Understanding Sleep Regressions and how to handle them.
By Diane Pawsey, Family Sleep Consultant.
Children are constantly changing, growing and developing. Every child reaches milestones at different rates but when children are learning, their brains are processing a lot of new information.
Research has shown that when a baby has spent time developing a new skill during the day (such as crawling), their brain is still active when they go to bed. The part of the brain they have been using the most is still firing and lighting up like a firework display even after they go to sleep.
This can cause a child, who was previously settling quickly at night, to suddenly find it difficult to do so. They may refuse to nap, wake up shortly after falling asleep, resist falling asleep, wake up early, wake up but still appear tired or wake more at night.
This is known as a sleep regression. Continue reading
Jesse Toksvig-Stewart talks about what it was like to grow up with gay parents.
I was chatting with my step sister recently. We were discussing all things about everyday life, catching up. She’s still at school and I asked her how everything was going. She announced to me that there was another child in the year below who had two mums. I was so pleased to hear that she had an ally at school. This was something that I never had at all growing up.
It is not really that long ago that being a gay man was illegal in the UK. The de-criminalisation act of homosexuality was put forward 1967. It is so shockingly close to our noughties decade, that people are somewhat in disbelief that it took so long.
The world is changing and people are becoming more accepting than they were when my parents or I was growing up. I’m 30 years old and still get moments where people say to me, “I don’t think that I have ever met anyone with lesbian parents before”. It is still unusual. My parents were at the forefront of same-sex parenting in the late 80’s. They didn’t know anyone else who was gay or lesbian and had babies. I guess this is where you can say that the times have really changed. Continue reading
We have found some of the latest and funkiest products for making your travels with little ones that bit easier:
Munchkin White Hot Inflatable Duck Tub – £9.95
Make sure bath time routines are not disrupted by taking the Munchkin White Hot Inflatable Duck Tub on your trip. The padded inflatable bath in the shape of a duck makes bathing comfortable for kids and the Munchkin White-Hot Safety Disc reveals the word ‘HOT’ when the bath water is too hot for baby. This is the perfect weekend away accompaniment for little ones 6 – 24 months old.
Available from Amazon
Moving house as an adult is one of the most stressful things you can do. There’s so much to organise, there’s costs to think about, and of course the emotional upheaval of the entire process can be exhausting. But what is it like for your child? To your child, you and their family home are the centre of their universe, and it’s difficult for them to imagine much else. So how can we help our children to better understand and find the moving on of moving house less stressful? There are a few tips that can help along the way.
Get on Their Level
The things that you’re worrying about in relation to what your child is worrying about in regards to the move are probably worlds apart. Whatever you do, a great place to start is by being honest with them and making them feel as included as you possibly can, without allowing them to share your worries. Something commonly found here, is that children will ultimately gravitate towards focusing what they may lose in the move such as their friends, their current school, and their current bedroom. Distracting from this and guiding them towards focusing on the positives of moving to a new home such as gaining more friends and a brand new bedroom is a great way of encouraging them to turn their nerves and sadness into excitement! Continue reading
Attachment Parenting is enveloped in confusion and opinion. It is often perceived as a fringe or extreme approach to parenting, though parents who practice it are simply following their instincts for attunement with their child. You may be practicing it yourself without even realising it.
A Brief History
Attachment Parenting International (API) was founded 25 years ago by Barbara Nicholson and Lysa Parker, in Nashville, Tennessee. They were mothers and teachers who noticed a growing need among students for greater family security and caregiver availability. They founded API to bring information and support to parents through a centralised collection of resources.
