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HPV Vaccination Program is Vital for Boys - a Cancer Story

By Carol Duncan - 15th February 2013

This year in Australia the cervical cancer vaccine is being given to young teenage boys in Australian high schools. The vaccine has been available for girls since the program began in 2007 and the aim has been to reduce the incidence of cervical cancer. Even if you are aware of the expansion of the HPV Vaccination Program to include boys, you may be wondering why. After all, boys don’t have a cervix, right?

Trigger - a Short Film about Food Allergy in Children

By Carol Duncan - 21st November 2012

Trigger is a short film about children and allergy. Despite statistics showing increased cases of severe food allergies each year – nuts, milk, eggs, wheat, soy, fish and shellfish allergies there remains a real lack of public awareness about the potentially lethal consequences these allergies carry. 'Trigger’ was created by Australian journalist and mother Grace Farah, whose six year old daughter suffers from severe food allergies.

We Moved Schools For Our Son To Find His Tribe

By Carol Duncan - 18th September 2012

I knew from very early on that I had a sensitive child on my hands. Actually it was my mother who commented first but that’s the way it goes when he was my first child and her 7th grandchild. “He’s sensitive, this one.” He was only a few months old but she knew ... I can’t remember if it was Mr 10’s Kindergarten year, or Year One, but it was certainly very early on the day I picked him up from school and he informed me, “Mummy, I’m not like the other children.”

PKU a Metabolic Disorder - Remember the Heel Prick Test?

By Carol Duncan - 24th August 2012

Have you ever noticed the labels on some artificially sweetened foods which read: 'PHENYLKETONURICS: CONTAINS PHENYLALININE.' You may have heard of PKU, or phenylketonuria, but what is it? I recently read an article about Queensland mum, Zoe Mitter and her son Cayden, aged two. I found Zoe and Cayden's story fascinating so I gave Zoe a call because I really think the more all of us know, the more understanding and the more helpful we can be for children like Cayden when we have them at our homes or when they're visiting cafes and restaurants.

Building Empathy in Medicine Using My Big Mouth

By Carol Duncan - 12th June 2012

I talk for a living. I often get asked to MC events. Over the last few years, I’ve been increasingly asked to speak at conferences pertaining to neonatal surgery issues and research. Not because I know anything about neonatal surgery, but because I’m a parent of a child who has undergone major heart surgery and spent time in a neonatal intensive care unit. What I tell them, is how to do their jobs better. This story is about why I love my big mouth.

Finding Friends Can Sometimes Mean Losing Friends

By Carol Duncan - 7th March 2012

Are there any kids at your school that you’re glad your own children aren’t friends with? Do you keep an eagle-eye on the friends your child does make and, well, judge the friend just a little bit? Carol Duncan reminds her boys how to make, keep, and sometimes let go of, friends.

An Immortal Hovering Television for Your Viewing Pleasure

By Carol Duncan - 15th December 2011

Well, we’ve made it through 2011. Almost. Just a few days to go. We’ve made new friends, lost old ones, seen amazing things and been some wonderful places - and mostly due to good friends who share with us their time, their love, their generosity and give us the gift of experiences. The boys have come home this week, this last week of the 2011 school year, with their bags heavy with the fruit of their efforts this year. Workbooks in every possible area: maths, HSIE, literacy and so on .... and I’ve saved two of my favourites to share with you.

Bed Wetting in Children - Worrying When They Spring a Leak

By Carol Duncan - 30th October 2011

Mr 8 still leaks. And while I knew not to worry about it, until if and when he did for things like sleep-overs, I’ve always maintained a vigilant eye to make sure that if he was becoming concerned, I’d know and be able to act on it early ... A local behavioural paediatrician recently held an information evening on bedwetting so I thought I’d head along ...

A Stiff Conversation with My Boys

By Carol Duncan - 5th August 2011

"No darling, stiffies aren't a type of dog." Wednesday is much like any other day around our house, except that Mr 8 has soccer training. So picture me, if you will, perched on the lounge with Mr 8 trying to squeeze his feet into the always-too-tight soccer socks, shove his shin pads in, boots on and get to the ground by 5pm. Then picture me 10 seconds later when Mr 8 asked, "Mummy, do you know what a stiffy is?"

Letter Reassures me I'm Doing Okay as a Mother

By Carol Duncan - 4th July 2011

This parenting business can make you feel all manner of insecure. I worry about my kids being safe, about them being healthy, having friends at school and trying to do their best in class. I get worried when the boys fight and squabble, and I used to often wonder, “Is this normal?” ... But this week, an unexpected and wonderful thing happened. So wonderful I even had a little cry.

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