What Now?

Management of heart failure

Once diagnosed, treatment of HF focuses on reducing symptoms and mortality. This can be accomplished with certain lifestyle modifications, such as increasing exercise, restricting salt, limiting alcohol intake, weight loss, and fluid restriction. Certain medications, such as ACE inhibitors, beta blockers, ARBs, diuretics, digoxin, nitrates, as well as anticoagulant therapy are used in the treatment of HF. In some cases, a device may also be implanted as part of treating HF, such as an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (Krum, & Driscoll, 2013).

The second part of this video discusses interventions. Although it is from a nursing perspective, these interventions are important and can be applied by anyone in the treatment of heart failure. Another piece of information that this video addresses is pharmacological treatment for heart failure.




Baptiste, D. L., Mark, H., Groff-Paris, L., & Taylor, L. A. (2014). A nurse-guided patient-centered heart failure education program. Journal of Nursing Education and Practice, 4(3), 49-55. doi:10.5430/jnep.v4n3p49

Inamdar, A. A., & Inamdar, A. C. (2016). Heart Failure: Diagnosis, Management and Utilization. Journal of clinical medicine, 5(7), 62. doi:10.3390/jcm5070062

Krum, H., & Driscoll, A. (2013). Management of heart failure. The Medical Journal of Australia, 199(5), 334-338. doi:10.5694/mja12.10993

E-cigarettes: a safer alternative?

The use of e-cigarettes is one of the newest and most popular trends today.  Unlike traditional cigarettes, e-cigs are battery-operated and produce a chemical filled aerosol by a heating of the liquid.  E—cigarettes are commonly known as “e-cigs,” “mods” or “vape pens.”  E-cigarettes resemble regular cigarettes, pens, or USB sticks.

This video is a perfect example of how e-cigarettes are portrayed in the media.  Below are some common myths that are “debunked” after thorough research.

Myth: E-cigarettes are a safe alternative to traditional cigarettes

Fact: E-cigs contain fewer toxins, but they are not harmless.  E-cigs still contain nicotine, which is highly addictive and can negatively affect the human body.  These effects include elevated heart rate and blood pressure, airway inflammation, impaired immunological response and decreased lung function.  Aside from nicotine, e-cigarettes also contain harmful toxins such as lead and cancer-causing agents. Consumers are misled to believe that e-cigarettes are a healthier alternative to traditional cigarettes.

Myth: E-cigarettes are a proven method for smoking cessation

Fact: There is little evidence that e-cigarettes lead to cessation.  In fact, the nicotine in e-cigs may perpetuate nicotine addiction, making it harder to quit for some consumers.  Many users find e-cigs to be less satisfying than traditional cigarettes, leading to dual usage, increased and constant vaping.

Myth: E-cigarettes are used exclusively by people trying to quit smoking

Fact:“Vaping” is becoming increasing popular with adolescents, including those who had never smoked cigarettes.  Studies have shown that the majority of young people begin smoking traditional cigarettes only after vaping.

More facts:

  • Nicotine affects brain development in young adults
  • E-cigs are not FDA approved
  • There is no evidence that e-cigarettes are safe
  • 20.8% of high school students are actively vaping


Yes, e-cigs are less harmful than traditional cigarettes.  However, there is no evidence that they are “safe.”  Cigarette smoking has been the leading cause of preventable deaths in the US.  Anti-smoking campaigns have reduced the number of traditional cigarette smokers.  In the future, e-cigarettes should be implemented into these campaigns so that consumers are not falsely lead to believe that they are safe by the media.  Consumers should do their own research on the topic before deciding to begin smoking.


E-Cigarettes: What You Should Know. (2015). Consumer Reports on Health27(12), 9. Retrieved from

GIBSON-YOUNG, L. M. (2018). JUULING: What kids don’t know will hurt them. Contemporary Pediatrics35(6), 5–39. Retrieved from

Sherry, J. S., Blackstad, N. M., & Wheatley, K. S. (2017). E Cigarettes, Vaping and Chairside Education. RDH37(1), 45–52. Retrieved from

Zborovskaya, Y. (2017). E-Cigarettes and Smoking Cessation. Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing, 21(1), 54–63.

How the Correct Use of Weighted Vests Can Improve Attention to Task in School Aged Children! Facts and Fiction.