Today, the Attachment Parenting movement is well-established. Most parents recognise the power of touch, positive discipline and other Attachment Parenting practices. However, the essence of Attachment Parenting has been muddled. It is often confused with other parenting styles, such as permissive parenting (placing very few rules, expectations or demands on the child), helicopter parenting (like helicopters, parents ‘hover overhead’ to oversee every aspect of their child’s life) and natural parenting (centred on meeting the child’s needs and encouraging them to develop at their own pace). API approaches parenting in ways that can be adapted by any parent with the goal and desire of helping children reach their fullest individual potential. Continue reading
Encouraging your toddler to listen and cooperate can sometimes be a challenge. So many parents tell me that their little ones have suddenly started saying “no” to everything, have difficulty sharing, have become picky eaters and throw tantrums when they don’t get their own way. It can be a tough time for parents, but these behaviours are developmentally normal and healthy. Toddlers begin to independently explore their own identities, separate from their parents. Pushing boundaries is their way of exploring how the world works.
It’s also worth remembering that children of this age are going through a critical period of brain development, with 90 per cent of the brain developing in the first three years of life and more than a million neural connections being produced each second. Additionally, toddlers won’t have developed attention skills yet, so they have difficulty maintaining focus for very long. Their language skills are generally limited and their thinking is very literal, making it hard for them to understand and process everything you say to them. Continue reading
Written by Sally Rowden, Nursery Nurse and Jo Fletcher, Clinical Team Lead, 0-19s Children’s Universal Services, Northants.
Getting the correct advice before introducing solid food to your baby will not only help your little one to grow up to be healthy, but it will also help you to enjoy this special time.
The most up-to-date research tells us that babies only need breast or formula milk up to the age of 6 months. During the following few months, you can relax and really enjoy the experience of introducing solids, safe in the knowledge that baby’s nutritional needs are still met by their milk intake.
You may recall health visitors and feeding specialists talking about ‘responsive’ feeding – the style of feeding promoted by our teams and around the world to get children off to the best start. Responsive feeding means that the baby is offered food when they are hungry, and that they join in with the experience of controlling their appetite. Continue reading
As a new mother, you barely have the time to think, let alone rest. The endless burping, feeding, crying, disturbed sleep, and changing wears down on your energy levels over the months following the birth of your child.
Save yourself precious time and improve your parenting by downloading a few parenting apps to assist you with your daily baby care tasks.
Do I have to sell my J5 to run these apps? Well, that depends on your device, but these apps are available on both Android and iOS.
Install the apps and play around with them for a few days before making your final judgment call on their efficacy.
1. WebMD Baby
If you think your baby may be ill, there’s no need to rush off to the hospital right away if it’s not an emergency. WebMD Baby has plenty of useful information on a wide variety of adverse health conditions that affect infants. Enter the symptoms and receive an accurate answer approved by medical professionals. Continue reading
By Lorraine Thomas, Chief Executive of The Parenting Coaching Academy.
Every toddler will eventually get the hang of using the toilet, but be prepared – toilet training is a messy business. Give it a go when you have got the time, patience and energy. The more positive and relaxed you are, the easier it will be.
Is Your Toddler Ready?
There is no ‘right’ age to start toilet training. Every toddler is different. Some will get the hang of it much earlier than others. Boys often take longer than girls. In general, most children are aged between two and three when they start. Don’t feel under pressure to start because other parents are doing it. Go with your gut instinct. Look out for the signs; these include showing interest in the toilet, telling you they want a wee or poo or pulling off nappies.
You both need to be on top form to make toilet training work, so don’t start when they are unwell or tired. Make sure training does not coincide with a change in your toddler’s daily routine, such as change of childcare. Continue reading
By Raymond Arthur, Professor of Law at Northumbria University, Newcastle.
With Scotland set to become the first UK country to make it illegal to smack children, the debate has opened up about whether the rest of the UK should follow suit.
What is the Current Law on Smacking?
The current laws in Britain today prohibit adults from smacking, pushing or shoving other adults. They also protect pets from violence. However, parents are allowed to use physical force to punish their children, provided the punishment does not escalate beyond ‘reasonable punishment’.
In England and Wales, under section 58 of the Children Act 2004, parents who are accused of causing Actual Bodily Harm to their children cannot invoke the defence of reasonable punishment if their smacks cause mental harm, bruising, scratching or reddening of the skin. Continue reading