Developmental Disorders

Developmental disorders comprise a group of psychiatric conditions originating in childhood that involve serious impairment in different areas

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Never miss these crucial warning signs of emotional development problems in your baby

What is emotional development? Emotional development is all about how your baby learns to identify his emotions and develop ways of managing them. It's a lifelong process, but the foundations are laid during your baby's first year. Throughout this time, his relationship with you and the other people in his life will help him to understand and manage his own feelings.  Emotional development is not only an important part of your baby's personal development, it can also affect how he learns. When he's happy and relaxed, he'll find it easier to take in new information. If he feels comfortable and secure in his relationships with you and people who care for him, it will give him a safe base for exploring and finding out about the world. How can I tell if my baby's emotional development is normal? Your baby has his own personality from birth. He may be a naturally calm and placid baby, or he may need a bit more help to stay relaxed and happy.  One of the main challenges of being a parent is to accept your child for who he is, rather than who you would like him to be. If your baby is more sensitive, cross or anxious than you would like, it's important to spend time learning to understand him rather than trying to change him.  But whatever your child's natural tendencies, you should see him begin to develop something psychologists call “self-regulation”. This is the capacity we have to soothe ourselves when we're feeling overwhelmingly sad, angry or scared.  To start with, your baby will rely on you to help regulate his emotions. He'll be soothed by your touch, or the sound of your voice. But even as a newborn he'll be starting to learn how he can soothe himself too. He may suck his thumb or simply close his eyes if he's feeling anxious or distressed.  He'll quickly develop the ability to express his emotions too. By six months he'll be able to let you know when he's feeling a whole range of emotions, including pleasure, distress and anger. What are the signs of a problem with my baby's emotional development? All babies become overwhelmingly emotional at times. It's an essential part of learning to deal with feelings in general. However, if your baby is showing extreme emotional reactions in relatively relaxed and pleasant situations, such as meeting with familiar family members, he may be experiencing emotional development problems. You may notice that he: Seems very anxious all of the time. For example, he may appear tense and uptight, which can then lead to sleep or feeding problems. Is particularly afraid of new situations and generally reluctant to try anything outside his comfort zone. Is quick to anger, and often seems excessively irritated. Is tearful in a range of different situations. Seems lethargic and unmotivated to try out new things. When we have difficulty in expressing our emotions, it’s common for the emotions to be channeled into physical symptoms. If your baby's having emotional problems, he may also have frequent tummy aches, headaches, or complaints about pain. However, if you think your baby is unwell or in pain, always consult your doctor who can rule out any underlying physical cause.  

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Growth spurts: What you need to know

From age 2 to 4, kids add about 2 to 3 inches in height per year and up to 4 pounds in weight. (From ages 1 to 3, growth takes place primarily in the legs and trunk.) Growth percentiles reveal your child's height and weight relative to other children of the same age and sex. For example, a child in the 75th percentile in height is taller than three-fourths of his peers. Growth is seldom steady and even. Instead, it tends to happen in spurts. Among the signs of a growth spurt in progress: Your child may seem hungrier than usual or eat more at a sitting. Your child may nap longer than usual or sleep longer at night. Your child may be crankier or clingier than usual even though he's not ill. It's probably a good idea not to put too much emphasis on growth spurts, however, in justifying behavioral changes over the long term. Typically, parents notice a child's growth spurt after it has already happened. You dress your child in the same pants he wore last week and they no longer reach his ankles, or his feet seem too big for his shoes. It's not uncommon for a young preschooler to grow two clothing sizes in a season. Responding to growth spurts You don't need to do much in response to a growth spurt, other than restock the closet. If your child seems to have a larger appetite than usual, feed her another serving at meals or provide more frequent snacks. Preschoolers often veer between "living on air" and vacuuming up food, depending on their body's needs. Let your child sleep longer for a few days if she seems to need it. What about growing pains? "Growing pains" – dull aches in the legs, especially around the calves, knees, and front of the thighs – are somewhat controversial and probably misnamed. No medical evidence links them to growing muscles or bones. It's possible, however, for growing muscles to feel tight and spasm after a lot of activity. As many as 25 to 40 percent of kids report this feeling, beginning around ages 3 to 5 (and then again in the tween years). Often the pain wakes a child up in the middle of the night. These pains tend to follow days of vigorous outside play. They can be treated with warm compresses, massage, gentle stretching, or acetaminophen. If the pain is severe or lasts more than 24 hours, report it to your child's doctor so he can rule out other causes, including juvenile arthritis, rheumatologic disorders, infection, fractures, and other orthopedic problems.   Content and Feature Image Source:

Use of mobile phones during pregnancy

Are you worried about how safe is it to use a mobile phone during your pregnancy? While pregnant and after becoming a mom, safety of the baby becomes the first priority of most women. Besides eating good food, maintaining hygiene, taking ample rest, building one’s immunity, and exercising mildly; there is another important factor to consider in order to ensure overall well-being of your baby and yourself. This is - protection from radiation. Pregnant women are explicitly advised to stay away from x-rays. However, other sources of not-so-severe radiations are part of the environment we live in. These are – Wi-Fi routers, smartphones, computers, and other such devices. This means, that a pregnant woman is exposed to a lot of radiation collectively. Keeping that in mind is it safe to use a mobile phone during pregnancy?   What Researchers Say According to studies, mobile phones emit non-ionising (low level waves) electromagnetic radiation. These cannot possibly penetrate the human tissue to do much harm. Research has confirmed that these radiations are not likely to have an effect on the growth of the foetus. However, some studies have highlighted the following effects of using mobiles for a longer duration on the mother – Possibly trigger insomnia Diminished bone density Reduced brain function and memory Fatigue Affected eye sight Over exposure to mobile phones has also been linked to affected brain function and eventual hyperactivity in the baby. However, this finding has not yet been confirmed during any subsequent studies. Most research done on this subject has been on animals and any substantial evidence either way is missing. However, if you are still unsure of what to do, here are some suggestions. How to Limit Mobile Phone Usage during Pregnancy and Later? Check your phone’s SAR rating – The SAR rating is your cell phone’s Specific Absorption Rate value. This tells you the maximum amount of radiation your body is likely to absorb when you use that mobile. Different phones have different SAR ratings. Higher the SAR, higher is the radiation you are likely to absorb when you use a phone. If you find out that your phone’s SAR rating is high, change it with one that has a lower SAR rating. Reduce phone usage – As much as possible, try not to use the mobile phone. If possible, use a landline. Carry your phone wisely – Do not carry your mobile in a pocket close to your tummy. When sleeping, make sure the mobile is kept at a table away from the bed and not under your pillow or close to you. Switch off the mobile when not needed – When you know you are going to take a nap in the afternoon or at night, simply switch off the mobile and the Wi-Fi. This will help reduce your exposure to radiations and also help you get some undisturbed sleep. Reduce browsing and call timing – When pregnant, it is best to keep your call duration to the minimum possible. Avoid speaking or browsing for long hours to avoid unnecessary exposure to radiation. Get a strong signal – Few people know that the SAR value of your phone reduces when the phone gets a strong signal. Therefore, to reduce your exposure to radiation, find out a spot where you get the strongest signal on your mobile and then talk. All the above-mentioned tips can be followed even after your baby is born. Studies have indicated behavioural issues in children when parents spend long hours on the mobiles, ignoring the child’s emotional and physical needs. Therefore, to build a strong connect with your little one and to protect your family from radiations it is best to regulate the usage of devices such as mobiles, Wi-Fi routers, laptops, and computers to the least possible.   Featured Image Source

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Developmental milestones record for your 4 months old

Do you feel like your 4-month-old is a whole new baby at times? You’re not imagining things! The 4-month mark is a big milestone in your little one’s life, thanks to some major brain and physical development milestones. Most babies by this age will have doubled their birth weights (or more) and will be sleeping more solid and longer stretches at night. You may have a more predictable schedule for naps, bedtime, and feedings, so life might feel a little more settled. But fair warning, this month can often include the dreaded 4-month sleep regression. Don’t worry—we’re here to help. Find out what to expect from your 4-month-old. Your Growing Baby: By 4 months old, most babies have a hit a pretty significant physical milestone by doubling their birth weight. If your baby was born prematurely, for instance, they may need a little more time to double their birth weight. Developmental Milestones: Your baby will become much more active and alert and learn to interact with the world around them. Here are some of the major developmental milestones you can expect at this age. Body Rolls over from front to back Sits with the support  Bears weight when standing on a hard surface Holds a rattle or other baby toys Holds up head and chest Pushes up to elbows when laying on stomach Reaches for objects with one hand Coordinates seeing and movement—spotting something they want, then reaching for it Follows objects moving from side to side with eyes Brings hands to mouth Brain Learns cause and effect Understands object permanence Improves clarity of eyesight and enjoys looking at more patterns, shapes, and colors Smiles spontaneously, most often at people Enjoys playing and may react with negative emotion, such as crying, if playing stops Mimics facial expressions, such as smiling or frowning Babbles and may try to mimic language, like cooing Recognizes people from a distance Cries in different ways to communicate hunger, boredom, frustration, sleepiness, etc When to Be Concerned: Although every baby will develop differently, if your little one is displaying any of the following signs or symptoms, be sure to talk to your doctor about them at your baby’s 4-month well-child check-up: Crossed eyes Has gained less than 50 percent of their birth weight Is unable to hold their head up Is not able to sit up at all with support Does not seem to respond to or is uninterested in your face Soft spot that appears to be bulging Doesn’t watch items or people as they move Isn’t smiling Content source Featured image source

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Top 6 Pregnancy Fears (and Why You Shouldn't Worry?)

