Connect with us

Main News

Lockdown HAS affected babies’ development and behaviour, research shows

Published

on

lockdown has affected babies development and behaviour research shows

Lockdown has affected the development and behaviour of babies across the UK, a study suggests.  

The Babies In Lockdown report, commissioned by three leading UK children and parents advocacy groups, found some new parents felt ‘abandoned’ by the lack of care available during lockdown. 

Others said their baby had become more clingy or was crying more than usual. 

More than 200,000 babies are believed to have been born when lockdown was at its most restrictive, between 23 March and 4 July, according to the research. 

More than 200,000 babies are believed to have been born when lockdown was at its most restrictive, between 23 March and 4 July, according to the research. Stock image

More than 200,000 babies are believed to have been born when lockdown was at its most restrictive, between 23 March and 4 July, according to the research. Stock image

The survey suggests the impact of Covid-19 on these babies could be ‘severe’ and may be ‘long-lasting’ as both caregivers and the children themselves are impacted by the pandemic. 

A third (34 per cent) of respondents believed that their baby’s interaction with them had changed during the lockdown period. Almost half (47 per cent) of parents reported that their baby had become more clingy. One quarter (26 per cent) reported their baby crying more than usual.

One 38-year-old mother, from Scotland, said: ‘I have been crying for hours on end, having anxiety and panic attacks which are all out of the ordinary for me. This has affected my nine month old son who has seen me experience this and has been more tearful and clingy with me…

‘My son is hating me working from home because he doesn’t understand why mama is ignoring him when he can hear me and is now super clingy with me. He had never had screen time or seen me use a mobile before this. Now most of his social interactions are online and he doesn’t understand why I am locked away 35 hours a week in the bedroom.’

My two-year-old has become violent and upset quite a lot of the time due to this. He’s finding it hard just seeing and being in contact with two people
Mother, aged 24, from Scotland

Another Scottish mother, 24, who has a two-year-old and is five months pregnant, added: ‘My two-year-old has become violent and upset quite a lot of the time due to this. He’s finding it hard just seeing and being in contact with two people. I

‘I fear for the effects this lockdown will have on him later in life.’

A third mother, aged 37, from Greater London, said: ‘I planned to enrol my 15-months-old (in March) to a nursery to help him with his social skills – he does not say words and is not responding to his name which worries me. 

‘Not this is not possible [sic], I suspect his development is possibly behind but can do nothing about it at the moment. My 4 months old has only seen his brother, father and my face. I’m worried about his development also, I planned to take him to various classes, meet other mums with babies – this is also not possible at the moment.’

Some parents also expressed concerns over the support they were offered before and after the birth. Over a third (34 per cent) of those who gave birth during lockdown stated that care at birth was not as planned.

The study was commissioned by Best Beginnings, Home-Start UK and the Parent-Infant Foundation.

Should parents be worried about lockdown? The experts weigh in… 

WHY IS EARLY INTERACTION IS IMPORTANT?

Dr Sophie Niedermaier-Patramani, Co-Founder and In House Paediatrician at Little Tummy, said: ‘Early social interaction can play an important role in a child’s development. It drives the development of communication and language skills. 

‘Babies start to interact with their caregivers from the very first moment they are born. By bonding with the people closest to them they will develop a sense of security and resilience. The interaction between primary caregiver and the babies themselves dominates the social development in the first 18 months of life.

‘Children start playing next to each other around the age of 24 months and will loosely include other children into their play around the age of 3. This is when they start developing their social skills with peers of the same age and truly benefit from spending time around other children.’ 

Harriet Shearsmith, founder of parenting website TobyandRoo, added: ‘Babies and Toddlers are learning so much at such a fast rate and social interaction plays a vital role in developing their social skills, it can help improve their confidence and make a transition to preschool much easier.’

HOW COULD LOCKDOWN AFFECT BABIES AND TODDLERS?  

Dr Niedermaier-Patramani said: ‘Babies under one enjoy growing up with a daily routine and a safe and caring environment. Therefore lockdown will not have had a major impact on their development. Most baby classes where parents learn how to support their little ones’ development have moved online, so parents still have access to guidance. 

