Babies & Children
The emotional, social and physical development of children has a direct effect on their overall development and on the adult they will become. This is why understanding your child’s developmental needs is so important: to maximise their future wellbeing. Below are a range of information resources that will assist in ensuring your child grows into a happy, healthy and strong adult. On this page you will find a range of information resources to help on the following topics:
|You and Your Baby||Babies and Eating: New Foods and Allergies||Living with Toddlers||Toddler Toilet Training|
|Helping Baby Sleep||Ten Ways to Help Baby Sleep||Bed-wetting and Night Terrors||Minimising the Risk of SIDS|
You & Your Baby
Having a baby changes your life. There is a new little person to get to know, love and care for. New mums and dads may not have had a lot to do with babies until their first comes along and can have strong feelings they were not expecting. The most important thing is to believe in yourself and enjoy this special time with your baby. Most parents learn about babies and work things out as they go along.
← Open this information resource to find out more about your babies feelings and brain, relationships and behaviour, and overall developmental needs.
Babies & Eating: New Foods and Allergies
Laying down healthy eating and drinking habits for your baby is very important. Children who have a healthy and balanced diet are able to progress and develop well and are more likely to grow into happy and successful individuals. Children develop their eating patterns early on so getting it right as a parent and carer is essential. It can be frustrating at times when you know what foods your child should be eating to stay healthy but they refuse to eat them. And it can be a minefield in this day and age to know what foods cause what allergies.
← Open this information resource to find out more about when and how to introduce new foods into your babies diet, how to avoid ‘tucker tantrums’, foods to avoid, and allergies to watch out for.
Living with Toddlers
Between one and three years of age children move from being babies who need you to do everything for them, to becoming separate, independent people. They want your love and to feel safe and close to you, while also wanting the freedom to do things for themselves. It can be challenging for parents as toddlers struggle with their feelings and behaviour. It can help to know what’s happening for them so you can support their independence, help them learn and keep them safe.
← Open this information resource to find out more about what toddlers like and need, what they fear, what they can and cant do at this age, how they communicate, and how you can help.
Toddler Toilet Training
Achieving bowel and bladder control is a natural part of a child’s development. Your baby will let you know when they’re ready to start potty training, and you’ll almost certainly get a lot of advice from friends and family. Make sure everyone who cares for your child knows they are potty training and tell them the words you and your child use for the toilet.
← Open this information resource to find out some simple steps you can take to encourage your child to master this aspect of their independence.
Helping Baby Sleep
Do you recall how in old movies prisoners were tortured to tell state secrets? One of the most effective methods was the “deprive them of sleep” torture. Well, parents often say it is torture when their baby doesn’t sleep well. Coping with babies and toddlers who are tricky to get down, or up in the night when all we want is to get a good night’s sleep, is not easy and can often leave you feeling exhausted and distraught.
← Open this information resource to find out more about the sleep habits of newborns.
Ten Ways to Help Baby Sleep
Children and adults need to get enough sleep so they can play, learn and concentrate during the day. We sleep for our wellbeing. A lot happens in our bodies and brains while we sleep. For example, when it’s dark, children’s bodies produce growth hormone. This is one of the reasons why it is so important that young children get adequate sleep – their bodies and brains need it to grow.
← Open this information resource to find the top ten tips for helping your baby get the sleep it needs.
Bed-wetting & Night Terrors
Bed-wetting is a problem for young children and their families. The good news is that for many, the problem can be fixed through fairly simple treatment. Your child is not the only one with this problem, and it is important that he or she does not feel alone with it. This is the same in relation to night terrors. A night terror is a sleep disruption that seems similar to a nightmare, but with a far more dramatic presentation. Though night terrors can be alarming for parents who witness them, they’re not usually cause for concern or a sign of a deeper medical issue.
← Open this information resource to find out more about bed-wetting and night terrors and how to address them.
Minimising Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
Although no research has proven conclusive, many studies indicate that SIDS occurs due to instabilities and immaturities in a baby’s respiratory and cardiovascular systems. That is, breathing problems and irregular heart rate. All parents need to be aware of what SIDS is and how to do everything possible to prevent it from happening to their family.
← Open this information resource to find out how to minimise the risk of SIDS.
Colds & Fevers
The cold is one of the most common infections of the nose and throat, and can be caused by more than 200 different viruses. Because the common cold is a virus, it does not respond to antibiotics. Moreover, due to the sheer number of viruses it is impossible to immunise against the common cold. It is estimated that babies can have between 5 -10 colds per year!
← Open this information resource to find out more about the common cold, fevers, and what we can do as parents when our child catches one.
