Thursday, 11 February 2016

Tiny Tickers #CHD

Myself and both of my girls have heart defects and both my girls had open heart surgery in 2009. You can read our story....Part One and Part Two.

My girls heart defects were not picked up during their routine scans.....If it wasn't for Ellie jamming her fingers in a door and the anesthetist picking up on the heart murmur who knows what would of happened.....My girls would not have lived past their late teens that's for sure!! 

Tiny Tickers is a small national charity that aims to improve the detection, care and treatment of serious heart conditions in babies....They were founded in 1999 by a world-renowned fetal cardiologist when she realised that many of the babies she was caring for could have been helped earlier.

One in roughly every 125 babies in the UK has a heart problem – that’s more than 3,000 newborns each year. But fewer than half of those are spotted during pregnancy and, in some parts of the UK, detection rates are as low as 1 in 4. That means around 1,000 newborns leave hospital every year with no one realising they have a life-threatening heart condition.

They want to increase early detection rates of cardiac conditions....Rates for heart problems being detected during pregnancy have doubled since they launched! They train sonographers to spot defects during routine pregnancy scans, support families with a diagnosis, campaign to improve service standards and generally raise awareness!

Early detection also means that parents-to-be can get the support they need to prepare them for the future meaning fewer dangerous and costly emergency admissions to hospital, fewer cancelled planned operations because of emergency admissions, and less strain on emergency transport services. 

Tiny Tickers works to ensure that every baby born with a heart defect has an equal chance to fight their condition, and lead a healthy and normal life.

With your support, they can achieve great things:

£5 Pays for them to help 3 families who have just received a diagnosis of CHD by sending them a support booklet giving them vital information and advice on what to expect from the coming weeks.

£10 means we they send pregnancy information packs to 15 mums-to-be telling how they can help their sonographer check their baby’s heart health.

£25 means they can send vital detection information to 40 baby clinics / GP surgeries.

£100 enables their experts to provide specialist on-site training for a sonographer.

£250 helps them set up a peer-to-peer support network by training a volunteer who can work with families who receive a diagnosis of CHD.

£500 pays for their trainers to provide a two-day specialist on-site training programme for sonographers in a hospital’s screening unit.

£1,000 could pay for a half-day training conference for up to 100 sonographers.

You can help provide a better start for tiny hearts. Make a single or regular donation to help babies with heart defects have a fighting chance.

You can also donate any amount up to £10 using your mobile phone. Simply text “TINY11 £amount” to 70070 and Tiny Tickers will receive 100% of your donation plus Gift Aid.

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Shopping for hearts...

February is all about hearts isn't it....As well as Valentines Day it is also National Heart Month and this week it is Congenital Heart Defect Awareness week....

I always seem to notice things with hearts on more at this time of year and there is so much out there. Not just things for Valentines day but things to have all year round....

5 Piece Hearts Storage Set - £19.99 - Studio
Heart Knife Block - £36.00 - Next
Heart Cutout Wooden Spoon - £3.00 - John Lewis
Mason Cash Hearts Mixing Bowl - £13.99 - Dunelm
Heart Cake Tins - £24.99 - Lakeland
4 Wine Hearts Glasses - £6.00 - Asda

Boudoir Heart Clock - £19.95 - Tesco
Wicker Heart Mirror - £34.99 - Dunelm
Pearl Heart Lamp - £15.00 - Wilko
Willow Heart Basket - £6.00 - Asda
Graham & Brown Hearts Corsage Wall Art - £17.50 - House of Fraser
Wooden Heart Tea Light Holder - £5.00 - John Lewis

Home Heart Oil Burner Gift Set - £7.00 - Asda
Catherine Lansfield Vintage Hearts Cushion - £12.00 - Littlewoods
Wooden Double Hearts Sculpture - £26.99 - Studio24
Home Sweet Home Wooden Heart - £4.00 - Wilko
Yankee Candle You Warm My Heart - £15.00 - Very
Hearts Rubber Doormat - £8.00 - Next
Cream wooden heart cutout drawers - £15.40 - Debenhams
Heart Birdhouse - £15.00 - Homebase

There is so many cute things...Is there anything you fancy?

