Baby Care

The process of meeting all the needs that a baby may require during the growing up years

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Helping Your Toddler Learn to Put Himself to Sleep

Toddlers need adequate sleep to rise to the developmental challenges that fill their lives, from controlling their temper on the playground to staying on top of their own bodily functions.. The bad news is that some kids seem to be born "good" sleepers, and some aren't. The good news is that falling asleep is a habit, and all kids can learn it. While some kids have a harder time falling asleep than others, all children do eventually start falling asleep without a parent's presence, and sleeping through the night most nights. It may take some time to develop that habit, but your child can learn to put himself to sleep, and to stay asleep, eventually. Here's how: 1. Start the wind-down process early in the evening. Toddlers who've been racing around the apartment can't simply switch gears and decompress when you decide it's bedtime. The last few hours before bed should be calm and quiet. 2. Follow the same evening routine every night, if possible. Your goal is a sense of calm, safe, inevitability. Dinner, then a bath, then stories, then kissing and tucking in all the stuffed animals who share the toddler's bed, then prayers or blessings, then lights out while you sing to your little one, is an example of a common and effective routine Toddlers who are showing oppositional behavior may resist moving along with the bedtime routine. The best way to sidestep this is to have the clock, rather than you, be the bad guy. 3. Help your toddler set his "biological clock." Toddlers need a set time to go to bed every night, so their body begins to expect sleep. Most toddlers do better with an early bedtime; between 6:30 and 7:30 pm. You'd think a later bedtime would help them fall asleep more easily, but when they stay up later, they get over-tired, and stress hormones like adrenalin and cortisol kick in to keep them going. Then they actually have a harder time falling asleep, wake up more during the night, and often wake early in the morning. So keep moving bedtime earlier until you find that magic moment before your little wind up toy starts getting wound up. (Of course, toddlers who nap later may need a later bedtime.) 4. Set up a cozy bed. All children go through normal sleep cycles in which they wake just slightly and then settle into deep sleep again. Your goal is to ensure that discomfort doesn't wake your child during those periods of slight waking Warmth matters -- if your toddler kicks his covers off, make sure he sleeps in warm pjs with feet. And of course, once he's out of diapers, be sure he uses the bathroom last thing. 5. Don't give up naps too early. Although every child has individual sleep needs, most kids are not ready to give up naps until age 3. Going napless before that just makes them cranky and adrenalized, making bedtime much more challenging. Content Image Source Feature Image Source: 

Colic: Lifestyle and home remedies

  Colic should go away by the time your baby is 4 months old. Until then, try these tips. They may give both of you some relief. Help him swallow less air. Try a special bottle designed to reduce gas or a nipple with a smaller hole. Sit him up while he eats so he swallows less air. Remember to burp him during and after feedings. Bright lights and sounds can overwhelm a colicky baby. Your baby may calm down if you: Lay him on his back in a dark, quiet room. Swaddle him snugly in a blanket. Lay him across your lap and gently rub his back. Try infant massage. Put a warm water bottle on your baby's belly. Have him suck on a pacifier. Soak him in a warm bath. You may have heard that some home remedies can relieve colic. Most aren’t proven and they could hurt your baby. Always talk with your child’s pediatrician before trying something new. These are things you may have heard about. Rice cereal in a bottle. This is a definite no-no. It's a big choking hazard, and it is not proven to work. Herbal remedies such as chamomile, or gripe water. It’s best not to use these. The FDA doesn’t regulate over-the-counter remedies. You can’t be sure what they are made of, and ingredients aren’t always labeled. Some can have things in them that are very bad for your baby, like alcohol or opiates. Babies can also have allergic reactions to them. They’re also not proven to work. Simethicone gas drops. These can be OK to try. But will they work? They may or may not help.

What to do when your baby hates bathtime

Has your splash-happy baby suddenly started crying through bathtime? Don't worry, you're not alone! Bathe with Your Child. Try bathing your baby to give her confidence that both baths and the water are safe and fun. If you smile and laugh as you play with bubbles and bath toys, your child may want to jump right in to join the fun. Try a Different Time of Day. Sometimes timing is everything. "In the beginning my daughter hated having baths at night so I gave them to her in the morning and she loved them," shared Jackie Y. Every baby has their own fussy times, so try giving your baby baths at a different time of the day - before the last feeding of the night, after the last feeding, or even in the morning. Keep the Water Warm. cold bath water may be one of the culprits. "My little one gets mad when she gets cold," says Jaime M. "I constantly pour warm water on her while she is in there so she doesn't get too cold." Fight Fear of the Drain. Some children are actually afraid of the drain. When Amy D.'s son was scared of going down the drain, she waited until he was out of the room to let out the water. "After a period of time I was able to reason with him and show him it was impossible to go down the drain but it took a while!" Offer Distractions Galore! There are lots of easy ways to make bathtime fun.