Author Archives: Mark

What to Engrave on Your Medical ID

Essential Information for Engraving Your Medical ID

If you’re unable to speak or communicate in the event of an emergency, medical ID can be a life-saver. It’s important to engrave your ID with essential medical information so that it can do its job.
ID bracelet with clasp
Unsure what details you need to include? Our handy guide covers the most important information to engrave on your medical ID:

  • Full name
  • Medical conditions
  • Medication and allergies
  • In case of emergency details (ICE)

Read more

How Swimming Can Benefit Children with ADHD

Swimming Can Help Improve Behavioural Symptoms in Children with ADHD

Boy swimmingAttention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), is a mental health condition that primarily affects behaviour, and symptoms usually appear during a child’s infant years.

Studies have shown that children with ADHD can benefit from regular exercise, as it helps to improve cognitive functioning. Activities such as swimming can help focus the attention of children who have ADHD while providing structure and an outlet for releasing excess energy.

Read more

Living with Dextrocardia and Mitral Valve Regurgitation

Managing a Rare Heart Condition

Leanne Yates

Pictured above: Leanne Yates

Dextrocardia is a rare heart condition that affects less than 1% of the population. It’s a congenital disease, which means it’s present at birth due to problems during fetal development.

There are different types of Dextrocardia that affect the body in various ways. In some cases, the heart is on the right-hand side of the body and flipped over, which is sometimes referred to as ‘mirror image’. In more severe cases, other organs in the body are also affected and positioned incorrectly.

Although it’s rare, if it’s only the heart which is impacted by mirror image, it can still function normally.

The causes of Dextrocardia are currently unknown, however, if other problems are apparent like lung and chest defects, it can have an impact on the way the heart develops.

Read more

Caring for a Child with Hunter Syndrome

Mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS) type II, otherwise known as Hunter Syndrome, is a rare condition that usually only affects males. According to the MPS Society, from 1992 to 2002, only 52 babies were born with the condition in the UK. It’s varied in its effects, which includes developmental delay and progressive physical problems.

Pictured above: Sally and her son D

Pictured above: Sally and her son D

Sally, 45, cares for her four-year-old son, D*, who has Hunter Syndrome. His symptoms mean that he requires regular treatment to minimise the effects of the disease, which is challenging for their family.

Sally regularly posts on her blog, which documents their journey to diagnosis and learning to live with MPS II.

Read more

Autism: Interacting with Dogs to Improve Social Skills

Developing Social Skills through Interacting with Dogs

Rosie the dogAnna, 41, is a full-time carer for her four children*, Jessica, 11, Claire, 10, Ben, 8, and Thomas, 15 months. She lives on the Devon coast with her partner, Hannah, 38. Two of their children have been diagnosed with autism, and they are at the Asperger’s end of the spectrum. Daily life can be challenging, but in February this year, everything changed when they adopted a dog called Rosie.

Studies have shown that children with autism respond positively to interacting with dogs, and it can help develop their social skills. Since Rosie has been the family, Anna’s children have learnt how to read body language, which has helped them prepare for social situations.

Read more

The Teal Pumpkin Project: Making Halloween Inclusive

Family Fun for Everyone this Halloween

teal pumpkin painting

Penelope and Harry painting their pumpkin

For the majority of children, Halloween is a great time of year. What’s better than wearing fancy dress and getting handfuls of tasty sweets and chocolates?

But what about the children that have food allergies? Imagine having your stash of treats and goodies taken away from you because you could get seriously ill.

That’s where The Teal Pumpkin Project comes in. This fantastic project was launched by the Food Allergy Research and Education project (FARE) in the USA in 2014, and its aim is to make Halloween an occasion that everyone can enjoy. Families who take part offer non-food treats, so children with food allergies can enjoy the festivities with their friends. All you have to do is put a teal coloured pumpkin in your window to signify you have suitable treats for children with allergies.

Read more

The Gurkha Welfare Trust: Supporting Elderly Gurkhas

The Gurkha Welfare Trust

Gurkhas are the fighting men of Nepal.  For generations, they have fought with courage and loyalty alongside British soldiers. This tradition of service continues today.

2nd Battalion Royal Gurkha Rifles

Pictured above: 2nd Battalion Royal Gurkha Rifles

Gurkhas first encountered the British in the Gurkha War of 1814 – 1816 which ended, not just in stalemate, but with an abiding sense of mutual respect between the two sides. The Peace Treaty that ended the war enabled Gurkhas to serve in the East India Company’s army which, in turn, became part of the British Army.

Read more

Life Skills Training for People with Autism at Crowsmill

Skills Training for Disaffected Youths

Founders of Crowsmill Craft Centre

Mark Chiswell and Dickon Pitt

Crowsmill Craft Centre is a Community Interest Company based in Shropshire. Dickon Pitt and Mark Chiswell co-founded the centre in 2013 after gaining a wealth of experience working in the charity sector.

They discussed their ideas with Shropshire Council and then spent eight months converting a disused barn into the centre where the projects, courses and activities take place. Dickon tells us that their aim is to give people the chance to learn new skills, meet new people and help their students to gain work experience or go onto further education.
Read more

Crohn’s Disease: Daily Life, Symptoms and Charity Support

Crohn’s Disease

crohns diseaseCrohn’s disease is a form of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). It’s a life-long condition that causes inflammation of the digestive system.

The condition affects each person differently, and inflammation can occur in any part of the digestive system. The symptoms tend to differ depending on where the condition is active within the bowel and can range from feeling feverish to severe abdominal pain.

Read more

Symptoms of Autism and its Impact on Daily Life

Caring for a Child with Autism

Mother and Child

Pictured above: Ryan and Elaine

Autism is a condition that affects one in every 100 people in the UK, and there are varying symptoms across the autism spectrum. Autism can cause speech and language problems, learning difficulties, or in some cases above average intelligence. The condition can have a significant impact on the sufferer and the lives of affected families.

Elaine Pearce, 36, cares for her five-year-old son, Ryan, who has autism, epilepsy and hypermobility of the joints. Ryan’s complex health conditions mean that he needs constant care and attention.

Read more