How to make sure that your child’s sunscreen is helping and not hurting!

Sunscreen is a MUST for our kids! And, although most of us use it on them routinely, is the type that we are using really safe for kids? I recently had to make a sunscreen switch for my own daughter after reviewing the American Academy of Pediatrics and the FDA’s updated guidelines and recommendations. Since I was in the dark on this topic, I thought I would share 4 important points that every mom should know.

1. Ditch the Oxybenzone

When a friend asked me my opinion about oxybenzone in children’s sunscreen, I gave her a blank stare. I hadn’t really heard all that much about it, and I assumed that the concerns were simply social media hype. Trying not to be too skeptical, I told her that I would look into it. To my surprise, there does seem to be some legitimate concern regarding oxybenzone, although some organizations such as the American Academy of Dermatology do still think that it is safe to use in children. (The CDC and the Environmental Working Group). This product which is found in many infant and children sunscreens can act like a hormone, potentially influencing our developing children’s endocrine systems. Although long-term studies have not yet been done to determine the extent of the harm, the American Academy of Pediatrics is recommending that parents avoid this ingredient when purchasing sunscreen. In a society where precocious puberty (puberty at a young age) is becoming a more common issue, I decided it was probably a good idea to not take a chance. I’ve opted for a oxybenzone free sunscreen. On a side note, if you are going to be out in the sun and your only option for sunscreen contains oxybenzone, go ahead and use it. Infrequent use is probably not going to have an effect on your child’s hormone levels, but we do know that sunburns in childhood definitely predispose them to skin cancer later in life.

2.  Aerosolized Children’s Sunscreen May be a “No, No”

Many of the large sunscreen companies have made our lives as moms much easier! They have created an aerosolized sunscreen revolution. It’s fast, it’s much less messy, and it goes on more easily. Bad news is…we aren’t exactly sure what it might be doing in our children’s lungs. The whole point of an aerosolized sunscreen is that it sprays through the air onto the skin. Our children are inevitably breathing in some of this spray. Because the aerosolized sunscreens contain nano particles (incredibly tiny particles), when breathed in they are able to travel much further into the lungs. There is concern in the medical community that these nano particles might cause local irritation in the lung tissue or result in increased absorption with unknown longterm effects. If you have to use an aerosolized spray, first spray it onto your hand (away from your child) and then apply it to your child’s skin directly.Hand heart

3. Broad Coverage Update

The FDA has changed its regulations on how companies are allowed to promote their sunscreens. They can only advertise “Broad Coverage” if they provide both UVA (ultraviolet ray A) and UVB (ultraviolet ray B) protection. You want to make sure that you are choosing a sunscreen that has both of these. This is the only way to prevent not only sunburns, but also longterm risk for skin cancers. In addition to broad coverage, make sure that you look for an SPF of at least 15 to 30 (50 would be great if you have the option). Anything higher than 50 doesn’t really have any additional protection as far as we can tell. So, if it says SPF 70 but no broad coverage, don’t buy it!

4. Put it on Before You Hit the Beach and then Keep Reapplying!!

Sunscreen needs a little time (15-30 minutes) to absorb in order to be effective. Don’t wait until you are already in the sun to put it on your kids. Apply it before you leave the house so that they will be protected from the harmful UV rays the entire time they are in the sun. Remember to keep reapplying it as well. Once and done is not going to work. Most sunscreens need to be Little girl with bottle of sun cream sitting at tropical beachreapplied after two hours. However, if your child is swimming or sweating, you should reapply it sooner.

Check out the AAP Sun Safety Guideline Information Sheet for Parents for more information on sun protection. Remember…protecting your child’s skin from burns today will protect him/her from skin cancer later in life. It really is that important!

