A good photograph is essential in helping to locate a missing or lost child. It is important that the photo includes the childís face and head. A baby goes through incredible physical changes physically in the first few years of life.
One reason for the rapid changes in an infantís looks is due to the fontanels. Fontanels are soft spots on top of the babyís head. The fontanels serve a dual purpose by allowing the babyís head to fit through the narrow birth canal during labor and delivery, and in accommodating the rapid growth of the brain during the first two years.
The posterior fontanel fuses closed during the 2nd or 3rd month, while the anterior fontanel fuses together around 24 months. Initially as an infant a new picture should be taken every month during the first three years of life to document these physical changes.
As a child celebrates their fourth and fifth birthdays taking a picture every 3 to 6 months should be adequate. The invention of the cell phone allows a parent to document physical changes quickly and easily. I recommend you take a picture of each child before leaving on an outing or family vacation. Be sure to take both a close up of the child's face and a full length photo showing what the child is wearing including their shoes.
If you use a cell phone camera you will always have a recent photo of your child if you become separated. These pictures are essential to show people assisting you in your search. This way the person knows exactly who they are looking for and this increases the chances your child will be found quickly. Be sure to document any identifiable birth marks, scars, moles, freckles, or other unusual anomalies.
Keep all of this information in a digital format and keep a copy at home in the event you lose your cell phone. Remember picture may provide the missing link when looking for a lost or missing child. Finally, teach children your cell phone number and show them how to make an emergency call from a cell phone. It is never too early to begin teaching children safety.