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screen time for infants

How much screen time is recommended for infants?

When it comes to screen time, what I hear time and time again from all good sources is infants under two should be kept away from tv. The main reason for this is that babies learn best through interacting with real people and not the people on the screen. The other reason is it’s harder for under-twos to get good visual information from the tv. Pop over here to find out how your baby sees tv.

What’s surprising is that watching tv takes a lot of effort for babies. It can make them really tired and if they’re not old enough to turn their heads away they can become distressed.

Screen time after my toddler turns two? The effect of tv on toddlers

What about screen time once your toddler turns two? There are a few reasons still to keep your toddler away from too much tv. The biggest one is that tv distracts your toddler from creative and physical play which is better for their learning and development. Another important reason is that if you have the tv on for distraction or comfort it may become a habit for your toddler as they get older.

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What is baby eczema

What is baby eczema ? – Our feature in Family Capers Magazine

This month, I wrote for leading online Family Publication, Family Capers on “Dealing With Baby Eczema”.

Some of the key takeaways from the article are:

1. What is baby eczema

Baby eczema is when patches of your baby’s skin show as red, inflamed, itchy and irritated. Your baby can either suffer from mild, moderate or severe eczema. When the eczema is sever then these patches of your baby’s skin can weep, ooze, bleed and crust over.

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Food allergies and eczema

The link between food allergies and eczema

I can’t talk about managing eczema without mentioning the link between eczema and food allergies. Some toddlers with eczema will be allergic to some foods. The most common foods which trigger eczema symptoms in toddlers are cows’ milk, eggs, soya, wheat, fish and nuts. This doesn’t mean the food causes eczema, just that it is likely your toddler may also have a food allergy which can in some cases make eczema symptoms worse. In our family my eldest toddler has a food allergy to yeast – so no vegemite in our house! My younger toddler has food allergies to pineapple and eggs.

Each of my toddlers react differently to their food allergies. The eldest has a delayed food allergy – after about 6 hours of eating the food he is allergic to, his itching and eczema worsens. Whereas the youngest experiences immediate food allergies and her symptoms are more obvious. Her symptoms usually occur within two hours of eating the food she is allergic to – what we see is redness, swelling and irritation around her mouth and a little red lumps which form a rash on her skin (uticaria).

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vegetables, toddler, fussy

My toddler won’t eat vegetables

I have been battling with my toddler to eat vegetables ever since I can remember. I have tried so many different things, from hiding pureed carrots and sweet potato in bolognaise sauce (which lasted about 2 weeks) to telling him that if he doesn’t eat his green beans he won’t grow to be big and strong (which never got off the ground). It was becoming an every day battle and I usually came out the loser.

My toddler is a ‘dairyvore’ – he could happily survive on cheese sticks, although his preference is Jarlsberg, as well as strawberry, yoghurt and milk. I guess on the upside this is better than having a ‘treativore’ which I think my youngest is shaping up to be, but for the moment at least she dabbles in beans and pumpkins.

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eczema, baby

Why does my baby have eczema?

Both my babies have eczema. I have always wondered (or to be more exact, agonised), why my babies? why do they have it and other babies don’t.

Being a pharmacist, I am constantly surrounded by health professionals. I have asked this question to so many health professionals, ranging from naturopaths to paediatricians. In response, I always get the same question – have you or your partner ever had eczema? Chances are you have come across a similar response in your journey to conquer your baby’s eczema.

What do they mean? I have never had eczema… but if you dig deep enough someone related to your child probably has. Or they are asthma or seasonal allergy sufferers, and these two conditions have also been genetically linked to babies who have eczema. So, it’s more than likely a genetic thing, something we have been dealing with through the generations.

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