November 23, 2015
Over 14,000 purple newborn caps have been donated to London Health Sciences Centre to raise awareness about The Period of PURPLE Crying and Shaken Baby Syndrome. This year hats poured in from coast to coast and overseas thanks to the international reach of a successful social media campaign. “With so many donations from across Canada, the United States and from knitters overseas in the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Switzerland it is simply not possible to thank everyone enough,” says Brandon Batey, Injury Prevention Specialist at LHSC. “Thank you to everyone who shared their personal stories and sent photos in, and most of all thank you for raising awareness about the period of PURPLE crying and Shaken Baby Syndrome/Abusive Head trauma.”
The donated caps are being given to newborns at LHSC throughout the months of November and December for The Period of PURPLE Crying program. Supported by Children’s Health Foundation, the program aims to educate the public about infant crying patterns, and shares coping strategies for new parents and caregivers. LHSC was the first hospital in Ontario to implement the program, and since 2011 over 35,000 caps have been donated. Extra caps that are not given out at LHSC are sent to regional hospitals.
PURPLE is an acronym which reminds parents of the characteristics of normal infant crying.
- Peak of crying – The baby may cry more each week, peaking at two months, and then less at three to five months.
- Unexpected – The crying can come and go, with no explanation.
- Resists soothing – The baby might not stop crying no matter what you try.
- Pain-like face – It may look like the baby is in pain, even when they are not.
- Long lasting – The baby might cry 5 hours per day or more.
- Evening – The baby might cry more in the late afternoon or evening.
For the second year in a row, LHSC is holding a social media photo contest in support of The Period of PURPLE Crying program. Parents of babies who receive a purple cap from LHSC during November and December are eligible to win a newborn photo session with Laura Rowe Photography. To enter, parents must take a photo of their baby wearing the purple cap and share it on social media using the hashtag #LHSCpurple. For further contest details visit www.lhsc.on.ca/purple.