‘The wonderful thing about children’s brains is that they adapt easily to these challenging times. They will replace peers with parents or older siblings and still train their social skills, just in a different way. And once lockdown is eased, they will catch up quickly.’

Angela Spencer, a parenting expert with over 25 years’ experience, agreed lockdown would have little impact on very young babies. She said: ‘I am one of the old fashioned ones that believes the first six weeks for a baby is purely for bonding time with their mum and dad.  

‘Babies and children learn from their senses so by watching, hearing, and then doing what others around them are. There’s no right or wrong time for socialising for a baby, as long as they are getting positive interaction from those around them, social skills will develop from every experience they have, so a few weeks in lockdown won’t do any harm and you can introduce other babies and children as experiences allow.’

CAN A LACK OF INTERACTION MAKE A BABY CLINGY?    

Dr Niedermaier-Patramani said: ‘Every baby will go through a phase when they appear to be more clingy – for some it can be more extreme than others, but this is generally a personality thing. Separation anxiety happens around the age of 9 to 12 months and is a normal part of their social skill development.’

WHAT AGE GROUP WILL BE MOST AFFECTED?   

Dr Niedermaier-Patramani said: ‘Children who have just started preschool have a period where they thrive in their development through the stimulation they experience at school. They will also be developmentally ready to learn from their peers and make impressive leaps. Narrowing the social circle to a few people will delay this period to a later point – but will most likely not have a significant impact on the longer term.’

WILL CHILDREN DEVELOP ‘STRANGER DANGER’?   

Dr Niedermaier-Patramani said: ‘Once lockdown is loosened, children might go through a transitional period where they will get used to moving in a broader social network and meeting others. For anxious children, it might take longer to get used to the new environment and they will need extra support and reassurance from their parents. My prediction is that these effects are transitional and will be forgotten before the end of the year.’ 

Angela said: ‘Children take their cues from their parents, and in particular the ones we don’t think are obvious such as our body language and our energy/feelings towards others and this is where the ‘stranger danger’ is more likely to develop. 

‘It is a parent’s job to show children how to interact positively in this world, be confident and polite but aware of their boundaries and safety. This we can still do after lockdown.’

HOW ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF LOCKDOWN?  

Rather than focus on the unavoidable challenges of lockdown, I would look on the brighter side of things: Lockdown can be a great opportunity to strengthen the bond between family members. Strong families create strong, resilient children, helping them to adapt more easily to stressful situations later in life.

‘Lockdown is also a great time to help babies reach new milestones, for example beginning the weaning journey, which can be great fun but also time consuming. At Little Tummy, we work hard to provide advice and support for parents to help them when weaning babies onto solids. Now is a great opportunity to explore new flavours and food textures with baby.’

WHAT CAN PARENTS DO TO HELP? 

Harriet said: ‘I would be encouraging lots of FaceTime and voice calls with friends and family to allow my child to hear other voices, and once we felt it was safe to do so, we would start meeting up for socially distanced walks and introducing our baby back into this new world.’

Dr Niedermaier-Patramani said: ‘I encourage parents to reserve specific times of the day only for their children. It can be hard to juggle household chores, working from home and childcare at the same time and we often try to do everything simultaneously. Children will benefit from dedicated playtime where they can interact with their parents and have their full attention.

‘A lot of nurseries and schools give recommendations for activities at home. These include singing, arts and crafts or turning your flat into an obstacle course. Try to offer them a variety so you can stimulate all skill sets.

‘Minding your own mental health is so important. Where possible try to carve out a little time each day (even thirty minutes) to do something for yourself; a bubble bath; meditation; a video call with a friend. There is no denying that this situation is hugely challenging, so try to be kind to yourself.’ 

Angela said: ‘This is an easy one! Interact and play! Think sensory and nature as they are the key philosophies of my company Babyopathy – sing, read, talk, play music, dance, show them the beauty of nature that surrounds them in the flowers (colours), plants (textures and shapes), animals (noises etc), play in the dirt with cars and animals, crawl through the grass, run through puddles, don’t be afraid to dance in the rain and make a fort to sit in the dark and play with torches and light! I could go on and on, the list is endless but most importantly just have fun!’ 