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Loveum Kids Giveaway from The Mom in Me, MD

Love um! Love um! Looking for handmade in America, trendy clothes for your little boy or girl? Loveum Kids on Etsy has some rad stuff at great prices! From headbands and hats to harem pants, leggings, and bloomers…super cute patterns and styles are just one click away.Diptic

I found Loveum Kids while shopping in a local boutique. After snagging a few pair of leggings in the shop, I decided to check out Loveum Kids’ online Etsy shop. I fell in love with the vibrant geometric fabric choices-so on trend. And, what’s not to love about a shop run by another mom?Diptic

Loveum Kids was kind enough to send me some additional headbands and pants to try out on my little one. Love at first sight! Trust me, no one pressured me to rant and rave about these products. In fact, I liked them so much that I asked if Loveum would be willing to give YOU some free items too! Of course they said, “YES.” And, the best part is that you get to choose the item yourself. Click HERE to enter to win a $15 store credit. Yep, that’s enough to get you almost anything in the shop! I told you that the prices were great. Don’t forget to follow The Mom in Me, MD on Instagram and give The Mom in Me, MD a like on Facebook to qualify.photo 5

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The Magic of Glitter…how to make your photos sparkle!

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Pixie Dust Please!

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Not Between My Toes!

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My Favorite Laugh…DSC_0338 DSC_0340 DSC_0343 DSC_0344DSC_0374 DSC_0352 DSC_0356 DSC_0367

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So all you need is a dark backdrop, some bottles of glitter, a cute tutu and a camera (and an excellent vacuum)! Find a local photographer near you and see if they have any Glitter Mini Sessions scheduled, or make a special request. Your Little One will love it! You won’t even have to ask her to smile. Boys can get involved too. Grab a top hat and a bow tie. Let him pretend to be a little magician!

Wardrobe and Styling: The Borrowed Boutique (yep…that’s my online styling and boutique rental shop): Tutu Du Monde Center Stage Onsie tutu, Show Stopper Shorts, Tank, Sweater and Ballet Slippers

Photography: Sweet Plumb Photography

(Safety Note: Please don’t do this with any child who isn’t able to follow directions well. I wouldn’t recommend this for any little one under the age of two just due to the concern that they might put glitter in their mouth or not understand to close their eyes. Also, make sure that you are not pouring glitter directly into their face since glitter does have sharp edges, and if it gets into their eyes it can cause irritation and possibly even small scratches on the surface of the eye if they rub. You never want to use powdered glitter since this can be inhaled and cause irritation to the lungs. Instead, make sure that you are using the large square flakes of glitter. Sorry, to spoil the fun with a disclaimer but don’t want any babies having injuries!)

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Poison Prevention… 9 life saving safety tips for your innocent child

It only takes a moment…a fraction of a moment…a turned back…an unlocked cabinet…a detergent pod left on the counter…a bottle of nail polish remover sitting next to the sink…or a Tylenol bottle left open in the bottom of a purse…only a moment for the unthinkable to happen. Every day, according to the CDC over 300 children are treated in emergency rooms across the United States due to poisonings. Every day 2 of these children die. And, while you might say that this could never happen in your home…9 out of 10 poisonings do occur at home.

Just last week I realized that my daughter wasn’t her usual noisy self. I had left her coloring at the kitchen table while I started on dinner, but in the two seconds that my back was turned she had snuck into the pantry. I found her crouched on the floor with something in her mouth! I began to panic. What had she found? Thankfully, it was only a girl scout cookie, but she had somehow managed to sneak it from a shelf far beyond her reach. On that same shelf (that I assumed to be baby proof distance) I had my vitamins, over the counter pain killers, and cold medications neatly stacked…all with child proof lids, but still! Heartworm pills for the dog in non-baby proofed punch out aluminum covered tabs were only one shelf higher. Could she possibly reach them too? Wake up call for this mama!Child patient receiving artificial ventilation

Baby proofing a house is hard work. While latches on cupboards are incredibly important here are a few additional tips to make sure that your little one doesn’t get his or her hands and mouth on something harmful. Medications, cleaning supplies, and even makeup can be toxic to your toddler or infant.

TIPS TO PREVENT POISONING:

1. KNOW WHAT CAN HARM

While some items stand out as obviously harmful, some aren’t quite as glaring. Everyone knows to keep medications and cleaning supplies away from children, but laundry pods? Yes, these small packets used in the dishwasher and now even the washing machine have introduced a new vehicle for poisoning. They are small enough for a little hand to hold, and they look delicious. Makeup can be equally alarming. Eye makeup remover and many other beauty products can also be harmful if ingested. Even certain plants can be poisonous. Art supplies often contain harmful chemicals if ingested. Keep all of these out of reach and locked away.

