School & Family Life > Tough Topics

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  • "Am I Pretty?": What Moms, Daughters Really Think About Looks
    KidsHealth asked thousands of mothers and daughters how they felt about their appearance. Their answers may surprise you.
  • 5 Ways to Bully-Proof Your Kid
    Take the target off your kid's back with these smart tips.
  • Am I 'Too Tough' When I Discipline My Kids?
    Find out what the experts have to say.
  • Amphetamines: What Parents Need to Know
    Amphetamines (including prescription diet pills) are highly addictive stimulants that accelerate functions in the brain and body.
  • Anxiety Disorders
    Anxiety is a normal part of growing up, and all kids experience it. But when it becomes extreme, it can interfere with a child's overall happiness.
  • Becoming a Stepparent
    Stepparenting can be a challenging yet rewarding experience. Learn how to cultivate a healthy relationship with your stepkids.
  • Biting
    There are ways to get to the bottom of your toddler's biting habit. These steps can help.
  • Caring for Siblings of Kids With Special Needs
    Kids love their siblings. Often, those who have a brother or sister with special needs want to help. Here's how to help them feel loved and secure about their place in the family.
  • Caring for Siblings of Seriously Ill Children
    By being aware of what healthy siblings are going through and taking a few steps to make things a little easier for them, parents can help kids cope.
  • Child Abuse
    Nearly a million children are abused each year in the United States alone. Learn how to spot the signs of child abuse.
  • Cocaine & Crack: What Parents Need to Know
    Cocaine and crack are illegal drugs that produce an intense high and can cause a stroke, heart attack, or even death.
  • Connecting With Your Preteen
    As your preteen becomes more independent, staying connected may seem like more of a challenge. But it's as important as ever – here are some tips.
  • Cough and Cold Medicine Abuse
    Chugging cough medicine for an instant high isn't a new practice for teens, who have raided the medicine cabinet for a quick, cheap, and legal high for decades. Unfortunately, this dangerous, potentially deadly practice still goes on.
  • Cyberbullying
    Cyberbullying is the use of technology to harass, threaten, embarrass or target another person. Here are some suggestions on what to do if online bullying has become part of your child's life.
  • Date Rape
    Half of all people who are raped know their attacker. Increase your child's awareness of date rape and teach him or her how to stay safe.
  • Depressants: What Parents Need to Know
    Depressants calm and relax nerves. But if used in the wrong way, they can be dangerous and even cause life-threatening problems.
  • Developing Your Child's Self-Esteem
    Self-esteem is a child's armor against the challenges of the world. Here's how you can promote healthy self-esteem in your kids.
  • Disciplining Your Child
    It's important to be consistent about discipline. If you don't stick to the rules and consequences, kids aren't likely to either. Find out how to vary your approach to fit your family.
  • Disciplining Your Child With Special Needs
    Here's how to set boundaries and communicate your expectations in a nurturing, loving way.
  • Disciplining Your Toddler
    Reeling in your active little one can be tough. But setting limits now helps prevent bigger problems down the road.
  • Drugs: What Parents Need to Know
    Knowing what drugs are out there, what they can do, and how they can affect someone is the first step in raising drug-free kids.
  • E-Cigarettes
    E-cigarettes are marketed as a safe alternative to smoking, but they're not - they still deliver nicotine into the body. Here are the facts on "vaping."
  • Ecstasy: What Parents Need to Know
    Ecstasy is a dangerous illegal drug that can cause hallucinations and even death.
  • Encouraging a Healthy Body Image
    A healthy and positive body image means liking your body, appreciating it, and feeling grateful for its qualities and capabilities. Parents can help kids develop a healthy body image.
  • Financial Woes? How to Talk to Kids When Money Is Tight
    Saying "no" to your kids can be hard. Here are some age-appropriate ways to discuss financial matters when times are tough, while still finding ways to have fun.
  • GHB: What Parents Need to Know
    GHB, gamma hydroxybutyrate, is a popular club and date rape drug that can be deadly.
