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Helpful Articles

Articles written by Katy Grbas

1.    Travelling with Babies, Toddlers or Young Children
2.    Travelling with a Medical Condition
3.    Wearing an Identity Bracelet could save your Life
4.    Preparing your Child for Kindergarten or School
5.    Keeping your Kids safe with an ID bracelet
6.    Organising a successful play date for your Child

1. Travelling with Babies, Toddlers or Young Children

Taking a baby/toddler on holidays for the first time can be a little daunting, but with the right planning it can be a lot of fun.

Start by considering your destination and the sort of conditions available to you. You may be staying at a resort that caters for children, in which case you won’t need to bring much equipment. If your destination is quite remote then you will need to be prepared for anything.

What is your baby going to eat while you’re in transit and once you reach your destination? Do you need pre made baby formula or are you breastfeeding? Do you need to consider airline regulations regarding the transportation of liquids? Check with the airline to get the latest rules. Do you need solid foods? Always pack more than you think you need. Delays are frequent and you don’t want to be caught short.

Will you need any sterilization equipment for bottles, feeding spoons or pacifiers etc.?

Disposable items are great for travelling as you may not be able to wash items while on the road. Check your local store for disposable bibs, change mats, soiled nappy/diaper bags, thermometers, moist wipes etc.

Pack your own first aid kit with paracetamol/ Tylenol, band aids, antiseptic cream, antihistamine, thermometer etc.

Think about the sorts of clothing your baby will need and be sure to pack plenty of extra in case of little accidents. Check the weather forecast for the area you are visiting to get a better idea of temperatures to expect and pack some extra warm clothes just in case. Hats and sunscreen are always a good idea.

Where will your baby be sleeping, and will you need bedding? Do you need to bring your own travel cot? A blanket or something with there own smell will help your child settle into a new environment quickly.

If you are flying make sure you keep a bottle on hand for your baby to suck on during take off and landing. This helps to ease the pressure on there ears.

Take a couple of there favourite small toys just to help them settle in at new place.

You may need to take your own stroller and or car seat but remember baggage handlers can be quite rough with your stroller so it might be better to take a cheaper one.

The most important thing is to relax and enjoy your trip and take lots of photos (so don’t forget the charger or batteries for your camera).

2. Travelling with a Medical Condition

When you are travelling with a medical condition like diabetes, it is important to take steps to make the journey as smooth and enjoyable as possible. Take a look through all our suggestions for those that apply to you.

Before Your Trip

Get an ID bracelet or necklace that identifies your medical conditions and/or allergies. Check out the many options available from www.id4u.com.au.
Leave your destination contact phone number and address with a friend or relative. Make two copies of your travel documents e.g. passport, visas, tickets etc and leave one with a friend in case of emergency. Keep the other copy with you in separate bag to the originals. This will really speed up replacements if your documents are lost, damaged or stolen.

Register your travel plans if possible with your government agency & check travel warnings for the areas you are planning to visit. For Australia this is SmartTraveller, but each country has their own version.

You may require vaccinations for destinations you plan to visit. Some need to be done up to six weeks prior to travel. Check with your doctor for details.

Arrange for international roaming on your mobile/cell phone. This can take several weeks with some providers. Or you can buy a new SIM card at your destination to use while in a particular country or region. SIM cards are usually available from retailers at major airports. Store important contact numbers in your cell/mobile phone, and a written copy in case your phone is stolen or damaged.

Arrange for travel insurance. A medical evacuation is VERY expensive.
Ask your doctors' for notes regarding any medications you are taking and keep them in your hand luggage.

Keep your medications and prescriptions in your carry-on in case your luggage is lost. Bring extra prescriptions in case you lose your medications. You may want your medication made up into Webster packs for your trip. This helps to avoid confusion with times & doses. Ask your pharmacist for details.

Clearly label ALL of your belongings - include phone number if possible and allow yourself extra time to avoid unnecessary stress and fatigue. Use luggage with wheels to avoid carrying it.

