Offer healthy snack and meal choices, limiting sugars. Encourage fruits and vegetables. Offer many options.
Avoid direct sun exposure. Use a sunblock - SPF 15-30.
Continue fluoride supplement if recommended by your doctor. Make an appointment with your dentist for a routine exam and continue routine cleanings every 6 months.
Continue to have your child brush his or her teeth daily with toothpaste. You should assist them to ensure proper cleaning.
Ensure adequate amounts of sleep and physical activity.
Encourage importance of good personal hygiene.
Use a seat belt whenever in a moving car or van. If your child is under 60 lbs., consider continuing to use a booster seat. Always have your child in the back seat as it is the safest place to be if in an accident.
Never put a child under 12 years of age in the front seat of a car with a passenger side airbag.
Turn the hot water heater in your home down so the hottest water you can get from the faucet is 120 degrees.
Install and test your smoke detector in or near your child's room.
Childproof your home (poisons, medicines, guns). Visit our poison safety tips page at www.YourPediatrician.com.
Make sure any playground environment is safe.
If you haven’t yet, purchase a bottle of Activated Charcoal to have on hand in case of ingestion of a poison.
Obtain your local Poison Control Center’s phone number and keep it on hand (you can obtain this from our Web site, www.YourPediatrician.com).
Use a bike helmet for your child (and yourself) when riding.
Do not allow your child to ride on a riding lawnmower.
Keep matches out of reach and instruct on fire safety.
Do not keep a firearm in your home. If you must, make sure it is locked and out of reach from your curious child.
Provide a safe after-school environment.
Teach your child how to swim and follow water safety rules (see our water safety KidTOPIC at www.YourPediatrician.com).
Supervise activities with friends.
YOUR CHILD SHOULD…
Be able and willing to follow rules at home and school; respect authority.
Show pride in his or her achievements.
Be making steady progress in school.
Know how to swim.
Praise your child at every opportunity.
Talk and sing regularly with your child.
Listen to music together with your child.
Play board games and card games with your child.
Limit TV to certain programs and to maximum of 1 hour per day. Practice selective TV viewing (not channel surfing). Limit video games to the same time limit.
Encourage your child to read books.
Encourage participation in sports, hobbies, learning a musical instrument and other interests.
Reward good behavior as much as possible.
Be consistent with rules. Be firm. You decide how strict or liberal to be, just make sure you are consistent.
Respect your child's autonomy, privacy.
Offer choices to your child at every opportunity to allow decision making.
Encourage assertiveness but not aggressive behavior.
Eat meals as a family.
Establish and maintain family rituals/traditions.
Try to allow expression of feelings (anger, joy, sadness, fear). Offer ways to resolve conflicts and handle anger.
Expect sexual curiosity. Use correct anatomy terminology. Answer sex-related questions in a simple manner. Read age-appropriate books on sexual matters.
Encourage your child to have positive interactions with teachers and other adults.
Prepare for school, meet with teachers regularly. Get involved with your child's school and organized activities.
Assign chores and offer rewards (point scoring system, allowance. See our Chores section of KidTOPICs at www.YourPediatrician.com).
Get to know your child's friends and their families.
Be an example of the type of person you want your child to grow up to be - they are like sponges and absorb everything around them !
Spend time alone with your partner - one of the best thing you can do for your child is to maintain a quality relationship with your partner.