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Good News: Boy Refuses to Graduate High School Without his Biggest Inspiration

Austin and Ty Coppola were born only seconds apart, yet Ty was diagnosed with Down syndrome. The boys grew up doing everything together, except Ty faced different challenges. When it was time for Austin to graduate from high school, he couldn’t imagine crossing the stage without his brother.  Even though Ty didn’t attend the same high school, Austin insisted that he share the special day with his brother. Click here to see these two brother share an inspirational moment together!

Are Kids With ADHD More Likely to Use Drugs?

If your kid has ADHD, is he more likely to use drugs as a teen or young adult?  Yes—and no.

CBS News is reporting on a new study conducted by Boston Children’s Hospital that found that children suffering with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder are more than twice as likely to try and abuse drugs

However, if kids are treated properly—including with prescription medications, they may actually be LESS likely to use drugs when they get older.

Dr. Sharon Levy at Boston’s Children’s says “one of the main points [of the research] is that treating ADHD both with behavioral techniques and medications seems to lower the risk of substance abuse,”

Dr. Levy did caution that stimulant medications such as Adderall and Ritalin can sometimes be misused. The researchers found that almost 1 out of 4 school-aged children are approached to sell, buy or trade their ADHD medications

Dr. Michael Duchowny at Miami Children’s Hospital recommends that children with ADHD should be counseled about the risk of substance abuse.

Although the association between ADHD and the risk of substance abuse is known, the reasons for the increased risk aren’t,

It’s possible that the same biology that causes ADHD also puts some children at a higher risk for substance abuse, he added. Other social factors may also contribute to increased risk.

For example, kids with ADHD are more likely to struggle in school and turn to drugs or alcohol to escape anxiety about their difficulties.

For more information on ADHD, its diagnosis, and proper treatment, go to chadd.org.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Emotional Son

Dear Dr. Bill,

 

We have a very emotional 8-year-old boy.  He often cries about little things and gets upset at my husband and me constantly.  He has a 2-year-old sister, and I wonder if their age gap has caused some kind of strain for him.  What do you suggest?

 

–Joy

 

Dear Joy,

 

Every child is wired differently from the start—each with his own unique personality and disposition.  Some are more laid-back, some are more high-strung.

As parents, one of our jobs is to help our kids capitalize on their strengths and overcome their weaknesses.

 

Without directly observing your family, I can only speculate about what’s going on, but could it be that you and your husband are unintentionally reinforcing your son when he cries and throws tantrums?

 

Many parents believe the most loving thing to do is give in to their child’s demands and emotional outbursts—they want their child to like them and they don’t want to do anything to cause them to be unhappy.

 

Unfortunately this sets up a negative pattern that will cause a child to struggle in his relationships with classmates and teachers—and later with dating partners and employers.

 

It sounds like things have gotten worse since your daughter was born.  My guess is that your son has been used to getting his way and being the center of attention for years, and he doesn’t like sharing mom and dad with this little “intruder.”

 

If this description rings true, you and your husband will need to start setting firm limits with your son and implementing consequences for negative behavior.  You’ll also need to teach him more appropriate ways of responding when he is upset, frustrated or angry.

 

For some great guidance on this, check out the book “Boundaries with Kids” by Henry Cloud and John Townsend.

 

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Sitting Can Be Hazardous to Your Health

How much of your day do you spend SITTING? You’ve probably heard that sitting for long periods can be hazardous to your health.

Not only can sitting make you fat, but last year Australian researchers found that people who sit for more than 11 hours a day have a 40% increased risk of death…from any cause.

Health.com is reporting on new study that found that people who spent most of the day on their—posteriors– had a 24% greater risk of colon cancer. That number shot up to 54% for people who spent the most hours sitting in front of the TV.

The risks remained even for so-called “active couch potatoes”—people who work out but still spend most of their day sitting down.

Standing isn’t the answer, as jobs that require a lot of standing are linked to their own set of health problems including varicose veins, lower-back pain, and increased risk of stroke.

So here are a few steps you can take to get healthier.

Set an alarm. Setting your phone alarm or using an app like BreakTime are simple ways to encourage more movement throughout the day.

Stand up and pace when you’re talking on the phone. It’s easy if you’re on a smartphone—if not, see if you can get a cordless phone for your desk.

And walk whenever possible. You’d be surprised how many ways you can sneak walking into your daily routine. If possible, take a quick walk after lunch. After eating, the fat levels in your bloodstream are at their peak, and simply moving around increases the activity of a gene that boosts your metabolism.

For more health tips, go to health.org and enter “sitting” in the search engine.

 

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Good News: Ex-NFL Tight End Suffers Memory Loss, but Writes Heartwarming Song for his Family

Ben Utecht, former tight end for the Colts and Bengals, began experiencing memory loss at age 30 after a football career including five concussions. To ensure that his daughters always know he cares for them, even if his concussions rob him of much of his memory, Utecht penned and recorded a heartwarming new song titled “You Will Always Be My Girls.” Click here to read more and hear this touching song!

Crime and Television

If you find yourself worried about crime, could your fears be caused by what you see on TELEVISION, rather than on REALITY?

 

A new study has found that Americans’ fear of real-world violence is directly related to the amount of violence portrayed on broadcast television.

 

According to PluggedIn.com, The Annenberg Public Policy Center examined the amount of violence on TV from the 1970s through 2010, and then compared that to how people responded to Gallup polls about their fear of violence.

 

Despite the fact that crime rates in general have decreased over that time period, people’s fear of crime rose and fell in a pattern similar to rising and falling crime rates on TV shows!

