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Caring for Toddlers (1-3 yrs) Tips

Thumb Sucking - Helping Your Kid To Break The Habit!

Thumb Sucking - Helping Your Kid To  Break The Habit!

The habit of thumb sucking is very common in many toddlers and babies but often disturbs the parents to a great extent. Before dealing with this habit, it is very imperative for parents to understand the cause of this behaviour. The tendency of thumb sucking is quite normal for the babies as it makes them feel comforting.

Problems that occur with thumb sucking -
There are certain problems that occur if the baby develops the habit of prolonged thumb sucking. The problem that occurs mainly on sucking the thumb for a longer time is with the teeth of the toddlers which may result in speech problems. Some babies get over this habit of thumb sucking on their own without any adverse effects. However, sometimes prolonged thumb sucking may result in irritation on the skin or lead to peeling off of the skin, causing discomfort and pain to the child. There are chances that even the nails on the fingers grow in a crooked manner because of infection caused by thumb sucking.

How to get your child to leave thumb sucking habit?

  1. Parents must in any case not force their toddlers to stop this habit or get upset with them, as it can cause the toddler to develop this habit all the more.
  2. A child mainly sucks his thumb for comfort, and the habit can be stopped by diverting their mind and offering the child a soft toy or giving them a special blanket.
  3. It is better to give the toddler something to hold which makes him feel secure and comfortable.
  4. It is very important to assess whether it is a problem before stopping the habit of thumb sucking. But if the habit continues, it may affect the alignment of the teeth.
  5. It is always better to make use of ways like positive reinforcement and encouraging behaviour change in your child. Parents must set up a reward system and take note of the days the child does not suck his thumb. It is important that parents praise their child verbally and give them some reward at the end of the month.
  6. The best and simple way to quit the habit of thumb sucking is to cover the thumb with a thumb guard or mittens.
  7. The best way to help your child quit the habit would be to distract him or her and involve them in activities that would require the use of both the hands. Parents can keep their child busy by giving them puzzles or blocks to play.

How Can Ayurveda Benefit Your Kids?

How Can Ayurveda Benefit Your Kids?

Ayurveda has been in practice from thousands of years – it has a great deal of wisdom that is applied just as easily to children as adults. Essentially a preventive approach to well-being, Ayurveda can help correct the imbalances of doshas that may be hampering your kid’s health. Moreover, this alternative treatment approach can potentially lead your children on a lifelong path towards optimal health. 

According to ancient Ayurveda, there are three developmental stages of a child. 

  • Garbha Avastha – This is the stage where the child is still inside the mother’s womb 

  • Balya Avastha – This refers to the period right from the birth of the child to the time he/she turns one-year-old. This stage is also known as ‘Kshirap Avastha’. During the time, the baby only feeds on milk.

  • Kumar Avastha – This stage extends from age 1 to age 16. When the baby is about 1 or 2 years old, he/she starts eating a few other kinds of food along with milk. The period is referred to as ‘Kshirannad’. From age 2 to 16, the period is known as ‘Anand Avastha’, where the main diet of the baby comprises of cooked food. 

Once the child starts consuming cooked meals, he/she develops higher chances of worm infestation. In Ayurveda, this particular condition is known as ‘Krimi Rog’. 

Worm Infestation/Krimi Rog in Children - 

Worms or krimis are of three types – the Purishaj krimi, the Raktaj krimi, and the Kaphaj krimi. Children are likely to contract worm eggs by feeding on contaminated water and food due to poor hygiene, or by walking barefoot on unclean surfaces. 

Common signs and symptoms observed in children with krimi rog may include –

What is the treatment for Krimi Rog in children?

The most effective cure for Krimi Rog in children is Krimipatan Basti, as suggested by Ayurveda. Basti refers to the administration of ghee or medicated oil and herbal decoction through the anus. This cleanses and nourishes the colon and the intestine, and helps to increase muscle tone. Prior to performing Basti, castor oil may be applied around the belly button in a clockwise, circular motion, as it aids in digestion.

Eliminating and avoiding causative factors can help treat worm infestation. Effective measures need to be taken to clean the body. 

Here are some measures you must take to keep your kids away from worm infestation –

  • Do not give them fruits to eat in the morning or at night. Fruits should only be consumed right before lunch.

