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Period of Purple Crying Program 

Babies cry, it’s normal.There’s a typical period of time in their young lives when the crying reaches its peak. That’s when infants are extra prone to being injured by frustrated parents and caregivers.That’s why “The period of purple crying program” was created.It’s a national program to promote awareness about the problem and to protect babies.Thursday the program was discussed in a big way at Maine Coast Memorial Hospital in Ellsworth.For many parents the reality of a crying baby is a lot to handle.”By the time they’re 6 to 8 weeks old, they hit what we call a peak period of crying. That can be for some babies as much as 6 hours.”This leaves many new parents frustrated. Experts say many cases of shaken baby syndrome stem from this frustration.”Typically, crying is the trigger, so we want to get this educational program out there to try to impact how people understand and deal with baby crying.”There’s now a program aimed at educating caretakers on what to do.”We felt that the period of purple crying had the best mix of education about crying and discussion of shaken baby syndrome. We really wanna focus on how families understand normal crying and how they respond to it.”Educating the public about this now is particularly important.”We’ve seen a dramatic, if not three fold or more, rise in cases of abusive head trauma.””Experts say there’s a number of reasons why the number of infant head traumas has gone up. However, they say the economy could be a major factor.””The best predictor of the abuse rate is the employment rate, so there’s no question that plays a role.”Experts say alcohol, drug abuse and a rise in domestic violence may also play a role.They say an average of 12 to 15 cases have been reported in Maine in the past two years, but those are just the tip of the iceberg. “For every baby hospitalized with shaken baby syndrome as many as 10, even perhaps 100 babies are actually shaken.”For more information on shaken baby syndrome, or about the period of purple crying program, you can visit the National Center for Shaken Baby Syndrome’s website.