Advertisement

Powered by: Daily Mail

Main News

Three brothers aged 14, five, and four find GUNS in canal during magnet fishing trips

Published

on

By

three brothers aged 14 five and four find guns in canal during magnet fishing trips

 THREE brothers with a passion for magnet fishing have hauled out deadly catches – a gun each.

Reece Nixon, 14, was the first to come across a weapon when he found a World War One machine gun at the bottom of a canal.

That find a year ago was followed by a handgun fished out by younger brother Riley, five.

Then last Sunday four-year-old Leo found a BB gun on one of his first fishing expeditions.

Gun fishing: Leo Nixon, four, with BB weapon

Gun fishing: Leo Nixon, four, with BB weapon

Riley, five, with handgun

Reece Nixon, 14, with a World War One machine gun

Riley, five, with handgun and Reece Nixon, 14, with a World War One machine gun

The wartime weapon, a Vickers. is now in a museum, while investigations have found the German handgun was used in an armed robbery. 

The brothers, from Leeds, regularly go magnet fishing – in which a magnet attached to a rope is dangled into water to locate metallic objects – in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. 

The boys’ father William, 49, took the first two guns to the police.

Powered by: Daily Mail

Continue Reading

Main News

Simon Cowell ‘PULLS out of BGT Christmas Special after breaking back’

Published

on

By

simon cowell pulls out of bgt christmas special after breaking back

Simon Cowell has reportedly been forced to pull out of Britain’s Got Talent’s Christmas Special, as he continues to recover from his broken back.

Sources claim the music mogul, 60, is unable to travel to the UK from his home in Los Angeles to film the special in October, after breaking his back in an electric bike accident last month. 

Despite this setback, Simon is reportedly still raking in the cash through his television and music empire, with sources claiming he’s earned an eye-watering £37million in just one year.

Sad news: Simon Cowell has reportedly been forced to pull out of Britain's Got Talent's Christmas Special, as he continues to recover from his broken back

Sad news: Simon Cowell has reportedly been forced to pull out of Britain’s Got Talent’s Christmas Special, as he continues to recover from his broken back 

A source told The Sun that Diversity’s Ashley Banjo is expected to fill in for Simon during non-competitive festive special, which will see BGT’s biggest stars take to the stage to entertain viewers.

They said: ‘Simon hoped he’d be well enough to fly from Los Angeles to the UK for the special show but he’s had to pull out.

‘Plus the new lockdown measures — and him having to fly two weeks before the show so he could quarantine in advance — made it even more difficult for him to make the journey.

‘Simon will of course be across the show and what happens on it but this is a massive blow for him as he adores.’

MailOnline has contacted representatives for Simon Cowell for comment. 

Cashing in: It comes amid claims that the mogul has raked in an eye-watering £37million ($46million) in just one year through his TV and music empire

Cashing in: It comes amid claims that the mogul has raked in an eye-watering £37million ($46million) in just one year through his TV and music empire 

It comes amid claims that Simon has raked in an eye-watering £37million ($46million) in just one year.

The media mogul’s company Simco, which oversees his earnings from TV, has reported a profit of £35million – an increase of £10million on the previous financial year, according to The Sun.

His TV empire includes such ratings juggernauts as Britain’s Got Talent and The X Factor, which have also enjoyed success in international formats.

And while the global versions of his shows have brought him much success, The Sun reports that his biggest earnings come from the British arm of the TV favourites.

The shows in the UK market reportedly pull in 42 per cent of his earnings, compared to 33 per cent in the US and 21 per cent in the rest of the world.

MailOnline contacted a representative for Simon Cowell for comment. 

On the mend: Meanwhile, Heidi Klum has divulged that the music mogul is keen to make an appearance during the America's Got Talent finale, which will take place on Wednesday

On the mend: Meanwhile, Heidi Klum has divulged that the music mogul is keen to make an appearance during the America’s Got Talent finale, which will take place on Wednesday

Meanwhile, it has been revealed that Simon is still expected to return for the America’s Got Talent finale, six weeks after he broke his back in a horrific electric bike accident. 

