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Why breast is best

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In the early days with a new baby, a new mother will often feel a bit daunted by the idea of breast feeding, and may struggle with the decision over when to use the bottle and when to use the breast. As the saying goes, “breast is best”. This is true in that there are more natural nutrients in breast milk than will ever be found in bottled formula, and it enables the baby to grow up in better health than would otherwise be possible. There is, it goes without saying, some drawback to this. But there are drawbacks to everything, and it is how you address them that is really important.

A baby will require feeding at regular intervals, and for a mother who is breast feeding this can present a few interesting challenges. For one, there is always the concern of whether the baby will need to be fed while you are out for one reason r another. Breast feeding in public is still frowned upon by many, and in some places you will be asked to leave if you do it. This limits where you can go and what you can do, and although you can express breast milk to be served from a bottle, this affects the temperature.

Additionally, some mothers feel that breast feeding causes unreasonable pain in the nipples. Expressing milk is a partial answer to this, but achieving the right temperature is only part of the problem there. Some people feel that feeding directly from the breast is the only way to establish the closeness that a mother and baby should have – anything less and you will have to deal with people asking you why you are not doing it, and regardless of your reasons they will keep doing so.

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Baby Tips

Your Personal Parenting Style and Your Child’s Sleep

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Good mothers and fathers come in many styles. Each one of us has different strengths, interests, and values that make us great parent.

Don’t let yourself become discouraged or disappointed when others ‘give you advice’ that doesn’t seem to mesh with who you are. Maybe you’re not a roll around on the floor kind of parent with your child.

Maybe you’ve decided to hang back and let your little one explore. That’s great! As long as it works for you and your child, nobody should be able to convince you that your method is incorrect or wrong.
Once you recognize and embrace your own personal parenting style, you can stop trying to live up to everyone else’s expectations and get on with the business of enjoying being a parent.

It’s important to keep in mind too, that these well-meaning advice givers don’t know your child as well as you. They aren’t there with your child night and day, watching him grow, learn, explore, play, eat, and sleep.

Only you know what’s best for your child, and you know what works best in your household and for your lifestyle. As with anything, figuring things out along the way will involve trial and error.

So when you receive yet another unsolicited piece of advice regarding your child’s napping or nighttime sleeping habits, keep both your and your child’s personal style in mind.

You’ve done the legwork, you’ve experimented, and you’ve learned together what works and what doesn’t work.

The cues should come from your instincts regarding your child and from your child directly. There’s no such thing as a hard-and-fast rule for sleep habits among children other than it is needed!

As your child grows, his cues may change, but as long as you stay in tune with him, his sleep habits shouldn’t have to suffer as a result. And neither should yours.

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Baby Tips

Taming a Tough Toddler at Bedtime

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Putting your toddler to bed can sometimes be an exercise in frustration. If you have experienced this, you might want to consider one of the following techniques to make bedtime a peaceful time.

Be consistent about bed times and waking times. Your toddler is more likely to respond positively if he’s used to a specified schedule. The earlier your child’s routine is established, the easier it is to put them to bed without incident.

Make the activities the same every night, and make the time before bed quiet and peaceful. Whether a parent tells the child a story, provides a bedtime snack, puts in a short video, or plays quiet games before putting the child in bed, consistency is the key.

Try not to lie in bed with your toddler until he falls asleep. This might actually have the opposite effect, and might encourage your child to stay awake, and ask for drinks of water and more bedtime stories. An alternative might be telling your toddler you’re going to complete a chore and that you’ll come back in and check on them in a few moments.

It’s most likely that the child will fall asleep while waiting for mom or dad to return. You might also want to talk about your child’s day with them. Keep your tone soft and quiet, and try not to excite your child in the process. Turning this into a nighttime story with your child as the main character is a fun option as well.

As the child grows older, if a consistent bedtime is maintained the task will become easier. The most important issue is consistency and repetition. If the child can expect the same thing every night, and these customary tasks are pleasant, bedtime can become a delightful family ritual.

If however, your child is continually resisting sleep, talk with your child’s pediatrician, as their might be a medical problem at the root of it.

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