  • Fruit juice and milkshakes are an absolute favourite among kids – but make sure you keep them away from such beverages, as it could lead to cold and cough

  • Feed your kids freshly cooked home-food only

  • Teach them good hygiene and healthy dietary habits

  • Children must avoid pork and red meat 

  • Make sure the water is boiled and purified before allowing your kids to drink it

Ayurvedic therapy and remedies are very effective against intestinal worms and have no side effects on the body, as compared to conventional medications. Nevertheless, you may seek help from a practitioner before opting for Basti procedure. 

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First Aid Guide For Parents & Caregivers!

First Aid Guide For Parents & Caregivers!

Bones make up the skeletal framework of the body. They are a type of connective tissues and are made up of calcium. Their main function is to provide support and to protect our internal organs. When a bone in our body breaks, it is said to be a fracture.

The fracture occurs when an external force is exerted on a part of the body making the bones to break. This breakage can be caused by reasons ranging from traumatic to medical. Traumatic causes include accidents, falls and injuries, whereas medical conditions include osteoporosis and cancer of different types.

There are various types of fractures that affect individuals. The main types are closed and compound fractures. In a closed fracture, the broken bone does not make a hole through the skin. In a compound fracture, the bone is broken down into pieces, thereby resulting in internal bleeding and infection. However, the most common type of fracture in children is the greenstick fracture. It is defined as a small and slender crack affecting children because their bones are more flexible and soft compared to that of adults.

When it comes to fractures in children, parents are advised to follow certain first aid measures to ensure faster healing and repairing. They are:

  1. Immobilisation - The most important step in first aid for fracture is immobilizing the fractured portion. Do not move your child from his or her place unless there is a paramedic.
  2. Stop the bleeding - If the fracture has pierced the skin and has resulted in heavy bleeding, then you should put pressure on the wound with a sterile cloth. This should stop the bleeding.
  3. Put ice packs - If your child is in pain, put ice packs on the injured area. However, wrap the ice in a cloth first then put the pack on the wound to prevent swelling and to reduce pain.
  4. Provide support - If the fracture has taken place in the child's limb, provide support to him/her by placing a pillow under the leg. Try to comfort your child and do not panic in front of him/her.
  5. Use a splint - It is important to splint the injured area and know the basic steps involved in making a splint. For a splint, you can use a wooden scale or a folded magazine. Place the splints above and below the fractured area. Use gauze or tape to keep the splints in place. Do not put the tape or gauze directly over the fractured region. It is important to note that you do not move or realign the broken bone, causing further pain to your children.

After providing proper first aid care to your child, you should immediately call for an ambulance and take him or her to a doctor. Whatever you do, do not panic in front of your child and comfort him/her.

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Homeopathy For Kids!

Homeopathy For Kids!

Parents today are more concerned about their child's healthy diet and hygiene compared to earlier days. They are more inclined towards quality when it comes to providing medical assistance to their children. They are also now well aware of the side effects of conventional drugs and are keener towards trying alternative treatments which come with no side effects. Studies prove that conventional drugs suppress diseases and antibiotics hamper digestion. But homeopathy, on the other hand, offers natural remedies, which are safe, and has a long-lasting effect by boosting your body's immunity.

Below are some of the conditions in which homeopathy works wonders with the kids:

1. Acute conditions such as cold, flu, sore throat, stomach infections. These conditions are self-limiting. Homeopathic remedies not only cure these acute problems but also prevent their recurrence.

2. Chronic diseases like eczema and allergies are cured completely and never recur when treated with homeopathy. In both the above cases, homeopathy works miraculously. Alongside the healing process, it boosts the child's self-defence mechanisms to fight against diseases. While antibiotics may be too harsh for the child's body, homeopathy is a safer option since it does not have any side-effects.

Homeopathy is also effective in treating colic, earache and reduces pain and discomforts. Some of the common problems of children where homeopathy works well are fever, teething, vomiting, diarrhea, dysentery, kidney diseases, infant colic, jaundice, eczema, convulsions, ear infection, fungal infections, warts, thyroid problems, and growth-related problems.

Not just physical symptoms, homeopathy also treats mental and emotional disturbances.

  • You can take help of homeopathy treatment if the child is cranky or restless, and it is very beneficial even in case of hyperactive children.
  • It is also effective in increasing concentration.
  • Homeopathy works perfectly for specially challenged children as well.
  • One of the plus points with homeopathic medicine is that it is easy to administer given their light doses and consumable taste.
  • In addition, injections are not required. Furthermore, homeopathic treatment helps in all stages of childhood.