Hedi Klum, 47, divulged that the music mogul is keen to make an appearance during the finale, which will take place in Los Angeles on Wednesday. 

The judge said that the talent show mastermind planned to come back before the season’s end, but insisted his return was being kept a secret.

Heidi revealed to The Mirror: ‘He is going to come to the finale, but do not tell anyone.’

Their co-star Howie Mandel also has an inkling that Simon will return to the show, but it is unclear if they expect his return to be via video link or in the flesh.

Howie added: ‘I would not count out seeing Simon again before this season’s end.’ 

Don't count him out: AGT Co-star Howie Mandel said, 'I would not count out seeing Simon again before this season's end'

Don’t count him out: AGT Co-star Howie Mandel said, ‘I would not count out seeing Simon again before this season’s end’

Simon reportedly came within ‘one-centimetre of being paralysed’ when he fell from his electric bicycle and broke his back in multiple places.

The entertainment mogul was rushed to hospital at the beginning of August when he fell from his new vehicle whilst taking it for a test drive at his house in Malibu. 

He was at home with his partner Lauren Silverman, 43, their son, Eric, six, and his stepson Adam, 14, at the time of the incident.                              

Speaking just days after the accident, a family friend told MailOnline that the father-of-one was ‘doing well’, but was in ‘shock and massive amounts of pain’. 

They said: ‘He’s in recovery and asleep. Lauren went with him to the hospital and has been allowed in briefly to see him. He’s doing OK in the circumstances.

‘He was in shock and in massive amounts of pain. He was outside in the courtyard in Malibu with Eric and Adam trying this new bike’  

They added: ‘Simon’s had to have a big surgery, he’s got a number of breaks and has had to have a metal rod put into his back.’

‘When he fell off the bike he landed right on his back which broke in a number of places. It was six hour surgery overnight on Saturday.’ 

Near miss: Simon had surgery after breaking his back, coming within 'one-centimetre of being paralysed' when he fell from his electric bicycle. Pictured with partner Lauren Silverman

Near miss: Simon had surgery after breaking his back, coming within ‘one-centimetre of being paralysed’ when he fell from his electric bicycle. Pictured with partner Lauren Silverman

Powered by: Daily Mail

Continue Reading

Main News

Diagnoses of several common health conditions HALVED during pandemic, study shows

Published

on

By

diagnoses of several common health conditions halved during pandemic study shows

Diagnoses of cancer and other life-threatening health conditions dropped off dramatically during the coronavirus lockdown, an alarming study suggests.

Between March and May, there were 49 per cent fewer people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes than doctors would expect at that time of year and 44 per cent less heart disease cases. 

Mental health diagnoses also plummeted plummeted by half in the three-month period, while there were 43 per cent fewer patients with respiratory problems.

There were also 16 per cent fewer cancer patients – amid fears of a time bomb of undiagnosed and untreated cancer that could lead to a surge in deaths in years to come.

The worrying drop-off was revealed after researchers analysed the health records of more than 240,000 people living in Salford, Greater Manchester. 

Experts say some patients will have been too scared to go to hospital in case they got the virus, while others wouldn’t have wanted to be a burden on the health service.

A drive to ‘protect the NHS’ when the virus first took off in spring this year led to thousands of routine operations, scans and appointments being cancelled and postponed en masse.   

The number of conditions diagnosed during lockdown plummeted, a study has revealed. Pictured above is an empty private ward at a hospital in London

The number of conditions diagnosed during lockdown plummeted, a study has revealed. Pictured above is an empty private ward at a hospital in London

The study, published in The Lancet Public Health, used ten years of patients’ data from January 2010 to this year to create statistical models showing the predicted number of new diagnoses between March 1 and May 31.

It then compared these to the actual levels to highlight the drop-off in hospital and GP attendance as pandemic fear gripped the UK.

Richard Williams, from the University of Manchester’s Centre for Health Informatics and study leader, told MailOnline the researchers see ‘no reason’ why the figures for Salford do not reflect the national picture for the UK.

