Consider the following patient scenario:
A mother comes in with 9–month–old girl. The infant is 68.5cm in length (25th percentile per CDC growth chart), weighs 6.75kg (5th percentile per CDC growth chart), and has a head circumference of 43cm (25th percentile per CDC growth chart).
Describe the developmental markers a nurse should assess for a 9–month–old female infant. Discuss the recommendations you would give the mother. Explain why these recommendations are based on evidence-based practice.
Child abuse and maltreatment is not limited to a particular age—it can occur in the infant, toddler, preschool, and school-age years. Choose one of the four age groups and outline the types of abuse most commonly seen among children of that age. Describe warning signs and physical and emotional assessment findings the nurse may see that could indicate child abuse. Discuss cultural variations of health practices that can be misidentified as child abuse. Describe the reporting mechanism in your state and nurse responsibilities related to the reporting of suspected child abuse.
DQ 1: Expert Answer and Explanation
Health Assessment for Infant
For a 9-month female infant at 25th percentile of height and head circumference, yet only in the 5th percentile in terms of weight demystifies that the infant is underweight. The CDC provides essential developmental markers that a nurse should consider when assessing the nine-month-old female infant (CDC, 2019). For instance, at the age of 9 months, the infant ought to have developed social and emotional markers such as being afraid of strangers, recognizing favorite toys, and being clingy to familiar adults. Communication makers include the ability to copy sound or gestures, use finders to point, and understanding “no.” In terms of the cognitive and physical development, the infant should be able to watch the path of a falling object, put items in mouth, move objects from one hand to the other, sit without support, crawling, and standing while holding on to something (CDC, 2019). The assessment can also include the nutritional and dieting aspect of the infant.
As a nurse, I would recommend improvements regarding nutrition and diet, increased movements, and mental alertness. The recommendation is in light of the infant’s underweight appearance. I would first discuss with the mother the importance of a proper diet and nutritional value to the growth of the baby both physically and mentally (Green, 2018). I will also inquire about the breastfeeding routines if the infant is being given other formulas that improve their growth. It is essential for the mother to comprehend the relevance of breastfeeding and the type of food that an infant can begin to eat after the six months following the delivery. It is also essential to offer the mother nutrition awareness materials such as handouts so that she can refer and offer the child with appropriate meals for weight gain.
CDC. (2019). What developmental milestones is your 9-month-old reaching? Retrieved 18 May 2020, from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/milestones/milestones-9mo.html
Green, S. (2018). Health assessment: Foundations for effective practice. Retrieved from https://lc.gcumedia.com/nrs434vn/health-assessment-foundations-for-effective-practice/v1.1/
Alternative Expert Answer
Developmental Markers for a 9-Month Old Baby
When assessing a 9-month old female infant for any developmental issues, a nurse has to look at the developmental markers for a child at this age. On average, a female baby at this age weighs 8.2 kg. For a child at this age, still, their average length is 70.1 cm, and the size of their head is 44.5 cm. Although a baby starts to crawl when they reach this age, not all crawl when they hit 9 month after birth, and they may start walking after the 12 month. The baby also sits, babbles and express interest in picking things. Additionally, they reach for objects while sited, and they may pool themselves up using tables or chairs (Tandon, 2017). The child may express anxiety when separated from their parents. When examining this child, the nurse would need to take to consideration the fact that a baby at 9 months can respond to their name, and they know their parents (Breiner et al., 2016).
The baby in the case seems to be experiencing the developmental issues. The baby’s weight is 6.75 kg which is lower than the average 8.2 kg. Their length is 68.5 cm, and this is slightly below the average length of 70.1 cm for female babies at this age. The circumference of her head is also slightly lower than that the average. As a nurse, I would recommend to the parent to encourage the baby to move. This would be important in helping build the baby’s muscles. The parent may hold the baby’s hands and pull them while they walk together (Tandon, 2017). It is also important for the parent to consider feeding the child a meal rich in protein so that the child gets to meet her nutritional needs. This would help her gain weight. These recommendations can translate to better clinical outcomes because a number of studies link practice and nutrition to the improved child development (Tandon, 2017).
Breiner, H., Ford, M. A., Gadsden, V. L., & National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (U.S.). (2016). Parenting matters: Supporting parents of children ages 0-8. Washington: National Academies Press.
Tandon, M. (2017). Early Childhood Mental Health: Empirical Assessment and Intervention from Conception through Preschool, An Issue of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America. Amsterdam: Elsevier.
DQ 2: Expert Answer and Explanation
Child Abuse and Maltreatment
Child neglect is the most common form of child abuse that school going children go through. The maltreatment has the capacity to negatively affect all aspects of their lives while in school. Poor grades and low self-esteem are some of the negative results of this form of maltreatment in school-going children (Zeanah, & Humphreys, 2019). Physical abuse is the second form of child maltreatment that is common in school-going children. Physical abuse may present itself in different forms. Beatings, stabbing, punching and kicking are ideal examples of physical abuses meted upon school going children.
There are different warning signs that a nurse or parent may use to tell when a school-going child is going through some form of abuse. For example, such a child may opt to stay away from other kids; isolation. The presence of physical marks on the body of the school-going child is another warning sign. Importantly, a negative change in behavior can also be used.
Some of the cultural variations of health practices that can be confused for child abuse are as follows. The branding of children using hot iron in multiple places on their bodies. The branding is done in order to identify the child as one of the tribesmen (RE, 2018). Some cultures allow parents and adults to instill discipline to children through beatings. The beating can be misidentified for physical abuse. Having said that, child abuse cases are supposed to be reported to child welfare offices within the state for the right action to be taken against the perpetrators of such heinous acts. Relatively, a nurse is required to keep records of the child abuse cases reported to him or her. Such records can be used by the authorities to serve evidential purposes when bringing the child abuser to justice. The nurse ought to be willing to testify.
RE, D. (2018). Cultural health care or child abuse? The Southeast Asian practice of cao gio. Davis RE1. doi: DOI: 10.1111/j.1745-7599.2000.tb00173.x
Zeanah, C. H., & Humphreys, K. L. (2019). Child Abuse and Neglect. doi: doi: 10.1016/j.jaac.2018.06.007
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