Use the bathroom just before you board the plane, bus or train (airlines can make you sit with the seatbelt on for a while after take-off).

Ask for seats near an exit if you are physically handicapped (you won't get the exit row, becauce they are reserved for people who can assist the crew in an emergency, but you should be able sit nearby). Wear special travel pressure socks if you are concerned about your feet swelling or have vein problems such as deep vein thrombosis (DVT). You will also need to pre-request any special meals that may be required during a flight.

Buy some hand sanitiser to use when you can't wash your hands with soap and water. Moist wipes can be very handy in many situations and both of these items are sold in purse packs at supermarkets & pharmacies.

Confirm with your hotels any special access requirements for wheelchair access etc. Make use of assistance with wheel chairs to avoid fatigue.

Check electrical voltage of your destination country or countries, for any medical equipment you need to use, and purchase conversion plugs if required.

You may need a small cooler bag & ice packs if your medication needs to be stored at a certain temperature.

If you are fitted with a pacemaker - carry your pacemaker ID card and show it to airport staff before going through security check points. Also a letter from your Doctor to say you have a pacemaker.

Carry a small, portable sharps container for syringes if required. But do not carry any sharp objects onto the plane, as this is not allowed. Pack your own medical kit with paracetamol, bandages, thermometer, antiseptic cream, gastro prevention, antihistamines etc.

Familiarise yourself with exchange rates for the countries you are planning to visit and get some local currency from your bank for each of your main destinations. Your bank may need to order some currencies. Just get enough cash to get your started in each place in case you wish to purchase small items like food, drinks, newspapers, taxis etc.

During Your Trip

Keep hydrated by drinking water throughout the journey. Stick to bottled water if possible.

Make use of assistance with wheel chairs to avoid fatigue and ask about special services for those with disabilities at your destination.

Avoid prolonged sun exposure, wear a hat & apply sunscreen regularly.
Keep medications with you in a convenient place such as a purse or backpack and check locations of local hospitals.

Wear your ID bracelet at all times in case of emergency. You can order one online from www.id4u.com.au. Allow plenty of time for little emergencies.
Practice good hygiene and wash your hands often, use sanitising hand wash if no water available.

These suggestions may seem rather long and over cautious, but some advance preparation will make your trip memorable for all the right reasons.

3. Wearing an Identity Bracelet Could save your Life?

The most important reason for wearing an ID bracelet or necklace is it could save your life. If you have any kind of medical condition, and you collapse or are involved in an accident while away from home, your survival may depend on medical staff identifying your condition quickly. Once they are aware of your condition, they can get you the right help quickly and this may save your life.

If you are not carrying any ID at the time of your emergency, precious time could be lost trying to identify you, and significantly delay emergency services in contacting your loved ones.

We have seen all kinds of emergency situations around the world lately such as fire, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, terror attacks etc. Identifying people is one of biggest problems facing authorities. You could be lying in a hospital somewhere and no one knows who you are? Or where you are from? Do you even speak the same language?

What about your kids? If you get separated for any reason you need to know that you can be contacted quickly. Children rarely carry any ID.
So stop putting it off and get yours today from www.id4u.com.au. They have a good range of fashionable products suitable for every member of the family.

4. Preparing Your Child for Kindergarten or School

Preparing your child to start kindergarten or school can be an exciting or a nervous time depending on the child. Start out by visiting your kindy or school so you are familiar with its location, staff and buildings. You may wish to do this the first time without your child. Ask lots of questions about the routine the children follow and the locations of the important things like the classroom they will use and of course the bathrooms.

Ask if they run an introduction program. This is usually a few short visits prior to the official start. Most will, as they know it helps the kids to settle quickly into there new routine.

You may also be quite nervous about them being away from you for the first time. Be sure not to let your child know if you are worried. Make it easier for both of you by talking to your child about what they can expect, and make it all as positive as you can. Go through as much of the routine as possible. Make it a game.

Show them how to introduce themselves to a new friend or teacher. Make sure they know where the bathroom is, and know how to ask the teacher for help if required. Pack some spare clothes for little accidents.

