Bringing up a healthy, all-rounded child starts with your choices before conception and throughout the baby’s life. Whether you’re a new parent or a seasoned one, making decisions that not only influence your life but your child’s well-being is a great responsibility. Making good decisions will also make it easier for you to bring up a healthy, happy child. Here’re some tips to help you along the way.
Take Good Care of Your Health
What you eat before conception significantly affects your health and that of your baby when pregnant. It will also enable you to get pregnant faster and reduce pregnancy complications. Ergo, eat a well-balanced diet, exercise regularly, and encourage your partner to do the same.
When pregnant, eat foods rich in iron, zinc, folate, vitamin D, and iodine to prevent congenital disabilities such as spina bifida. Additionally, exercise regularly, rest, and don’t forget to attend your prenatal clinics. It’s equally essential to create a bond with your unborn child by regularly talking to them and encouraging your partner to do the same.
Research shows that unborn children can recognize the mother’s voice, and soothingly talking to your baby might be comforting and assuring.
Take Good Care of Your Child’s Health
There are vaccinations to keep up with and make sure the child’s home environment is healthy and safe. Also, keep the baby room warm and avoid exposure to the elements. It’s also essential to keep the child away from crowded places and visitors, use baby-friendly products, and maintain high hygiene standards.
If you use an air conditioner in the house, ensure it is clean to avoid polluting the indoor air. Before the child is one year old, see the dentist, but it’s preferable when the first tooth appears.
During the dental clinic, the dentist will examine the growth and development of the child’s jaw, oral tissues, bite, and gum. You’ll also get advice on safe dental practices.
Other than this, make sure that the child completes milestones successfully. If you have any concerns or doubts, it’s best to consult a doctor. For instance, a baby who can’t stand on their own after two years may have a poor bone structure, bone weaknesses, or other conditions that require immediate medical intervention.
Practice Good Nutrition
As mentioned earlier, good nutrition starts right from when you plan to get pregnant and should continue even after giving birth. Once you deliver the baby, eating healthy meals with enough vitamins is critical when breastfeeding. Also, ensure that a child gets all the nutrients they need to grow healthy and strong.
Consult with your pediatrician or a child’s nutritionist to ensure that you’re giving your child all the nutrients they need for healthy development. At an early age, teach the child to eat healthy snacks and avoid highly processed, sugary, fatty foods and candy.
Avoid Harmful Habits
As mentioned earlier, what you do or eat significantly affects your child’s life. So right from the time you get pregnant, think about your baby’s health and avoid toxins.
Toxins are anything that can harm your body, causing more complications during pregnancy and delivery and affecting the child’s health. Avoid alcohol when pregnant or breastfeeding because it can lead to a miscarriage, restricted growth, immune deficiency, and learning disorders.
Also, avoid illicit drugs because they can affect your health, the baby, and even your ability to care for the baby. For example, smoking exposes the little one to secondhand smoke and can cause restricted growth and conditions such as asthma and high blood pressure.
Let family and friends understand they cannot smoke in the house or near you and the baby. Additionally, only take medication approved by your doctor when pregnant and breastfeeding.
Have Positive Interactions
Children learn from what they see and the first person to teach them life skills is a mum followed by those who spend a lot of time with the child. Keeping the child’s environment happy, playful, and positive will promote healthy emotional and mental development.
Playing stimulates learning while keeping your emotions in check, giving the baby security and the emotional stability they need to grow into a confident adult. How you handle stressful events significantly affects your child’s emotional health. Don’t argue, raise your voice, scream or use abusive words.
Also, encourage healthy interactions with other family members. You might also want to control interactions to only those with positive influences.
Regularly go out to a picnic or spend time in a children’s park to break the monotony, familiarize the child with the outdoor life, and encourage them to make friends.