I took my 4-year-old to the dentist earlier this summer and found out that he had a cavity. Because of this, I have been very thorough about cleaning my 20-month-old’s teeth. I started researching the subject and found it’s really a hot topic out there. There’s a lot of information available, and it can get a little confusing. I’ve put together a list of baby tooth care tips that seem to be pretty universal.
My son recently told me that he wanted to try yoga, probably because I do a class here and there myself. I couldn’t find any kids’ classes that we could attend in town, but after a brief search online, I did come across YogaKids an award-winning series of DVDs from Gaiam.
After my son was born a few years ago, we experienced the hottest summer that I can remember in a long time. When we went for a walk I was constantly draping the stroller with baby blankets, shirts, or whatever else I had on hand, to shade him from the sun. Of course I didn't want to make it too hot for him, either, so it was always a balancing act. I searched high and low for some type of sunshade that would fit the stroller, but had no luck. I wish that I found these fashionable sunshades for Your Little Ones from Bellah May Designs. Choose from 27 different styles, all of which are reversible and are made of 100% breathable cotton.
One of my favorites is the Natalie (pictured above), which offers a Parisian flair with Eiffel Towers and polka dots in shades of pink and brown. The sunshades offer a sleeping baby privacy, and full or partial protection from the sun. They also offer a handy pouch for storage. Prices range from $75.00–$85.00. For more info or to purchase, go to www.bellahmay.com.
Can your kids get drunk, or worse, alcohol poisoning from hand sanitizer? That's what several emails passed on to me over the past couple of weeks by well-meaning friends and family claimed. The story went, more or less, like this: A four-year-old preschooler became inexplicably sick, and after much research and hand wringing was eventually diagnosed with alcohol poisoning; apparently she licked off the hand sanitizer applied to her grubby mitts by an overzealous teacher. As always, I immediately checked Snopes,com, the Web's vast repository of arcane urban legends and rumors, to see if this was true. Apparently it is, since the way most hand sanitizers get rid of those pesky little germs and bacteria on your and your children's hands is to kill them with alcohol. Many hand sanitizer products, like Purell are up to 62% ethyl alcohol, or a little over 120 proof.
When my family hits the great outdoors for a walk, hike, or swim, I always try to remember to put lots of sunscreen on them. I usually don’t do much more than buy what’s on sale, and make sure it has an SPF of at least 30 to 40. I decided to do a little research on the subject to find out what really is the best sunscreen for children. One thing I discovered is that it’s important to buy a sunscreen or sunblock with either zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. I also found out the sunscreen and sunblock are totally different; I thought the two terms were interchangeable, and they aren’t. Sunblock physically blocks the sun's UV rays, whereas sunscreen actually absorbs the ultraviolet light so it doesn’t reach your skin.
When you buy a sunscreen with zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide (which is recommended) it sits on top of the skin and forms a barrier against the sun's rays. When using a chemical sunscreen without either of those two ingredients, your skin actually absorbs the sunscreen, which may cause irritation or allergic reactions. It doesn't matter if you buy a so called "broad-spectrum" product, just make sure that it contains the all important zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, or both.
As a mom, I’m always looking for ways to making my home a healthier environment for my family. As I read more and more about how toxic conventional cleaning products and pesticides in our produce can cause health problems for me and my children, I’ve been trying to make a concerted effort to make better choices. Here are 5 really easy steps to a healthier home, as suggested by Healthy Child Healthy World:
Avoid use of all pesticides and insecticides
Use non-toxic or natural household cleaners and products
Clean up indoor air
Eat more organic foods
Use plastic products wisely
To find out more about the five easy steps to a healthier home, and to read about each step in more detail, go to www.healthychild.org.
Join the Walk for Autism Research this Saturday, April 28 at Sonoma State University in Rohnert Park and help find the missing pieces… and a cure for autism. The walk starts at 10:00 am and is approximately 2 miles. Check in time is at 9:00 am in the Main Quad at Sonoma State University. If you can’t make the walk and would like to make a donation, please visit the Autism Speaks web site. Autism is on the rise—it's currently diagnosed in 1 in 150 people—so join in, get involved, and help find out what causes this devastating disorder.
I’ve heard a lot of talk from moms in the last week about the hazards of using plastic products for children. There are concerns, spurred by recent reports like this in the San Francisco Chronicle, that chemicals used to soften polyvinyl chloride (PVC), namely bisphenol A or BPA, may pose health concerns when used in children’s toys, baby bottles, and sippy cups. Glass baby bottles are making a comeback, and I recently ran across this nifty little gadget: Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel Sippy Cup
There’s been a transformation lately in our house. Our 15-month-old, normally a jolly, good-natured kid, has turned into a grumpy,ill-tempered terror. She wanders around the house throwing toys and crying spontaneously, with a yucky three-foot long drool string hanging from her mouth.
It’s teething time again!
I had totally forgotten how difficult and exhausting it can be for parents when a child is teething, especially when more than one tooth is cutting through. It’s also hard for me to see my daughter when she’s in pain and constantly irritable. I guess I just blocked out that memory of when my now 4-year-old son was teething at that age. My husband and I also went through the same experience of being totally clueless about the teething until our daughter was well into it. We’d hypothesize as to why she was drooling so much and why she was so grumpy, coming up with elaborate theories, until one night in the middle of the night we’d realize: Oh yeah… she’s teething!
I guess we’re fortunate in that the whole experience hasn’t been that bad for us. Other parents we talk with about the subject seem to really be in abject misery from the whole ordeal (never mind how the baby’s feeling). Regardless, we’ll be pretty happy when all those choppers are in.
Anyhow, after our realization, I dug through one of the kid’s dresser drawers and pulled out some of my son’s old water filled chewy toys and put them in the freezer. My daughter chewed for a minute and threw it down on the ground in anger. Ok, I thought, she definitely not interested in that, so I took some of her plastic spoons (I remembered a friend had suggested that for my son) and put them in the freezer. She actually did chew on the spoon for an extra minute than the water filled toy, and then threw that down in tears, too. So much for that. Well, someone had suggested putting a wet washcloth in the freezer, which actually worked really well to sooth the gums. When I get desperate, I give her a little Tylenol, which seems to help for a short period.
Well, the teething will soon be over and we’ll forget the teething experience all over again.