  • Helping Kids Cope With Cliques
    With cliques prevalent in middle and high school, most kids encounter them at some point. Here's how parents can help kids maintain confidence and self-respect while negotiating cliques.
  • Helping Kids Cope With Stress
    Stress from things like school and social situations can feel overwhelming for kids. But by teaching healthy coping strategies, you'll prepare your kids to manage stress.
  • Helping Kids Handle Worry
    All kids to worry at times, and some may worry more than others. But parents can help kids manage worry and tackle everyday problems with ease. Find out how.
  • Helping Your Child Deal With Death
    It can be difficult to know how to help kids cope with a death, particularly as you work through your own grief. Here are a few important things to consider.
  • Helping Your Child Through a Divorce
    By minimizing the stress a divorce creates, being patient as everyone adjusts to the new situation, and responding openly and honestly to your kids' concerns, you can help them through this difficult time.
  • Heroin: What Parents Need to Know
    Heroin is a highly addictive, illegal narcotic that can cause death when taken in excess.
  • How Can I Teach Kids to Be Smart About Strangers?
    Find out what the experts have to say.
  • How Do I Handle the Transition When My Husband Returns From Active Duty?
    Find out what the experts have to say.
  • How Do I Help My Kids Deal With My Husband's Deployment?
    Find out what the experts have to say.
  • How to Talk to Your Child About the News
    News from the TV, radio, and the Internet is often educational. But when stories are about violence or other disturbing topics, parents can find it hard to explain to kids. Here are some guidelines.
  • If Your Child Is Raped
    Someone who has been raped needs care, comfort, and a way to heal. Learn how to help if your child has been sexually assaulted.
  • Inhalants: What Parents Need to Know
    Inhalants like glue are sniffed or huffed to give the user a high. Just doing it one time can be fatal.
  • Ketamine: What Parents Need to Know
    Ketamine hydrochloride is a quick-acting anesthetic that can cause intoxication, hallucinations, and even death when taken in dangerously high doses.
  • Kids & Teens Talk About Life (Video)
    In this video series, kids & teens talk about their experiences with bullying, stress, family life, managing health problems, staying fit, eating right — and what it means to be in love.
  • Kids and Alcohol
    As much as parents may not like to think about it, the truth is that many kids and teens try alcohol before it is legal for them to drink it. Here's what you need to know.
  • Kids and Smoking
    The health risks of tobacco are well known, yet every year many young people take up smoking. Here's how to help your kids avoid tobacco use - or quit, if they've already started.
  • LSD: What Parents Need to Know
    LSD is a dangerous hallucinogenic drug that affects mood, judgment, and behavior.
  • Making the Holidays Less Materialistic
    It can be hard to look beyond all of the product-driven hoopla surrounding the holidays. Here are five ways to curb materialism and reinforce the real reason for the season.
  • Marijuana: What Parents Need to Know
    Marijuana is the most widely used illegal drug in the United States.
  • Marriage Advice for Parents of Children With Special Needs
    When you're in sync with your spouse, you're better able to care for your child. Here are 10 ways to strengthen your relationship.
  • Methamphetamines: What Parents Need to Know
    Methamphetamines are dangerous stimulants that speed up a person's heart rate and bodily functions. When used in large doses, they can kill.
  • My Child Is Stealing
    Your child does homework on time, helps you clear the table, and even helps with housework. So can it be true that this same child is stealing? Before you react, know a little about why kids steal and where to get help.
  • My Son Is Being Deployed; How Do I Help My Other Kids Cope?
    Find out what the experts have to say.
  • Nicotine: What Parents Need to Know
    Nicotine is a highly addictive stimulant. Those who start smoking before age 21 have the hardest time breaking the habit.
  • Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
    Kids and teens who live through a traumatic event can develop posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Healing is possible with the help of professional counseling and support from loved ones.
  • Preparing Your Child for a Move
    Disruptive as moving can be for parents, the experience can be even more traumatic for kids. Here's how to make moving less stressful for the whole family.
  • Preparing Your Child for a New Sibling
    The arrival of a new baby can cause lots of changes. But parents can prepare kids for an addition to the family.
