ICON – Abusive Head Trauma


“Baby crying is normal, you can cope!”

ICON is officially part of the NHS England COVID19 national effort.


Following a recommendation from a Serious Case Review in Hampshire where abusive head trauma was a feature, a local preventative campaign, ICON was founded.

The idea for the ICON programme and the different interventions within it was conceived by Dr Suzanne Smith PhD following a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Travel Fellowship to USA and Canada in 2016 which included the study of effective interventions and research into the prevention of Abusive Head Trauma (AHT).  Research suggests that some lose control when a baby’s crying becomes too much.  Some go on to shake a baby with devastating consequences.  Suzanne found that the most effective evidence based programmes studied provide a simple message that supports parents/care givers to cope with infant crying.  Apart from preventing AHT, most people who have ever cared for a baby appreciate some advice about how to comfort a crying baby and how to cope when it goes on for a long time.-

* I – Infant crying is normal

* C –Comforting methods can help

* O – It’s OK to walk away

* N – Never, ever shake a baby

They have very kindly shared their resources nationally so that professionals can spread the word about Abusive Head Trauma and how to support parents and carers to prevent it from happening her in Cheshire West. Our aim is that there will be a reduction in babies being admitted to hospital with suspected AHT of non-accidental origin.

The national ICON website can be visited here

Watch the short videos on how to cope with your baby crying and other issues here