Doctor's orders: Go outside

Posted at 6:00 AM, Aug 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-01 11:23:29-04

Over the past few decades, kids have increasingly been drawn to technology, be it TV, iPads or cell phones. Article after article talks of how technology is taking over kids' playtime.

Now the medical community has had enough, and they're doing something about it. Doctors are prescribing parents to go back to the basics, writing out "Outdoor Rx," which trains pediatricians to write prescriptions for patients to participate in outdoor activities.

"I guess I'm surprised that that's a prescription. I think it's a good thing obviously but it's kind of sad. I guess that's got to that point that you have to prescribe it," said Monica Dieter, as she was as taking a walk through Lakewood Park with her sister and their kids.

She says at least once a day, she's determined to have her kids play outside for an hour or more.

Physicians say that's the right idea.

In cities like Boston and Philadelphia, doctors are now writing out an actual prescription for kids to get moving.

It's all in effort to cut down on the spike in childhood obesity and diabetes.

Here in Ohio, the CDC reports 13 percent of our kids are obese and 15 percent are overweight.

That's why the idea is starting to catch on here in Cleveland as well.

"You shouldn't have to wait until they're in an organized sport and you're sitting up in a stand somewhere for your child to be out playing," said Dr. Lolita McDavid, Medical Director of UH Rainbow Babies & Children Hospital.

Dr. McDavid also said parents are kids' biggest influences, so typically if they're inactive, their kids will be too.

Her remedy is for parents to find a way to get outside with them and get active as well.