2. LOCK THEM AWAY

This is referring to harmful substance…NOT YOUR CHILDREN! Make sure that all cleaning supplies, medications, and anything potentially toxic is out of reach, out of sight, and locked away from your children. Kids are little Houdini’s. Putting something harmful one shelf level above their reach is not going to cut it! They grow! You forget! And, then one day soon they can reach it or climb to it. Use safety features to lock low kitchen and bathroom cupboards that house cleaning supplies. Make sure that your laundry detergent is on a high shelf that is impossible for your toddler to access. Also be sure to keep all medications, cleaning supplies, and any other potentially poisonous chemicals in their original containers or bottles. This prevents confusion and mistaken ingestion.

3. CALL IT WHAT IT IS!

Don’t call your medication “CANDY.” It is not candy! Medicine is medicine. It is made to heal, but it can be deadly if taken by the wrong person or in incorrect doses. Calling poison candy is a recipe for disaster and injury!Child Takes Pack Of Pills. Dangerous Situation.

4. EDUCATE Grandparents and babysitters (pill boxes are not baby proof!)

Most likely you are not the only person watching your child 24/7. If your child is going to another home, make sure that the same principles for safety are established in that home as well. If your baby sitter is coming to your home, let her know where you keep potentially harmful substances and make sure that she uses the baby proofing latches appropriately. Grandparents are often on several medications. Make sure that these medicines are not loosely stored in plastic bags, on the counter top, or even pill boxes in their purse. Toddlers love playing with things that open and close. Pill boxes are a perfect little toy. Also, make sure that anyone watching your child has the number for poison control programmed into their phone or in a very visible place.

5. Have the POISON CONTROL (1-800-222-1222) number programmed in your phone and in a visible place

Yes, I am repeating myself! Make sure that you, anyone watching your child, and grandparents all have the number for Poison Control programmed into your phones. Leave the number in a visible place where you (or anyone in your home) can always find it (such as the refrigerator door) or on the door to the garage.

WHAT TO DO IF THE UNTHINKABLE (Poisoning) HAPPENS:

1. Don’t take time to freak out…instead grab your phone!

CALL 911 first if the child is not responding, has collapsed, or is not breathing. You want to make sure that help is on the way as quickly as possible. If the child is awake and responding first CALL POISON CONTROL (1-800-222-1222). Do not call your pediatrician or family physician first. They will simply connect you with poison control or they will have you hang up and call 911. Poison control is trained to tell you exactly what to do depending on what your child has ingested.

2. Have This Information Ready if Possible

    • the child’s age and weight
    • the container or bottle of the poison if it is available
    • the approximate time when the poisoning occurred (your best guess is fine)
    • the address where the poisoning occurred

3. Don’t Hang Up

While you may be tempted to hang up the phone if you are panicking or if your child isn’t doing well…DON’T HANG UP! Listen to the instructions from either the Emergency Room or Poison Control. Their advice is incredibly important and lifesaving. Do what they tell you to do! Every minute counts.

4. Do Not Use Syrup of Ipecac

While many grandparents would tell you that this is the “cure-all” for poisoning, this is not the case. In the past, syrup of ipecac was recommended after a harmful ingestion. This medication causes vomiting. While this may bring the poison out, it may also be harmful in the process. Vomiting up a toxic chemical may lead to severe chemical burns in the throat. It can also lead to choking on the toxic chemical, allowing some of the chemical to move into the lungs and smaller airways.Little girl giving kiss to her mom while working from home

While no parent, grandparent, or caregiver ever wants to think that a child could be poisoned on their watch…it unfortunately does happen. Children are naturally curious, and little ones love to put things in their mouths. Take the steps above to help protect your child. For more information on safety and poison prevention click on the highlighted links above.