Homeopathy is a holistic system of medicine. It works on improving immunity rather than only curing the disease. Thus, it is very important to complete courses in homeopathy medication. Even though handy, homeopathy does not allow self-medication. It is always advisable to seek a doctor's help.

Teething Trouble In Children - How Can Homeopathy Help?

Teething Trouble In Children - How Can Homeopathy Help?

Biting and gnawing at things is a precursor to the developing of the first teeth of your baby. It is a joy to see the first teeth of your baby. It may be an occasion to be celebrated, but it is an uncomfortable process for the baby. For this reason, teething trouble is common among babies.

Teething Troubles:

Between the ages of 4 to 7 months, babies usually begin to teeth, though some may also have it later. Symptoms of the teething problem include:

  1. Swollen gums

  2. Crying

  3. Slightly high body temperature

  4. Gnawing on hard things

  5. Drooling

  6. Changes in sleeping and eating pattern

These symptoms imply that the baby is feeling uncomfortable from the side effects of teething. He/She may also be feeling pain. If your baby suffers from vomiting, diarrhea, rashes or high fever, you need to take it to a doctor since these are not normal symptoms of teething.

However, even for bringing down the general symptoms of teething, babies are given pain relievers which may not be well tolerated in them, especially in the future. Looking for natural solutions is never harmful in such situations. Homeopathy can bring down the general symptoms of teething or prevent them more naturally.  

Homeopathy To Treat Teething Trouble:

The goal of attending to teething trouble is to reduce the associated pain and inflammation of the gum. There are many homeopathic medicines for bringing down teething trouble. In fact, homeopathy is a great tool for treating problems without much side effect. It is believed that homeopathic medicines don’t have any side effects. They are administered in very small concentrations, and they act by rectifying the homeostatic imbalance in the body. In fact, there are various teething remedies in homeopathy.

Homeopathic Remedies For Teething Trouble:

  1. Aconitum Apellus: If the baby is agitated, his/her gums look inflamed and are very restless, you can use this medicine.

  2. Belladonna: If the baby is suffering from intense pain and inflammation, it may feel restless and get easily startled. In that situation, you can go for this medicine.

  3. Calcarea Carbonica: In some babies, teething begins late; it is slow and also painful. For them, this homeopathic medicine may be effective. If the baby looks anxious or sad, pressing his/her gums together, and suffering from pain, you can use this medicine.

  4. Calcarea Phosphorica: For aching gums and disturbed sleep resulting in food faddism, irritability, and stomach aches, you can give this medicine to the baby.

  5. Chamomilla: If the child is extremely irritable and agitated and is screaming and hitting continuously despite rocking or carrying continuously, he/she may be suffering from intense pain. His/Her gums may have become sensitive to touch that every single bite seems to be producing intense pain. In such a situation one may use this medicine.

Ignatia: If the child seems to be upset, sad, and is suffering from teething trouble, you can use this homeopathic remedy.

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Proper Parenting - Know Its Importance For Child's Development!

Proper Parenting - Know Its Importance For Child's Development!

What a powerful portrait! Please remember that damage done at a very young age can last forever in your child. Redefine parenting.

Parenting - How To Make It Better?

Parenting - How To Make It Better?

Parenting is not at all an easy task to do and hence, it’s one of the most researched areas in social science today. If you happen to be the parent, just ask yourself what you really want from your kid. Healthy parenting can go a long way in shaping your child’s health, both physical and psychological. The confident adult that your child grows up to be can greatly be influenced by the decisions you take as a parent and the various parenting choices you make. Just the perfect mix of love, affection, authority and strict handedness are all, what it takes to try and be the best parent for your little one.

How can discipline and liberty go hand in hand?
We all learn from our mistakes, don’t we? Similarly, your child will! Hence, every time your child runs around the house trying to fiddle and explore, don’t run after him. Let him be. Watch him try and fail, fall and get up, and you shall be doing him a world of good that way. Parenting is not about taking charge of anything and everything your child does and clipping his wings of passion; instead, it’s about having faith in your child and teaching him to value freedom and use it the right way. This way, you get to teach your child resilience and how to be self-reliant.

How can healthy parenting positively affect the parents?
Wouldn’t it be great if your children grow up to become responsible citizens, loved and honoured by all? And if your kid really learns to respect freedom and become disciplined from an early age, it just saves your sanity and emotional balance too!

