Whether you’re just searching for a few additional changes to step up your child’s health and happiness, or you’ve noticed your little ones in a bit of a slump lately (which is highly likely in consideration of the lockdown restrictions). Either way, the tips below can help you add a few small changes here and there that can make a big difference to your children’s health and happiness. So let’s get started!
Persevere With Healthy Food Choices
It can often feel like an uphill struggle attempting to feed your little one their five a day. Sometimes it feels like they have a radar for nutritional food, and refuse to eat it just to wind you up. But there’s proof to suggest your baby’s refusal of wholesome food is not because it “looks funny,” or it’s “disgusting.” In fact, according to parents.com, when children reject their food, ‘it’s usually due to unfamiliarity, not true dislike.’ And so, the takeaway here is to persevere with providing healthy meals. And bear in mind, it could take up to 15 tries to present a particular fruit or vegetable before they feel familiar, confident, and comfortable to digest it.
Teach Regular Hand Washing
Interestingly, the International Scientific Forum on Home Hygiene (IFH) ‘tracked germ transmission in people’s homes and discovered people’s hands are the number one source for spreading infection.’
Sometimes it can feel as though you’re constantly reminding your little ones to wash their hands, whether after the toilet or before their meals – and that’s because you are! You’re helping your children to instil personal hygiene habits that will impact their health, and potentially others too. To make hand-washing fun for youngsters, you could ask them to choose a funky novelty soap, a fancy cartoon hand towel, or even make a song out of how to wash your hands. Depending on how old your children are, it may also work explaining to them briefly why it’s so important to keep their hands clean, to develop their understanding and begin adopting responsibility for how their choices could affect their health.
Another tip, if the children aren’t too pleased about wasting precious time washing their hands when they could be out playing, you could buy some hand sanitizers that they can quickly spritz on their hands. It does the job, and the spread of germs is reduced, which means healthier, happier children.
Lean On Medicine
On some occasions, a mother’s love and attention, coupled with a spoon of Calpol is not enough to diminish an illness, infection or other physical drawbacks your child could be experiencing. In which case, it’s time to contact the nurse or doctor to seek professional help. And with technology at your fingertips, seeking medical advice is easier than ever. For example, you can order ventolin online, for children with asthma, by filling out an online assessment which will be reviewed by a medical professional, and dispensed and dispatched by the pharmacy team straight to your door. Services such as these, are particularly handy for parents who, in light of COVID-19, are not overly keen on venturing outdoors to run errands.
In other instances, if you’re struggling to administer medicine to your son or daughter, there are a few methods you can adopt to make it more feasible to do—one of them being to disguise, tablets, such as antihistamines, in applesauce. The sweetness of the sauce will mask the tablet, and your little one will get the medication they need to relieve symptoms which can dampen their mood and energy, promoting better health and more happiness.
Make A Sugar Swap
A healthy diet has a dramatic effect on our energy and mood. And with a wealth of support online, including the NHS change4life scheme to help families lead healthier, happier lives, making healthy choices is easier to do. The programme provides guidance and tools on how to make simple food swaps in your kids’ diet. Here are a few examples;
- Swap chocolate or honey crunch cereal for porridge.
- Swap cake bars and doughnuts for fresh fruit and sugar-free jelly.
- Swap sugary juices and milkshakes for water and low-fat milk.
At first, your kids may be resistant to the changes, but as highlighted above, perseverance is vital to change their perception about healthy food.
Four million families have joined Change4Life, in a mission to make healthier changes in their children’s everyday life, and you can too!
Take Care Of You
‘Happy, healthy parents make happy, healthy children.’Dr Miriam Stoppard
It had to be said; whether you’re their parent, guardian or carer, you are the most important person in your child’s life. And it’s you their health and happiness relies on, by the small choices you make for them every day. Which brings us to why it’s paramount to take care of yourself, to take regular guilt-free breaks and not push your own health, wellbeing and play-time to the side and devote as much time as possible to the following suggestions;
- Alone time – Whether sipping a hot cup of tea in the morning before the kids wake up, or grabbing half an hour in the bath at night when they’re in bed. Find time to relax, unwind and rejuvenate.
- Exercise – Swimming is an excellent form of low-intensity exercise, perfect if you’re not keen on sweating it out in the gym. Less strenuous activity like walking or passive exercise such as gardening counts too, to help you burn calories, and maintain a healthy weight.
- Indulge in a hobby – What do you love to do? Do you like reading, painting, horse-riding, singing, cycling? Spend your free time doing what you love.
The last section of this post should be the one you take on board first. Because a happy spritely, well-rested parent doesn’t just happen, particularly when you’re always tending to little ones. Make time for you by any means necessary on a regular occurrence, in doing so you’ll have the energy, motivation and enthusiasm to make healthier choices, not just in your life but in your children’s too.
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