Saturday, February 25, 2012

Potty Training for Toddlers

I'm quite having a problem in potty training my youngest kid because he don't want to wear diapers anymore but he doesn't know how to tell me when he's gonna poop so I end up cleaning his poop in his underwear and on the floor. (smells so gross, really.) My two older kids have been successful in potty training and now they go by themselves in the comfort room to poop. Now I'm reviewing some info's about potty training and there are several sites online who give information about the steps in potty training and here are the steps that I find useful and that I've already proven to be useful.

The Child's Readiness. A child may show readiness to start the potty training as early as 18 months of age to 3 years. The signs are: staying dry for up to two hours, uncomfortable with wet or dirty diapers, being able to follow simple instructions, asking to wear a regular underwear, or asking to use the potty chair. We should tell by the child's facial expression or stance if he is going to urinate and poop. We should also not pressure the child to learn right away for it will be counter productive.

The Right Equipment. The potty chair should of course be appropriate to the child's size. We can let the child pick his potty chair and let him put a name on it, or decorate it so he can get used with the potty chair. Whenever he show signs of urinating or having a bowel movement, take him to the chair and explain to him what he should do.

The Routine. Establish a daily routine in the potty seat. Let the child sit at least once a day, every morning, afternoon, or anytime of the day that he usually poops so he will get used to the potty seat. Tell him that removing the pants before using the toilet is also done by mommy and daddy and other siblings because its a grown up thing to do. If he feels a little scared in using the potty seat, don't push it, just give him some time and then when he's willing to sit there, then he's ready to try again.

Demonstrate. The child will learn to sit in the potty seat by seeing his other older siblings do it, or if parents demonstrate and explain how to use the toilet. hand washing after using the toilet, wiping the potty seat before using, and flushing the toilet. Children learn by imitation and by seeing this routine everyday, he will get used to the routine and learn to use the toilet.  

Encourage and Appreciate. Encourage the child to use the potty seat whenever he has the urge to poop or urinate. If there are "accidents", handle it gracefully and tell him to tell you early next time when he has to go to the toilet. Appreciate and praise the child for every successful use of the toilet, and appreciate also every attempt that he made in using the potty seat.

* I'm gonna have an update post on this next time for other useful tips in potty training.

CREDITS: Babycenterkeep kids healthy

Friday, February 24, 2012

Care for Children During Hot Weather

We now begin to feel the tropical weather and that means summer is just around the corner. The time for beaches, Pools, and summer fun is fast approaching and summer means EXTREME HEAT. Children, though they enjoy the summer season, should be watched out carefully during this hot weather for they are more susceptible to Dehydration.

  • Sunken fontanels (in babies)
  • Sunken and dark eyes
  • Tired and lethargic
  • Irritable
  • High temperature
  • Vomiting or diarrhea
  • Dry and hot skin
Another condition a child can suffer if exposed longer under the sun is Heat Exhaustion.

  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Generalized discomfort
The worst condition a child may suffer under extreme hot weather is Heat Stroke, which is more serious and can lead to brain damage and death if not treated immediately.

  • Red, blue, or mottled looking skin tone
  • Rapid pulse
  • Headache
  • Chills
  • Nausea
  • Lack of perspiration
  • Temperature of 105 degrees Fahrenheit or higher

Hydrate the child often. Child are more susceptible to heat stroke because Children’s thermoregulatory systems warm three to five times faster than an adult’s. Breastfeed the infant often or offer drinks to young children. WATER is the best.

The child's clothes should be appropriate for the hot weather. Light-colored cotton loose fitting clothes should be worn by the child so air can flow freely to the skin, cool the heat and absorb perspiration. 

Use Sunscreens. An spf 15 sunscreen should be used to areas not covered by the clothes to avoid sunburn. Apply the sunscreen 20 minutes before going out and reapply often. A chemical-free sunscreen made with zinc oxide or titanium oxide is advisable for kids since it only sits on the top of the skin and blocking the sun's rays. Sunscreen is NOT advisable for use in infant younger than 1 year old. Appropriate clothing to cover most skin areas in an infant should be worn when going out. 

