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Not a stretch ntt to bd

^ When I first fell pregnant with Saskia, things were so hectic — so much info to take in on what to do, what not to do, what to eat, how much to exercise etc — that, quite honestly, stretch marks were the last thing on my mind. It was only when a friend of mine gave me a bottle of Bio-Oil, that I was reminded... she'd just had a baby so was clued up on all the right things to do. From then on, I used Bio-Oil every day of my pregnancy, without fail. Not only for stretch marks, but also because it really helped when my skin felt tight and itchy. Anyway, it worked brilliantly — not a stretch mark to be seen! After Saskia was born, I also used it on my Caesar scar and it's now barely noticeable. I now "prescribe" Bio-Oil the minute that I find out someone is pregnant... 55

Sam Fuchs

Interior Designer

Bio-Oil® is recommended by Lynne Bluff, editor of the Expectant Mother's Guide and National Co-ordinator of the Childbirth Educators' Group, South Africa.

Bio-Oil® is a specialist product that helps prevent the formation of stretch marks. It should be used twice a day during pregnancy, or more often as required. Bio-Oil also helps improve the appearance of scars, existing stretch marks and helps relieve the discomfort of tight, itchy skin. Bio-Oil's unique formulation is non-greasy, rapidly absorbed and suitable for all skin types.

Bio-Oil® is a specialist product that helps prevent the formation of stretch marks. It should be used twice a day during pregnancy, or more often as required. Bio-Oil also helps improve the appearance of scars, existing stretch marks and helps relieve the discomfort of tight, itchy skin. Bio-Oil's unique formulation is non-greasy, rapidly absorbed and suitable for all skin types.

Bio-Oil is available at pharmacies, health and beauty retailers and health food stores. Also available in the Republic of Ireland. The recommended prices are: £8.95 (60ml) and £14.95 (125ml). For more information visit or ask your pharmacist. Made in RSA.

A Union-Swiss product distributed by iRB^fllfim brands limited

Ask Annette

With more than 15 years' experience as a health visitor, Annette Maloney can sort out your baby, toddler and pre-schooler dilemmas

Babies know that rr\/in n ¡c tho mnct

Babies know that rr\/in n ¡c tho mnct

QI hate to hear my new baby cry, and panic when I can't stop her. What can I do?

A It's so difficult to hear your baby cry and not be able to soothe her. In the early days, it's a matter of trial and error. Go through your checklist. Is she hungry, lonely or in need of a nappy change? Or perhaps she's hot, cold, tired or unwell. Sometimes you may not find a solution. Believe it or not, you know your baby best and you'll get better at assessing her needs.

Share difficulties with whoever supports you. Take time out for yourself and go out every day. Ask for support from your health visitor and GP. And remember, most babies don't cry as much by 4 months.

Why a change?

QI've been advised to make up my baby's formula milk bottles individually, each time she needs a feed. With my first child, we stored it in the fridge in batches over 24 hours. Why the change?

A The recent changes have been introduced to help reduce rare but specific infections of thegutthat canoccurin formula-fediinfants.iThei guidelines now state that:

• Feeds should be made up with boiled waterthat'smore than 70°C - this means using waterthat's been left to cool fornomorehalf anhour; •Coolfreshlyprepared bottlesunderacold runningtap,with the cap covering the teat;

• Make bottles up fresh for each feed - storing made-up formula may increase the chance of a baby becoming ill and should be avoided;

• Throw away left-over milk;

• If you need a feed for later, keep water you've just boiled in a sealed flask and make up fresh formula when needed.

Flood alert!

QFm breastfeeding and seem to have gallons of milk. I catch the excess in special shells in my bra, then store it. But I'm producing ever more! It can't be right, can it?

A Sounds like you've done a great job in establishing your milk supply! Using the shells to catch excess drops may have started a chicken and egg reaction. If used all the

FOCUS ON... Tummy time

As babies spend much of their time sleeping on their backs, it's important to introduce them to regular periods when they can play on their tummy.

Supervised tummy time when awake strengthens the upper body and improves head control and balance, all of which are necessary for sitting and crawling.

When your baby's very young, lie her on your chest as you time, the shells may be stimulating the breast to produce more milk than your baby's demanding.

The more you produce, the more you need to catch the excess, and so on. Stop using the shells and go back to breast pads. Within a few days, supply will reduce to meet demand more comfortably.

Stressed out

QI'm worried about my sister. Her baby is 8 months old, but she struggles with small daily activities. She's ratty, tense and anxious. She doesn't see her health visitor often, but I think she may have postnatal depression. What can I do?

