Purple Hat Campaign raises awareness for shaken baby syndrome

Published: Nov. 13, 2019 at 5:18 AM CST
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All babies that are born in November and December at Mayo Clinic Health System in Western Wisconsin will receive a special gift.

The newborns will be given a purple hat that comes with an important message for all new parents. It's called the purple hat campaign and they carry an important reminder to parents about shaken baby syndrome.

More than 200 purple hats will be handed to the newborns, but their message is for their new parents. "When the baby comes it's rewarding, it's exciting but on the other hand it's a very demanding job and it's challenging too,” said Dr.Chetna Mangat a pediatrician at Mayo Clinic Health System.

It may seem simple but Dr. Manget says it's important to remember that newborn babies are going to cry. "When the baby is crying, it's not your fault, it's not that you are a bad parent, it's kind of normal,” Dr. Mangat said. But stay calm and don't take it out on the baby. "The brain of the baby is like jelly and they don't have much of the neck strength so when shaking the baby from the arms or the legs then the brain goes back and forth just like a whip lash injury,” said Dr. Mangat.

So that's where the purple hat comes in as a reminder to parents:

P-Peak of crying is in the second month.

U-Unexpected crying is normal.

R-Resists soothing: the baby may not stop crying no matter what.

P-Pain like face: the baby might look in pain while crying.

L- Long lasting: crying can last a long time.

E-Evening crying is common.

"If you feel that you are getting frustrated or angry, you just leave the baby in a safe place and then calm down and take a break for yourself,” Dr. Mangat said. The purple hats are serving as a reminder to take a moment and calm down before it's too late. "You want to see the babies growing, developing and you see some preventable thing happen that can stop or even can take the child's life it is the saddest thing,” Dr. Mangat added.

The key here is that shaken baby syndrome is preventable, so hopefully these little purple hats can go a long way in these babies lives.