Top tips for keeping children safe online - #SaferInternetDay

Safer Internet Day is celebrated in over a hundred countries and the day offers the chance to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones among children across the world.

The internet is such an important part of children's lives....They use it for school work, to socialise and to play games....There are risks associated with new technologies and it is essential for young people and us as parents to understand how to reduce these risks....

Keep your computer in an open area - If your computer is in a place where you can easily keep an eye on the computer activity it will deter a child from doing something they know they are not allowed to do and it also gives you the opportunity to intervene if you notice a behavior that could have negative consequences.....

Set rules - Make sure your child knows the boundaries of what they are allowed to do on the computer, how long they are allowed to be on it and what sites they are allowed to visit....

Use parental controlsComputers and even mobile phones have parental controls. You can block selected websites and email addresses by adding them to a filter list, you can set time limits and prevent your child from searching certain words....You can also contact your internet service provider (ISP) or mobile phone operator to find out about any child safety measures they offer.

Teach your child to protect their privacy - Teach them to never to give their name, phone number, e-mail address, password, postal address, school, or picture without your permission....Not to open e-mail from people they don't know and Not to get together with anyone they "meet" online.

Be involved - Ask your child to show you their favourite things to do online and show an interest in what they do....This will give you a much better idea of what they're getting up to and it gives you a way to support and encourage them while learning what they know.....

Know who they are speaking to - If they are using email, instant messaging or chat rooms try to get a sense of who they are chatting with and whether they actually know the person in real life....Explain to your child that it's easy for people to lie about themselves online, like their age, for example, because you have never met them.

Keep lines of communication open - Let your child know that they can approach you with any questions or concerns about problems they may have encountered on the computer.

Know the age limits - Stop your children from signing up for a Facebook profile or YouTube page before they're 13 which is the minimum age....

Stay safe....

Monday, 8 February 2016

Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week! #CHD

February is National Heart Month and this week running from yesterday to the to the 14 of February is Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week!

Over the next few days I will be sharing some posts raising awareness...I am not talking about something I know nothing about....I have a Congenital Heart Defect and both my girls have Congenital Heart Defect's...You can read our story Part one and Part Two....The short story is I had a hole in my heart which closed but I am now left with leaky heart valves....After a freak accident it was discovered my girls both had holes in their hearts and needed surgery to fix them. They had their surgery and are now left with leaky valves too.....

CHD stands for Congenital Heart Defect and is an abnormality of the heart which occurs soon after conception and often before the mother is aware that she is pregnant.

Common examples of heart defects include holes in the inside walls of the heart, narrowed or leaky valves. In more severe forms of CHDs, blood vessels or heart chambers may be missing, poorly formed, and/or in the wrong place.

Congenital Heart Defects are the #1 birth defect in UK! One child in every 125 (8 per thousand) is born with a heart defect.

CHD’s are the #1 cause of DEATH from a birth defect killing twice as many children as cancer every year.

Most causes of CHDs are unknown. Only 15-20% of all CHDs are related to known genetic conditions

Serious congenital heart defects usually become evident during the first few hours, days, weeks and months of life.

Signs and symptoms could include:  

A blue tinge to the skin.
Excessive sweating.
Extreme tiredness and fatigue.
Poor feeding including shortness of breath during feedings, leading to poor weight gain.
Rapid heartbeat.
Rapid breathing.
Shortness of breath.
Chest pain.
Poor blood circulation.

CHD’s can not be cured, the heart must be monitored throughout life. Many will need multiple open heart surgeries and some may even need a heart transplant. 

It has been estimated that there are currently 250,000 adults with a CHD in the UK, approximately 1,000,000 in the US and similar numbers in proportional terms in Europe and the rest of the world....