Author: Dr. Monica Wonnacott


Your child’s foot can grow a size or two in just 6 months. Here are a few tips to save you time and money when it comes to getting shoes for your child. Choose the right size. The old trick that my mom used to “allow for a finger’s width worth of growth” measured from the longest toe to the end of the toe box is actually good advice – nicely done, mom; nicely done. A tight shoe can lead to blisters or ingrown toenails, whereas a shoe that is too large will allow for too much movement and...

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FICTION Every day I hear parents assert that “teething” is what is causing things like fever, diarrhea, diaper rash, even vomiting. Wrong. The reality is that teething is a normal, natural part of growth and development. Teething doesn’t cause any of these things. If the teething child has these other symptoms, then he or she likely has a virus. In most children, teething only causes increased drooling and a desire to chew and bite everything. Some children will experience mild pain and irritability/fussiness as the gums become swollen and tender. In those cases a cold teething toy or some...

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Parents often ask me to recommend the best diaper cream, or the best ointment for diaper rash. There are lots of top diaper cream products out there, but in my opinion, get yourself some Calmoseptine. There’s really nothing better, in my opinion. We’ve gone through tubes of this stuff at my house. Regular diaper changes and a thick layer of Calmoseptine anytime the first signs of diaper rash show up, and you’re set. Where to get it You’re going to see lots of options in the baby aisle at your local grocery store, but you won’t often find Calmoseptine...

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How do I care for the umbilical cord? Caring for your baby’s umbilical cord is quite easy. You don’t have to do anything. It used to be that parents were told to dab rubbing alcohol on it. The new recommendations are to put nothing on it and let it dry up and fall off on its own. If the cord starts to get goopy or smelly, you can use alcohol, you won’t hurt anything. It just isn’t necessary otherwise. When should it fall off? Most cords fall off between 1 and 3 weeks; average is around 2 weeks. If...

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These are the most common questions I field regarding sunscreen. What age can I use sunscreen? The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend the routine use of sunscreen in children younger than 6 months. Prior to 6 months, parents should simply keep a child out of the sun as much as possible (using sun protective clothing, beach umbrellas, etc.). With that said, I always advise my patient’s parents that I would much rather they apply sunscreen to their 4-month-old’s face if adequate shade is not available than risk a sunburn. What is SPF? SPF stands for Sun Protection...

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Dr. Monica Wonnacott

I'm a pediatrician and a mom. is my blog where parents can get the straight scoop on their child's health, largely based on my experience in the office and at home. I don't diagnose on the site, so please don't ask. These are just my opinions. Use this site as a resource. And trust your parent gut.

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