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Michelle Crouch

Freelance Writer - health, parenting, personal finance and more

Location icon United States

I'm an award-winning writer and a former newspaper reporter with more than 20 years of experience writing for some of the nation's top consumer publications. I have a special interest in writing about health, parenting and personal finance, but editors also turn to me when they need someone who can dig deep for surprising insight or advice on any subject.

My national credits include: Reader’s Digest, Parents, Real Simple, Prevention, Dr. Oz The Good Life, Parenting, AARP, More,, The Washington Post and The New York Times. As a long-time contributing editor at Reader’s Digest, I authored dozens of so-called “secrets” stories covering subjects ranging from airline pilots to convicted burglars. Two favorites: “50 secrets a surgeon won’t tell you” and “50 secrets a waiter won’t tell you.”

I also write regularly for several Scholastic classroom magazines and for Wells Fargo's consumer-facing publications. Other corporate clients have included TIAA, Fidelity, Brighthouse Financial, USAA, Honda, WalMart and Harris Teeter.


Recent favorites

The Charlotte Ledger
The case of the $10,000 colonoscopy

Dan Hurst’s medical procedure cost thousands more than he was quoted. Despite a push for more transparency, medical pricing remains hopelessly complicated. Here's what you can do to lower your medical costs and be a smarter patient.

The Charlotte Ledger
The doctor won't see your newborn now

When you go to the hospital to have a baby, you might assume that a doctor will carefully examine your newborn after you deliver. But that's not always the case.

Scholastic Action
TikTok's Secret Star

Her Renegade dance got famous. Why didn't she? Jalaiah Harmon's quest for the credit she deserved.

Coronavirus coverage

The Charlotte Ledger
Some front-line doctors have trouble getting vaccinations

Good morning! Today is Friday, January 15, 2021. You're reading The Charlotte Ledger, an e-newsletter with local business-y news and insights for Charlotte, N.C. This post is sent to paying subscribers only.

New At-Home COVID-19 Tests Promise Results in Minutes

Antigen tests are most likely to be accurate when you're having COVID-19 symptoms, Wroblewski said. Common signs of COVID include cough, fever, fatigue, muscle aches, congestion, runny nose, loss of taste or smell, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

What to Know About Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine

A few people who received the Pfizer vaccine developed anaphylaxis, and the CDC advises health care providers not to give the vaccine to anyone with a known history of a severe allergic reaction to any ingredient in the vaccine, a standard caution for all vaccines.


Reader's Digest
How to Survive Your Next Trip to the Hospital

As many as 440,000 Americans die every year from medical errors and infections contracted in the hospital. Combined, they are the third- leading cause of death in the United States. Your best defense? Take charge of your care as much as possible.

Innovations Help Imperfect Organs Work For Transplants

Chuck Boetsch was desperate for a new pair of lungs. A rare disease was causing the set he had carried for 72 years to harden and scar. He could barely breathe. Finally, after 10 weeks on the waiting list, Boetsch got a call that a lung was available - but there was a catch.

Scholastic Choices
Generation Zzzzzzzz

Teens are getting less sleep than ever before, and experts are calling it a national health crisis. Read on to learn the shocking consequences—and real strategies for getting the rest you so desperately need.

Flying High, Landing Hard

Whether you're a cheerleader or a soccer star, the pressure to perform could be putting you in serious danger.

Scholastic Choices
Can this lunch be saved?

Mushy green beans. Questionable beef patties with fake grill lines.   Overripe fruit that the lunch lady says you have to put on your tray. We take you behind the cafeteria counter to reveal why so many school lunches are unappetizing, why you should care, and what you can do about it. 


Reader's Digest
21 Things a Burglar Won't Tell You

Is it a crime to spend money on a home security system these days? A look inside the mind of convicted burglars will help you decide.


If you're among the 164 million Americans who struggle with sleep, a friendly "Good night!" is cold comfort. It's especially galling if you've already done the obvious-cut out afternoon caffeine, closed the blinds, and put away your screens-and you still can't doze off.

Reader's Digest
40 Things Your Airplane Pilot Won't Tell You

We asked pilots from across the country to give us straight answers about maddening safety rules, inexplicable delays, the air and attitudes up there, and what really happens behind the cockpit door. What they told us will change the way you fly.


Teaching Diversity to Your Kids

When Julianne Weiner's 4-year-old son, Benjamin, started flipping out about going to preschool, she thought it was typical first-day jitters. Then he told her the reason: "I don't want a teacher with brown skin." Weiner, who is white and lives in a diverse neighborhood in Boyds, Maryland, was horrified and confused.

Scholastic Action
"I Went Viral for Being Bullied"

Lauren "Lulu" Williams was in middle school when her mom found the first bald spot on her head. "When my mom showed me, I started crying," Lulu says. "I wanted to hide." Lulu, now 16, has a condition called psoriasis (sor-EYE-uh-sis). Psoriasis causes patches of dry, scaly skin.

An Insider's Guide to Walt Disney World

It may be a place filled with magic, but pulling off a great trip to Walt Disney World is anything but child's play. Here's our best time-saving tips, money-saving strategies, and sanity-saving advice.

39 Breastfeeding Secrets Every New Mother Should Know

Nursing your baby is no easy feat. Luckily, we've rounded up the only breastfeeding tips you'll ever need, from the experts who've figured out the smartest tricks, shortcuts, and solutions. Nursing may be natural, but it's also downright difficult.

A Guide to Parental Controls By Device

Learn how to manage parental controls on iPhones, Androids, gaming systems, and every device in between to ensure anything your kid gets her hands on is safe.

Delivery Day: The New Rules of Giving Birth

Listen up, expecting moms. Childbirth isn't what it used to be -- and that's good news! We asked top ob-gyns to explain the most important improvements that you'll benefit from on delivery day.

4 New Ways to Play

Use your kid's cars, action figures, stuffed animals, and more to reinforce the skills he's learning in school. When your child begs for another Skylander or Lalaloopsy, it's easy to say no. But when she asks for a toy that helps with math, do you give in?

5 Ways to Raise a Science-Lover

Schools still aren't devoting enough resources to this critical subject, but you can bring science to life with these hands-on ideas.

How to Pay Off Your Family Credit Card Debt

The diapers, the dance lessons, the clothes... kids are expensive! Start paying off your credit card balance now with this advice from money pros and moms who have been in your shoes.

Personal Finance

Inspiring teens

Scholastic Action
My illness makes me stronger

McKenzie, 17, has a serious disease called Type 1 diabetes, but she hasn't let it hold her back.

Scholastic Action
"I take care of my abuela"

More than 1 million teens in the U.S. are caregivers. Daniel, 17, is one of them.

Scholastic Action
Changed by fire

They watched a wildfire destroy their home.

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