Monday, June 30, 2008

Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) What Are the Symptoms of ADHD?

The nine symptoms that suggest inattention and hyperactivity/impulsivity.

How can you tell if your child has ADHD? He or she must exhibit at least six of the following nine symptoms from one of these lists, from the diagnostic criteria in the fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

The symptoms must have been noticeable for at least six months in two or more settings — for example, at home and at school. What’s more, the symptoms must significantly impair the child’s functioning, and at least some of the symptoms must have been apparent before age seven.


1. fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes
2. has difficulty sustaining attention
3. seems not to listen when spoken to
4. has trouble following through on instructions or finishing tasks
5. has difficulty organizing tasks and activities
6. is reluctant to engage in tasks that require sustained mental effort
7. often loses things
8. is easily distracted
9. is forgetful in daily activities


1. fidgets with hands or feet or squirms in seat
2. leaves seat in classroom
3. runs about or climbs excessively
4. has difficulty playing quietly
5. often seems “on the go” or acts as if “driven like a motor”
6. talks excessively
7. blurts out answers before questions have been completed
8. has trouble taking turns
9. interrupts or intrudes on others

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) Learn More On Keeping Your Kids Safe Online

This Press Release is posted with the permission of - Visit SafeEyes for ore vital information to protect your children online.

10 Tips For Keeping Your Kids Safe On Social Networks

ATLANTA, GA — May 28, 2008 — June is Internet Safety month. With hundred of millions of teens, pre-teens—and adults—around the world using social networking sites, there’s no better time for parents to be aware of the fun, the benefits, the powerful attractions, and the potential risks that MySpace, Facebook and other similar sites offer their children., the recognized leader in Internet safety solutions, has assembled a list of practical tips parents can use to ensure a safe networking environment for kids:

Show Interest — Ask questions about how your child’s preferred social networking site or sites work. Kids are generally happy to demonstrate their knowledge if you show genuine interest. You can even ask your teen to show you how to set up your own social networking site—a great way to visit your child’s page and see what’s been posted there.

Encourage Instinctive Responses — Kids often can instinctively do the right thing, which makes them their own first defense against those who may take advantage online. Encourage your children to avoid contact with people they “feel funny about.” Tell them to not reveal anything online they would not want a stranger to know. Limit the posting of pictures and remind them that once something is placed online, it can never be taken back.

Know Your Kids’ Passwords — If your child changes his or her password suddenly and refuses to share it with you, that’s trouble. Insist on knowing how to access his or her accounts—then keep their confidence by not sharing the information with their friends or siblings.
Set Hours for When Kids Can Access Social Networks — Late nights are the favorite time for predators to seek out their adolescent prey. Set firm limits not only for the time of day, but also the total amount of time, that your children may access social networking sites.

Be Aware of Alternate Access Points — Kids don’t have to access their social networks at home. Libraries, friends’ houses, even cell phones make the Internet easy to reach today. Keep up with what’s happening on your child’s social networking page and be aware when changes have been made despite the lack of access from home.

Exercise Your Parental Right to Supervise — There’s a difference between being snoopy and ensuring safe activity. You don’t have to read every last word of a personal message your son or daughter sends to a friend. But you do have the right—and the obligation—to see who your kids are talking to, and to know the general subject matter.

Check for Photos — By clicking on the Windows “Start” button, you’ll find the “Search” tool. Click on “Pictures, Music or Video,” the box next to “Pictures and Photos,” and finally “Search”. Ask your child to identify any photos of strangers, or any other pictures you find questionable.
Install Filtering Software — PC products like Safe Eyes allow parents to block or record Instant Messenger chats, limit email use to prescribed addresses, block objectionable Web sites (including peer-to-peer file sharing programs that often expose kids to inappropriate material), and receive alerts when kids post personal information on social networking sites.

Watch for CyberBullying — Encourage your children to tell you immediately if they are being harassed online. Children also need to know that it is not acceptable to be a party to cyberbullying—or to remain silent when they know others are being harassed.

