Monday, April 30, 2018

Scars Run Deep

Many of the children in our program have physical scars. And for many of these children, their scars represent one or more life-saving surgeries. A scar down the front of one child’s chest represents open heart surgery to repair a septal defect… a scar across another one’s abdomen represents a previous colostomy and subsequent reversal for anal atresia. Ying and Cheng are just two children who have physical scars from their life-saving surgeries. 

Scars are a normal part of the wound healing process and can be a reminder of a more critical period in a child’s medical history. Interestingly, scars can take up to 2 years to fully mature.

For infants and young children with a lot of growing yet to do, the mobility of a scar can be critical too. Scar mobility (or lack thereof) can further impact a child’s overall growth and development. Surgical scars run deep and scar tissue can adhere to any underlying structures–  connective tissue, muscles, tendons, blood vessels, nerves, organs, and bones. These adhesions can restrict movement and function. Scars can also be hypersensitive to touch, producing visceral responses (nausea/vomiting) in the most extreme situations. Scars obtained in infancy/early childhood can negatively impact various body systems (musculoskeletal- posture, cardiopulmonary- breathing, internal organs- digestion, etc.) as children continue to grow.

Recently we did a scar management training with the nannies in one of our baby homes. We had the opportunity to look at different children’s scars, assess their mobility, and demonstrate how to perform scar massage to prevent complicating adhesions. We can’t remove the scars from these children or change their past medical history, but we can help ensure these scars won’t further impair movement and function as they continue to grow and develop.

Friday, April 20, 2018


The advantages of being an only child are many. No matter which way you turn, the child enjoys all the toys, goodies, love and attention. This kind of happiness might seem perfect, but being an only child removes the opportunity to experience both the rivalry and love between siblings!

It can be easy to think children living at Dew Drops, who have been abandoned at birth due to their congenital medical issues, as being alone. But actually, we at Dew Drops believe that it is very important for the children in our care to grow up in an environment that emulates a family. Therefore, children are grouped into little homes with a primary caregiver and “siblings.” They are also taught to model the love their nannies give them.



When there is love, siblings can learn to play together. When they fight, they shove and push each other! A toy can be shared by two siblings who get along and then, that same toy can be what drives two siblings upset at each other! This is very common in any household with many children. At the end of the day, the siblings learn to accept each other and forgive. The love and bonds that form between siblings is very unique.

Monday, April 2, 2018

So Much Happiness from One Apple!

Can one apple satisfy you? There are many kinds of apples available – green apples, red apples, yellow apples – all are delicious but can they bring you happiness? Obviously, we are simply talking about edible apples, not the famous Apple products that many can’t live without!

During snack time, all the children sit in their highchairs to eat various kinds of fruit puree. For the children that are still learning to use a spoon to feed themselves, it usually takes a little time for the nanny’s to work their way around the group and feed every child. So what should they do while they wait? Here we have a great opportunity to give the older children an activity that encourages the use of their fingers and also improves their chewing ability. Today, our helper snack is an “apple”. This apple is going to help the children develop their fine motor skills with their fingers and also foster friendship and joy among them. Don’t believe us, just look for yourself!

Te Te has already had successful surgery for his cleft lip and palate. He eats an apple with a big smile:

No Longer needing a colostomy bag, Zong Zong shows off his apple eating skills

Han has already had treatment for her arthrogryposis and is making great strides in her development. Look at her use her hands to grab these apple slices:



Sweet Hui doesn’t let her growth asymmetry get in her way of having some fun! This is how she eats an apple:

After 4 successful GI related surgeries, Zhen is a happy boy who shows us how he eats an apple today:



Yao has already had two surgeries to separate his fingers. Here he shows us his skill at eating an apple:



Even while the children show off their skills of feeding themselves, they don’t forget to share!

Little ones, how does a simple apple bring you so much joy and happiness? Is the apple really that delicious?!

The children’s satisfaction with merely an apple shows that they know how loved and cherished they are. Children that are loved, live in gratitude and satisfaction.

There are so many wonderful things in this world. What brings you satisfaction? May the children’s smiles bring you happiness and satisfaction today!