Healthy parenting is a gradual process
Healthy parenting is a habit that the parents and the kids should grow with. These can be achieved by:

  1. You may be the corporate honcho, but try and be the daddy dearest for your blue eyed boy. Get back home, play with him and see all inhibitions disappear.
  2. Cuddle up with your baby and a book and read out to him every day! Your voice will affect him positively and he would probably want to hear of you more. This induces imagination and creative power in the child and may make him an avid reader in the future.
  3. Make simple yet grand memories with your baby and he is sure to never forget them; can be as simple as going out for an outdoor game every weekend or swimming together on Sundays.
  4. Lead by example. Show him with your behaviour and practicality the way you would want him/her to be later on in life. Make sure he learns and learns the right things by watching you. If your child sees you tackle and come out of a sticky situation with a cool head on your shoulders, he’s sure to imbibe the attitude in him as well. Be the captain your child needs, and he shall score big.
  5. Saying how much you love her a thousand times a day is not what’s really needed. Rather, be there for her when she’s down and out, the times when she would need you the most. Don’t rely on only words to forge memories with her. You can do a lot more than that.
  6. And lastly, try and make your child inculcate in him the belief that it's not always important to do the right things, rather try and do things right. Street-smartness is something your little beloved will ever thank you for.
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How To Boost Your Child's Immunity!

How To Boost Your Child's Immunity!

With increasing levels of pollution and global warming, the world is coming to a halt with an increased number of reported cases concerned with the health status of our children. The mounting levels of poor air quality index (AQI) and toxic accumulations in our immediate surroundings make us more worried about the tender ones, almost making it impossible for us to protect them with an additional layer of the shield which is otherwise not needed in a natural environment. Unfortunately, an urban lifestyle is synonymous with an absence of natural lifestyle and thus, need additional care to help your child’s health concerns.

How Urban Lifestyle Affects Your Child’s Immune System?

The urban environment is full of dust, smoke and industrial pollution which you'll almost never witness in a rural setting. True that a rural setting lacks the infrastructure needed for adequate development of your child’s educative requirements however, the serene environment available down the countryside is undoubtedly the best for your child’s physical health. An urban way of living not only doesn’t allow your child’s body to get familiar with a natural setting, but it also contributes to an increased level of sensitivity and allergies when exposed to certain natural elements. A full-time protection shield also dissuades your child to develop their immunity which can be only developed when being exposed to it with a memory-based immune system present in humans. Living in an urban area also drops down the chances of physical activities necessary for healthy physical development.

How To Prepare Your Child To Fight Off The Germs?

We understand how impossible it sounds to start a life there though, we highly recommend you to take adequate measures compatible with the pollution level in your city. For metropolitan areas, we highly recommend you to adept with a quality air purifier and PM2.5 Mask for your children. Alongside, it is highly recommended to give your child an ayurvedic supplement to assist with their immune capabilities. Starting with the goodness of a spoonful of chyawanprash, can be a good alternative to boost their immunity if they are very selective about their intake. You should also promote physical activity in terms of sports. This shall not only help them with their team skills and discipline but do wonders for their physical health. You’ll easily see an increased level of immunity and less number of sick days in your child’s overall health. We also recommend you to take care of their dietary requirements and supervise their junk intake as it is mostly impossible to reduce it to zilch at such a tender age.

Parenting - How To Excel At It?

Parenting - How To Excel At It?

As a parent, we all love our children deeply. And most of us will agree that these days parenting is very demanding and exhausting instead of pleasurable and joyous process. What has changed? It is not that children are any different. The difference is in the environment around them with stronger social influences; and this also affects the way we parent. In today's more democratic and egalitarian world; 'Do as I say and not as I do' style of parenting does not work. But, 'I will do as I see you doing' phrase from kids define our parent-child relationship.

With change in social environment and influence, our strategies for correcting their behaviour and impart discipline has to undergo adaptation! When there are so many confusing and conflicting signals reach to our kids from their environment, whether we like it or not, we are still their role models. How positive parenting style will help? The core principle of positive parenting is to accept your child as an individual. We are in a democratic society and family is a small yet important part of society. Democracy does not mean allowing disrespectful and irresponsible behaviour; rather to effectively help kids change their behaviour and create harmonious and cooperative relationship with them. It also means that we as a parent need to learn to think, act and react in a different way.

Through, positive parenting, you will learn respectful disciplining methods, which would work better than demanding compliance. Through these principles and tips you will get your child to listen without screaming, nagging, reminding or evoking rebellious behaviour. More importantly, this is all about building stronger relationship bond with your children and nurture them through early childhood to teenage years as they become independent, responsible, capable, kind, happy and successful young adults.