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Being a Mommy Matters…Most

At times I wrestle with my newly formed identity…MOM. Don’t get me wrong. I cherish my new name. I cherish it when my daughter calls out to me in the middle of the night, or when she bumps her little knee. I cherish it when I hold her tightly and sing to her softly. There is nothing better than being a mom. But…Portrait of a mother with her newborn baby

My husband and I opened a new checking account right after we had my daughter. Since I wasn’t planning on going back to my traditional job of seeing patients in the office for a while, my title options on our application included: 1) unemployed 2) house wife 3) student. I was still working on my Masters of Public Health degree so I gladly latched onto the “student” title. Why did being called a house wife bother me so much? Was my identity really that wrapped up in my degrees and training? Well, I had spent the last 13 years of my life sacrificing everything for them…so, yes.

I didn’t want to give up what I had become as a physician just because I was making the decision to stay home with my daughter for an unforeseeable length of time. I wanted to be a full-time mom for a while. Goodness knows that motherhood has been a degree in and of itself (I still haven’t graduated)! And, while I still love being a full-time mom, I long to use my medical skills and training too. Is it possible to do it all? I’m still not sure:)

I’m finding that many moms struggle with their identity when trying to balance work, career, motherhood, marriage. There isn’t one right answer. I love being with my daughter, and I’ve been blessed with work options that allow me to “stay at home” and work part-time as a writer, public health consultant, and entrepreneur. But, even this set up leaves me feeling guilty and torn on certain days. For some moms, working outside of the house is vital to their sanity or financially necessary. For others, staying home full-time and caring for their kids is most fulfilling. The balance is difficult for all of us…enough self time…enough couple time…enough kid time…enough family time..enough work time.

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I’m finding that it all comes down to priorities. Nothing matters more than my love for God, my husband, and my daughter. My career and impact on the lives of others is also incredibly important.  I’m still a doctor, a wife, and a woman with dreams of my own. I don’t have to discard that part of myself. I want my daughter to see me doing great things. I want her doing them with me. So, the struggle continues-how to be the best mom possible while trying to save the world at the same time.

I’ve decided that the world can wait a few minutes longer than my two-year old (yes, we are working on patience). She needs me now. That doesn’t mean that I can’t work or send her to a Mom’s Day Out program one or two mornings a week. It just means that I need to filter my priorities, understanding that I have such a short window of time before she is all grown up. I am responsible for helping shape her into a woman who’s going to change the world for good. I don’t want to miss my opportunity or the calling that I have in my own home. When I’m home I want to be fully present with her. When I’m working I want to be fully focused and efficient so that I won’t be distracted when it’s HER time. I need to hang up the phone, turn off the computer, and look her little face in the eyes.Little girl giving kiss to her mom while working from home

Being a mommy matters. It matters more than most of us realize. Being an amazing mom can help shape our daughters’ character. It can impact generations to come. Being a mom matters as much as any other title. I’m still shying away from the STAY AT HOME MOM title that has made me cringe in the past. I don’t call my husband a GO TO WORK DAD. It’s just a weird title. Instead, I’m renaming my job description DEDICATED MOM and creating my own version of what it means. DEDICATED MOM has a much more inspiring and positive tone! It brings out the best version of me. It’s a role in which I can aspire. I may not have everything figured out yet…but I’m certain that however I choose to divide my time, love, and energy, I’m doing it with her in mind.

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Kindred Oak Giveaway from The Mom in Me, MD!!!

Cutting edge fashion trends, killer styling, and accessories fit for Kardashian kiddos…yep, Kindred Oak has all three nailed! We may not be Kardashian around here, but The Mom in Me, MD is pretty style savvy too! I slipped a pair of the fringe ankle cuffs over my daughter’s little feet, and I was smitten. Then I added a floral beanie to her cutie pie head, transforming her into a baby boho fashionista!photo 1 photo 2

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Kindred Oak is all about boy fashion too! Gender neutral pants, t-shirts, beanies, and more rad options are just one click away from making your little man into a stud.d8fbec565ad4cfc86b80b8a47d3aae8c_large

Kindred Oak was cool enough to team up for a Mom in Me, MD giveaway! The winner will get a toddler/child pair of fringe cuffs and a toddler to girl size floral beanie (compliments of Kindred Oak) as shown in the picture above. All you have to do is enter to win HERE. Entry rules require that you follow The Mom in Me, MD on Instagram (@themominmemd) AND that you follow Kindred Oak on the social media site of your choosing (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter etc.) As you already know, all of my opinions are always my own. I like what I like, and I don’t mind saying so.

