Charlotte Smarty Pants

Charlotte Smarty Pants – Daily Scoop for Savvy Charlotte Moms

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June 23, 2017

From Invisible Fence® Brand: Tips for keeping your dog cool this summer AND Charlotte’s best dog parks

By our Smarty friends at Invisible Fence® Brand. Click here to get $150 off a premium outdoor package.

Let’s put this in perspective: animals like you and me, we’ve got sweat glands for days. Mammals have not one but two types of secretory skin gland. The eccrine gland, the one tasked with heat regulation, is basically all over the place in our bodies—the palm alone boasting something like 370 sweat glands per square centimeter. That’s a lot of cooling power.

Dogs? Well, their “palms” are pretty much the only place they have sweat glands. This fact, come late summer, may well provoke a question in a kind-hearted canine caretaker like yourself: How do I help my dog stay cool?

We posed this question to our friend Cheryl Meyers, DVM, a Seattle-based relief veterinarian and friend of Invisible Fence® Brand. Here’s her 5 principles of hydration for our differently thermoregulated companions.

Calculate your dog’s water/weight ratio. Ok, so most days you don’t need a calculator. You “follow your nose” and manage to keep yourself and your dependents fed and nourished. No sweat. But on a sweltering day loaded down with activities, the scientific method might make the difference between a mild case of dehydration in your dog and a moderate-to-severe one. Luckily, calculating your pet’s water-to-weight ratio is easy. Read More →

June 19, 2017

Take the Library with you on vacation

CML June Blog Post Image

By our Smarty friends at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

Summertime is a time to get away, relax and have fun! Planning a road trip, or flying to a tropical locale this summer with your family? Be sure to take Charlotte Mecklenburg Library with you to add to the fun.

Here are just a few ways to enjoy the Library while you travel this summer.

Enjoy some beach reads.

Relax with a good book, whether you are at the beach literally or just in your mind. Check out a copy of one of this season’s notable beach reads, and don’t forget your sunscreen! Read More →

June 15, 2017

From the Smarty Health Corner and CEENTA: All About Audiologists

By our Smarty friends at Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates, P.A.

Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates, P.A. has nearly 100 healthcare providers with different jobs and titles. What do these titles mean and what care does everyone offer? This is the third in a series explaining who our providers are and what they do to keep you and your family healthy.

What is an Audiologist?

Audiologists are medical professionals – usually doctors – who test, diagnose, and treat hearing loss in babies, children, and adults. They also fit patients with hearing aids or other hearing-enhancing instruments, and diagnose other hearing- and ear-related conditions. At CEENTA they also work closely with the ear, nose, and throat doctors to provide a continuity of care if more serious medical concerns are detected during an audiology exam. Unlike hearing instrument specialists, who primarily do just hearing aid fittings, audiologists also can perform full diagnostic evaluations of a patient’s complete auditory system. This means they can diagnose the cause of hearing loss and determine if it needs medical attention before the patient gets hearing aids.Swanson

How does someone become an Audiologist?

After receiving an undergraduate degree, future audiologists get a master’s degree or doctorate in audiology through a graduate program. In addition to the classroom portion of the degree, the third and/or fourth year of their program involves getting hands-on experience through an externship program. In fact, CEENTA has its own externship, where fourth-year students work with patients in three separate educational tracks. Students rotate through clinics for cochlear implants, pediatric audiology, tinnitus retraining therapy, vestibular testing electrophysiology, diagnostics, hearing aids, and practice management. CEENTA is currently accepting applications for the 2018-19 program, and interested students can email Audiologist Tracy Swanson, AuD, F-AAA, at Read More →

May 30, 2017

From the Smarty Health Corner and Levine Children’s Hospital: Early Peanut Eaters May Avoid Allergies Later On

This post was originally posted on the Carolinas Healthcare System blog. A big thanks to them for allowing us to post it here for our readers!

It seems like common sense to avoid foods you’re allergic to. But new evidence reveals that sometimes, it might be better to do the exact opposite.