Visit or for excellent tips and information.
Don’t Lecture — Finally, if you should find reasons for concern, don’t browbeat, insult or condescend to your child. Have a discussion about values and why they are important. Respect your child but be firm. And most of all, lead by example. Parents have a powerful ability to influence their child’s behavior—and nothing is more powerful than someone who not only talks values, but lives them.

“Parents should never feel that their level of involvement in their child’s social network activity is excessive. Since 1998, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s CyberTipline has logged over 33,000 tips about children being enticed online for sexual acts,” said Shane Kenny, President and COO of “Better that the parent error on the side of intrusion, rather than bear the consequences of doing nothing.”

Established in 1999, specializes in providing Internet safety solutions. Its flagship software, Safe Eyes, is the two-time recipient of the PC Magazine Editors’ Choice Award and was rated as the #1 parental control solution by America’s leading consumer advocacy publication. The company’s Safe Eyes and EtherShield products are providing online protection for PCs and Macs in homes, businesses and schools across more than 125 countries.

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Thursday, June 19, 2008

Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) How to Hang with Your Teens

By Shoulder to Shoulder

Ok, we know it may seem like an oxymoron: parents and teens having fun together? It has been known to happen. Whether its family activities, time just for you and your teen, special events and trips or just the every day activities around the house, find ways to create fun and connections with teens.


Read the same book and then talk about it.
Take a class together. Try dog obedience or cooking classes.
Go out for lunch to celebrate the beginning of the school year.
Celebrate half birthdays with a special family meal.
Share a subscription to a favorite teen magazine and talk about one article.
Cook a special meal together for someone who is ill.
Go to a music store and listen to their favorite CDs. Then have them listen to our music. (Ignore the groans.)
Take your teen to work with you.
Build something together.
Take a trip by car and visit places that were special to you when you were your teen’s age.
Go for a bike ride with one of their friends and the friend’s parent.
Have a favorite “breakfast diner” and eat there once a month.
Schedule your lunch hour during your teen’s lunch break - check them out of school and take your teen to lunch.
Ask your teen for suggestions.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Teens and Gateway Drugs

A Parent's Guide to Gateway Drugs

A gateway drug is a drug that opens the metaphorical gateway to more potent, dangerous drugs. Substances like alcohol, cigarettes and marijuana are considered gateway drugs. While many parents are tempted to say "it's only beer" or "its just pot", the danger in gateway drugs is their ability to convince the user that they can handle larger quantities or in many cases, stronger, more potent substances.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Sue Scheff: Gambling Addiction with Kids

“I think if someone had asked me if I had wanted to go out with a beautiful girl or sit at home and play poker, I probably would have said I’d play poker.”

– Daniel Gushue, 22 years old

Daniel was a compulsive gambler.

Over the course of two years he racked up 18 thousand dollars of credit card debt.

“So on a typical night, my gambling at its worst, say here Oct. 25th,” Daniel says looking at his bank statement, “I deposited $50, I deposited another 50, another 50, a 100, another 100, 50, and then 200. So all-in-all that’s 6- $600.”

A survey by the University of Buffalo found that over two percent of teens admit to having a gambling problem. That’s a small number, but that represents 750 thousand teens.

And some are stealing or selling possessions to continue gambling.

Experts blame accessibility.

“So whereas 15-20 years ago you have to get into a car, drive to a casino, might take you an hour or two hours or three hours to get there, now you can just pick up your cell phone and be gambling while you are waiting in the doctor’s office, or while you’re waiting at the bus stop,” explains Dr. Timothy Fong, Addiction Psychiatrist.

That’s why, experts say, parents need to be proactive.

According to psychologist Dr. Larry Rosen that means, “Familiarize yourself with what potential problems your kids might come up against, and sit them down and talk to them.”

Daniel doesn’t play online poker anymore, but he does gamble on sports.

That makes his girlfriend, Carlee Schaper, nervous. “When it comes to watching him online, sports betting and things like that, I don’t like to see him doing that, because I feel like it’s a slippery slope, and, um, it’s possible for him to go back to his old ways.”