Whooping Cough, Croup & Scarlet Fever
Whooping cough is a highly contagious respiratory infection caused by the B-pertussis bacteria, and derives its name from the “whooping” sound which occurs on the inward breath after a coughing spell. Croup is a viral infection (a type of laryngitis) which involves an obstruction of the upper airway. And Scarlet fever is a bacterial infection which gives rise to a scarlet, sandpaper-like rash (on the chest, neck, armpits and groin) from which this illness derives its name.
← Open this information resource to find out more about the the signs, symptoms and treatment of Whooping Cough, Croup and Scarlet Fever.
Vaccination, Immunisation, and Tips for Making Medicine-Taking Easy
Immunisation is the process whereby a person is made immune or resistant to an infectious disease, typically by the administration of a vaccine which boosts your immune system to protect you against subsequent infection or disease. Today there is much debate surrounding immunisation. Nevertheless, it has been proven a safe and effective way of safeguarding children against certain diseases – the guiding principle being that the risks of contracting the diseases outweigh any possible risks which may result from vaccination.
← Open this information resource to find out more about what vaccination actually is, any adverse reactions it may cause, and how to manage these reactions. Also included are some helpful tips to make medicine taking easier for your child.
Eye and Ear Health
Babies, children and teenagers have different eye health needs than adults. Some problems that can be treated in babies and young children become irreversible once a child is older. Young people’s hearing is equally important as their sight. When a child’s ears are healthy they can learn language and talking; be good at school; feel good about themselves; and get a job later in life.
← Open this information resource to find out more about eye and ear health, including blocked tears ducts, conjunctivitis, styes, ear aches, ‘and glue ear’.
Asthma is a respiratory illness involving a chronic inflammation of the airways, leading to wheezing, coughing and difficulty breathing. It is currently one of the most chronic illnesses in Australia and the most common reason that children present to the emergency department. One in seven children are reported to suffer from asthma.
← Open this information resource to find out more asthma, its symptoms, risk factors, triggers, medications, and treatment.
Rashes at a Glance
Almost ever parent knows the feeling of finding an unusual looking rash on their young child and rushing off to the doctor in a panic. Afterall, rashes are one of the most common reasons children are taken to their local doctor. Most often, the rash is not an indication of anything serious. But it can be.
← Open this information resource to find out more about common rashes young children get, including nappy rash, impetigo, roseola infantum, ringworm, chickenpox and others.
Lice & Tick Bites
The head louse is a tiny, wingless parasitic insect that lives among human hairs and feeds on tiny amounts of blood drawn from the scalp. Lice (the plural of louse) are a very common problem, especially for kids. They’re contagious, annoying, and often tough to get rid of. Ticks are equally as annoying. Tick bites do not usually cause any lasting medical problems, but can occasionally pose serious health conditions. For all parents, it’s good to know how to best treat lice and tick bites.
← Open this information resource to find out more about ticks and lice and how to treat them.
Shocks, Seizures, and Convulsions
It is scary when your body does things uncontrollably or unexpectedly. It is even more scary when it happens to your child. Anaphylaxis shock, convulsions and seizures fall into this category. A seizure is the changes in behaviour that occur after an episode of abnormal electrical activity in the brain. The term “seizure” is often used interchangeably with “convulsion”, which is a condition where body muscles contract and relax rapidly and repeatedly, resulting in an uncontrolled shaking of the body. Anaphylaxis shock, on the other hand, is a severe and sudden allergic reaction which causes the body to go into shock. It can occur as a result of exposure to any number of allergens.
← Open this information resource to find out more about these three conditions.
Baby Bowel Problems (Gastrointestinal)
If we want our babies to be healthy and grow well, we need to ensure they are eating and digesting food properly. For most babies, absorbing nutrients and having normal bowel movements after being fed is not a problem. There are, of course, temporary adjustments all babies will make when new foods are introduced into their diet. However, problems in this area can be a sign of a more serious issues. If you’re a new mom or dad, worrying about your baby’s digestive health is more common than you think!
← Open this information resource to find out more about common gastrointestinal conditions including diarrhoea, thread-worms, giardiasis, and constipation, as well some information concerning urinary tract infections.
Meningococcal disease is an acute bacterial infection which can cause a number of serious life-threatening illnesses, such as meningitis and septicaemia. Meningococcal disease can begin suddenly and may lead to permanent disability if not attended to.
← Open this information resource to find out more about the symptoms, risk times and what to do if your child shows signs of Meningococcal disease.
Fun & Healthy Recipes for Kids 1 & 2
Life can be quite miserable for everyone if you feel that you have to battle with toddlers over what they eat or refuse to eat! If you provide a variety of healthy foods, no child will starve or end up malnourished. Rather, they will flourish. It is now well understood that children who grow up in families that enjoy a variety of nutritious foods from the ‘Five Food Groups’ are more likely to make their own healthy choices as they get older.
Open this information resource to find a range of fun, easy, cheap and tasty food recipes and snack ideas for your kids.