Children are innocent beings who fill our lives with joy and gratitude. However, they are also weak and naive, and require the right care and nurturing to become healthy, strong, and intelligent young adults. Whether you are a first-time parent or experienced, you can follow certain tips and guidelines to make parenthood much easier. Here’s what you need to know:
Stress the importance of hygiene
The fragile immune systems of children and their ability to easily catch diseases make hygiene an important issue. To protect your children from germs, clean and sanitize surfaces using surface cleaners, sanitization sprays, and wet wipes.
Personal hygiene is equally important, so ensure your children shower daily, brush and floss their teeth, wear neat clothes, and trim their hair and nails. Practicing good hygiene includes protecting others from germs you may be carrying. Teach your children to always wash their hands, cough or sneeze with closed mouths, and correctly dispose of their used materials, such as tissue paper.
Monitor your child’s health
Children can be born with health problems that become prominent as they grow, or develop health-related problems due to bad habits. The former can be genetic issues that pass down from either one or both parents or birth injuries. Birth injuries are any physical harm caused during labor. Some birth injuries are curable, but others can render children disabled. Their families can face financial and emotional hardship for years or even a lifetime.
Genetic and birth injuries require urgent care and attention to treat and manage them appropriately. For this, regularly visit their toddler’s doctor to track the child’s health and developmental milestone progress. Parents can also hire a birth injury lawyer to sue a negligent health practitioner and obtain compensation for the child’s treatment. Early detection can lead to prevention and proper care.
Curate a healthy daily routine
An ideal daily routine for a young child must begin with waking up early. If you instill the habit of waking up early in your kids before they become school-going children, it becomes easier for them later on. Waking up early in the morning should be followed by breakfast and playtime, which involves interactive and educational games. Lunch should be served by midday.
Since children aged 6–12 years should get around 9–12 hours of sleep a day, as the American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends, you should observe an afternoon nap after lunch. Once nap time is over, plan an afternoon activity, preferably outdoors, for your children. You can also utilize this time for yourself by taking a walk in the park or socializing with fellow parents while the kids play around.
Dinner should be served by 6 pm, and your children should be tucked into bed by 9 pm with a comforting bedtime story session.
Feed them nutritious food
A healthy and nutritious diet makes all the difference in a growing child’s life. For newborns, breastfeeding and baby milk formulas are the ideal options. As children grow older, they require foods from all different groups to prevent deficiencies or stunted growth. Hence your child must consume three proper meals daily, constituting all five food groups. Try replacing processed and unhealthy snacks with fresh and healthy ones, such as carrots with dip instead of potato chips.
Ensure your child is eating enough but not overeating to prevent childhood obesity. Also, make mealtime a bonding session between you and your kids. A good way of doing so is by making them engage with all their senses while they eat, such as describing the color, smell, texture, and taste of their food as they eat it.
Get them vaccinated
Young children have weak and developing immune systems, so they need extra protection from viruses and bacteria. Since vaccinations provide immunity from certain viral and bacterial diseases, they are necessary for your child and the adults around them. That’s why scheduling your child’s vaccinations is important. Make sure they never miss a vaccination appointment.
Not only does your child need to be vaccinated, but so do the adults around them, including you. Making vaccinations a top priority for the whole family will benefit your family’s overall health and well-being.
Keep their surroundings safe
Germs, internal health issues, and physical danger endanger your child’s health. All hazardous spaces and objects threaten your young one’s well-being. That’s why keeping their surroundings safe is imperative.
Protect your children from any sharp corners and objects, heights and elevations, obstructions in their pathway, tiny ingestible objects, stairs, or any electrical, mechanical, or explosive hazards. Babyproofing your house is a great way of doing so, and items for babyproofing are readily available in baby stores and online.
Make their childhood memorable
Most first-time parents can be overly protective of their little ones, and rightfully so. However, remember that for your young one’s childhood to be truly memorable, they need to embark on adventures occasionally. Allowing your kids to be explorative and free will enable them to have unforgettable and even life-changing childhood experiences. So let them explore nature, take them on vacations and road trips, and allow them to experience the joy of being young and wild.
Be a good role model
Children learn by example. By observing you and how you treat them, as well as how you treat other people, your children will follow your footsteps. Last but not least, remember that your kids constantly look up to you as a parent and a role model, mentor, and guide. So set a good example for them to adopt. Practice kindness, compassion, love, and gentleness in your own life to see it translate into your children’s lives.
Parenthood is just as rewarding as it is taxing and burdensome. However, by adopting the right parenting tips and strategies, you can give your child a wonderful childhood while making your life as a parent or guardian easier and breezier. Follow the tips mentioned above for a happier and healthier upbringing for your little ones.