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Valentine’s Day Forecast…Cloudy with a Chance of Lovely!

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It’s raining hearts and lovies around here!

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Everything is always cuter with little red rain boots!

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Looking for some Valentine’s Day Inspiration????

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Nothing says sweetheart like Tutu Du Monde.

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HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY XOXO

Styling Tips:

Look #1:

Janie and Jack Red and White Striped Romper, Baby Gap Red Coat: sold out but similar option available here Little Princess Red Dress Coat,  Hunter Original Kids Gloss Red Boots, Gold Heart Knee Highs: Ry and Rue, Matching Red Hair Bows Sold out but similar at: Girls “Evie” Small Bow , Red Ballet Flats: Mini Melissa

Look #2:

Little Urchin Pink Tutu: Tutu Du Monde, Faux Fur Vest: Target, Feather Headpiece: Tutu Du Monde

Look #3:

Marshmallow Tank Top: Tutu Du Monde, White Whisper Tutu: Tutu Du Monde, Rosette Clip: Tutu Du Monde

All Tutu Du Monde items are available to rent from The Mom in Me, MD! Simply click on any of the Tutu du monde links above and add yourself to the closed Facebook group. A full rental website is coming soon!!!! If you prefer to purchase…head to Shop Belle, this super sweet US-based boutique not only carries Tutu Du Monde, it also has countless other designer goodies for your little ones (and the shop owner is incredibly helpful). Shop Belle was my “go to” for all of the tutu du monde you see above!

Photographs by Hannah Hilliard Photography

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A Little Bit of Love…photos and frills!

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner I decided to give you a sneak peek of some of our photos and frills! Nothing says lovey dovey like a precious moment in Tutu Du Monde captured on film.  10818395_882697531761900_4193040430618545280_o

 

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The first of our Valentine’s pictures…compliments of Brittany Marie Photography. All of these frills (dresses, tutus, and accessories) are available for rent from The Mom in Me, MD! Make your little one’s pictures perfect in an affordable way. Click this link to join my Facebook rental page, but stay tuned…a full website with its own catchy boutique name is coming soon!

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9 Ways To Deal With Your Toddler’s Tantrums…Without Losing Your Cool

We have arrived. The “terrible two’s”, which I have endearingly renamed the “CHALLENGING Two’s” are here in full effect. Full-body, flailing meltdowns smack dab in the middle of the kitchen floor (or even better…the grocery store); screams so loud that the neighbors can hear; and surprise smack attacks by precious little hands. My sweet little girl is still sweet…most of the time…but some days our schedule feels like we are simply making it from one melt down to another. Is this normal? Do I have an overly emotional bully on my hands?

Thankfully, I know enough to know that my two-year old’s tantrums are simply because she’s a toddler. Her language skills are limited (which can be incredibly frustrating for her), her coping skills and understanding of patience are even more limited, and her needs are great. I remind myself that this is just a season of time that were passing through (I will survive), but how I respond is of paramount importance for her understanding of discipline, boundaries, and healthy ways to express her emotions.

My mantra…”Baby may be losing it, but momma has to keep it together.” This may seem like a no-brainer, but in the middle of a toddler tantrum, I often feel my own emotions spiraling out of control. What am I to do with this tiny maniac and my rising frustration??? Here are a few tips proven to work by countless mothers before us. Try one. Try five. Try them all!

1. Keep Your Cool

Having your own melt-down is only going to make matters worse. Your little one is either tired, hungry, frustrated, not getting their way, in need of attention, or just having a tantrum for the sake of it. Yelling, screaming, and dealing with your child in a physically forceful way will only escalate the situation. It will also reinforce for your child that outbursts are an appropriate way to deal with anger and frustration. “If mommy does it then it’s okay that I’m doing it too.” NO! You need to set the standard for appropriate behavior. Your toddler is learning how to deal with his/her emotions. By demonstrating healthy ways to deal with frustration you set the standard and lay a great foundation. Take several deep breaths and let the frustration roll off of your shoulders. Keep your voice soothing and calm. You can still be firm but loving at the same time. If you feel like you are going to lose it and your child is in a safe place, remove yourself from the situation for a few moments until your emotions are under control. It’s also okay to ask for help. If you’re having a more than challenging day with your toddler, give yourself a reprieve. Go to the gym, and let your toddler play in the gym daycare; ask your partner to give you a break while you take a bath, get a pedicure, or simply sit in a quiet room for five minutes; phone a mommy friend and see if she would be willing to give you a 30 minute break.Happy Toddler Boy Eating Strawberries

