Shaken Baby Syndrome

A large number of child deaths are reported in South Africa each year. A lot of deaths relate to neglect, abuse or murder. Despite this, there's a knowledge gap in relation to understanding the issue....

Amniotic fluid problems

The importance of amniotic fluid Amniotic fluid is essential for pregnancy and foetal development. Amniotic fluid is a watery substances residing inside a casing called the amniotic membrane or sac. ...

Choosing a pre-school

Becoming a parent is a momentous; life-changing event filled with hopes, expectations and naturally some fears. Parents often learn and grow alongside their children, as they face the challenges of pa...

Newborn reflexes

Although newborn babies are physically helpless and vulnerable at birth, they have a number of amazing innate abilities or reflexes. Reflexes are involuntary movements or actions, designed to protect ...


Mastitis is an inflammation of the breast that can lead to infection. The word “mastitis” is derived from the Greek word “mastos” meaning “breasts”, while the suffix “-itis” denotes “inflammation”. Ma...

Pelvic floor exercises

Although your new baby will probably bring you immense emotional satisfaction, physically you may feel uncomfortable and strange in your own skin. After 9 months of pregnancy and hormonal changes, you...


Babies cry because they need to communicate something and most parents, especially new moms, find it distressing to see or hear an unhappy baby. In time, you will learn to recognize the various causes...

Antenatal Classes

Antenatal classes are informative sessions provided to prepare expecting parents for the birth of their child and the early days of being a parent.Most antenatal classes are run by Midwives and occasi...


The Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 was launched on the 11 May 2011. It is a global declaration of war against road crashes and fatalities. According to Mr Sibusiso Ndebele, MP Minister of ...

  • Shaken Baby Syndrome

    Tuesday, 21 July 2015 16:28
  • Amniotic fluid problems

    Thursday, 14 May 2015 12:54
  • Choosing a pre-school

    Friday, 10 April 2015 17:50
  • Newborn reflexes

    Tuesday, 03 March 2015 15:49
  • Mastitis

    Tuesday, 03 March 2015 15:41
  • Pelvic floor exercises

    Wednesday, 11 February 2015 17:20
  • Colic

    Wednesday, 11 February 2015 17:11
  • Antenatal Classes

    Monday, 03 June 2013 09:34
  • Strap-in-the-Future

    Thursday, 30 June 2011 13:52

Down Syndrome

down_syndromeDown Syndrome is a genetic condition that is usually identified at birth or shortly thereafter. It occurs in one in every 691 live births, making it the most commonly occurring chromosomal condition. Down syndrome occurs in all races, nationalities, religions and socio-economic groups. Individuals with Down Syndrome have 47 chromosomes instead of the usual 46, resulting in slight differences in appearance, and physical and developmental delays. People with Down syndrome have 3, rather than 2, copies of the 21st chromosome.

Every person with Down syndrome is a unique individual, who may possess certain physical characteristics to varying degrees or not at all. Some of the common physical traits of Down syndrome are; low muscle tone, small stature, an upward slant of the eyes, eyes which have prominent skin folds at the corner of the eye lids, a small, round face and full cheeks, a large tongue that tends to protrude, floppy limbs, and a single deep crease across the centre of the palm. Similarly, all people with Down syndrome, experience cognitive delays, but the effects are generally mild to moderate and not indicative of the strengths and talents they possess as individuals.

Many children with Down syndrome have a heart defect and may suffer from an intestinal abnormality. Down's children are also at an increased risk of developing certain medical conditions; such as an underactive thyroid gland, respiratory problems and acute leukemia. They are likely to have unstable neck joints, which may limit their involvement in certain activities. They may also have hearing difficulties and be susceptible to infection. Adults who have Down syndrome, are more susceptible to early onset Alzheimer's disease and arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries).

Advances in educational methods, a stimulating home environment, good quality health care, and positive support from family, friends and community members; means that more children with Down syndrome are able to reach their full potential and lead fulfilling lives. People with Down syndrome attend school, work, participate in decisions that affect them, bring joy to those around them and make valuable contributions to society.

" Having a child with DS has changed
my life…
my life is brighter
my life is more wonderful
my life is filled with love "
~ Lorene Kay

" Sam's mannerisms of saying
'Hi' to everyone, hugging
often, smiling and laughing through even the worst of
times, his purity and innocence and his lack of worry,
anxiety, stress and doubt seem like something we
should all strive for…We have so much to learn from
these individuals if we allow ourselves to see "
~ Susan Mayer

In celebration of World Down syndrome Day 2011 and in celebration of all those with Down syndrome, watch this beautifully created, heart warming video:


Also worth a read, is an article written by Dennis McGuire, PhD entitled " If People with Down Syndrome Ruled the World" :

Dr. Collins, J (ed.). (2006). Children's Medical Guide: The Essential Guide From Birth To 11 Years. Dorling Kindersley: UK.