"Most babies who have colic outgrow it by 3 months. The worst cases can last 9 months, at which point parents should be awarded a gold medal"
Critical to parents surviving this time is making sure they get an hour or two break every day from the crying. Leave the baby with a sitter and go out to dinner, Lester says. Colic can drive a wedge into the parent/child relationship at a critical period in bonding, he adds. It's normal to feel angry, guilty and even resentful when you're faced with a screaming baby for hours on end.
| |NOTHING kills the bliss of being a new mother quite like colic, a condition marked by hours of constant crying that afflicts 25 percent of all babies.
Experts say they routinely see mothers near the end of their ropes, wondering what they did to cause their baby so much misery, and that study after study has shown no known specific causes. Even the Mayo Clinic
in Minneapolis says numerous studies have failed to find a cause for all that wailing.
It's not allergies, lactose intolerance, maternal anxiety, spicy food, rich food or the birth order of the child. It's also not mom's fault. Colic can occur equally in boys and girls and the number of children afflicted has remained constant over the years.
Brown University in the US has a colic clinic that families go to for help after exhausting every other option. It offers medical and mental health professionals to the families.
"We treat colic as a family issue," says Barry Lester, director of the Brown Center for the Study of Children at Risk
. "The thing to remember is this will end."
There are a couple of tricks to figuring out if your baby has colic. The first is what Dr. Richard Shannon
, a family practitioner in Columbus, Ga., calls the Rule of Threes:
- Baby is less than 3 months old
- Baby cries for three or more hours at a time
- Baby cries for three or more days a week
- Baby's crying occurs for more than three weeks
Meanwhile, the symptoms for colic include:
- Flushed face
- Balled fists
- Furrowed brow
- Legs drawn up
"Some parents swear by putting the baby in the car seat and going for a drive, or placing the child in a carrier on top of a clothes dryer while it's running to calm the child"
| |Researchers are investigating whether modifying breastfeeding mothers' diets could help ease colic in their babies.
The causes of colic, which produces persistent crying in otherwise healthy babies, remain unknown but one theory is that foods consumed by breastfeeding mums could be triggering allergic or intolerant responses in the infant.
Mums are often told to avoid broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, chocolate, onion and cow's milk, although there is limited scientific evidence that these foods cause colic.
The University of Queensland's Children's Nutrition Research Centre will compare a behavioural intervention for colic with four special maternal diets.
Researchers hope the study will resolve whether mothers' diets are associated with colic in breastfed babies.
The centre is seeking mothers of colicky or unsettled babies who are exclusively breastfed and younger than four months of age for the study.How to Soothe Your Colicky Baby? Click Here
"Researchers hope this study will resolve whether mothers' diets are associated with colic in breastfed babies"
Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie has announced that the state government would introduce in the future a bill to reshape the altruistic surrogacy law.
THE QUEENSLAND government will ban single people and same-sex couples from having a child through surrogacy, in a bombshell move announced during a fiery overnight debate on watering down same-sex civil unions.
Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie has announced that the state government would introduce in the future a bill to reshape the altruistic surrogacy law.
Mr Bleijie said the Newman government's law would be similar to the one proposed by the Liberal National Party's Lawrence Springborg several years ago, and would repeal Surrogacy Act provisions dealing with single people, same-sex couples, or any de facto couple that had been together for fewer than two years.
"That was a clear commitment many years ago when that debate originally took place," Mr Bleijie said of the future surrogacy changes.
Altruistic surrogacy is the process by which a woman carries a baby for another person or couple, for no payment. The changes would restrict access to heterosexual couples only.
A leading Perth paediatrician is urging WA parents to reduce their kids’ “screen time”.
THE NATURAL environment is being replaced by a digital world for today's children and is at risk of never being re-discovered, a prominent Perth doctor has warned.
Dr David Roberts said the increasing reliance on technology as entertainment for children had seen a rapid, disturbing decline in outdoor play.
Dr Roberts, chief executive of Nature Play WA, said parents were also partly to blame by restricting their children's outdoor activities out of fear that they may come to harm.
"There is a television in every second child's bedroom, and then the ubiquitous hand-held device to help them tolerate the perceived boredom of the still, the quiet times"
Leading WA paediatrician David Roberts said the increasing reliance on technology as entertainment for children had seen a rapid, disturbing decline in outdoor play.
Speaking at the launch of a new outdoor education centre at Kings Park, Dr Roberts said the way children were being raised had changed more rapidly than any time in human history.
"Physical activity has always been about play outdoors, and this is being lost. There are many causes, but in the past two generations, the principal culprit has been electronic screen exposure," he said.
"The impact upon children of this cultural change is seen in their health and psychological development."
Dr Roberts, a consultant paediatrician and former Australian Medical Association WA branch president, said the trend became evident when he asked children to make three "magic wishes" when taking a medical history.
"With alarming regularity, they devote at least two and often all three wishes to electronic screens," he said.