  Signs of ADHD (attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder) in children
  • Excitability
  • Fidgeting
  • Hyperactivity
  • Impulsivity
  • Difficulty focusing
  • Short attention span
  • Boredom
  • Mood swings
How Can a Weighted Vest Improve Students School Performance?
  • Provides “deep touch pressure” which has a calming and organizing effect on students who have trouble focusing in class
  • Weighted vests are often recommended by an Occupational Therapist to help a child successfully participate in school related tasks
  • Increased focus/attention
  • Increased time spent on a school task
  • Decreased anxiety associated with ADHD
  • Promotes calmness
  • Promotes organization
Within the following media clips and evidence-based articles is factual and false information regarding the use and effects of weighted vests on school aged children. The evidence based articles directly following the videos either prove the media to be providing true or false information.
  • in this media clip, Nancy VandenBerg (Occupational Therapist) discovers how weighted vests improve attention to task and provide a calming effect on the students in the school district that she works in.
  • A student reported: “It helps me concentrate a little harder.”
“Effects of Weighted Vests on Attention, Impulse Control, and On-Task Behavior in Children With Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder” (Evidence-based article)
  • According to this article (place name of article above) this media source provides accurate information.
  • This scholarly article, written by two Occupational Therapists, analyzed the question “do weighted vests improve attention to task in school aged children?”
  • The study analyzed 110 school aged children diagnosed with ADHD and the effects of weighted vests on their attention to task.
  • The students only had one diagnosis (ADHD) and were not on medication during the duration of the study.
  • Findings of the study: “although wearing a weighted vest is not a cure all strategy, our findings support the use of weighted vests to remedy attentional and on task behavioral problems of children diagnosed with ADHD.”
  • In this media clip, a student and parent report their results of using a weighted blanket to improve attention to task.
  • A weighted blanket is essentially the same thing as a weighted vest and is made for the same purposes-to improve attention to task in children diagnosed with ADHD.
  • The student reports that the weighted blanket has a calming effect and helps him to sit still and focus better in class.
  • The mother reports that his grades have improved since he began using the weighted blanket.
  • The classroom teacher reports that she is pleased with his school performance since using the weighted blanket.
“The effect of the wearing of weighted vests on the sensory behavior of learners diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder within a school context” (Evidence-based article)
  • This study was conducted by three Occupational Therapists.
  • This study confirms that the above video is in fact true information.
  • This article aimed to study the effects of weighted vests (much like weighted blankets).
  • It studies 30 children aged 6-9 who were diagnosed with ADHD and reported to have poor in seat behavior and task completion by their classroom teacher.
  • The conclusion of this study suggests that the intervention of utilizing weighted vests improves classroom behavior and performance of students diagnosed with ADHD.
  • In this media clip, the focus is the concern of the parents regarding the weighted vest being used on their 4-year old child without their consent.
  • My focus of the video is that the weighted vest was deemed not useful after being used for ONLY one minute.
“The Use of a Weighted Vest To Increase On-Task Behavior in Children With Attention Difficulties” (Evidence-based article)
  • In this peer reviewed article, written by Nancy VandenBerg (Occupational Therapist), she studies the use of weighted vests on children diagnosed with ADHD and the appropriate time that students should be wearing the vest for the vest to be effective.
  • The weighted vest is used for 15 minutes to have effects on attention to task in school aged children.
  • The study was conducted on 4 students.
  • The children’s attention to task was observed for 15 minutes with the weighted vest on and for 15 minutes with the weighted vest off.
  • The results of the study: “on-task behavior increased by 18% to 25% in all 4 students when wearing the weighted vest for 15-minute intervals.”
After exploring facts and fiction through various evidence-based articles, I have been able to validate that the first two news videos about weighted vests/weighted blankets provide accurate information regarding the correct use and results of weighted vests/blankets in school aged children. Video three has been debunked and proven to have been used incorrectly, resulting in poor results on the student’s attention to task. How is a weighted vest used?
  • Wear on top of clothing
  • The weight of the vest should be 5%-10% of your child’s total body weight (your child’s body weight multiplied by .05 or .10)
  • Vest should be worn 5 minutes before activity begins in class
  • Vest should be worn for 20-40 minutes (during task in classroom)
  • Vest should be taken off for 20-40 minutes after the task is complete
References: Buckle, F., Franzsen, D., & Bester, J. (2011). The effect of the of weighted vests on the sensory behavior of students diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder within a school context. South African Journal of Occupational Therapy, 41 (3), 36-42. Lin, H., Lee, P., Chang, W., & Hong, F. (2014). Effects of Weighted Vests on Attention, Impulse Control, and On-Task Behavior in Children With Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 68(2), 149-158. doi:10.5014/ajot.2014.009365 Vandenberg, N. L. (2001). The Use of a Weighted Vest To Increase On-Task Behavior in Children With Attention Difficulties. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 55(6), 621-628. doi:10.5014/ajot.55.6.621 OTvest, L. (2011, July 17). OTvest™ – The On-Task Weighted Vest for Treating Autism, ADHD and Sensory Processing Disorders. Retrieved from KERO, 2. A. (2017, December 06). Weighted blankets, lap pads helping people with autism, anxiety and attention disorders. Retrieved from News8, W. (2011, November 16). School uses weighted vest to get kids focused. Retrieved from  

Can stokes be prevented through proper diet and exercise?