Care inside the car. Never leave the child inside the car especially during the hot weather because the car's temperature is hotter than the outside temperature, and can increase rapidly. Travel during the coolest part of the day. Open the windows while traveling or use the air conditioner. 

Open windows. An open window can be a danger of falling for small children so install a safety window guard and move furniture away from the window to avoid injury and falls.

Immediate action. When early warning signs are recognized, act immediately. Give the child fluids and keep him cool by proper ventilation (air-condition, electric fans) and seek professional help.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Aggressive Behavior in Children: Is it Normal?

Another problem of parents especially of moms is the AGGRESSIVE BEHAVIOR of children - especially the biting and hitting. It's kind of shocking especially when our kid is playing with other kids and then our kid began hitting and biting and we end up apologizing for our child's behavior. Its really frustrating because it feels like we can't do anything to change our child's behavior.

Its a normal part of our toddler's developmental process as they learn the process of self-control. Since they still have limited language skills, a strong will of autonomy, and developing muscle impulse, getting physical is their way of expressing what they want. Though its normal, we should not set this aside. As early as possible, we should correct the behavior by educating them to express what they want without getting aggressive.

What we should do
Longer our patience. Show the child that we can control our anger and talk to him calmly. Yelling and screaming at our child will only give him new things to try. And remember, the child imitate what elders do.

Stop the behavior immediately. Once we saw our kid is about to become aggressive, we should step in and  remove the child from the situation. Give him a minute or two of time out so he can calm himself down and then explain to the child the consequences of what he has done.

Be Consistent. We should respond to another episode the way we did the last time. That way, the child will remember that if he did bite or hit again it means he'll have another time out or he'll be out in the action. He'll come to expect a consequence if he misbehaves.

Tell the Child that its wrong to bite and hit. When the child finally calm down, explain to him that its ok to be angry but its bad to hit and bite. We should teach the child other alternatives in expressing his feelings like talking it out.

Appreciate. We should appreciate the child's effort and praise the child's good behavior. That way, he will continue to express himself in a good way because he is receiving praises by for example, lending the other child his toy or asking another child for his turn to the toy.

Monitor what the child watches on TV. We should guide the child while watching the TV because some programs may include hitting, shouting, and other kinds of violence. The child should only watch programs which fits his age. If other cartoon programs have some form of violence like hitting and spanking, explain to the child the situation and that it is still bad to hit and shout to anyone.

Seek professional help. If our child seems to be aggressive more often, upsets or frighten other children, engage activities that will annoy or hurt others, or if everything we say have no effect at all then its time to talk to our pediatrician who may recommend a child psychologist or counselor to determine what really makes the child behave this way. We should help the child through it and work with him patiently.

CREDITS: Baby CenterEmpowering ParentsThe Baby Corner

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

How to Handle Temper Tantrums

One of the problems we, moms face is our kids' Temper Tantrums. Its kinda unpredictable especially when we were out, We thought that it was a very fine and peaceful day until our kid began crying, kicking, and screaming, throwing every stuff which comes his way, at times, lying down the to the ground. Tantrums can be very frustrating but we can treat tantrums as opportunities for education. 

Causes of Tantrums
There are several causes of tantrums which are very familiar to parents: The child is hungry, tired, or uncomfortable. Tantrums are often the result if the child can't get what he wants or if he can't get the things or the parents do what he wants. It also happen because toddlers have the sense of autonomy and want things his way.

Here are strategies for handling Temper Tantrums as written by Dr. Robert G. Harrington, PhD of University of Kansas.