“Should I be gambling?” says Daniel, “Probably not. But for the time being I’m in a good place.”

Tips for Parents

The numbers from a University of Buffalo study are staggering. Three-quarters of a million teens have a serious gambling problem. That includes stealing money to gamble, gambling more money then initially planned, or selling possessions to gamble more. Another 11 percent of teens admit to gambling at least twice a week. Evidence shows that individuals who begin gambling at an early age run a much higher lifetime risk of developing a gambling problem.

Some individuals and organizations support teaching poker to adolescents as a real-life means of instructing on critical reasoning, mathematics and probability. They say teaching the probability of winning is the most important aspect of the game and that the mathematics behind the reasoning that will show kids they won’t win in the long run.

The legal gambling age in the United States is 21. Poker sites enable minors to play by clicking a box to verify that they are the legal age and entering a credit card number. Age is verified further only if suspicions are raised.

Some researchers call gambling the fastest-growing teenage addiction. Teens are especially vulnerable to gambling because of the excitement, the risk and their belief that skill is involved. The Arizona Council on Compulsive Gambling and the Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling lists the following warning signs that a teen may be struggling with a gambling problem:

Unexplained need for money: Valuables missing from the home and frequently borrowing money
Withdrawal from the family: Changes in personality, impatience, criticism, sarcasm, increased hostility, irritability, making late-night calls, fewer outside activities, a drop in grades and unaccountable time away from home
Interest in sports teams with no prior allegiance: Watching televised sports excessively, exhibiting an unusual interest in sports reports, viewing multiple games at one time, running up charges to 900 sports phone numbers and showing hostility over the outcome of a game
Gambling paraphernalia: Betting slips, IOUs, lottery tickets, frequent card and dice games at home and the overuse of gambling language, such as “bet,” in conversation
Coming to parents to pay gambling debts
Using lunch or bus money to gamble
Ask yourself the following questions if you suspect your child has a gambling addiction:

Is your child out of the house or confined to a room with a computer for long, unexplained periods of time?
Does your child miss work, school or extra-curricular activities?
Can your child be trusted with money?
Does your child borrow money to gamble with or to pay gambling debts?
Does your child hide his or her money?
Have you noticed a personality change in your child?
Does your child consistently lie to cover up or deny his or her gambling activities?
Compulsive gambling is an illness, progressive in nature. There is no cure, but with help the addiction can be suppressed. Many who gamble live in a dream world to satisfy emotional needs. The gambler dreams of a life filled with friends, new cars, furs, penthouses, yachts, etc. However, a gambler usually will return to win more, so no amount of winning is sufficient to reach these dreams.

The compulsion to gamble can easily lead to self-destructive behavior, especially for teens. If you are concerned that a young person you care about has a gambling problem, encourage him or her to contact a gambling help line in your area or to seek professional help at a gambling treatment facility.

American Family Association
Arizona Council on Compulsive Gambling
Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling
National Gambling Impact Study Commission
Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education
University of Buffalo's Research Institute on Addictions

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Sue Scheff: Teenage Eating Disorders

Teen Eating Disorders – Recognising Bulimia and Anorexia

Does Your Teenage Boy or Girl Show Weight Loss, Increased Body Hair, Acne?: How to Spot the Signs of an Eating Disorder

Is your teen losing weight, suffering from severe acne, hiding food, or fasting? Could it be Anorexia or Bulimia? Causes, symptoms and treament discussed.

Is your teen losing weight, suffering skin problems like severe acne, hiding food, binging, vomiting or fasting? He or she might have an eating disorder.

Anorexia nervosa and Bulimia are serious eating disorders that have severe health impacts, sometimes even causing death in teens as young as eleven or twelve.

Weight loss, over-excercising, teenage acne,counting calories, depression and disorted body image, binging or uncontrolled eating, vomiting, and hiding food. These are just some of the symptoms. There are many others.

