Monday, April 7, 2008

Raise a Smarter Child by Kindergarten

Allow me to preface this personal book review with the following statement: I am not, by any means, obsessed with the idea of having the smartest child. It is not a regular practice of mine to pick up books that "raise IQ by up to 30 points and turn on your child's smart genes" as this book says on the cover. The only reason I checked this book out from the library, and then bought it, was because I honestly feel like I was led to this book -- Raise a Smarter Chid by Kindergarten by Dr. David Perlmutter.

I was at the library quickly trying to check out Life of Pi before Samantha's nap time. She was getting fussy, so I found the book and cruised through the isles of bookshelves when this book caught my eye. All I saw were the words "smarter child" and I decided to check it out. I read the book in 4 days. Sure it gives a lot of ideas of activities to play, etc, but it also specifically addressed issues I had been contemplating and praying about. The author is a neurologist who basis a lot of his treatments on nutrition. I looked up his curriculum vitae and he has a pretty good background. So, this is what I appreciated in this book--

#1 Nutrition. I am one of those people who, though I don't always make the best decisions in my health, I feel that Heavenly Father has put food on this earth as a way to nourish us. How novel an idea, I know. But I feel like the better we take care of our bodies, the more we will be able to prevent, if not reverse, problems. I appreciated the insight he gave on certain foods to eat, as well as supplements if necessary. This was particularly helpful for me because he gave a good guide on what to look for in formula, which I have never used before.

#2 Immunizations. I know this is a controversial issue and Marcus and I don't always see eye to eye on this. He being in a scientific field looks for hard evidence while I, a more "feel-y" person look for the anecdotal evidence. We were specifically told by our geneticist that Samantha would NOT have seizures. After her 2nd round of immunizations, she had her first seizure. It was that night, and we rushed her to the hospital. All of the doctors said her shots wouldn't have caused her seizure, except one. Dr. Hacking told me that it was something I needed to consider, and if I wanted to continue with her immunizations. I continued. I have always felt extremely guilty -- that I caused her seizures. Now, we have Callie. And I really was not sure what I should do. I believe immunizations are important, but I also believe some children are more susceptible to having reactions (be it seizures, autism, etc). When I read the section about immunizations, I can't tell you the relief I felt. I had such a peace come over me. I was able to resolve my concern about how to better avoid the "dangers" while immunizing. At this point, I didn't know there were alternate schedules. I thought you immunized or you didn't. Dr. Perlmutter explains what happens in the brain and then suggests a schedule that gives less shots at a time, while still getting it all done by age 2. Basically, it spreads things out a bit so your body isn't being attacked with so much at once. Like I said, I think for most kids, the traditional schedule may be fine, but for me, this was a true answer to a pray that I had been anguishing over. It will require me to go to the Health Department more, and Callie may get more shots (the shots are all individual doses), but for my peace of mind, it is worth it. Sorry Callie-belle. You're the one getting poked, but I honestly feel better about it.

Aside from all that, there were good activities and whatnot that explain what you are doing and why they are good. ADHD, Asthma, TV, environment, etc are all discussed. It was an easy, quick read, that I found to be a great guide for what I needed right now.


Lant Family said...

Sounds like a good book. I have always had a little worry about immunizations. I just get nervous every time she has to get them with all the stuff you hear about. I keep telling myself to just not worry. I will have to check it out.

AJ said...

I am of the thinking that in most cases immunizations do way more good than bad (like the measles cases recently in Sandiego), but it is also very good to make sure that it is right for your own kids. And like you said at the right times. That sounds like a very interesting book. I will have to check it out.

Jenny said...

I agree AJ. I hope it didn't come off wrong on the entry. But just to clarify, just in case, I believe we should immunize our kids. That's why, even though it made me uncomfortable, I kept immunizing Samantha. It's a scary thing all these things you have to decide and face when you enter parenthood.

maryirene allen said...

i had no idea what those immunizations might have caused. wow. good luck with all that. i'm sure callie will not remember, and if she's like sam, they are over it the minute you pick them up.


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