 

It turns out that the number of violent sequences shown on broadcast TV each hour decreased significantly between 1972 and 1996. But since then, the number of violent incidents has been on the rise again…up to almost 4 per hour in prime time.

 

Each additional violent sequence per hour corresponded with a 1% increase in the number of people who said they feared walking alone at night in their own neighborhood.

 

Dan Romer with the Annenberg Center says “We now have stronger evidence that the fictional treatment of crime on TV may influence the public’s fears of crime,”

 

And this just in…watching sitcoms may make you more cynical about love.

 

Researchers at the University of Michigan found that students who watched sarcastic and cynical comedies such as How I Met Your Mother and The Big Bang Theory tended to have a much more pessimistic view of romance than those who didn’t.

 

The researchers say even if we aren’t aware of it, we internalize the messages we see on TV or in films.

 

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

“Patriot Pastor” From the Revolutionary War.

It’s Independence Day, and millions of Americans are enjoying picnics, barbecues and fireworks.

 

While you’re relaxing with friends or family, I’d encourage you to remember what this day commemorates—the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776.

 

One of my favorite stories about the American Revolution is about a pastor named John Peter Muhlenberg.

 

Pastor Muhlenberg had a military background, and toward the end of 1775, George Washington asked him to raise and command the 8th Virginia Regiment of the Continental Army.

 

He agreed, but his brother Fredrick, who was also a pastor, didn’t approve of him going into the army.  That is until the British burned down Frederick’s own church in front of him. Then he joined the army himself.

 

On January 21, 1776 in the Lutheran church in Woodstock, Virginia, Pastor Muhlenberg preached from the third chapter Ecclesiastes, which starts with “To every thing there is a season.”

 

After reading the eighth verse, “a time of war, and a time of peace,” he declared, “And this is the time of war.”  He then threw off his clerical robe to reveal the uniform of a Continental Army Colonel.

 

Outside the church door the drums began to roll as the men in the congregation turned to kiss their wives and then walked down the aisle of the church to enlist.

 

Within half an hour, 162 men had joined the 8th Virginia Regiment and went on to fight for our country’s freedom.

 

After the war, John Muhlenberg served in House of Representatives and then as a US Senator.

 

I’d encourage you to share Pastor Muhlenberg’s story with your children or grandchildren.

 

Happy Independence Day from all of us at Shine.FM!

Listen to today’s audio here.

Hazards Involved With Not Getting Enough Sleep.

You’re feeling grumpy, you have trouble concentrating, and you’re not eating well.  It could be because you’re not getting enough SLEEP.

But not getting enough sleep does more than affect your mood. It can wreak havoc on your health.

USA Today has a story on sleep deprivation which includes a new report from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC warns that habitual lack of sleep can lead to an increased risk of many serious health problems, including obesity, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, depression, heart attacks and strokes.

That’s not to mention negatively impacting your quality of life, reducing productivity—even contributing to premature death!

As you may have heard me mention a few weeks ago, a recent study involving mice found that chronic sleep loss can lead to the irreversible loss of brain cells.

CDC data show that 1 out of 4 adults report sleeping six hours or less each night, and that’s simply not enough for most people.

Safwan Badr, a past president of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, says sleep is so critical to good health that it should be thought of “as one of the components of a three-legged stool of wellness: nutrition, exercise and sleep,”

Dr. Badr says there are some steps you can take to get a better night’s sleep:

Go to bed at about the same time every night, get up at the same time in the morning, don’t drink caffeine in the afternoon, limit alcohol consumption, and exercise regularly.

For more ideas, go to sleepeducation.com.

 

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Good News: Toddler Discovers Eye Brows

 

When babies discover anything for the first time, it’s an adorable thing to watch – especially when the discovery is their eyebrows. Twenty-month-old Leon had a big revelation in a viral video taken by his dad, Lucas MacEochaidh, while being held by his mom.  Leon is looking in the mirror while raising his eyebrows up and down, and to him, it’s pretty much the funniest thing in the world (but really, it’s pretty darn cute). Lucas uploaded the video Friday and it already has nearly two million views.  Click here for some major cuteness!

 

Help—My 6-Year-Old is a Habitual Liar—What Can I Do?

Dear Dr. Bill,

 

Ever since my second daughter could walk and talk, she has been sneaky and a little deceitful.  She’s now almost 6-years-old and is very smart and sweet, but her tendency to lie continues to baffle me. I’ve tried reading children’s books to her about telling the truth, and reviewing Bible verses that back up what I’ve been teaching her — but the problem persists. What should I do?

 

–Nicole

 

Dear Nicole,

 

Young children tend to respond more effectively to actions, rather than words. Although explaining the importance of truth and sharing Bible verses with your daughter are important, you’ll find that firm, decisive actions are the best teacher.

 

My guess is she has found that lying works for her—at least some of the time. She’s learned that telling a fib helps her to avoid or at least delay punishment. So you need to make the consequences for lying more severe than for other types of misbehavior.

 

For example, if she deliberately breaks one of her sister’s toys, she will receive a consequence, but if she LIES about it, her punishment will be considerably more painful.

 

Clearly explain this to her, so she knows in advance that she’s much better off telling the truth and admitting to an infraction, even if she does experience a negative consequence for her misbehavior.

 

In addition to consistent, powerful consequences for lying, you should also begin praising her when she tells the truth.

 

Many parents find it helpful to use a sticker chart or token system to reinforce positive behavior and discourage negative behavior.

 

You can learn how to set up such a system in Dr. James Dobson’s book “The New Dare to Discipline.”

 

Thanks for writing Nicole!

 

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

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