Clearly label all of the their belongings and make sure they know what their bag, lunch box, and drink bottle all look like. Now that you have labelled all the little things – what about your child? They have no ID. Get them an ID bracelet or necklace online at www.id4u.com.au they have a huge range. Also make sure your child’s allergies and medical conditions are clearly listed.

Talk to the staff, and make sure they are aware of any special conditions or allergies your child may have.

Teach your child to tie there own shoe laces. If they can’t manage this, buy shoes with buckles or Velcro so they can be as independent as possible. Dress them in clothes which are easy to manage so they can easily go to the bathroom unassisted.

When the big day finally arrives, be confident and positive, don’t let your nerves show. Your child will pick up on your fears and may become nervous themselves. Be prepared for a few tears (hopefully not from you) and pack some tissues. The tears don’t usually last long, and the teachers are very experienced at handling them.

Arrive a little early for pick up time because parking may be difficult. The last thing you want at this time is for them to them think you have forgotten them. Even if the first few days or weeks are difficult stick with it and things will improve. Discuss any problems with staff as soon as they arise, because most can be fixed quickly if they know what is happening.

5. Keeping your kids safe with an ID Bracelet

Have you ever wondered what would happen to your child if you were unexpectedly separated while you were out? Kids almost never carry any ID and are not always able to give the correct information that is required to reunite them with you quickly. If you ask a young child “where do you live?” the most common answer is “at home”.

Your child could be involved in an accident whilst not in your care, so you need to know that authorities can contact you quickly. If your child has an allergy or medical condition, it is vital that this is identified so medical staff can give the appropriate care in an emergency situation.

If you are travelling overseas with your child you should consider adding your country of origin to the ID bracelet. Disposable write-on style ID bracelets are are best if you are travelling to various countries. They can be updated at each of your destinations if required.

Get them an identity bracelet with your contact information. A great range of ID bracelets for all ages are available online at www.id4u.com.au. While you’re at it get one for each member of the family, especially if there are health issues.

Being able to reunite a child with their family quickly is so important to reduce the traumatic affect it has on all involved. Give yourself some peace of mind knowing that you have done everything possible to protect your child should an emergency arise.

6. How to organise a successful play date for your Child

When you are new to the whole play-date thing it can be a little hard to know where to start. You may be nervous about sending your child to a stranger’s home, or inviting a stranger into your home.

A good place to start might be to arrange to meet your child’s new friend (and there parent) at a neutral location, such as a park or playground. This way neither of you need to worry about sending there child to a home they are not familiar with.

If possible start by introducing yourself to the parent of your child’s new friend. It is always best to do this in person if possible. This gives them a chance to also meet you. If you aren’t able to do it in person, try calling them or sending a note home in the child’s bag. Be clear with your invitation and advise them when, where, how long the visit is to be, how they will be transport, and who will be supervising.

You can always invite the parent to stay for a coffee and let the children have a short play in the getting to know each other stage. Over time you can progress to longer visits once everyone is comfortable with each other.

You should get an ID bracelet for your child in case they are lost or injured while in someone else’s care. This is particularly important if they have an allergy or medical condition. You can purchase a bracelet online at www.id4u.com.au.

When you have a child over to your home to play be sure to show them around, and tell them where they can play, where the bathroom is and where you would like them not to play. If you have a dog or cat make sure they know how they should be treated. Perhaps your pet might be better left in another room at first.

Arrange some age appropriate activities for the children, and make sure you have time to supervise them properly.

If your child is going to someone else’s house to play be sure and talk to them about keeping safe, and that they can call you if they don’t feel comfortable. Make sure they have your phone number on an ID bracelet for instace. Give them an "reason" to leave just in case. By this I mean ask them to call home and say “my tummy feels sore” and you will know this means they want to leave.

If  a child is coming to your place, don't forget to ask child’s parents if they have any allergies or conditions you should know about before they leave. Get a contact number for emergencies, and give them your number. Be sure to arrange a pick time, which should be adhered to so the child does not become anxious.