2. Smile at Your Audience

Why do tantrums always seem to happen in public? So embarrassing for every parent! The funny thing is, anyone watching who has kids isn’t judging you or your crazy child. Nope, they’re empathizing and remembering their own challenging toddler years, and they’re watching to see how you’re going to react. If you forcefully grab your child, yank her from the floor or start screaming yourself…well, then yes, you are going to be judged. If you keep your cool, maintain a calm voice, and handle the situation like an adult (assuming we all have the same standard of appropriate adult behavior) even if your child is still screaming your audience is going to think you’ve got it handled. Mom of the year award coming your way! You can flash them an, “I’m not liking this challenging situation, but I can handle it” smile and wait for an empathetic smile back at ya.

3. Ignore the Tantrum

Sometimes ignoring a tantrum is the best and quickest way to get it to stop. It’s fine to acknowledge that your child is upset and to affirm their feelings, but clearly their screams and kicks are not an appropriate way to show their frustration. Instead of giving their fit more attention that it needs, simply ignore it. If your child isn’t getting the desired reaction (and extra negative attention) from you they are more likely to stop the fit sooner.Ladder into sky

4. Change the Scenery

Leaving the house, exiting the grocery store, or even taking a parking lot break during dinner at a restaurant may be necessary if your little one has a tantrum that just won’t stop. A change of scenery can often diffuse a tantrum and it lets your little one know that if they can’t behave they are going to be removed from the party. Although it’s not convenient to leave the grocery store without any groceries, sometimes it may be necessary. If you say you’re going to leave…FOLLOW THROUGH. Be consistent and let your toddler know that when you say something you mean it.

5. Distract

While this method doesn’t work for all children, it does wonders in my household. My two-year old’s emotions are easily redirected when I start to make a goofy face, sing a silly song, pull out a crazy toy that she hasn’t seen in forever, or start to tell her an AMAZING story. Yep, this momma pulls out all the bells and whistles. All of my elementary school acting classes were worth while after all. BE ANIMATED. ENTERTAIN. BE SILLY. MAKE YOUR LITTLE ONE LAUGH SO HARD THAT HE FORGETS ALL ABOUT THE TANTRUM. Toddler attention spans are short. Use it to your benefit! Food can also be a great distraction. Don’t bribe with candy, but offer your toddler a delicious, healthy snack. Everyone always feels happier with a full tummy.Portrait of a crying child on the mother's hands

6. Affirm with words and physical affection (POSITIVE CONSEQUENCES)

Some toddlers act out because they want the extra attention. When your child is upset sometimes giving them a hug will do the trick. Tell them how much you love them and praise them for their great behavior that day. Do this even when your little one isn’t having a melt-down. Providing consistent positive reinforcement will improve their sense of security, confidence, and understanding of what behavior will get them the most attention…GOOD BEHAVIOR! Praise your little ones. Encourage them. Let them know when they have been kind and gentle. Reward them…don’t just punish them. The majority of the attention that you give your child should be positive. If you are only pointing out when they are “bad” they will continue to be “bad” just for the attention. I’m not saying to let naughty behavior slide! We are all about discipline around here, but make sure your discipline is done in love rather than anger and that you aren’t forgetting to reward your little one’s positive efforts. FYI: Some children detest physical contact during a tantrum. They may lash out even more. If that’s the case with your child…skip on the hug and try a different method. Many children aren’t in the mood for logical reasoning during a tantrum either. Don’t try to explain to them why they shouldn’t be having a tantrum…this method never helps. Instead try one of the other methods such as distraction.Happy Mother And Baby Laying On Meadow