Symptoms of Anorexia:

Weight loss-15% below the ideal weight for her age and height.
Being obsessive about counting calories and eating fat-free foods.
A fear of gaining weight.
Being cagey about eating habits.
Obsessive and compulsive or excessive exercising.
Abusing laxatives or diuretics.
Mood and emotional problems like depression or anxiety.
A severely distorted self and body image.
Loss of bone mass.
Absence of menstrual periods.
Low body temperature.
Death-from dehydration, heart failure or other causes.

The main symptom of Anorexia Nervosa is a marked fear of being fat and obssessions about being and becoming thin. This usually translates into intense and secretive efforts to avoid food. No matter how thin an anorexic girl or by becmes they will still see themselves as fat. Ultimately the person will starve themselves, and use excercise and laxatives to aid this process.

Unfortunately attempting to force an anorexic teen to eat will likely end in failure and might even make the problem worse. This is because the disorder isn’t really about food or weight. Some patients become obsessed with other health concerns like treating acne, hair care, or how they dress and behave.

Anorexia is more than just a desire to look good or be accepted. Teens with these diseases are looking for more than just a perfect body. Anorexia is a complex psychological disorder that is linked to severe depression and low self-esteem.

Symptoms of Bulimia:

Uncontrollable eating (binge eating).
Dieting, fasting and vomiting as weight control measures.
Visiting the bathroom often after eating –usually to purge.
Heartburn, indigestion or sore throat.
Being obssessive about body weight.
Mood changes and depression.
Hoarding or hiding food.
Dental changes such as loss of enamel, cavities and abrasions –due to frequent vomiting.
Dehydration and electrolyte loss.
Bowel, kidney and liver damage.
Irregular heartbeat and possible cardiac arrest.

Teens with bulimia eat very large amounts of food and then induce vomiting to remove the food from their bodies. They are not comfortable or happy with their self and body image.

Most appear to be of normal weight, which can make the disorder difficult to spot, but some are underweight or overweight. Some sufferers also abuse drugs and alcohol. Bear in mind that many obese people have binge eating disorder but this is not the same as Bulumia.

Who gets Anorexia and Bulimia?

Around 75% of girls are not happy about their weight or feel they are too fat. Anorexia occurs only in 1% of girls worldwide. Do bear in mind that while eating disorders are more common in girls they also affect teen boys.

About 90% of sufferers are girls between 12 and 25 (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill). Fewer than 10% are boys or men. It is more prevalent in groups that value slim physiques such as athletes, dancers or models. As already mentioned eating disorders may be masked in seeking treatment for acne, skin problems, tooth decay etc. just as an adult might.

What causes eating disorders?

It is not known exactly why one person will develop an eating disorder and another won’t. In two thirds of cases dieting can trigger the disease, but this is not the only important trigger mechanism. Most girls and boys with eating disorders have low self and body image or co-existing emotional disorders like anxiety and depression.

How dangerous are eating disorders?

The effects of both Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia can be very damaging to the general health. They can even cause death. Diuretics (water pills), laxatives, and weight loss pills can be very damaging to the body’s organs. Syrup of ipecac is often used to induce vomiting and is also deadly if used in excess. Very low body weight on its own offers some life-threatening complications.

Some effects are minor such as skin, hair problems and back acne, for which treatment might be sought. Most teenagers do not need any type of diet, except a healthy one. If your teen is overweight good eating habits and exercise is usually all that is needed to bring the problem under control.

The body mass index (BMI) of a teen is more important than calorie and pound counting. A body mass index below the 5th percentile for the child’s age and sex can be considered underweight. Consult BMI tables for more information.

How to help your teen cope with an eating disorder:

Teens can be helped to avoid falling prey to unhealthy obsessions with food or weight by learning early on to associate healthy eating with good health and self-love. Avoid excessive focus on weight within the family and place the emphasis on lifestyle changes not dieting.

If you suspect that your teen has an eating disorder, use "I” statements and make sure he or she understands that you are concerned not judging. It is important to LISTEN. The average teen finds it hard to share emotions, and these teens are especially blocked or sensitive.