A stroke happens when blood flow to an area of the brain is cut off resulting in cell death.  A stroke can cause permanent brain damage or result in death.  There are two types of strokes:

Ischemic Stoke

  • Caused by arteries being blocked or narrowed.

Hemorrhagic stroke

  • Caused when a blood vessel in the brain breaks or ruptures.

How can you reduce your risk of having a stroke?


  • Work out or simply walk for at least 30 mins a day.

Eat better

  • More fruits and vegetables 
  • Choose lean proteins and high fiber foods
  • Stay away from saturated fats
  • Cut down on salt intake and processed foods

Stroke Prevention In the Media

Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension Diet and incidence of stoke: Results from 2 prospective cohorts

  • This article examines whether adhering to the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet can reduce the risk of ischemic stroke. 
  • The DASH diet consists of vegetables, fruits, and low-fat dairy products and has reduced amounts of saturated fat, total fat, and chole.
  • This diet has been known to reduce hypertension which is one of the risk factors for having a stroke.
  • The results of the study was conducted on a cohort of 74,404 Swedish men and women between the ages of 45-83 years old with no history of stroke.
  • The results showed that those in the highest quartile of the modified DASH diet had a 14% reduced risk of ischemic stroke compared to those in the lowest quartile. Also, high adherence to the diet was also associated with a lower risk of intracerebral hemorrhage, it however had no association with subarachnoid hemorrhage. 
  • This concludes that a diet like the DASH which is recommended by some health organizations can reduce the risk on ischemic stroke.

Diet for Stroke Prevention

This article is about the importance of diet and lifestyle in stroke prevention. According to Spence, “poor lifestyle choices account for more than half of strokes.”  he writes that people who don’t smoke, have moderate alcohol intake, a body mass less than 25%, exercise 30 minutes daily, and eat healthy have an 80% reduction of stroke compared to those that who do none of these. Some of the things Spence addresses in this article include harmful dietary trends, diets associated with stroke prevention, certain foods related to stroke lastly, he makes recommendations for those at risk for stroke.  


This article also concluded that coffee contrary to popular belief is beneficial and not harmful in stroke prevention.  This is because according to Spence both coffee and tea reduce cardiovascular disease and diabetes which are risk factors of stroke.  He also states that green tea lowers blood pressure, reduces LDL cholesterol, and improves endothelial function. 

Stroke and nutrition: A review of studies


  • This article analyzes previous studies done that showed a relationship between diet and stroke prevention.
  • The authors explain why certain nutrients affect the risk of strokes: such as fats and cholesterol, antioxidants and vitamins, salt, sugar, potassium, carbohydrates, etc.
  • They also list and explain which foods and drinks effect the risk of stroke.  Some of these foods included meats, fruits and vegetables, tea, and soft drinks.
  • The results of this study showed that adhering to a healthier diet such as the Mediterranean or DASH can reduce the risk of stroke.  

This video supports the claims made in the above articles on stoke prevention through a balanced diet.  It provides examples of foods that have been scientifically proven to help reduce Stroke risk.

In this video Dr. Lee Schwamm, Chief of MGH Stroke Service,  explains the importance of exercise in stroke prevention and how to over come barriers when it comes to exercising by sharing his own exercise habits and routine.

Other Media Findings That Contradict This Information

Exercise Does Not Prevent Blocked Arteries, Study Finds

  • This article explains the findings of a long term study conducted by researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and the Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, CA.
  • The study included over 3,000 participants, this included black and white men and women between 18 and 30.
  • The participants were followed-up for 25 years, until 2011. They underwent eight examinations over this period and filled in questionnaires reporting their levels of physical activity.
  • To their surprise while researchers expected to find that those with higher physic al activity levers would have a reduces risk off CAD the fin dings were contradictory to this.
  • The results of the study concluded that white men who exercise three times above the U.S. national guidelines for working out (150 minutes per week) are 86% more likely than black men, and those who exercise less, to develop a buildup of plaque in their hearts by the time they’re middle aged.

