Understanding Your Baby: How Tresillian Can Help You

Tresillian Family Care Centres offer a large range of programs that educate, counsel and support families to understand and respond to their baby’s cues in order to minimise distress. Through Residential and Day Stays, these programs teach parents essential skills such as how to bond and relate to their baby, as well as useful sleep and settling strategies.

RESCU asked Ann Paton from Tresillian Family Care Centres about the difficulties parents face with babies and how Tresillian can help. 

RESCU: What are the common mistakes new parents make when they bring their baby home?

Ann Paton: One of the most common reasons for parents accessing a Tresillian service is for guidance on how to deal with their infant/child’s ‘sleeping problem.’ In the early weeks, parents are still learning their baby’s cues and can sometimes misinterpret them.  The baby provides cues that signal they want to interact. If parents misread these often subtle cues, they may continue to attempt to engage or over feed when the baby needs time out or sleep. 

RESCU: What are the settling techniques that Tresillian recommends?

Ann Paton:
Settling In Arms (babies 0-3 months), Hands On Settling  (in cot), Comfort Settling (babies over 6 months), Self Settling  (child 12 months and over), Gradual Withdrawal (child 12 months and over) and Parental Presence (baby 6 months and over). All settling strategies are flexible to meet parental preferences and the individual needs of the baby and family.  

RESCU: What do you suggest to do if your baby is uncomfortable with taking a bath?

Ann Paton:
It’s usually a problem for babies who don’t manage change or lots of handling very well. Try putting the baby in the bath with some clothing or swaddle around them. If the baby is really sensitive to the bath try hands or feet first, gently swishing, soothing vocalizations. 

RESCU: Can you suggest a massage technique that will help with settling a baby that is safe and appropriate?

Ann Paton:
Make sure the room is warm and not drafty. Use any oil or lotion you like, but make sure it is safe and non-irritating to a newborn’s tender skin. Place the baby on a safe, comfortable surface. There are several different ways to massage an infant, and whatever feels comfortable for the baby and parent is fine. As you massage, do not forget to interact by talking to your baby, as this is a perfect time for communication.  

RESCU: There is a lot of talk about ‘control crying’. What is the Tresillian view on this practice and what do you suggest we do in the first year?  

Ann Paton: Tresillian does not endorse controlled crying or sleep training methods. Tresillian strategies are based on working in partnership with parents; encouraging them to listen and respond sensitively to their baby’s cues, rather than focusing on the number of minutes the baby is left crying/distressed. Responding in a timely manner prevents over stimulation and therefore decreases the potential of the baby getting into a state of distress.

RESCU: Can babies become over handled?

Ann Paton: Yes, babies can get overtired and it is often due to over stimulation. Your baby will give subtle cues, for example, looking away from you or becoming irritable and grizzly. These cues indicate the need for time out or that your baby has had enough. Responding sensitively to these cues prevents your baby from becoming over stimulated.  

Tresillian offers a 24hr Telephone Helpline and has recently launched
their ‘Live Advice’ service, sponsored and made possible by JOHNSON’S®
Baby. This service operates through Facebook, allowing parents to seek
advice from a Tresillian Nurse using the sites chat application. To find
out more information about Tresillian Family Care Centres visit www.tresillian.net 

You can also find more tips and advice at JOHNSON’S® Baby Centre Australia www.babycenter.com.au

RESCU Recommends:

Johnson’s Baby Bedtime Bath

Containing NATURALCALM™ essences, a unique blend of gentle ingredients and soothing aromas, this formula has been clinically proven to help your baby sleep when used as part of a routine.  

500ml – $8.99, available at leading supermarkets, variety stores and pharmacies nationally.  

Johnson’s Baby Top-To-Toe Bath

A mild liquid cleanser that gently cleans and protects your baby’s skin and hair, it’s NO MORE TEARS® formula means this product is as mild as pure water on a newborn baby’s delicate skin.  

500ml – $8.59, available at leading supermarkets, variety stores and pharmacies nationally.

DermaVeen Baby Moisturising Cream

This fragrance-free cream is ideal for everyday moisturising, helping to protect baby’s skin from dry and itchy skin symptoms. It helps relieve dry skin, eczema, dermatitis, rashes, nappy rash, minor burns & minor sunburns. It’s perfect for newborn skin.  

200g – $14.50, available at all good pharmacies  




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