Informed – Accurate – Sincere – Real Information
On children and parenting

By Professor Claudia Gray, paediatrician and proud parent

What is normal, what is not?
What’s too noisy, what’s too hot?
What’s that cough and what’s that spot?
Worry a little or worry a lot?

Parenting is a mammoth task, and brings with it a lot of uncertainty as to what is actually within the norm, and what may need more urgent attention. Coupled with this uncertainty, parenting in the 21st century is complicated by overwhelming amounts of information available at the push of a button – some of it useful, some of it inaccurate and even harmful!

In this website we aim to bring you real, sincere information which has been researched and experienced, to help separate the useful facts from the overwhelming noise.

The COVID-19 vaccines have been available under emergency authorization by regulatory agents in many countries of the world for the 12-18 year old age group, including the UK and the USA. We hope it is coming our way soon in South Africa! Some people have been worried about the risk-benefit ratio, as kids don’t tend to get too sick with COVID and the vaccine has a rare side effect in this age group of pericarditis (inflammation of the lining of the heart- which- to put it in perspective- is usually mild and self-limiting with rest and pain killers). Here are some convincing data from a study by Dr Deepta Gurdhasani in the UK ( preprint August 2021) regarding adolescents and COVID: It was estimated based on infection statistics that between July and October 2021 in the 12-17 year old group: ➡️ 5100 children would require hospitalization ➡️ 330 would require…

Boosting a child’s immunity. Infections are everywhere, many are very catchy, and we cannot dodge every bullet! There is no magic “immune booster” to keep a child healthy, but the following can help, right from pregnancy through to toddler days. 1. During pregnancy: – Eat a varied diet – Avoid excess antibiotics and anti-acids – Don’t smoke – Avoid excessive stress (excess stress can affect the baby’s lung development!) 2. Breastfeeding: – Breastmilk is a “soup” of healthy stuff! – It has superb nutrients as well as antibodies, prebiotics and anti-bacterials 3. Newborn skin care: – The skin is a possible site of penetration of infection as well as allergens – To preserve the skin barrier, use bland products, avoid harsh soaps and keep the skin moisturized with a bland emollient. 4. Establishing a healthy microbiome: A healthy set of bugs (“microbiome”) in our guts, airways and on our skin…