A Your hunch couIc be right. Postnatal depression can occur any time up to two years after the birth, although recline. It's a fun way to chat to her. Gradually build up the amount of time she spends on her tummy.

As she grows, spend time on the floor with her. Encourage her to do this by placing a small rolled up towel under her arms.

Use toys, books and mirrors, which she can reach and grab for. Both of you will enjoy the new skills she learns and her developing confidence in her body.

it's usually confined to the first year.

There are several symptoms, which include being irritable, sad, tearful, and over-anxious about their and/or their baby's health . Although she may not see her own health visitor often, every family has one. They're specially trained to help identify and support women with postnatal depression.

Perhaps you could go with your sister to a baby clinic or to her GP, and encourage her to seek

Your health visitor is there to support you ^

Your health visitor is there to support you ^

Toddler & beyond

QWe're taking our toddler on holiday for the first time. We've heard horror stories from friends about how unsettled their children were, and we fear we'll return more exhausted than we already are. Any tips?

A You're already half way there by realising that holidays with kids are different. They can still be fun if you plan ahead. Here are some key tips:

• Do short, simple trips at first, to give everyone time to adjust.

• Share the load - each parent needs time off to rest in the day.

• Broadly stick to your routine, eg, similar meal and nap times.

children like the familiar smell and feel of their own sheet and blanket, so don't wash them before you go!

• Bring their own feeding utensils for more familiarity.

• A few treasured toys will be comforting and help them settle.

• Pack a basic medical kit, including baby paracetamol, and diarrhoea treatment.

Bubbles are the best, Dad. Glad vou brought

Bubbles are the best, Dad. Glad vou brought

help and extra support. With treatment, she'll make a full recovery.

QIs it usual for health visitors to call when your child has been to Accident and Emergency? Our son recently fell down some steps and we took him to the hospital. He's fine, but then our health visitor rang to see if we were okay. Now his granny says we're being monitored. What's it all about?

A Don't worry - it's entirely normal anc good practice for health visitors to contact families who've been to A&E. When a child under 5 attends, the family health visitor is automatically informed.

Most hospital attendances are stressful, especially if there's been an accident. Your health visitor will just be offering you an opportunity to talk through the event, maybe helping

FOCUS ON... Weaning off bottles

It's easy to find A" ti uJfc week period.

JLyourself in the "

scenario where your little one refuses 'proper' food because he loves his bottle. You worry he doesn't eat, so offer a bottle because you know he'll take it, thinking at least he's had something. So the next time he refuses solids, he expects to be offered milk instead, and so it goes on. Milk is a great food, but it's not enough by this stage.

At 1 year, a child needs around S00-600ml (lpt) of full-fat cows' milk a day, cheese and yogurt included. So cut back gradually to this amount over a one or two week period. From 1 year, it's a good idea to stop bottles and introduce a beaker. This may also help to break the milk habit. Keep offering I family food, even if he refuses I - he'll eat when he's hungry. Eat together as a family when possible ; - babies are sociable and like to i join in. Let him try a variety of I different textured finger food, such as toast, cheese, fruit and raw, peeled vegetables. Give him ; a vitamin supplement, if you aren't already, as they're recommended I for children up to the age of 6.

you prevent it happening again, and checking that your son's okay now.

QWhen do little ones usually stop teething?

A Most babies get their first tooth at around 6 months. The majority of their primary teeth are through by around 21/2. The first permanent second teeth come through at the back at around 6.

QHow much sleep does a 3 year old need? Since starting at nursery, my daughter seems to need less, not more. It takes her ages to get to sleep at night and she still gets up at 6am. What can we do?

A I had a very similar experience with my daughter when she started nursery and then again when she went to school.

It seems logical that all the stimulation will wear little ones out, but for some it's completely invigorating and hard for them to switch off when it's time to sleep.

Nursery is a huge challenge for most children. They're experiencing different rules, teachers, friends, toys and a wealth of new learning. It requires a lot of concentration and adapting. Sleep is important for this all to be processed. The average 3 year oIc tends to need around 10-12 hours a night.

Keep the rest of her daily routine fairly bland for a while. Build some quiet time into it, such as story time, drawing or gentle play. Make sure things are familiar and easy for her. This will give her time to adapt to the new situation at nursery, and eventually she'll settle better at night.

✓ Do you have a question for our health visitor? Write to her at Ask Annette, PP, Room 2720, King's Reach Tower, Stamford Street, London SE1 9LS, or email [email protected] com. Sorry, but Annette can't answer questions personally.

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