What to do about discipline?

Child discipline

By nine months of age your baby has started to explore its world. There are so many exciting new experiences all around and at the same time some dangers. It is at this point, when baby begins crawling and later walking, that parents find themselves repeatedly saying “no!” or running to prevent some kind of injury or catastrophe.  Discipline now …

Baby on board- flying with your baby

  With the Christmas season almost upon us, many families are preparing for their annual break. In many cases these breaks involve flying. I was listening to the early morning radio station where air travel with babies and small children was the topic for the show. Of course you always get people on opposite ends of the spectrum calling in. …

Summer lovin’

Summer lovin

December is usually a special time of the year. As South Africans, we generally take a well-earned break and head off for some quality family time. The sunshine, outdoor activities and break from routine are better for our health than any doctor’s prescription. That is, provided the kids are healthy or that we have what we need by way of …

Why babies cry, and how to soothe them

I recently came across a quote which I feel is very appropriate to the topic: “Because babies don’t come with owners’ manuals!” Probably one of the most difficult times in the parenting journey is the first six weeks of your baby’s life. Not only are you completely exhausted as you adjust to being a parent, but it is so hard …

Goodbye hay fever! How to treat your kids’ seasonal allergies

Hay fever

Spring has arrived in Johannesburg. The gardens are bursting with colour and the lawns are turning green after the dry highveld winter. Unfortunately, along with all this beauty come the common signs of allergy and in particular allergic rhinitis, commonly known as hay fever. An amusing little fact is that hay fever is not caused by hay and doesn’t produce a …

Talking about tummy time

I get such a kick out of receiving photos of my special little patients. This one in particular really made me smile. What a lovely photo. James is being the perfect model for why tummy time is so important but just look at the other people around him with tiny tots all on their tummies. There is a mom, a …

Measles: Everything you need to know

I was recently asked to do a workshop for expectant parents and parents of young babies on the topic “To vaccinate or not to vaccinate, that is the question?”. I was grateful for the opportunity, as I feel that the only way to form opinions on matters such as this is to have open, honest discussions. My approach for the …

The value of exercise

As a paediatrician, I am disturbed by the new terms being used in reference to young children. These include such things as digital dementia, tech fatigue and blue light damage. While I fully understand that digital media is here to stay and is a necessary part of a modern child’s life, I cannot ignore the negative impact it is having …

All you need to know about head injuries

Head injuries are common in children and studies have shown that roughly 500 000 children land up in the ER due to some kind of head injury annually. Accidents do unfortunately happen, especially when babies start walking or children take part in physical activities.   I am an avid supporter of physical activity for children. It is a vital part …

How you hold your child can be harmful to them

Safety is one of the first things parents are concerned about when a baby is on its way. Ensuring you have completed a CPR course, have a good car seat, have secured the pool, locked up the medicines, gated the stairs and so on are all really important. But there is one thing you probably aren’t aware of when dealing …

Intimacy: You, me & us

Intimacy is not something parents usually visit the paediatrician about. Having said this, we deal with the “product” of intimacy and have a very keen interest in ensuring that the family unit stays strong if we are to have happy, well-adjusted children under our care.   My first encounter with a couple following discharge from the maternity ward is usually …