WHY OTHERS FAIL
The majority of health professionals, including doctors, nurses and allied health professionals, are educated using a ‘medical model’ of care. This means they are trained to look for signs and symptoms that might point to a physical problem or medical condition. Health professionals trained under the medical model are ideally suited to provide treatment and care for sick or disabled children, and children with medical conditions. They are also an excellent source of health information on illness prevention and ways parents can promote the growth and development of healthy children. However, they are not necessarily experienced in advising parents on the intricacies involved in the care of healthy babies and children. Caring for their own children is in general the only hands-on parenting experience that most health professionals have.
Where health professionals trained under the medical model of care fail parents and their healthy babies is the way in which difficult behavior is viewed and managed. Behavior frequently displayed by normal, healthy, yet irritable babies, such as persistent crying, screaming, straining, milk regurgitation, back arching, food refusal and wakefulness are typically viewed as signs and symptom of pain due to a physical problem or medical condition. If treatments such as medications and dietary changes fail to improve the situation (as is often the case for healthy babies) parents may be told that there’s nothing more that can be done but wait until their child outgrows the problem.
It’s not normal for a child to be distressed, and parents do not need to wait for their child to outgrow the cause of distress. Studies have shown distressed behavior displayed by healthy babies is seldom due to a physical or medical cause. More often than not the child’s troubled behavior it’s due to developmental or behavioral reasons. Parents can encourage their baby’s or toddler’s contentment by making appropriate changes to way they provide care. That’s where our consultants can help. We understand the complexities of caring for healthy babies and children based on medical and behavioral models of care.
When faced with uncertainty regarding the cause of troubled infant behavior it is wise to have your child thoroughly examined by a medical doctor as a first line approach. However, it may be necessary for you to look beyond a physical or medical cause in order to find a solution.