Prevention for Parents and Teachers
It is much easier to prevent temper tantrums than it is to manage them once they have erupted. Here are some tips for preventing temper tantrums and some things you can say:

  • Reward children for positive attention rather than negative attention. During situations when they are prone to temper tantrums, catch them when they are being good and say such things as, “Nice job sharing with your friend.”
  • Do not ask children to do something when they must do what you ask. Do not ask, “Would you like to eat now?” Say, “It’s suppertime now.”
  • Give children control over little things whenever possible by giving choices. A little bit of power given to the child can stave off the big power struggles later. “Which do you want to do first, brush your teeth or put on your pajamas?”
  • Keep off-limit objects out of sight and therefore out of mind. In an art activity keep the scissors out of reach if children are not ready to use them safely.
  • Distract children by redirection to another activity when they tantrum over something they should not do or cannot have. Say, “Let’s read a book together.”
  • Change environments, thus removing the child from the source of the temper tantrum. Say, “Let’s go for a walk.”
  • Choose your battles. Teach children how to make a request without a temper tantrum and then honor the request. Say, “Try asking for that toy nicely and I’ll get it for you.”
  • Make sure that children are well rested and fed in situations in which a temper tantrum is a likely possibility. Say, “Supper is almost ready, here’s a cracker for now.”
  • Avoid boredom. Say, “You have been working for a long time. Let’s take a break and do something fun.”
  • Create a safe environment that children can explore without getting into trouble. Childproof your home or classroom so children can explore safely.
  • Increase your tolerance level. Are you available to meet the child’s reasonable needs? Evaluate how many times you say, “No.” Avoid fighting over minor things.
  • Establish routines and traditions that add structure. For teachers, start class with a sharing time and opportunity for interaction.
  • Signal children before you reach the end of an activity so that they can get prepared for the transition. Say, “When the timer goes off 5 minutes from now it will be time to turn off the TV and go to bed.”
  • When visiting new places or unfamiliar people explain to the child beforehand what to expect. Say, “Stay with your assigned buddy in the museum.”
  • Provide pre-academic, behavioral, and social challenges that are at the child’s developmental level so that the child does not become frustrated.
  • Keep a sense of humor to divert the child’s attention and surprise the child out of the tantrum.
Intervention for Parents and Teachers

There are a number of ways to handle a temper tantrum. Strategies include the following:
  • Remain calm and do not argue with the child. Before you manage the child, you must manage your own behavior. Spanking or yelling at the child will make the tantrum worse.
  • Think before you act. Count to 10 and then think about the source of the child’s frustration, this child’s characteristic temperamental response to stress (hyperactivity, distractibility, moodiness), and the predictable steps in the escalation of the temper tantrum.
  • Try to intervene before the child is out of control. Get down at the child’s eye level and say, “You are starting to get revved up, slow down.” Now you have several choices of intervention.
  • You can positively distract the child by getting the child focused on something else that is an acceptable activity. For example, you might remove the unsafe item and replace with an age-appropriate toy.
  • You can place the child in time away. Time away is a quiet place where the child goes to calm down, think about what he or she needs to do, and, with your help, make a plan to change the behavior.
  • You can ignore the tantrum if it is being thrown to get your attention. Once the child calms down, give the attention that is desired.
  • Hold the child who is out of control and is going to hurt himself or herself or someone else. Let the child know that you will let him or her go as soon as he or she calms down. Reassure the child that everything will be all right, and help the child calm down. Parents may need to hug their child who is crying, and say they will always love him or her no matter what, but that the behavior has to change. This reassurance can be comforting for a child who may be afraid because he or she lost control.
  • If the child has escalated the tantrum to the point where you are not able to intervene in the ways described above, then you may need to direct the child to time-out (see “Resources”). If you are in a public place, carry your child outside or to the car. Tell the child that you will go home unless he or she calms down. In school warn the child up to three times that it is necessary to calm down and give a reminder of the rule. If the child refuses to comply, then place him or her in time-out for no more than 1 minute for each year of age.
  • Talk with the child after the child has calmed down. When the child stops crying, talk about the frustration the child has experienced. Try to help solve the problem if possible. For the future, teach the child new skills to help avoid temper tantrums such as how to ask appropriately for help and how to signal a parent or teacher that the he or she knows they need to go to “time away” to “stop, think, and make a plan.” Teach the child how to try a more successful way of interacting with a peer or sibling, how to express his or her feelings with words and recognize the feelings of others without hitting and screaming.
Post-Tantrum Management