In Anorexia nervosa it is very important that some weight is regained as soon as possible so this should be an important goal of treatment. To do this, teens will need to overcome fears and perceptions in a therapeutic setting. In most cases any eating disorder is best dealt with at a clinic or facility especially tailored for this.

Concerned parents can call the National Eating Disorders Association’s Toll-Free Information and Referral HelpLine at 1-800-931-2237.

If you uncover that your child does have an eating disorder he or she needs to be evaluated as soon as possible. Eating disorders need to be properly diagnosed by medical and psychiatric professionals. They always need medical attention.

The National Institute of Mental Health has an online brochure on eating disorders that discusses current research.

Eating Disorders will also provide parents with information. Teens should read: Eating Disorders: Facts for Teens.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Sue Scheff: Teenage Acne - How can it Effect your Teen - By Johanna Curtis (Skin Care Specialist)


95% of teenagers in American suffer from acne. The effects of this common problem can be truly devastating. It isn’t just the scars that are left by a bad case of teenage acne; there are many emotional effects as well. Some of which can follow you for life!

Whether it’s right or wrong, we teach our children that the way we look matters. With this societal dogma come many issues when, as a teen, you cannot look your best. With the blemishes that come with acne, many teens experience self esteem issues. These issues may range from being mildly self-conscious to a complete withdrawal from the world. There are actually many emotional issues that come from our need to look our best combined with a case of acne.

Some of the more common issues that result from teenage acne include:

Reduced Self-Confidence
Social Dysfunction
Poor Self Image
Clinical Depression
Problems with Anxiety
Facial Scaring

The reality of it is that even a mild case of acne can greatly affect the way you live. A few simple blemishes can leave you feeling completely self conscious. For those with more severe cases, they often face ridicule which leads to shame and embarrassment.

With all of this it brings us to the main question: What can be done for teenage acne? Luckily there is an answer. A teenage acne solution that will work where other teen acne medications have failed! Before we talk about the real solution, let’s talk about traditional acne treatments. Likely you have tried some of these products, and it’s very likely you found that they simply didn’t perform to your expectations.

The Problem with Other Teenage Acne Medicines:

Store Bought Solutions don’t Work:

When it comes to curing acne, everyone claims to have the best solution. The problem with most of these products is that they are hard on your skin, and the results are minimal at best. Worse than that, even when the store bought solutions do seem to be working – the effect is only superficial; These products do not get to the root of the problem. As soon as you quit using that commercial acne treatment, guess what happens: your acne comes back!

Prescription Acne Medicines are Dangerous:

Then there are the prescription acne medicines. Although these may work better than that cheap solution you bought at your department store, the side effects of many of these medicines include: damaged skin, skin irritation, nausea, skin burns, and even liver damage! The prescription medicines for acne are quite scary, and for some people, quite dangerous as well. Imagine needing a liver transplant because you were trying to get rid of a few zits!

Laser Treatments Will Cost You Thousands:

Another method for treating teenage acne, that produces varied results, is laser treatment. With this type of treatment lasers are used to remove blemishes. Some people have had okay results with laser treatments, while many others claim the minimal results were not worth the price. Which brings us to the big problem with laser treatment: You will spend thousands of dollars, and there is no guarantee of any result at all! To make matters worse, some people have claimed that their skin was burned or scarred from laser treatments.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Sue Scheff : “A Parent’s Guide to the Teen Brain”. This new site is designed to help parents decode teen behavior and connect with their kids.


The Partnership for a Drug Free America to Hold a Virtual Press Conference Announcing Launch of “A Parent’s Guide to the Teen Brain”

- New Site to Help Parents Decode Teen Behavior and Connect with their Kids
- Release of the 20th annual Partnership Attitude Tracking Study

WHAT: The Partnership for a Drug Free America will debut their newest online parenting tool: “A Parent’s Guide to the Teen Brain.” The site launch also coincides with the release of the 20th annual Partnership Attitude Tracking Study (PATS), a survey of parents’ attitudes about drugs and alcohol.

