Hygiene plays a crucial component of a baby's overall care. Practicing a good hygiene is extremely important to keep your baby happy and healthy all the time.

Eight essential hygiene rules for your baby. Here are eight simple good hygiene practices to adopt when you have a baby.

  • Washing your hands with a good antibacterial soap is essential for removing harmful bacteria and germs that cause colds, flu, diarrhea and other infections. Be sure to dry your hands properly and wash your hand towels regularly. It's especially important to wash your hands before feeding your baby, after handling raw food, after changing a nappy or going to the toilet yourself, after touching pets, after touching anything dirty such as dirty nappies, rubbish or food waste.
  • You don't need to clean the house every day from top to bottom with disinfectant, you just need to pay particular attention to the surfaces that are most likely to harbour germs and bacteria. Focus on the areas that have a lot of contact with food, bodies and hands, such as bathrooms, kitchen benches, tables, crockery, cutlery and glassware. You need to be cleaning these properly. Use hot water with detergent for crockery, cutlery and glasses, while kitchens and bathrooms will need a thorough clean with a good disinfectant. Pay particular attention to taps, toilet seats, benches and door handles. Dry surfaces as well if they are not in a well-ventilated area with natural light.
  • Babies love to put things into their mouths, and toys are often the closest thing to hand. Be sure to regularly give your child's toys a clean with a good disinfectant. Wipe hard plastic toys down and make sure you rinse them thoroughly or put plush toys through the washing machine.
  • A good bath is essential for keeping your baby clean and tidy, but you need to make sure you are not over-washing as this is damaging to your baby's sensitive skin. In the first year of your baby's life a full bath is necessary only two or three times a week. Check out our step-by-step guide to bathing your baby.
  • These are three areas that need some special attention. Always keep your baby's nails well-trimmed so that they can't scratch themselves — the best time to trim them is when your baby is asleep. Be sure to use baby-sized nail clippers and not to cut the nails too short as these will hurt your baby.
  • Only wash the outside of your baby's ears, never the inside, and never insert cotton wool buds into your baby's ears. If your baby is unhappy and touching their ears repeatedly, this could be a sign of infection — be sure to get this looked at by a medical professional.
  • Clean any dried mucous from your baby's nose, as this can cause difficulty breathing. Use a damp wash cloth to gently remove the dried mucous. A nasal syringe may be needed to help remove excess mucous, but consult your baby's health practitioner before using one of these.
  • Be sure to keep your baby's eyes clear of any dried mucous. Use damp cotton wool to gently clean their eyes and seek medical attention if you notice your baby's eyes are irritated.

3 toddler tantrums decoded

Toddler tantrums decoded

Your toddler is sure to challenge your approach to discipline, but these solutions may help. By Lisa Witepski

The post 3 toddler tantrums decoded appeared first on Living and Loving.


Toddler tantrums decoded

Your toddler is sure to challenge your approach to discipline, but these solutions may help. By Lisa Witepski

The post 3 toddler tantrums decoded appeared first on Living and Loving.

Toddler tantrums decoded

Raising a toddler can be one of the most challenging stages of parenthood. Toddlers aren’t being stubborn or defiant to spite us – even though it may well feel that way. Clinical psychologist Candice Cowen explains that  they’re simply trying to be heard, and as their communication skills are still developing, they may not be going about it effectively. Fortunately, there is a way to win toddler tantrums.

Bedtime battles

Cindy Glass, owner and co-founder of Step Up Education Centres, explains that while you may experience bedtime as longed-for tranquillity, it’s a minefield for your child as she views those hours apart as a separation, rather than a bodily function, which triggers separation anxiety. Throw in a few memories of nightmares and the stage is set for war. This is even before you factor in practical issues, like whether your child is overtired (and, therefore, unable to choose appropriate behaviours) or reeling from a sugary bedtime snack.

ALSO SEE: Toddler separation anxiety at night

How to handle it:

Setting boundaries goes a long way in addressing many behavioural issues, Cindy continues. If you’ve made it clear that there are always consequences to bad behaviour, your child is more likely to cooperate. Routine can also help – especially if you’ve entrenched rituals that introduce a calm mood at the end of the day. “Help your child wind down by reading a story, cuddling on the couch or listening to soothing music before bedtime. A warm, relaxing bath is also a good idea,” she advises. From a practical perspective, keep sugary foods to a minimum before bedtime and monitor daytime naps. It’s simple – a child who’s not tired won’t sleep.

Mall madness

We’ve all experienced the nagging that steadily escalates until the volume of your child’s cries suggest they are in severe pain. Cindy Glass explains that a little empathy should be spared for the child . She’s only crying because she’s trying to deal with an emotion (probably boredom or over-stimulation) that she doesn’t have words for, so can’t express. Again, there could be physical factors at play. If your child is overtired, she’s more likely to act out, and your attempt to silence her with a chocolate could backfire as her blood sugar spikes, then plummets, leaving her grumpy and unplayable.

How to handle it:

The solution is simple – if you can see that tiredness or hunger is making your child snippy, go grocery shopping solo or schedule the trip for another time. Candice suggests preparing your child for upcoming excursions so there are no nasty surprises. She gives the following example of a constructive conversation: “You and I are going to go to a toy shop to get Johnny a present for his party. I know how much you like toys and you are very good at playing with them. That’s why you can help me choose a present for Johnny, and we can even look at all the toys until we find something you think he will like. We are only getting a present for Johnny, because it is his birthday – just like you get toys when it’s your birthday. Once we find the present, we are going to pay for it, wrap it and come back home so that we can get ready for the party.”
Psychologist Sharon Melrose says it’s always a good idea to model the behaviour you would like your child to emulate – keep calm, and eventually she will, too. Don’t try to reason with her while she’s in the middle of a tantrum, but once she’s settled, explain that certain behaviours are not appropriate.

ALSO SEE: The 10 commandments for shopping with children

I want…

You’re most likely to hear these dreaded words around your child’s second birthday. Cindy Arenstein, school counsellor at Breaking the Barriers Counselling and Training Centre, explains this is the time your child starts to realise she’s a separate person to you, which drives her to assert her likes, dislikes, wants and needs, so she can establish her burgeoning independence. She’s also starting to acquire the language skills that make it possible for her to vocalise these wants and needs.

How to handle it:

Your natural reaction will be to establish control with an automatic shutdown, Cindy adds. It’s probably not going to work for you, though, because it doesn’t help you understand what she’s going through and it doesn’t address her needs. This is why it’s important to help toddlers understand and label their emotions, she explains. The “I want…” stage is actually a positive one if you consider the fact that, as Sharon observes, experiencing disappointment is an important part of emotional development. “Your job isn’t to make sure your child is always happy, but to make sure she is confident and secure – this means saying no at times, and allowing your child to sit with the disappointment and sadness that results.”

ALSO SEE: New ways to say “no” to avoid toddler tantrums

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