  • Never, under any circumstances, give in to a tantrum. That response will only increase the number and frequency of the tantrums.
  • Explain to the child that there are better ways to get what he or she wants.
  • Do not reward the child after a tantrum for calming down. Some children will learn that a temper tantrum is a good way to get a treat later.
  • Never let the temper tantrum interfere with your otherwise positive relationship with the child.
  • Teach the child that anger is a feeling that we all have and then teach her ways to express anger constructively.

When to Get Help

For parents. If, despite the use of these interventions, the tantrums are increasing in frequency, intensity, or duration, consult your child’s doctor. You should also consult your child’s doctor if the child is self-injurious, hurtful to others, depressed, showing signs of low self-esteem, or is overly dependent on a parent or teacher for support. Your pediatrician or family physician can check for hearing or vision problems, chronic illness, or conditions such as Asperger’s syndrome, language delays, or a learning disability, which may be contributing to your child’s increasing temper tantrums. Your physician can also direct you to a mental health professional who can provide assistance for you and your child.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Snoring in Children

I only had snoring problems with my husband until i had my youngest child. When he was a baby, i never heard him snore but when he turned 18 months old, that's when his snoring started. It was never a big deal for me before until the snoring became persistent. I was kinda alarmed and researched for this condition and so i learned that snoring in kids is not really cute and is NOT NORMAL.

Snoring happens when the air that enters the nose was blocked by several structures in the throat. The sound is the result of the rubbing structures in the mouth and throat as the air passes. There are some causes of snoring like colds, allergies, obesity and obstructive sleep apnea.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea is the leading cause of snoring in children. It is due to the enlarged tonsils and adenoids which blocks the passage of the air and cause the snoring sound. The child with OSA have disruptions of sleep with pauses which lasts for 10 or more seconds and happens several times in their sleep. The child usually wakes up feeling grumpy, irritated, and tired. The child may also have growth and behavioral problems, and may have poor performance in school. Some children with OSA may be misdiagnosed with ADHD because of hyperactivity and restlessness as a result of disrupted sleep.

How to manage snoring?

Proper sleep position. Proper placement of the child's head may lessen the snoring. Elevating the child's head while sleeping could help clearing air passages.

Alleviate the Allergy. If allergy is the problem then remove all the things which trigger the child's allergy (cats, dogs, stuffed toys, flowers, dust). Also, a PRESCRIBED medication for allergy from the pediatrician may control the allergy.

Lose Weight. An obese child should start to lose weight slowly by having a proper diet and exercise.

Treatment for OSA. If the problem is an enlarged tonsils and adenoids, you should start discussing with your doctor for the best treatment for OSA. The usual treatment for OSA is Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy (surgical removal of tonsils and adenoids)

One of these days, We will visit my children's pediatrician to have him examined for the cause of his snoring and seek treatment before the condition becomes worse and may affect his growth and development.

CREDITS: aboutBabyzoneWhattoexpect

Thursday, February 16, 2012

German Measles

During the first trimester of my pregnancy, i contracted the Rubella Disease or commonly known as German measles. As someone with a background in medical studies, i knew the possible effects of this disease to an unborn child, which my 4 year old Carl have today. But what really is Rubella? what is its causes and effects? what are the methods to prevent the disease?

Rubella is a common communicable disease in children and young adults caused by the rubella virus. Its name was derived from latin meaning "little red". It is called German measles because it was first discovered by German physicians in the eighteenth century. The incubation period is from 14 - 21 days. It is acquired/transmitted through the respiratory route (can be passed along by the breath of a person sick from rubella).

