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Parents Need to Know is a newsletter written by Craig Collison, MD, pediatrician with Mount Nittany Physician Group.
Is your home childproofed?

Most people don’t realize what all needs to be done to ensure your home is childproofed. As a New Year’s resolution, check each room in your house. A good guide to follow is The Ultimate Childproofing Guide by Here are a few of their tips:


  • Put a childproof lock on the medicine cabinet.
  • Keep cleansers, bleach and razors out of reach of children.
  • Place a knob cover on the bathtub so your children cannot turn on the water on their own.


  • Keep window blind cords out of reach by looping the cord around the top of the blinds.
  • Put a childproof lock on all cabinets and drawers.
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The Cotton Ball Diet – Watch out for the dangerous diet trend

The Cotton Ball Diet, which started in the fashion industry, is becoming a trend among teenagers with YouTube videos and chat rooms showcasing how to follow it. The dangerous fad involves eating up to five cotton balls that are dipped in orange juice, lemonade or a smoothie in one sitting. The cotton balls fill up your stomach, making you feel full without gaining weight. Some dieters eat the cotton balls before a meal to help them eat less, while others are just surviving on the cotton balls.

This diet is extremely dangerous. Most cotton balls are made of bleached, synthetic fibers that contain a lot of chemicals. By eating cotton balls, you can block the digestive system to the point where surgery is needed. Also, these dieters are not getting enough nutrients, which can cause development and growth issues from being malnourished.

If you see your child watching a video about The Cotton Ball Trend or you hear conversations about the diet, make sure you discuss the associated dangers.

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What to know about protecting your child from meningitis

With the recent meningitis outbreaks at colleges across the United States, it’s important to understand what meningitis is and how you can protect yourself and your child from the illness. The most common cases of meningitis are caused by bacteria and viruses. Viral meningitis is the most common type of meningitis and is caused by viruses such as the herpes simplex virus, HIV, West Nile virus and the mumps. Bacterial meningitis is rarer than viral meningitis, but it is very contagious and can become life threatening if it’s not treated immediately.

The most common symptoms associated with meningitis include a bad headache, fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, mental status change and a stiff neck.

Both viral and bacterial meningitis are contagious and can be spread from someone who is infected through tiny drops of fluid from the throat and nose, including when the person talks, laughs, coughs or sneezes. Talk to your kids about following good hygiene practices like washing their hands before eating and after using the restroom, and using a tissue when coughing or blowing their nose.

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Pediatrics office in Bellefonte moves to remodeled, kid-friendly office
  Peds office  

Children walking into the new Mount Nittany Physician Group Pediatrics office in Bellefonte may never want to leave.

A newly remodeled pediatrics office, recently relocated from 141 Medical Park Lane to 129 Medical Park Lane, is bursting with every color of the rainbow. Containing kid-friendly features and a cheery atmosphere, the new pediatrics practice may look more like a playground than a medical office.

Features of the new facility include:

  • Eight spacious examination rooms
  • Centralized nurses station
  • Expanded waiting room
  • Combined registration/check-out area
  • Physician work area
  • Staff lounge
  • Ample parking

The new facility even features a children’s play area with a table and chairs, books, and a television with educational programming for those waiting to see a provider.

Technology-driven attributes such as a wireless network for physicians and a card reader system also complement the new space, saving time and resources.

A truly child-friendly space, the new pediatrics office is located directly in front of the former pediatrics location, and providers are currently accepting new patients.

For more information, visit



Recent product recalls

Here are recent product recalls announced by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. For the most up-to-date recall information, please visit and click on the Recalls tab from the home page.

Name of product: Wearever Girl’s Hooded Jacket and Pant Set

Hazard: The jackets sold with the set have drawstrings through the hood, which pose a strangulation hazard to young children.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported.

Description: This recall includes Wearever Girl brand girl’s long sleeve zip-up, 100 percent cotton hooded jackets sold as a set with brown pants. The brown hooded jackets have thin aqua, light pink and light green horizontal stripes and are sold in girl’s sizes 7 to 16. There is a brown, flat drawstring around the neck of the jackets. “Wearever Girl” is printed on a label on the back inside neck of the jackets and on the pants.

Sold exclusively at: Burlington Coat Factory in August 2013 for about $10.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the jackets away from children, and remove the drawstrings to eliminate the hazard. Consumers can also contact David’s Place to obtain a return address label and instructions for returning the garment for a full refund. 

Consumer contact:Call David’s Place Off Price Clothing toll-free at 888.394.1398 from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm PT Monday through Friday, or email at for more information.

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