Shaken Baby Syndrome: New Prevention Program in North Carolina

17 Jan

I received an important comment today from Dale. For those of you who don’t know, Dale is the one who made the wonderful tributes to London that can be viewed on YouTube.

I liked his comment so much that I’m turning it into it’s own post; I think it is that important.

Dale said on Thu, 17th Jan 08 at 9:41 pm

Hey Kat

Just stopping by to say Hi and give a little of my two cents =)

I really have to say I was glad I found out about your site. I had never been here prior to my last announced visit or the death of Baby London. I often stop back just to read your blog without leaving a comment. I have read many of comments left about London, Jessica and Joshua. Sometimes I get really discouraged by the comments left and then I sit back[,] take a deep breath and continue reading because I know that I will get to one of your replies and then things will fall into perspective with [your] words.

I know not everybody is thinking negative and I applaud them for that. I know myself I have read an article or two on the on-line news forums and seen the news-clips and sometimes I just get frustrated and want to point fingers just to make myself feel better. But being the person that I am I sit back, think things over and remember how things were when I was 20 and raising my kids on my own. (Just a little note for all you that said because Joshua was a male that he shouldn’t have been trusted with a baby, Well I think I did just fine thank you lol) and I had three kids two years apart, yes twins!!! One of the biggest problems I’ve seen in the story of London that is different from my own is that I had help from my family. I look back at when my kids were young and I understand what Joshua was going though. I’m not saying I condone what he did, I don’t. He will be punished in more ways than what our words or hatred will do. I truly believe he knows he made a mistake and he has the rest of his [life] to think about and suffer with what he did and if there really is a God, Jesus or heaven after we leave this world, he will have to face matters there. As for Jessica, my heart goes out to her, I pray for her everyday that she makes it though this horrible ordeal that she has been made to go [through] and that she understands that most people are just angry because of all the recent increased reports of child abuse, [whether] it be physical or mental, that has [been committed] on our children in recent years. People are angry and I don’t blame them. But we need to put that energy to a positive use, not negative.

I would like to share some news on a program I had no [idea] about until today. I think it’s an awesome program that I hope catches on real fast. I also included a link to NBC17.com and the actual article and news-clip. Please pass this info along:

http://www.nbc17.com/midatlantic/ncn/news.apx.-content-articles-NCN-2008-01-15-0012.html

RALEIGH, N.C. – Parents of every newborn in North Carolina will receive information about shaken baby syndrome as part of a $7 million prevention project that is the first of its kind in the nation.

Estimates are that as many as 2,000 children under two years old in the state are shaken by a caregiver; yet only about 50 children are treated in the hospital for their immediate injuries.

Child abuse prevention experts say that the primary reason people shake babies is a lack of understanding of why babies cry.

“The Period of PURPLE Crying” is an intervention program that educates parents about the reasons for crying in healthy babies. PURPLE is an acronym that represents the characteristics of normal crying infants: it Peaks at 2 months of age and ends at 4 or 5 months; is Unexpected; Resists soothing; the child appears to be in Pain; it is Long lasting (2-5 hours); and occurs more in the Evening.

At Johnston Memorial Hospital in Smithfield, new parents Daryll and Candace Warren are adjusting to life as parents. Just hours after the birth of their son Lathan, they were busy learning how to change diapers and feed their baby, things the 25-year-olds have not had to do before.

“Seems easy enough here, but when you get home, you’ve got to get up in the middle of the night and feed them,” said Candace Warren. “I’m sure it’s going to be a little overwhelming.”

Parent educator Connie Godwin teaches parents what to expect from their new babies. She says parents can’t get all of their information from a book, or even from other people.

“This is a learning experience. It’s hands-on experience,” said Godwin. “You learn as you go with your baby. So anything that you do is not particularly wrong for you. It’s what you need to do for yourself and your baby.”

Godwin advises parents to ask for help from family and friends. But even the most prepared parents may find themselves at wits end when a baby won’t stop crying. Doctors say that’s when shaken baby syndrome is likely to occur, especially among young and inexperienced parents.

“You have somebody who’s crying, it’s their only way of expressing what they need, and somebody who’s going to be more likely to lose control of their behavior when they’re frustrated with not being able to satisfy this crying,” said Vic Randolph, M.D., emergency physician at Johnston Memorial.

The parent education program will provide the parent of each of the 125,000 new babies born in North Carolina with a short video and 11-page booklet along with hospital and healthcare provider-based education. Initially, 30 hospitals in the state will receive the materials; organizers hope to reach all 90 hospitals in North Carolina that have maternity programs within five months.

The project is sponsored by Duke University Medical Center, UNC Chapel Hill’s Injury Prevention Research Center and the North Carolina Child Fatality Task Force. Funding for the project comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Duke Endowment.

[There] is also a [second article] at ScienceDaily if you would like to read [it:]

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080116164251.htm

Thank You Kat!!!

Dale

I think Dale is a great man, a wonderful father, and a terrific human being. I am so honored to have him as one of my readers.

Thank you, Dale. Thank you very much.

Let’s not forget to contact our Senators and Congressional representatives to try and get a national prevention program in place; see here for details. Even if your Senator or District isn’t represented, you can still send them an email and let them know you want them to put pressure on the people on these subcommittees. Send them my blog address if you want, so they can read for themselves what a real tragedy look like. WE are the Government in this country and WE can get PURPLE mandated in every state if WE put our personal power to work.

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