Music has been a part of our humanity since we first started banging sticks on rocks and grunting in time to the beat. There is even some evidence that musical development in humans preceded that of language development.
Q – My 3 year old wants to brush ‘by himself’. How can I tell if he’s doing a good job?
A – Your 3 year old is not able to do a good job brushing his teeth. Children do not have the dexterity required for adequate brushing until 7 or 8 years of age.
Q – How many times a day should my toddler brush his teeth?
A – Your child should have her teeth brushed at least twice a day, once in the morning and at night before bed.
Q – When should I start brushing my baby’s teeth or gums?
Q – My baby is 10 months old and doesn’t have teeth yet – should I be worried?
A – This is not a cause for concern. Although the average age for first tooth eruption is 6 months, some children begin teething earlier, around 3 or 4 months, and some later, not until 14 or 15 months.
One of the hardest parts of being a new parent is the isolation you can feel. Are you doing the right thing? What are other babies like? Do I know my baby’s cues?.. Parent-Child Mother Goose is a phenomenal program offered across Canada that can provide you with insight into your child, give you wonderful rhymes and music to sing, and connect you with other parents.
The other day, my toddler wanted to know where his daddy’s mommy was. She died ten years ago of cancer, and I was stunned that he was already sensing the absent family connection. How young is too young to explain death? Experts agree that the correct terminology is a good place to start. ‘Passing away’, ‘expiring’ or ‘putting down’ simply don’t compute with the little ones.
Colic is a mysterious catchall phrase for generally unsettled babies.The definition of colic is a baby that cries for more than three days a week for more than three hours at a time. It is not considered serious, but presents as extended and uncontrollable crying in any baby that is otherwise healthy. It can happen at around two to four weeks of age and can last for three months or longer.
It is believed that colic is related to the baby’s digestive system, or a combination of their temperament and an immature nervous system. A baby may be highly sensitive to the environment and because the baby’s nervous system is immature, he or she is unable to regulate crying once it starts. Crying can be at any time of day but seems to be at its worst in the evening. Babies may look uncomfortable, draw their legs to their stomach, get a red face and pass wind. Some refuse food and it is also common for them to have difficulty falling and staying asleep.
The crying and the anxiety it produces creates stress in the home and it may help for parents to have enough support to be able to take a break once in a while. The good news is; however, that babies that exhibit colic still seem to eat and gain weight normally.
Before you seek medical attention you should make sure that you have eliminated all other possible reasons for discomfort, including hunger, tiredness, lack of contact, startling (sudden noise), undressing (is baby cold?), temperature or some identifiable source of pain.
There is no proven cure for colic, but you may want to consider changing your formula (if lactose allergy suspected, try soy-based instead) if the baby is bottle-fed, or monitor your own diet more closely if the baby is breastfed. Babies find cruciferous vegetables, beans, soft fruit, spicy food, caffeine and alcohol difficult to digest. If there is a history of lactose intolerance, breastfeeding mothers could try eliminating cows milk from their diet.
Make sure baby is burped frequently and consider changing the shape of the nipple if they are bottle-fed, some help to reduce the amount of air the baby is getting. If the baby is breastfed, make sure the latch is good, then baby isn’t taking in air. You could try Boiron’s Cocyntal, a natural, homeopathic remedy to help with colic.
BC Ministry of Health. Baby’s Best Chance: Parents’ Handbook of Pregnancy and Baby Care. (free at local BC health unit)
BC Ministry of Health. Toddler’s First Steps: A Best Chance Guide to Parenting Your Six-Month to Three-Year Old. (free at local BC health unit)
Karp, Harvey. The Happiest Baby On The Block: the New Way to Calm Crying and Help Your Newborn Baby Sleep Longer.
Murkoff, H., A. Eisenberg and S. Hathaway. What to Expect the First Year.
Spandikow, B., William Sears and Martha Sears. The Fussy Baby: How To Bring Out The Best In Your High-Need Child.
Spock, B. Dr. Dr. Spock’s Baby and Childcare.