A study published in The New England Journal of Medicine suggests that exposing children to peanuts at a young age could actually prevent the development of a peanut allergy later in life. Researchers fed peanut products to infants between 4 and 11 months old who were at high risk of developing a peanut allergy. Compared to a high-risk group of infants who weren’t fed peanut products, those who ate peanut products were far less likely to be allergic to the food by the time they turned 5.

Dr. Ekta Shah, a pediatric allergist with Carolinas HealthCare System

Dr. Ekta Shah, a pediatric allergist with Carolinas HealthCare System

Ekta Shah, MD, a pediatric allergist with Carolinas HealthCare System, thinks the researchers may be on to something. “We’ve suspected that the late introduction to peanuts is associated with a higher risk,” she says. “This is one of the first studies to demonstrate that the early introduction of an allergenic food can be beneficial.” Read More →

May 25, 2017

From our Smarty friends at Signature Pediatrics: Test Anxiety

The month of May brings beautiful weather, the promise of summer, the end of the school year, and……final exams!
It is normal to feel nervous before a test—most people do. However, for some children this normal anxiety escalates into something more intense and debilitating. And no longer is this a condition that affects only teenagers concerned about GPA’s and college. With the pressure that end of year tests like the EOG’s puts on students, many of our younger children are experiencing significant anxiety at this time of year.

Photo credit:

Photo credit:

The physical symptoms are the same as with any type of anxiety. A child may have a stomach ache or nausea, a headache, feel shaky or sweaty, or complain of a racing heart, shortness of breath or light-headedness. Symptoms can even progress to hyperventilation or a full-blown panic attack, which can make a child feel like he or she can’t breathe or is having a heart attack.

Along with these physical symptoms comes the worry and negative thoughts associated with test anxiety. Children worry about doing poorly on the test, which fuels the physical symptoms of anxiety in a vicious negative cycle. The child feels worse and worse, and the negative thoughts and worries crowding the child’s brain affect his or her ability to concentrate and think about the test questions. This can lead to poor performance on the test, which then only fuels the anxiety for the next test situation.
So, how can we help our children with test anxiety? Here are some general tips:

1. Help your child prepare for the test. For younger children, this may just mean making sure they know what to expect on test day. Just being prepared for the format of the test and what types of questions to expect will help at any age. Older children may need help learning good study skills. Read More →

May 22, 2017

This is your brain on summer: 4 reasons for summer learning, no matter your age

CML CSP Image May 2017

By our Smarty friends at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

The countdown to the sunny season has begun, and Charlotte Mecklenburg Library is gearing up to offer you Summer Break: Read, Learn, Explore from June 1-August 13.

Here are four reasons to include learning in your summer plans, no matter your age:

1) Have a little one? Summer Break is a fun toolkit to help your tot develop pre-reading skills.

Long before your child enters school, their early literacy skills begin with the primary adults in their life. So let’s start with the youngest summer learners, those ages 0-3. The Library’s Summer Break program for this age is designed to develop pre-reading skills – the skills children need to have so they start Kindergarten ready to learn (if we want to get technical, these include skills like phonological awareness, print motivation, print awareness, vocabulary, narrative skill and letter knowledge). Read More →

From the Smarty Health Corner and CEENTA: How to help your family sleep

By our Smarty friends at Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates, P.A.

Sleep is very important for a person’s health. Adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night and children need 10. However, only about a third of us get the sleep we need. May is Better Sleep Month, so if your family has difficulty sleeping, now is a good time to talk to them about what they can do to get the rest they need.

Sleep has a number of health benefits, such as healing and repairing your heart and blood vessels. Sleep also releases hormones in the bodies of children and teenagers that help them grow normally. The same hormone also boosts muscle mass and repairs cells.Abbasi

A lack of sleep, however, can lead to a number of health problems, such as raised blood pressure levels and stress hormone production. Immune systems can weaken. People can find it harder to concentrate or remember things, may have mood swings, and may be more irritable or depressed.

