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Tips for Kids' & Teens' Mental Health During Coronavirus

The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

Release Date: 03/23/2020

Decoding Boys - with Dr. Cara Natterson show art Decoding Boys - with Dr. Cara Natterson

The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

The task of parenting a modern day boy is daunting. It's as if teenage boys and those who raise them are in an Indiana Jones movie, dodging blades and poisonous darts flying past them at every turn. And the snake-filled pit, of course, is the constant barrage of headlines showing masculinity gone wrong. So how do we crack the code of raising boys—and do so right at a time when they typically start growing quiet? That’s the focus of —the newest book from Cara Natterson, MD. You might remember Dr. Natterson from our episode together on “” (and if you haven’t listened to that, you...

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The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

"Fear and what you do with it are two separate things." I love this quote from Kimberly Brubaker Bradley, especially right now.  What we and our kids do with big emotions can have more of an impact on our lives than feeling the emotions themselves.  In this episode, Robin Brannan, founder of Better Together Family Therapy, shares tips to help kids cope in difficult times. You just might find that many of these tips helpful for yourself, too! And on another note: If you or someone you know has a preschooler, be sure to check out 10-Minute Preschool, a new video series featuring...

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Update from the Front Lines of COVID-19 - with ER Physician Michael Daignault show art Update from the Front Lines of COVID-19 - with ER Physician Michael Daignault

The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

When I last spoke with Dr. Michael Daignault 6 weeks ago, the COVID-19 storm was approaching. Now that we're in the thick of it, he and I catch up to discuss what it's been like on the front lines in the Emergency Department. We also dispel some rumors you may have heard about treatment & prevention, discuss what's necessary to "open the country," and silver linings in this new normal. Find video of our conversation at You can help! Go to  and learn how to sponsor meals delivered from your local restaurants to your community hospital.

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The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

We're in a new normal—and with no clear end in sight. And as frustrating or anxiety-provoking as it may be, there is one indisputable fact about our current situation: We and our children will grow as people because of it. So how do we ensure that growth and development are the best they can be? How do we help our kids thrive during COVID-19? Having lived in Hong Kong and currently living in the Netherlands, Dr. Anisha Abraham has seen friends and coworkers manage parenting in a pandemic for months now—and she shares the lessons they've learned in our conversation on The Child Repair Guide...

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Tips for Kids' & Teens' Mental Health During Coronavirus  show art Tips for Kids' & Teens' Mental Health During Coronavirus

The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

So I’m the pediatrician who wrote that discouraging playdates during the coronavirus pandemic. And while I’m glad the message got out—over 2 million people read that article—it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to write. Why? Because even though I know that such extreme social distancing is absolutely necessary to slow the spread of this sneaky virus, I also know that isolating ourselves from each other can have a massive toll on mental health. And I’ve seen that toll already. As I write this now, schools in my area have been closed for only a week, and yet my pediatric...

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SPECIAL - Coronavirus and Your Family: What Parents Need to Know - with Dr. Michael Daignault show art SPECIAL - Coronavirus and Your Family: What Parents Need to Know - with Dr. Michael Daignault

The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

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The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

Comedian Ray Romano once noted that "having children is like living in a frat house — nobody sleeps, everything's broken, and there’s a lot of throwing up."   As just about everyone listening to this right now knows, being a parent is one of the hardest things you’ll ever do. Sure, it’s also the most wonderful, joyous, meaningful thing you’ll ever do—but it’s no cakewalk.   That’s why it really is so important to be able to look at the craziness of raising kids—yes, including the vomit everywhere—and somehow find the humor in it all.   That’s the...

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The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

Yuck. Vomiting and diarrhea. Blech! As much as you might hate it, you're likely going to deal with the stomach bug many times once you have kids.  I've fully revamped and updated all my tips and insights for you, including: When to call the doctor right away When to call during business hours How to tell the difference between spit-up and vomiting, diarrhea and normal baby poop How to tell if your child is dehydrated What's actually going on when your child has a stomach virus How to help your child when she's vomiting What to do for diarrhea Foods & drinks to avoid Why you should...

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The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

I’d say that anyone who’s paid attention to the news in the last few years, has been on social media—or has just conversed with other human beings—has probably gotten the sense now and then that the world seems on edge. Still, many of us parents can get so inspired by our own kids that we get the sense that they’re going to change the world—or at least their own corner of it. And a lot of kids might feel like they want to do exactly that.  But how to start? How to take the desire to do good and turn it into something real, something that can truly help people? That’s the aim...

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Parenting Resolutions for the New Year and Beyond show art Parenting Resolutions for the New Year and Beyond

The Child Repair Guide with Dr. Steve Silvestro

Remember that "always wear sunscreen" song from the late-90s?  Well, here's my version—updated now that we're all parents. After taking care of thousands of kids for over a decade, plus raising two of my own for over twelve years, I’ve come to recognize the value of things that aren’t taught in books. Here is some of my personal advice for a year of love, growth, and happiness for you and your family. Enjoy! 

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So I’m the pediatrician who wrote that viral article discouraging playdates during the coronavirus pandemic.

And while I’m glad the message got out—over 2 million people read that article—it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to write.

Why?

Because even though I know that such extreme social distancing is absolutely necessary to slow the spread of this sneaky virus, I also know that isolating ourselves from each other can have a massive toll on mental health.

And I’ve seen that toll already. As I write this now, schools in my area have been closed for only a week, and yet my pediatric office has been flooded with calls from parents worried that their kids are becoming depressed.

The risk for anxiety and depression amongst our kids and teens—and amongst ourselves—is real, and that risk will be compounded as the need for physical distancing inevitably stretches to several weeks more.

So these are my recommendations for parents to help bolster the mental health of their kids and teens in the midst of this pandemic. You may find them helpful for yourself, as well.