Parenting

What’s that in your nose?

New Children’s Book Helps Parents Keep Unwanted Objects Out of Little Noses and Ears

"New Children’s Book Helps Parents Keep Unwanted Objects Out of Little Noses and Ears"When children put small objects into their noses and ears, this innocent action can lead to discomfort and parental panic—not to mention serious health risks and medical bills! Fortunately, a new children’s book by Dr. Jerald Altman helps parents explain the no-nos and risks to their kids in a positive, engaging way.

If you’re the parent of a young child, you’ve probably shrieked, “No! Don’t put that there!” as you watched your youngster guide a coin, a piece of cereal, or another small object toward her nostril or ear. You may have even felt a moment of sheer panic when you caught a glimpse of an unidentified object stuffed unbelievably far into a nose or ear. Wouldn’t it be nice if there were a way to prevent your kids from sticking and stuffing things where they don’t belong?

Don’t Stick Sticks Up Your Nose! Don’t Stuff Stuff In Your Ears!, a new children’s book by Dr. Jerald Altman, was written with exactly that purpose in mind.

“As a parent myself, I know that young children tend to be most receptive to new rules and guidelines when the discussion is fun, memorable, and doesn’t feel like a lecture,” says Dr. Altman, coauthor along with Richard Jacobson of the children’s book Don’t Stick Sticks Up Your Nose! Don’t Stuff Stuff In Your Ears!. “When I realized that there were no children’s books dealing with the subject of sticking small objects in noses and ears, I decided to team up with a creative friend and fill that void.”

In his practice, Dr. Altman has seen it all in little noses and ears: rocks, candy, paper, peanuts, crayons, buttons, plant burrs, and beads…and the list just gets stranger from there, he says. Of course, when kids put foreign objects into their noses and ears, they don’t have any idea of the potential dangers—usually, they’re simply curious! Unfortunately, plugged up ears and noses can cause injury, not to mention a lot of anxiety and healthcare costs for parents.

“Foreign (and often dirty) objects in a child’s nose or ears can lead to serious health risks ranging from infections to blocked airways to punctured eardrums…things neither you nor your child wants to experience,” warns Dr. Altman. “And, of course, there’s the expense: co-pays, deductibles, and at times, general anesthesia.”

Of course, terms like “health risk,” “deductible,” and “anesthesia” don’t mean much to a youngster—and children under four are most at risk of getting in trouble with small objects. That’s why Dr. Altman and Jacobson’s two-time national award-winning book is so valuable—it explains the matter in entertaining terms that two- to six-year-olds can understand, while keeping the conversation positive.

Don’t Stick begins, “On your face are choices: your eyes, ears, mouth, and nose. When you ate your breakfast, we all know which you chose.” Over the next 22 pages, this engaging board book uses clever rhymes and colorful illustrations to teach children that noses and ears are for smelling and hearing—not for storing small objects. Don’t Stick is also in every electronic format, with interactive apps coming soon.

“Remember, prevention and awareness are key,” concludes Dr. Altman. “Trust me, I’d much rather you and your child read my book than visit me in my office!” 
Dr. Jerald Altman is the coauthor of Don’t Stick Sticks Up Your Nose! Don’t Stuff Stuff In Your Ears! He is an otolaryngologist-head and neck surgeon (ENT doctor) and was recognized as a Phoenix Top Doc in 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013. Dr. Altman loves taking care of children’s ear, nose, and throat issues. After publishing many peer-reviewed journal articles, he recognized the need for a children’s book dealing with a common problem in his practice.

Dr. Altman is married with three children and lives in a suburb of Phoenix. He enjoys woodturning as a hobby and climbs Camelback Mountain regularly.

Richard Jacobson is the coauthor of Don’t Stick Sticks Up Your Nose! Don’t Stuff Stuff In Your Ears! He studied architecture at Yale University and has spent most of his adult life designing interiors, landscapes, tablescapes, clothing, and just about anything else that can be fashioned in a creative way. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona, but since he travels extensively to play in duplicate bridge tournaments, he climbs considerably fewer mountains than his coauthor. Jacobson enjoys training dogs, birds, and topiaries in his spare time.

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