Tips to get you started:

1. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect and dignity, including children.

2. When your kid misbehaves instead of shouting or hitting, control your anger and respond in a calm and respectful way. Calmer but firmer tone and lower voice, yet not giving into their repeated demand, is much more effective as a discipline tool compare to nagging.

3. Understandable that you have a lot on your plate, such as work, managing and keeping the home in order, managing meals and other outside responsibilities, kids sports or extracurricular activities, family obligations and so on. It is easy to get lost in all these 'have to do' activities. Parenting shouldn't be just one more task to deal with. Reconnecting with your parenting goals and aspirations periodically will help take the stress out of it and add fun into it. Spend some time daily (10 minutes will do as well!) to just listen and enjoy your child (without correcting them or giving them suggestion to improve!).

4. Let your love for them be the driving force. Shift your internal conversations from 'have to' to 'want to'. As you do enormous things for your child each day, think how you are supporting their ambitions. How you are helping them become independent and strong. How you are nurturing qualities like compassion and deep listening by extending yourself.

5. Give promises and keep them. As your children grow they need much more than your words to trust and rely on you. Keeping your promises, letting them know if you need to change the plan, taking their opinion in appropriate matter will go a long way.

6. Seek to understand and do not impose yourself on your child. Especially when they are in their teenage, as a parent you have lot of worries, you are afraid of them making mistakes and of course you want to protect them from vices. Listening to them while keeping your focus on genuinely understanding them is the only way to go, when they know you understand them and they can trust you, the street between both of you turns two way street! They will be open to your wisdom and suggestion when they are at the cross road.

7. Last but not the least, 'be a role model'. Don't preach. If they see you disrespecting others, they will not respect you. If they see you hooked on your smartphone; that is their license to keep theirs in front of their eyes 24/7. If you are hooked in front of the TV till late night and haven't picked up a book in last 6 months. Advice about reading is going to fall on dumb ears. In short, be the change you want to see in your children.

8. Have family nights at least once in a week, play cards, board games or go for a walk together. Talk and listen. Just be there and listen without judgement and criticism, without thinking about how to correct them. Just enjoy each other's company and see how they are changing their opinion about you.

Positive parenting doesn't mean you will never have problems in your family. You will? if you are alive and growing family. Positive parenting style will open up the avenues to keep communication alive; it will open your children to your influence. Isn't it something that we all wish for!!

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Gastro-Oesophageal Reflux In Infant - Know Tests For It!

Gastro-Oesophageal Reflux In Infant - Know Tests For It!

Which baby doesn't spit up their food! This is usually not a reason to worry but if this spitting up is chronic and accompanied by other symptoms it is known as Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease or GERD. Severe GERD can cause weight loss and breathing problems and thus should not be ignored. Reflux occurs when food is pushed out of the stomach and back up the oesophagus. This is usually because the digestive system in babies is not yet fully developed. 

Vomiting often during the day is one of the most common symptoms of GERD. Other symptoms include:

-    A persistent cough
-    Choking or  gagging while eating
-    Refusing to eat
-    Crying while feeding
-    Heartburn
-    Pain in the stomach

Most cases of Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease can be diagnosed by its symptoms and a look at the baby's medical history. In some cases, additional tests may be required. These are:

-    Barium swallow
The child is given a chalky substance to drink. This highlights the esophagus, stomach and upper part of the small intestines in a special X-ray. It used to check if there are any blockages in the digestive system. 

-    pH probe
A long, thin tube with a probe at one end is put down the child's throat. This is kept in the esophagus for 24 hours. The probe measures the levels of acidity in the stomach. This test is usually done when the child complains of breathing problems along with reflux. 

-    Upper GI endoscopy
Here the doctor puts a thin flexible tube own the child's throat. At one end of the tube is a camera that allows the doctor to look into the esophagus, stomach and small intestine. 

-    Gastric emptying study
One of the causes of reflux is the slow emptying of the stomach. To check this, the doctor will mix a radioactive chemical with the baby's milk that allows a special camera to follow its path down the digestive system. 

In most cases, Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease can be treated by making a few lifestyle changes.  Some of these are:

-    Raise the head of the baby's crib
-    After feeding the baby, do not let him lie down but hold him upright for half an hour or so.
-    Change his feeding schedule
-    Ask your doctor is you can try giving him solid food. Else check if you can thicken his feed with cereal. 
-    Burp the baby after feeding

Most infants outgrow this condition within a year, so do not stress yourself and enjoy life with your baby.

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