‘Salford does have a higher deprivation than other parts of the country but we see no reason why there wouldn’t be a similar effect elsewhere,’ he said. ‘Although in some areas it may be not as pronounced.’

He added the data showed NHS bosses should be concerned about a backlog of patients coming forward to seek help at healthcare centres.

Mr Williams said: ‘(Our study) shows there’s a large number of people who are living with these conditions undetected, undiagnosed and untreated.

‘As people’s willingness to re-engage with the health service increases then you’re potentially going to see a surge in the coming months.

‘It’s particularly important to communicate now that you’re seeing a second wave that the health service is still open. It’s really important to keep seeing these patients.’ 

People are being urged to stay away from emergency rooms over winter in a bid to control a possible spike in coronavirus cases. (Stock image)

People are being urged to stay away from emergency rooms over winter in a bid to control a possible spike in coronavirus cases. (Stock image)

How Covid-19 has affected cancer patients in the UK 

Cancer Research UK estimates 2.4 million people were waiting for a cancer screening, further tests or cancer treatment at the end of May.

An estimated 2.1 million people were waiting for breast, bowel or cervical screening.

The charity also found that one in three cancer patients say their treatment has been impacted by the effects of the coronavirus on the health system.

Around 4 in 10 people (42%) also said their tests had been affected, according to the survey of 1,900 cancer patients carried out in May.

Around 70% of people who had delays or cancellations to cancer testing and treatment also reported feeling more frustrated and anxious. 

Advertisement

Dr Owain Thomas, GP at a practice in Salford, said the research is a ‘vital part’ of understanding the overall impacts of Covid-19.

‘The conditions we have looked at are usually many months or years in the making,’ he said, ‘so the reduction in new diagnoses does not represent a reduction in the burden of these diseases, more the fact that they have not yet been formally recognised’.

‘This will have an impact individually on those patients – the longer a patient goes undiagnosed, the more complications they are likely to suffer.

‘As we move forwards, careful thought will be needed to plan services to find and support those patients who have not yet been diagnosed.’

The highest percentage drop off the study showed was for mental health diagnoses, where 2,147 cases were expected but only 1,073 were diagnosed.

This is particularly worrying as lockdown is thought to have amplified the condition for many with the disruption in routine and absence of normal support systems.

The condition was followed by type 2 diabetes, where 141 cases were diagnosed out of an expected 276, and circulatory system disease, where 598 were diagnosed out of an expected 1,054.

In malignant cancers 163 out of an expected 194 cases were diagnosed.

They were the only group studied not to show a significant difference from the expected figure.

The researchers suggested this is because it can take longer for cancer cases to be registered on the NHS system, meaning it appears that there has been a drop off in diagnoses. 

The stark figures come after a YouGov poll revealed more than half of patients have struggled to get an appointment with their GP since the pandemic struck, as services are moved online.

As much as 53 per cent of those questioned said it was ‘harder’ to book to see a doctor either in person or over the phone, as demand has surged in recent months. 

A nurse shows a cardiac patient and a doctor an image of a heart on a tablet at a health clinic

A nurse shows a cardiac patient and a doctor an image of a heart on a tablet at a health clinic

A further 30 per cent of patients said they were finding it as hard to book an appointment now as before the pandemic.

To manage possible overcrowding this winter patients will be urged not to go to A&E unless they have called NHS 111 first. 

Those who have less serious complaints will be encouraged by handlers to see a GP, visit a pharmacist or attend a minor injuries unit.

And patients deemed ill enough to go to A&E are likely to be given a dedicated time slot when the unit is not too busy.

The study comes after the Mail revealed tens of thousands of patients had dodged going to hospital for life-threatening conditions such as heart attacks during the coronavirus crisis.

Shocking figures show that admissions for seven deadly non-coronavirus conditions – including stroke, diabetes, dementia, mental health conditions and eating disorders – between March and June fell by more than 173,000 on the previous year.

The NHS Digital data revealed the largest drop in admissions was for dementia – down 51 per cent in April compared to 2019. 

Health experts said the statistics were ‘troubling’ and that many patients may have died or suffered long-term harm as a result. 

Powered by: Daily Mail

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2020 DiazHub.