Signs and Symptoms 

  • Enlarged Cervical and postauricular lymph nodes (lymph nodes behind the ears)
  • Low grade fever
  • headache
  • runny nose 
  • sore throat
  • cough
  • joint pains
  • Faint pink to red rashes which develop on the face that spread down to the trunk and extremities 1-4 days after the onset of the first symptoms.

 Prevention for the Rubella Virus is usually given as part of the MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella) Vaccine. The first dose of the vaccine should be given to children at least 12-18 months of age and the second dose at 36 months of age as recommended by The World Health Organization. It is also recommended that adolescent girls should be given another shot of the vaccine so that they wont contract the disease when they got pregnant. There is no specific treatment to rubella because this disease is self-limiting however, management of the symptoms are done to minimize discomfort. Isolation of affected person is usually done to avoid transmission of the disease.

Congenital Defects caused by Rubella

  • Congenital heart defects (Patent Ductus Arteriosus is the most common)
  • Severe to Profound bilateral hearing loss
  • Unilateral or bilateral congenital cataract
  • blindness

The rashes from Rubella are usually faint pink to red in color which spreads from the face down to the trunk and extremities.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Things I remember my mom told me.

Being a mom is indeed a very rewarding job. It pays nothing but hugs, kisses, and love from our kids. I remember the things that my mom told me/want me to do when i was a kid that are exactly what i'm telling my kids today.

My Beautiful Mom and My adorable kids.

1. Don't Go Far! My mom always held on me when we were out in the mall. I wonder why she wont let me go and roam around, look at the things around. Now i know why. She's just afraid to lose me as I am very scared of losing sight of my kids when we go out.

2. Taking a nap in the afternoon. My mom told me that if i sleep in the afternoon, i will grow tall. Well, i did that but i never grew tall. Now I know the reason behind the "nap in the afternoon". Well perhaps for me, I send the kids off to sleep in the afternoon because toddlers need 10-13 hours of sleep at night and 1-3 hours nap time at day time to add up for their growth, physical, and mental development. Complete hours of sleep in children also lessens their mood swings and irritability. And it also gives the parents time to do the house chores or have sometime for relaxation.

3. Eating Vegetables. Getting Children to eat vegetables could be a very tiring battle between Parents and kids. That was also one of my mom's problems when i was a kid, and also my problem now that i have kids. But we should get our kids to eat vegetables because vegetables are great source of vitamins and minerals that are needed for growth and development. We Should introduce vegetables to our kids as early as 6 months by incorporating it to baby cereals, or other baby foods that they eat. We should also show them that we are eating vegetables as a way of convincing them because what we eat will also influence the kids' food preferences.

4. Don't talk when your mouth is full. My mom told me I should never talk when eating or with my mouth full because it may choke me to death. SERIOUSLY. Choking is when something, a liquid or a foreign body entered our air pipe where the air passes to our lungs, and blocks this air way. If this foreign body is not removed within seconds, it could result to death. Another case is when a foreign body entered our air pipe down to our lungs which could result to Aspiration Pneumonia.

5. I Love You! Of course our parents love us much more than we love them, and they want us to know how much they love us not only by saying these words but also by showing us through simple but thoughtful ways. Now that i already have my kids, i will never get tired of telling them and showing them how much i love just like my mom never got tired of showing me how much she loves me up until now.

Do you also remember things that your parents once told you which are exactly the things you're telling your kids now?

Thursday, February 9, 2012


Yesterday, my Parents-in-law came to visit the kids. They brought food and snacks for the kids and they just want to bond with them. Grand Parents are God's way of telling us that we, parents, have someone to turn to if we are not sure of some things about parenting. That Grand parents are the people whom we can entrust our children with when we are out at work. And that Grand parents are the ones who will love us, the parents, and of course our children unconditionally. The only problem is the kids become spoiled. :)