"Likewise there is a television in every second child's bedroom, and then the ubiquitous hand-held device to help them tolerate the perceived boredom of the still, the quiet times."
He said while children from previous generations discovered the natural world as a virtue of childhood, "that is no longer the case, and for our culture, it probably will never be rediscovered."
"And attempts to simply wind the clock back to the childhood experience so many of us enjoyed is simply unattainable," he said.
Dr Roberts said society must find new ways to enable children to engage with the outdoors, and said the new facilities at Kings Park were a "good start."
The education centre includes 20 "living classrooms", such as tree logs for seating under shady trees, a jetty in the Water Corporation Wetland and a concrete-lined fire pit facility for Aboriginal story telling.
A report from the University of WA, commissioned last year for the state government, found electronic screen use, such as watching television or DVDs, and using computers, video games and portable devices, was the most common leisure activity of youth in Australia.
It found a large majority of children and adolescents in Australia exceed the recommended maximum of two hours a day of screen use for leisure, and the reduction in time spent outdoors was resulting in negative outcomes, such as obesity, poor sleep habits, loneliness and depression.
THE outdoor natural environment at the old Ithaca Tafe site at 29 Nathan Avenue Ashgrove is about to be transformed into an early childhood training facility unlike most in Australia.
Queensland early learning group, C&K Preschooling Professionals, are hard at work transforming the site into the C&K’s Centre for Excellence.The training facility will be a key feature of the centre.
C&K boss Barrie Elvish (pictured bottom left) said the nature kindergarten approach they are using in Ashgrove was well
established in Germany and Scandinavia and was a growing influence on early childhood education thinking in the United Kingdom and North America.
“The plans will incorporate the indigenous flora and fauna in a large space that encourages children to explore and climb, make their own special places, cook their own produce and possibly even have sleep-outs with their parents overnight.”
"There’s lots of evidence that being outdoors benefits children both in terms of physical health and their general wellbeing”
“The childcare centre will be part of a wider early childhood training facility at the C&K Centre for Excellence that will service the sector throughout Australia and internationally,” Mr Elvish said.
In addition to the Australian first early childhood training facility, the C&K Centre for Excellence will include the C&K College of Early Childhood, training facilities, research and innovation unit and administration.
Work began in May 2012 cleaning up the site, removing asbestos and diseased vegetation before beginning the substantial refurbishment of the existing buildings. Rejuvenating the grounds and gardens is a key priority.
The existing C&K head office located at 14 Edmondstone Street, Newmarket Brisbane since 1977 has been sold. The office spaces are no longer viable for an organisation that manages almost 400 early childhood services across Queensland.
C&K and the Hear and Say Centre signed an agreement to be co-owners of the site late last year.
The C&K Centre for Excellence will span across five buildings on the site.
C&K expects that the building project will be completed by March 2013.
BOYS DAY OUT ... Baby Zac and his dad Ian Anderson, of Ashgrove West Brisbane, check out the C&K Preschooling Professionals’ newly acquired Nathan Street premises where it plans to establish an early childhood training facility. The project is expected to be complete by early next year.
Linguistics expert Kate Burridge said it was not surprising children experiment with swearing as lively language is very much part of our vernacular.
What is Your Experience? Do your littlies swear like sailors?
Tell us your story!
AN online survey has revealed 42 per cent of children first use bad language by three years of age.
By kindergarten, more than 90 per cent of children have uttered their first rude word, leaving parents in shock, a survey has found.
Swear words starting with "f" and "s" were the most common first naughty word. Bloody, used by 5 per cent of children as their first bad word, ranks as the third most common. The two most popular expletives each was expressed by 28 per cent of children.
Linguistics expert Kate Burridge said it was not surprising children experiment with swearing as lively language is very much part of our vernacular. "They soon learn they get maximum attention (with a curse word)", Professor Burridge, of Monash University, said.
"In the old days they might have had their mouths washed out with soap or been sent to the bedroom with no supper but they get maximum attention and learn how potent these words are."
Parents admit their children often heard their first curse at home (52.7 per cent) but the overwhelming majority (78.4 per cent) actively discourage swearing. The second most common place for children to pick up obscenities was in the playground at school or pre-school (48.2 per cent) followed by television (31 per cent).
"By kindergarten, more than 90 per cent of children have uttered their first rude word, leaving parents in shock"
Sitting in the back seat of the car is another good place for kids to learn foul language (15 per cent).
Parents who generally refrain from swearing admit stressful driving situations have caused them unintentionally to use bad language in front of their child (9.7 per cent).
Etiquette expert June Dally-Watkins said the level of swearing on TV and in public was unacceptable. "I think it is disgusting and should be taboo," she said. "Parents should not permit it. Swearing is ugly. There is too much bad language going on and too much on television."
Ms Dally-Watkins said parents posting clips of swearing toddlers on YouTube was horrifying. Most parents agree with her.
Professor Burridge said foul language was not considered as bad as racist, sexist or religionist language. He advised parents did not need to panic if their child swore. "It is probably best to treat these as ordinary words," she said. "They have always been an important part of the vernacular."
