Raising a child is not for the weak-hearted. You will see that you receive tonnes of unsolicited advice from almost everyone you meet especially if you are a new parent. Many a time, the suggestions are just misconceptions. Whether or not you pay heed to most suggestions, here are 7 major things you should know about your growing child’s health as you embark on the experience of parenthood.
1. Fever Is Not Always Bad For Your Kid
Having to see one’s child uncomfortable while having a fever is indeed a nightmare for any parent. However, most parents always freak out when you see your child’s running a fever. It’s important to understand that high fever is actually a defense mechanism of the body to fight microbes that have entered it.
Unless your baby is less than 3 months old, any fever above 100 degrees Fahrenheit is not likely to be harmful. Fever-reducing medications and tepid baths can help to an extent but your kid’s immunity should be ideally given time to fight off the infectious organisms. Most fevers come down within 4 days. If your child has a weakness, diarrhea, rashes and respiratory distress along with fever, you need to meet a pediatrician immediately.
2. Physical And Mental Growth Trackers Are Useful
As a parent, you should be well aware of what developmental milestones your growing child should achieve at every age. Any sign of delay in their mental or physical growth can serve as useful indicators in determining whether your child has any developmental disability.
Meet the pediatrician for more clarity on your child’s condition. Starting an interventional therapy in early childhood has been scientifically proven to bring a world of change in overcoming any developmental delay.
3. A Healthy Routine Should Be Started Young
Childhood obesity is increasing in leaps and bounds. This is because children are growing amidst adults who don’t follow a healthy lifestyle themselves. Every child needs a routine as much as he needs love. Whether they are waking up, sitting for meals, going out to play, doing homework or going back to bed, a good routine in early years helps to establish good habits for life.
A child who is brought up in a home where healthy eating, mindful living, physical activity, learning and quality sleep time are stressed upon will surely grow up to become a healthy adult by all means.1
4. Safety In The Sleeping Zone Is A Must
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is one of the major causes of death among infants who are less than a year old. Putting her to sleep on her back in a firm cot is an ideal way to lower the risk of SIDS. If your baby loves sleeping on her belly, monitor her and keep anything that could smother her away from the crib including cushions and toys. Studies claim that using a pacifier during sleep can also prevent the chances of suffocation.2
5. Slacking On Hygiene Is Not An Option
Encouraging children right from a young age to practice hygiene can keep them protected as well as limit the spread of infections. Don’t slack on hygiene, even if it would require you to spend more on hand sanitizers, disinfectant wipes, diapers, and hankies. Children should practice habits like brushing bathing and hand washing at an early age. They should also be trained to cover their mouth and nose while coughing and sneezing. This will enhance their overall wellbeing.3
6. There’s No Time To Stop Breastfeeding
When to stop breastfeeding is a decision that should suit your baby’s nutritional demands and your comfort. Breastfeeding for 6 months is mandatory for all the good it can do for your health as well as your baby’s. If you have a job to go back to, plan how you can work around feeding your baby with the help of a lactation consultant. Don’t give into the societal pressure of weaning your baby until you feel its right.4
7. Discretion Is Required When Researching Online
In the digital age, almost everything under the sun is available online. Many new-age parents have the habit of looking up the medical queries to seek answers to their children’s conditions. Unless or until, it’s written by a certified pediatrician or reputable medical journal website or has an evidence-backed study to support the claims, refrain from believing it.
Parenthood can be a daunting journey that demands your commitment. Keep these things in mind and when in doubt about your child’s health seek expert medical help without delay.
|↑1||McCambridge, Teri M., David T. Bernhardt, Joel S. Brenner, Joseph A. Congeni, Jorge E. Gomez, Andrew JM Gregory, Douglas B. Gregory et al. “Active healthy living: prevention of childhood obesity through increased physical activity.” Pediatrics 117, no. 5 (2006): 1834-1842.|
|↑2||Ways To Reduce the Risk of SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Causes of Infant Death. Safe To Sleep|
|↑3||Improving Child Development: A New CDC Handwashing Study Shows Promising Results. Centers For Disease Control And Prevention|
|↑4||Breastfeeding – deciding when to stop. BetterHealthChannel|