Breast milk is best for your baby

The World Health Organisation recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life. Unnecessary introduction of bottle feeding or other food and drinks will have a negative impact on breastfeeding. After six months of age, infants should receive age appropriate foods while breastfeeding continues for up to two years of age or beyond. Consult your doctor before deciding to use infant formula or if you have difficulty breastfeeding.

SCIENCE & DEVELOPMENT

Dehydration

The dangers of dehydration
shutterstock_312430265-1.jpg

When a child has diarrhoea with or without vomiting, large amounts of fluid and electrolytes are lost from the body. This excessive fluid loss can lead to dehydration – when the body loses so much water that it can no longer function efficiently. If a child has both diarrhoea and continued vomiting, dehydration may become even more dangerous. Certain minerals, including potassium, sodium and chloride, are known as electrolytes and are vital for proper cell function and growth.

Find your balance

Some sports drinks and other household beverages lack the proper balance of electrolytes children can lose during diarrhoea and vomiting. Many of these beverages contain sugar, which can make diarrhoea worse. Extra sugar can draw water away from parts of the body that need it most.

Warning signs of dehydration

  • Frequent watery stools, often with a change in color or odor
  • Less-frequent urination
  • Dry mouth
  • Few tears

Signs of severe dehydration

  • Overly sleepy or fussy
  • Sunken eyes
  • No tears
  • Minimal urination