7. Meet the Need but Don’t Cave In

Often times tantrums occur because children are hungry, thirsty, tired, or frustrated. If you are in the middle of the grocery store at 12 noon and your toddler hasn’t had lunch yet, you better believe they are going to want everything in sight! Of course they want the cookies. Don’t you? Instead of quickly diffusing the tantrum by giving into the cookies, hold your ground. If you said, “No,” to cookies. Then your “NO,” needs to stay “NO.” Giving in during or after a tantrum will only reinforce for your toddler that tantrums are an effective method to get their way. ABSOLUTELY NOT! If your child is starting to melt-down over cookies, give him a reasonable alternative that will curb his hunger.  A piece of fruit or an organic fruit and veggie squeeze pack are much better options. Get him involved in a positive way by letting him choose which of these healthy choices he would like.

8. Prevent it before it happens-expectations and bribery

Anticipating your child’s needs is a great way to prevent tantrums before they even start. If you know you are going to be out during snack time…take a snack with you! If you know you are going to be cutting into nap time prepare yourself for a cranky child. Don’t expect your 2-year-old to behave perfectly when you are changing their routine or jipping them on sleep and food. Try to stick to their schedule as much as possible. This will save you many a melt-down. If circumstances don’t allow you to follow your little one’s schedule, let them know ahead of time what your expectations are and what’s in it for them. For example, if your family is coming into town for a special anniversary dinner (way past your little one’s bedtime), let your little one know that they will get a special prize if they behave well at dinner. Remind them of this when they start to act up at the table. This form of bribery is really just a form of positive reinforcement for good behavior. Since you are doing it ahead of time and not in the moment it isn’t a harmful trick. I recently told my daughter that if she had gentle hands at preschool she would get to pick several extra books to read at bedtime. On several occasions the teacher had to remind her, but this prevented hair pulling and shoving like a charm. Even though we had a few incidents later in the day while at home, I didn’t take her extra books away from her (I gave her different consequences instead) because she had earned them with good behavior.cute toddler with finger in mouth

9. Use Reasonable Punishments

Use reasonable punishments. Your child is a toddler after-all. She is learning limits. Never hit/smack/bite your child back! This only reinforces for her that these behaviors are acceptable. It’s a good idea to give her some warning before you flat-out punish her. This gives her time to change her behavior and obey. Let her know that if you count to three and she isn’t listening then she will have a consequence. If she is doing something to physically harm another child then deal with the situation immediately! Don’t wait for a three count!

Use time-outs to your advantage. Giving yourself a 2 minute breather may be what you need too to effectively deal with your little one. Remember not to make time-outs too long. Rule of thumb is one minute for every year of age. Example: a 2-year-old should only have a 2 minute time out.

Taking away privileges is one of my favorite methods to nip a tantrum. If my daughter refuses to get into the car seat and starts flailing I simply tell her that she won’t get to play with her favorite toy when we get home if she doesn’t sit nicely by the time that I count to three. This doesn’t always work, but often times the threat alone is enough to get her seated. Often times she doesn’t end up losing the privilege because she quickly realizes I mean business and she doesn’t want to lose her doll!

Try these tips and let me know what works for you! If you have additional suggestions I would love to hear them. Parenting is a learning curve for all of us. We can all use all the help we can get! Remember…the toddler years are just as season. They don’t last forever!

For more helpful insight check out the links below:

Positive Parenting 

Essential Tips for Parenting Toddlers and Preschoolers 

The Mayo Clinic on Toddler Tantrums

Healthy Kid Tips on Dealing with Tantrums

 

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Toddler Fashion Alert…What’s Trending

Graphic print leggings…faux fur vests…jelly shoes…and head scarves! SO CUTE…and incredibly affordable to get the look. Boho Chic Baby! photo 3 photo 2 photo 5 photo 4 photo 2 photo 1

 

GET THE LOOK: Many of the items from this outfit are already sold out, but I’ve found some other brands or same brands with similar styles that look equally boho chic. Check out the links below!

Faux Fur Vest

Mini Melissa Ballet Shoe Black

Adorable Essentials Black Flutter Sleeve Top

Neck Scarf (Not shown but too cute not to mention!) EUBUY Fashionable Autumn Winter

Loveum Kids Graphic and Native Style Pants and headbands

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