Book Review: Understanding Your Child’s Health


understanding_your_childs_healthBeginning over thirty years ago, the frum community in Boro Park has turned to pediatrician Dr. Susan Schulman to administer to the health and well being of their children. Since that time, her earlier patients have grown and raised families of their own. They, in turn entrusted the well-being of their children to the doctor whom they had grown to know and trust.  By now, Dr. Schulman finds herself treating the grandchildren of her first patients. While there have been many medical breakthroughs and developments since her first generation, and Dr. Schulman’s expertise has only grown, a sense of mission and a philosophy of preventive medicine continue to be the cornerstones of her practice. 

Now, Dr. Schulman’s expertise, dedication and advice, can spread beyond Brooklyn. Families everywhere can join Dr. Schulman’s thousands of satisfied patients; knowing that their children benefit from the knowledge of a world class physician who specializes in dealing with families just like theirs. Why? Because Dr. Schulman has written a book. The book, entitled Understanding Your Child’s Health is distilled from Dr. Schulman’s decades of experience attending to the health of thousands of children.

Understanding Your Child’s Health is divided into sections, beginning with The First Two Years, which includes chapters on breastfeeding, infant sleeping, safety and immunizations, among other topics. There are sections on nutrition, exercise, child safety, and common pediatric conditions. Each section is divided into chapters a few pages long, concise enough for reference, and informative enough to give the reader a feel for the topic.

Notably, Understanding Your Child’s Health does not always toe the medical establishment line. While Dr. Schulman’s advice is often mainstream, it is clear that her ideas are built more on her experience than anything else, such as when she describes being spared the incidences of life-threatening bacterial meningitis since the development of the HIB vaccine. In that vein, the book also offers advice on topics and conditions that are endemic to the frum community, including Shabbos and Yom Tov health, Purim advice (and no, Dr. Schulman does not categorically oppose drinking!), and exercise, especially for yeshiva bachurim. She does not shy away from thorny issues; one chapter offers perspective on smoking in yeshiva, and there is a chapter on child personal abuse, an indication that in her experience, it is a topic that requires awareness.

Rabbi Abraham Twerski had this to say about Understanding Your Child’s Health:  “It is a book that should be read by…all parents….Parents must provide their children with the means to develop healthy bodies and healthy personalities. This is a formidable challenge…Dr. Schulman’s book is an invaluable guide for today’s parents”.

Dr. Schulman’s expertise and dedication have made her an icon in Boro Park. Understanding Your Child’s Health will ensure that you are providing your family with the expert medical knowledge and child care they deserve.         

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  1. I really enjoyed the book. Dr. Schulman is a realist; her advice is quite practical. And her advice on how to be healthy is doable. For example, she addresses how to eat yom tov meals and not gain uncontrollable amounts. She isn’t my doctor but she must have a great bedside manner — for parents. She tells you how to NOT worry about fever, etc. This book is practical, I cannot say enough about it. And no, nobody told me to write this! I just saw this presss release so I wanted to chime in that I was pleasantly surprised by the consistently good stuff that I found.