WHY: For every parent of a teenager who has ever wondered “who is this kid?” the website aims to make answering that question easier. Designed to help parents navigate the confusing, often frustrating teen years, “A Parent’s Guide to the Teen Brain” translates recent scientific findings that shed light on how brain development shapes teens’ behavior and personalities into easy-to-understand tips and tools for parents.

The site explains that the human brain takes 25 years to fully develop, with areas responsible for complex judgment and decision-making maturing last. Through video, humorous interactive segments, role-playing and advice from experts, parents learn how adolescent brain development explains the “normal” teen behaviors that often confound parents—impulsiveness, rebellion, high emotions and risk-taking, especially with drugs and alcohol—and how to use this new information to connect with their teens.

The 2007 PATS study shows that as kids become teenagers, their parents need for information and help talking about drugs and alcohol peaks, and parents’ confidence in their ability to keep kids from using drugs and alcohol begins to wane.

WHO: A distinguished panel of experts will participate in a discussion about “A Parent’s
Guide to the Teen Brain including:
• Steve Pasierb: President and Chief Executive Officer of the Partnership for a Drug Free America
• Ken Winters, Ph.D.: director of the Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research, a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota, and a Senior Scientist with the Treatment Research Institute, Philadelphia, PA.
• Tara Paterson: certified parenting coach, mother of three, founder of the Mom’s Choice Awards (which honor excellence in family friendly media, products and services), author of the upcoming book Raising Intuitive Children and contributor to

Highlights of the Virtual Press Conference will include:
• Detailed explanation/run through of “A Parents Guide to the Teen Brain”
• Explanation about the links between teen behavior and the physiological changes happening in the teen brain
• Explanation of findings from the 2007 PATS study
• Discussion of how to apply the scientific findings about the teen brain to real life
• Valuable insight from a parent and parenting coach


WHEN: June 11, 2008 from 10:00 am – 11:00 am

To download video of the webcast in broadcast quality format (available June 11th from 10am – 11am ET) please visit the coordinates below:

Galaxy 26 Transponder 1 C BAND Analog
Downlink frequency is 3720 Vertica

Beta copies can be requested after the event, but will require additional time for delivery.

Media Contacts: Judy Klein, o: 212-251-1204, m: 917-282-9352, e:
Paul Costiglio, o: 212-973-3530, m: 917-686-8697, e:

For more information about the Partnership for a Drug-Free America, visit
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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) Summer Reading for Parents and Teens

Summer is almost here and what a better time to catch up on relaxation and reading!

Go to your local library with your kids or a bookstore and find some educational and fun books to read. Health Communications Inc. offers a wide variety of wonderful books for both parents and kids today.

Also review for great reading!

Monday, June 2, 2008

Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) Parent Connect

A new online program called Parent Connect allows parents to check their children's grades step by step — long before a report card is printed.

But is the technological advance an ace for students and teachers or a hindrance that allows helicopter parents to hover?

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) ADHD Teens - Room To Bloom

By ADDitude Magazine

10 ways for protective parents to step back and allow their ADHD Teens to Grow..

I saw Donny for an evaluation shortly after his eleventh birthday. Like many parents, his mother, Christine, reacted to his diagnosis with mixed feelings: sadness that her son was not "perfect" and that the attention deficit disorder (ADD ADHD) wouldn't go away - and concern about the implications for his future. She hoped that the treatment plan we devised - a combination of academic accommodations, therapy, and medication - would improve their day-to-day lives. Mostly, she was determined to do whatever was necessary to help her son.

Christine became the boy's champion, protector, and advocate. She coordinated with Donny's teachers, school counselors, soccer coaches, piano teachers, and the parents of his friends to make sure that they understood his needs and treated him fairly. She attended IEP meetings and helped shape his academic plan. Morning, homework, and bedtime routines were established to structure life at home. The bottom line? Donny thrived.

Read entire article here: