Singapore baby left disabled for life after father hits him on the head while crying
The child is now tube-fed and cannot sit, move, turn or flip over on his own...
The father was mad that he had been woken up by his baby's cries. So he hit the 6-month-old hard on the head with his hand. This single rash act of hitting a crying baby caused multiple skull fractures in the infant. The child is now disabled for life.
Today, he is 2 years and 8 months old, but his developmental age is only 4 months.
Hitting a crying baby fractured his skull
According to The Straits Times, the incident happened on 26 August 2016. The Singapore dad, who is a father-of-three, was frustrated that his baby wouldn't stop crying.
He was sleeping in his Bedok North flat when he heard the child's cries.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Grace Chua has been quoted as saying, "The accused shouted 'shut up la, shut up la. Later I have work, you make noise, I cannot sleep', and hit the victim once on the head with his right hand."
After some time, the baby vomited on the floor and fell asleep. After a few hours, his mother suspected that he was semi-conscious and weak.
The baby was rushed to KK Hospital, and a CT scan revealed that the child had multiple skull fractures.
He also had excess fluid in his brain. The baby spent seven months in the hospital and was finally discharged on 2 Mar 2017.
The toddler is now permanently disabled. He cannot sit, move, turn or flip over on his own. He also needs to be fed through a tube.
DPP Chua said, "It is important to continue early intervention and close medical follow-up to prevent further complications."
"However, the victim is likely to continue to require assistance in all activities of daily living and mobility,"
Father admits to hitting a crying baby
On 8 November 2018, the 30-year-old father pleaded guilty in court for severely injuring his son. The child and his 4-year-old brother are now living in foster care. Their sister still lives with their parents.
The victim's foster parent said, "On one occasion when a blanket covered his face, he was unable to react to it... He is also unable to lie flat on his back and needs to be placed in a special trolley cum bed in light of his reflux condition."
The father is expected to be sentenced on 9 November 2018.
DPP Kumaresan Gohulabalan has been quoted as saying, "When the victim was crying that day, instead of pacifying the victim or even checking on him to make sure that the victim was well, the accused betrayed the trust reposed in him by not only neglecting the victim but also physically assaulting the victim."
We feel sorry for this little child who bore the brunt of his father's anger and frustration. We sincerely hope that with adequate care and medical attention his condition gets better.
How to Keep Calm When Baby Won't Stop Crying
When your little baby just won't stop crying, you might be tempted to do just about anything in an attempt to make him stop. But whatever you do, please don't hit or shake your baby.
Shaking your baby is dangerous because babies have weak neck muscles and often struggle to support their heads.
Shaking your baby out of sheer frustration might have devastating consequences — including blindness, brain damage or mental retardation. It can be life-threatening or even fatal.
Here are some ways to calm your crying baby:
Start with the Basics
Babies normally cry when they are hungry or sleepy. The first thing that you could try with your crying infant is to either feed them or hold them up for burping. Also, check if they need a diaper change.
If it is close to nap-time, you can change their position or rock them a little so that they easily fall asleep. If none of this works, maybe your baby just needs some attention and could do with a little bonding time with you.
Some common reasons why babies cry are:
- Sleepiness or fatigue
- Wet or dirty diaper
- Overstimulation from noise or activity
- Colic, acid reflux, or food allergies
- Pain or illness
- Stranger anxiety or fear
If the Tears Still Won't Stop
Many times, the baby seems to be okay but continues to cry. At such times, it is most important to keep cool and try out the following things:
- Hold your baby close to you and talk to her or sing to her. Tell her that she will be okay.
- Try getting out of the house. Getting outdoors for a quick walk or a short drive might help in soothing your little one.
- Remind yourself that while it is okay to get frustrated by the incessant crying of your baby, anger won't help. Sometimes, babies just need to cry it out. Babies have feelings too.
- In case you are the only one handling your crying baby, take a break when you feel the need to. Ask your partner or trusted friend to take over for a while until you calm your nerves.
- When you've tried almost everything and the baby still won't calm down, take professional help from a health expert.
(Source: The Straits Times)