This study goes against the information provided in  the previous pieces of media and in most peoples belief that exercise is good and helps keep people healthy and prevention disease.  This article has many limitations and I don’t believe this in formation is reliable.  It has been published in credible sources such are the new York daily news however, requires further investigation.  The study was only shows the correlation between white man and black black men’s likely hood go getting CAC.  This means further research should be done to clarify the role of race in the risks for CAC in people with high phial activity levels. Maintaining a proper diet and exercising regularly has been proven on many occasions to prevent disease including those that increase risk of stoke such as diabetes, CAD, obesity, and hypertension.  There is more liable information that proves this fact than that which doesn’t.



Larsson, S. C., PHD, Wallin A., MSC, & Wolk, A., DMSC. (n.d.). Dietary approaches to stop hypertension diet and incidence of stroke. Retrieved from

Spence, J. D. (2018). Diet for stroke prevention. Stroke and Vascular Neurology, 3(0), 44–50. Retrieved from

Foroughi, M., Akhavanzanjani, M., Maghsoudi, Z., Ghiasvand, R., Khorvash, F., & Askari, G. (2013, May). Stroke and nutrition: A review of studies. Retrieved from

Cohut, M. (2017, October 18). Exercise does not prevent blocked arteries, study finds. Retrieved from





By: e-Magine Art

Lyrica is a medication used to treat neuropathic pain from diabetes or herpes zoster (shingles), seizures, and Fibromyalgia.

This commercial talks about Lyrica helping with widespread pain so that people can get out more and improve on their daily functioning. As all prescription drug commercials do, this one talks about all the side effects quickly before ending the commercial.

A list of side effects includes dizziness, feeling tired or drowsy, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, headaches, increased weight, unsteadiness or reduce co-ordination, shaking or tremors, dry mouth, and blurred or double vision. These side effects are the more common and mild ones. Side effects that are more life threatening and less common include mental health changes, such as depression and suicidal thoughts, swelling of hands, ankles or feet, enlargement of breasts, unexplained muscle pain, or passing little to no urine.

This commercial points out some of the side effects, but not all of them, which further shows how important it is to discuss medications in detail with the provider prescribing them before you start taking them. What this commercial also does not point out is that Lyrica is not effective in people with post-traumatic neuropathic pain which means nerve pain caused by a traumatic injury such as a car accident (Lyric flops in pain study, 2016).

This is another Lyrica commercial that shows Lyrica for a different use. While the previous commercial talked about the drug being used for generalized pain and weakness, this commercial shows Lyrica being used specifically for diabetic neuropathy, which is nerve pain in the extremities caused from diabetes. This commercial gives a little more information about the drug because it lets us know that the drug is meant to have an affect on the nervous system of the body.

This commercial has the same exact information on the drug as the first commercial had, including some side effects while leaving others out.

This video on Fibromyalgia is most interesting. It discusses what the drug Lyrica does to the body and why it helps with pain. The neurologist in the video talks about Lyrica being originally developed as a seizure medication. Collins (2015) confirms that Lyrica was indeed created as an anti-epileptic medication and goes on to explain that the pain management was discovered after more studies were done.

This video talks about Lyrica’s effects on the body and talks about why it is a dangerous drug to use too often and how it does not fix the underlying reason for the pain. What Lyrica is meant to do is reduce excess electrical signals being sent out by the brain (Lyrica: 12 Things you need to know, n.d.). It is not stopping the pain, but stopping the brain from sending as many signals out for the pain. The doctor in the video also talks about Lyrica blocking the formation of new brain synapses. I am unable to find information that confirms or denies this statement, but the doctor in the video is getting the information from a study that he found.


All pharmaceutical drugs created have their benefits and side effects. Sometimes we take the word of the doctor when they prescribe one of these drugs to us. It is important that we are gathering as much information as we can about a medication before we put it into our body. Learn what you can and then decide; are the risks of the medication worth the benefits?



Collins, A. (2015). Pfizer reinforces Lyrica restrictions. Chemist & Druggist282(6939), 12. Retrieved from

Lyrica: 12 Things You Need to Know. (n.d.). Retrieved November 18, 2018, from

Lyrica Flops in Pain Study. (2016). P&T: A Peer-Reviewed Journal for Managed Care & Formulary Management41(1), 23. Retrieved from

Pregabalin (generic)/LYRICA (BRAND). (2013). Brown University Psychopharmacology Update24, 1–2. Retrieved from

20 Years Of Helping Australians Make Better Decisions About Medicines, Medical Tests And Other Health Technologies. (n.d.). Lyrica Capsules. Retrieved November 18, 2018, from