Many women experience fear of the unknown during pregnancy. Here are the top 6 pregnancy fears and why you shouldn't worry- 1. I'll have a miscarriage Most pregnancies result in healthy babies, and less than 20 percent end in miscarriage. Also, remember that most miscarriages happen within the first few weeks of pregnancy when many women typically don't realize they're expecting and wouldn't know if they did miscarry. They'd just get a normal-looking period. After your doctor can see a heartbeat (usually around 6 to 8 weeks) the risk of miscarriage drops to about 5 percent. And the odds of having a second miscarriage are very small – less than 3 percent. So what causes a miscarriage? Often, it's due to a chromosomal abnormality that prevents the fetus from developing normally, and miscarrying is totally unavoidable – not because of anything you did or didn't do. But you can lower your risk by not smoking or drinking alcohol and cutting back on your caffeine intake (aim for 200 milligrams or less, or one large cup of coffee, a day). Can you stop a miscarriage from happening?  Sadly, there's no way to stop a miscarriage from happening once it's started. It is vital to be seen by your doctor and treated to prevent hemorrhaging and/or infection. 2. My baby will have a birth defect   Like many moms-to-be, you hold your breath during every single prenatal test, hoping the results will prove your baby is healthy and developing on track. And it's overwhelmingly likely that she is. The risk of your baby having any birth defect is only 4 percent. That includes serious ones as well as all of the thousands of other identified abnormalities, many of which are small and insignificant, like a problem with a toenail or a tiny heart defect that goes away soon after birth without causing any health issues. Even if a screening test (like an ultrasound or quad screen) comes back abnormal, it doesn't necessarily mean there's a problem. In many cases, subsequent tests confirm that everything is fine. The best way to protect your baby: Take a multivitamin with folic acid before pregnancy and pop your prenatal vitamins daily to reduce the risk of brain and spinal defects. You should also talk to your doctor about any specific concerns you have. She should be able to give you a clear idea of the true risks, given your family history and age, and help put your "what if" worries into perspective. 3. I will go into labor too early This one might be on your worry radar because the rate of premature births has been steadily increasing. But more than 70 percent of these babies are born between 34 and 36 weeks – far enough along in the pregnancy that the risk of serious complications or developmental issues is much lower. Pregnant women can do quite a few things to lower their risk of delivering early: Don't smoke or drink alcohol, have regular prenatal checkups, and take prenatal folic acid supplements every day. A recent study of nearly 40,000 women found that those who popped the vitamins for a year prior to conception and throughout their pregnancies were between 50 and 70 percent less likely to deliver early than those who didn't take them. The researchers believe that folic acid may prevent certain genes from malfunctioning and causing premature labor. 4. Sex will never be the same  After Baby makes her way out, it's hard to imagine how everything “down there” will get back to normal. But you just need to give your body time to heal, and your libido a chance to fire back up again. During the first few months, odds are you and your hubby will crave sleep more than sex, anyway. Once your doctor gives you the green light, take it slow. Sex may hurt or feel uncomfortable the first few times (lube will be your new best friend). But the human body is an amazing thing with an incredible ability to snap back and recover. In fact, nearly 70 percent of women report that things are back to business as usual by six months after delivery, according to one study in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology. And once the initial ouch-ness passes and your muscles regain their strength, a lot of new moms actually find their sex lives improve post-baby. They crave it more often and find intimacy more satisfying than before. 5. Labor will be too tough or painful At some point, you’ll realize that your baby needs an exit strategy, and you’ll probably worry about labor and delivery. First, take a step back and realize that women have been doing this since the dawn of time – and these days, there's plenty you can do about the pain. Read up on pain management techniques, attend childbirth classes, poll all your friends for tips on how they got through labor, and draw up a birth plan to discuss with your doctor. Regardless of your worrying style, it's most important to have a doctor you trust and can chat openly with about your fears and wishes in the delivery room, and who can talk you through what to really expect. That will go a long way toward putting your mind at ease. 6. I will have complications like preeclampsia or gestational diabetes The risk of developing dangerously high blood pressure (preeclampsia) is just between 5 and 8 percent. It's more common in women under 18 or over age 35, as well as in women who have borderline high blood pressure going into their pregnancy. But if you had any of these factors, your doctor would be monitoring you closely from the very beginning and would likely catch the condition early.   Preeclampsia also doesn't tend to develop until the second half of pregnancy, and in some cases, it arises so late that there are few adverse health effects. There's no way to necessarily lower your risk for the condition. But make sure you get regular prenatal checkups (during which your blood pressure will be checked) and alerting your doctor to any symptoms of preeclampsia, – such as swelling of your hands or face, blurry vision, or major headaches – will ensure it's caught in its earliest stages. As for gestational diabetes – a condition where your body becomes unable to process sugar properly, so it accumulates in the bloodstream – the risks are similarly low. Simple dietary changes, like limiting your intake of starchy carbs, are usually all it takes to get gestational diabetes under control. For healthy women with no history of diabetes, a routine blood glucose test between weeks 24 and 28 of pregnancy can spot the condition. Content Source