The same basic guidelines for getting more regular sleep each night apply to you, your children, and your parents. It’s best if you get on a regular sleep/wake schedule and sleep in dark, quiet, comfortable environments. It’s also recommended that adults drink no caffeine or alcohol later than six hours before bedtime. It’s also best to not eat heavy or spicy meals before bed. Read More →

May 19, 2017

From our friends at Pure Barre Myers Park: Say Hello to Summer with Confidence


It’s hot outside which means tank top & sundress weather! Yes (ish?!)! We all love this time of year for sure. We also know this means swimsuit season is here. Maybe your kids are already begging you to go to the pool. Maybe you’ve got a summer beach trip planned. Maybe you just want to wear tank tops with confidence. Whatever your “maybe” is, head straight to Pure Barre and turn that “maybe” into a “for sure.” You’ll be thrilled you did and your body will thank you.

Pure Barre is the fastest most effective way to change your body.

And, the time to get ready for summer is now! There is nothing better than feeling confident in your body all summer long and Pure Barre can help you make it happen. In each 55 minute Pure Barre class, you will achieve a total body workout concentrating on the areas we all struggle with most: hips, thighs, seat, abdominals, and arms.

Pure Barre Myers Park has fabulous teachers, many of them moms too! So drop in today for a class. Read More →

May 18, 2017

From the Smarty Summer Day Camp Guide: Charlotte Day Camp

By our Smarty friends at Charlotte Day Camp

Charlotte Day Camp was founded in 2011 as a cultural exploration program where campers could experience other parts of the world without having to leave Charlotte. Over the last six years, we like to think it has grown into one of Charlotte’s best summer enrichment programs.

The camp now offers three different themed programs each week for campers, and the current directors have more than 20 years of combined experience administering summer camps both in the US and internationally.

If there is one thing that makes Charlotte Day Camp stand out, it is their strong Outcomes Focus. This is not a camp that just puts activities together and hopes that the campers have a good time. There are three specific Program Outcomes that the camp is designed to achieve for every camper: Growth, Learning, and Fun.

At Charlotte Day Camp, Growth means helping campers build positive, healthy, and productive dispositions. Counselors are hired and trained to be role models who demonstrate confidence, courage, and responsibility for campers and help campers do so as well.

Learning is all about practicing skills that are critical to success in the 21st Century. Each activity at camp is designed to allow campers to practice one or more of the following skills: communication, collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, and leadership. Read More →

May 15, 2017

The First Tee of Greater Charlotte Goes to College

By our friends at the First Tee of Greater Charlotte

The spring semester of senior year is an important time for any high school student. For some it holds the final months before you truly experience independence. The First Tee of Greater Charlotte realizes the impact that going off to college can have not only on the student but on the entire family as well. The Chapter is committed to helping graduating seniors pursue their goal of higher education with financial assistance via The Rudolph-Dadey College Scholarship Fund. The scholarship was created in 2011 to honor the memory of Craig Rudolph and Kevin Dadey who served as assistant golf professionals at Ballantyne Country Club before losing their lives in a helicopter crash. The scholarship fund has continued to grow thanks in large part to an annual golf tournament held each Spring. Thanks to continued support from the community, The Rudolph-Dadey College Scholarship has aided 18 The First Tee of Greater Charlotte alumni and has plans to assist many more in the years to come.

Here is what a few of the current Rudolph-Dadey Scholars at The First Tee of Greater Charlotte have to say about how the scholarship has impacted their college career.

Matthew Hite

I feel so honored that The First Tee of Greater Charlotte has given me the scholarship to help me toward achieving my goal of becoming a golf professional. When I heard the news that I was going to receive the scholarship, I was so excited. My favorite thing about The First Tee of Greater Charlotte is that it gives everybody the chance to learn the sport no matter how much skill and knowledge the individual has with the game of golf. Read More →

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