  • Preventing Abductions
    It's important to teach your kids to be cautious without filling them with fear or anxiety. Here are ways to lessen the chances that your child will be abducted.
  • Questions and Answers About Sex
    Answering kids' questions about sex is a responsibility many parents dread. But by answering these questions honestly, parents can help foster healthy feelings about sex.
  • Quick Poll: Too Much Screen Time?
    How do you feel about the screen time habits of your children? Take our poll.
  • Raising a Child With Autism: Paige and Iain's Story
    When their son was diagnosed with autism at age 3, Paige and Iain were devastated. Since then, Lochlan has gotten the treatment and services he needs, and is learning about the world around him. Read their story.
  • Raising Confident Kids
    It takes confidence to be a kid. And while each child is a little different, parents can follow some general guidelines to build kids' confidence.
  • Rohypnol: What Parents Need to Know
    Rohypnol is an antianxiety medication. Because it can cause extreme drowsiness (or "blackouts"), the drug is often used in date rapes.
  • School Violence and the News
    As terrible and frightening as incidents of school violence are, they are rare. But it's natural for kids to worry. How can you help them deal with these fears?
  • Secondhand Smoke
    Experts now know that breathing in someone else's secondhand smoke is hazardous to our health. Find out what you can do about it.
  • Sexting: What Parents Need to Know
    Sending or receiving a photo, video, or message that contains nudity, a sex act, or even talk of sex is know as "sexting." This type of sharing could haunt a teen for the rest of his or her life. Here's what parents need to know.
  • Sexual Orientation
    During the teen years, sexual feelings are awakened in new ways because of the hormonal and physical changes of puberty. It takes time for many kids to understand who they are and who they're becoming. Part of that understanding includes a person's sexual feelings and attractions.
  • Support for Parents of Kids With Special Needs
    You might have more on your plate than most parents, but it doesn't mean you have to do it all alone. Here's how to ask for help and avoid caregiver burnout.
  • Talking to Your Child About Drugs
    Just as you inoculate your kids against illnesses like measles, you can help "immunize" them against drug use by giving them the facts now.
  • Talking to Your Child About Menstruation
    Kids reaching puberty should already know what's going to happen to their bodies. Here are some tips for talking to your daughter about menstruation.
  • Talking to Your Child About Puberty
    Talking to kids about puberty is an important job for parents, especially because kids often hear about sex and relationships from unreliable sources. Here are some tips.
  • Talking to Your Daughter About Puberty
    Help your daughter prepare for the changes that puberty will bring before she takes her first steps toward adulthood.
  • Taming Tempers
    Controlling outbursts can be difficult for kids - and helping them learn to do so is a tough job for the parents who love them. But just about every child can improve with the right coaching.
  • Teaching Your Child Tolerance
    Teaching tolerance is important - the differences that come from living in a melting pot enrich our culture, bringing new ideas and energy. And people who are open to differences have more opportunities in education, business, and so many other ways.
  • Teens Talk About Bullying (Video)
    Hear from teens who've been bullied - and what they did about it.
  • Teens Talk About Stress (Video)
    Here, teens talk about what stresses them out and how they cope.
  • Telling a Child About Deployment
    I'm being deployed. How do I tell my child?
  • Tips for Divorcing Parents
    No guide can guarantee a way to steer kids unscathed through a divorce. Every situation - and every family - is different. But these commonsense guidelines might make the adjustment a bit easier.
  • Transgender People
    People who are transgender feel like they're living inside a body that's all wrong for them. Here are the facts about what it means to be transgender.
  • When a Parent is Deployed
    When a parent is deployed, there are ways to help kids cope and foster the resiliency they need to endure during the separation.
  • When a Pet Dies
    For most kids, pets are more than just animals – they're members of the family. So it can be heartbreaking to lose one. Here's how to help kids cope.
  • When Your Teen Is Having a Baby
    If your daughter is pregnant and planning to have the baby, many changes await your family. How can you support her through the challenges to come?

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