AUSTRALIAN toddlers will be screened for mental illness under a new, federal government funded program that some critics fear may medicalise normal childhood behaviour.
THE Healthy Kids Check - starting on July 1 - will be predominantly conducted by GPs, who will refer children with troubling behaviour to psychologists or paediatricians.
The program is expected to identify more than 27,000 children who the government believes will benefit from additional support, but who some doctors say will be wrongly labelled as having a mental illness.
While the aim is to prevent mental illnesses - 50 per cent of which start in childhood - the Australian Medical Association and some mental health experts fear children may be misdiagnosed or given psychiatric drugs unnecessarily.
''We have to be careful we don't medicalise normal behaviour and that's a real caution with children,'' the AMA president, Steve Hambleton, said. ''There are genuine kids who need extra support to help them integrate into normal kindergartens and classrooms and a lot of the funding for that is driven by diagnoses so there's a perverse incentive to diagnose conditions like autism. There are kids who need it but we don't want to make normal kids abnormal.''
Frank Oberklaid, director of the centre for community child health at Melbourne's Royal Children's Hospital and chair of the expert committee appointed by the Minister for Mental Health, Mark Butler, to develop the check, said their priority was to ''first do no harm''.
''The critics are worried that we're going to slap diagnoses on three-year-olds and treat them with drugs but this is not the point of the exercise,'' Professor Oberklaid said. ''Many parents and preschool teachers face behaviours in children that are challenging and cause stress and distress. We also know that thankfully many of these are transient but we can't predict in a particular child which ones are going to disappear and which ones are going to go on and cause mental health problems. What we're really doing is having a more systematic way of finding out those kids who are causing difficulties and doing something about it.''
"The program is expected to identify more than 27,000 children who the government believes will benefit from additional support, but who some doctors say will be wrongly labelled as having a mental illness"
CHILDCARE workers union United Voice says in the 12 months to April 2012, childcare fees rose from an average of 63.21 to 70.29 a day.
United Voice assistant national secretary Sue Lines says families need affordable, quality early childhood education and care, with a professional workforce to deliver it.
Karen Jackman, a parent and editor of parenting newspaper and website KindyNews, said the pressures on parents are massive, while childcare centres and kindergartens worked very hard to provide the best quality care they can for children, sometimes under difficult conditions.
"Working parents tell us all the time about the pressures they are under to meet rising costs of childcare," she said. "It is also very difficult for the child care providers as wages still remain low compared to other professions despite carrying huge a responsibility caring for young children."
Minister for Childcare Kate Ellis says the government is providing record levels of financial support, investing 22.3 billion in early childhood education and care over the next four years and shouldering about half of any increases in fees.
The ACT topped the list for the most expensive childcare at $82.43 a day - up nine per cent.
THINK PINK ... Madison, 3, has her face painted by artist Nerine Hooper at this year's Hyundai Playgroup Children’s Festival. Held at the RNA showgrounds, it was was Playgroup Queensland’s signature event for National Playgroup Week 2012, Hyundai has stepped in again to support Playgroup Qld by offering an amazing new car as a prize in the Playgroup Queensland Art Union2012!
HOW would you like to drive a beautiful new car while simultaneously helping thousands of children all over Queensland?
No, you don’t have to don your superhero cape and tights for this challenge, mum and dad!
Playgroup Qld are launching the Hyundai and Playgroup Qld 2012 Art Union
with the major prize being a Hyundai iMax, worth more than $46,000!
And it is up for grabs for a lucky Playgroup Qld supporter!
“We are thrilled to launch the first public Playgroup Qld Art Union,” Kimberley Miller, Playgroup Qld’s Event Co-ordinator said.
“As a small state-based organisation, chances are very good for the public to win some great prizes. With tickets selling for $5 each, it’s a great opportunity to suppo rt a local charity – and possibly win a car!”
As well as a car, other prizes include holidays, toy packages and entertainment packages, with the total prize pool of 10 prizes valued at over $56,000.
Proceeds from the ticket sales will contribute toward establishing playgroups, improving playgroup facilities, buying toys and equipment, expanding Playgro up Qld’s early intervention programs for vulnerable families and providing parent resources and support.
With over 1,000 Playgroup sessions run each week across the state, many lives have been touched by this not-forprofit organisation.
| |Top 3 Competition Prizes are:
- 1st - Hyundai iMax worth more than $46,000
- 2nd - Educational Experience Toys and Equipment worth $3,000
- 3rd - ABC Roadshow Entertainment Package worth $2,000
Tickets are $5 each and available on Playgroup Qld’s website or call 1800 171 882.
Each ticket sale allows the purchaser to nominate their favourite Playgroup and the 20 Playgroups with the most nominations will also win great prizes.
The raffle will be drawn on 2 November 2012, and winners will be notified by phone or email.
POWER OF PLAY... The first Playgroup Qld Art Union is about to be launched and there are many prizes up for grabs as well as the chance to help more children discover the power of play.