Arlington Pediatrics Newsletter
JUNE 2014
APL Wants You To "Just Hang It Up"

We live in a world where we are constantly multitasking, which unfortunately includes people using their cell phones while driving. Dr. Brottman has seen firsthand what distracted driving has done to his own patients and the personal tragedies affecting families. This is why he helped start the "Just Hang It Up" campaign. To learn more about this great campaign and how you can get involved, go to: www.justhangitup.org.
Classes For The Whole Family

Check out what's going on at the IBMC, APL's new classroom. Click here to get a list of upcoming classes for the whole family.
Featured Article
Just a Thought -- Mindfulness Meditation
By Mark DeDonato LCSW, ACSW, CSAT

Adolescents are bombarded with myriad internal and external stressors. Hormones, challenging peer dynamics, social media, academic and standardized test expectations, and evolving family dynamics may cause teens to feel overwhelmed and out of control. The feeling of not being in control can lead to emotional and behavioral consequences ranging from depression and anxiety to eating disorders and substance abuse. Adolescents can benefit from skills training to identify and cope with inner experiences while maintaining awareness of the world around them.

Mindfulness meditation is a skill that trains the brain to focus on the experience of a present moment and take a gentle, non-judgmental stance toward that experience. In understanding what it is to be mindful, it might help to identify some common mindless practices such as carelessness, forgetting someone's name as soon as they introduce themselves, becoming lost in thoughts and feelings, preoccupation with the past or future, and not eating when hungry or continuing to eat after full. Mindfulness meditation is the practice of picking an anchor -- breathing, the sensation of a particular body part, a fixed external object -- and intentionally returning to that anchor as the mind wanders to other thoughts, feelings, or body sensations.

The goal of mindfulness meditation is to possess the ability to quiet the mind, focus attention on the present (not be overwhelmed by the past that has already happened or the future that has not yet occurred), and dismiss distractions. It is helpful to think of mindfulness meditation as strength training for the brain. Like exercise, the benefits from mindfulness are most noticeable with daily practice.

Current research suggests that mindfulness based interventions can help reduce symptoms of anxiety, depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, and improve overall reports of well-being and quality of life. Furthermore, mindfulness can improve focus and memory, increase creativity and compassion, and decrease stress.

To begin practicing mindfulness meditation, start with this simple exercise. Sit in a comfortable chair with feet flat on the floor and back straight. Relax muscles and fold hands gently in lap. Try to maintain good posture while being comfortable. Set a timer for two minutes and close eyes. Begin to take deep breaths in and out, focusing on the sensation of the air entering the lungs while inhaling through the mouth and the sensation of air leaving the lungs while exhaling through the nose. Notice all thoughts, feelings, and body sensations that emerge and gently return focus back to breathing. Recognize that the mind wanders and take a non-judgmental stance toward yourself as you let go of distractions and return focus back to breathing. Continue to focus on returning to the anchor of breathing until the timer goes off. Practice daily until you're able to tolerate five to ten minutes of mindful meditation practice a day.

Mark DeDonato, LCSW, ACSW, CSAT is a licensed clinical social worker specializing in treating chemical dependency, eating disorders, sex addiction, self-injury, and co-addiction. Mark also has experience treating mood and anxiety disorders. As a certified school social worker, Mark enjoys working with emerging adults struggling with school issues and life transitions. Mark can be contacted at mdedonatolcsw@gmail.com or 847-877-1881.
Lactation Tips
Dr. Brottman named 2014 Breast Feeding Friendly Physician

On May 5th, 2014, our own "Dr B" was named one of 5 health professionals to win this award sponsored by the Chicago Area Breast Feeding Coalition. Dr B was honored for his innovative strategy of having his own lactation team see newborns in both the inpatient and outpatient settings.

The mission of the Chicago Area Breast feeding Coalition is to encourage collaboration among Chicago area breastfeeding advocates in order to more efficiently protect, promote and support breastfeeding.

"It is quite an honor to receive this award from this prestigious organization," said Brottman. "This award belongs to our whole team at APL. They all make APL a breast feeding friendly place. Pat Tomlinson RN, IBCLC, Karen Dickert RN, IBCLC and Melissa Larson are the true winners who provide excellent care and classes for our patients and families."

For more information about our lactation services go to: APLLactationServices.com

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Phone: (847) 398-0400

www.arlingtonpediatrics.com

3325 N. Arlington Hts. Road, 100A
Arlington Heights, Illinois 60004

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Joke Corner
Below are a few jokes we found funny. Let us know if you have any good ones for our next issue.

Q. What do you call a pig that knows karate?
A. A pork chop!

Q. Why was the man running around his bed?
A. He wanted to catch up on his sleep.

Q. Where do library books like to sleep?
A. Under their covers!
Disclaimer: The information contained in this newsletter is for educational purposes only. It should not be used as a substitute for medical care and advice of your physician. The dispensing of this information should in no way be construed as establishing a doctor-patient relationship.