Parenthood can be overwhelming and fulfilling at the same time. Everyone has a different parenting style, and it may take a little while to figure out what works best for you and your toddler. Infants and toddlers need special care since these are the years they make the most progress.
Here are some practical parenting tips for infants and toddlers.
For infants (0-1 year)
The first year of your child’s life is dedicated to learning to focus on vision, reach out, familiarise themselves with things and people around them and explore. Babies develop a bond of love and trust with their caregivers as part of their developmental journey. Here are some parenting tips:
- Your baby finds your voice calm. Talk to them often.
- Try to avoid crowded places, especially during the first month and let people sanitize their hands before holding your child.
- To help your baby learn the language, add words to the sounds they make.
- Play music or sing to your baby. Music helps with brain development.
- Try to create a schedule for feeding, napping and bathing. Having a routine will help your baby feel safe and secure.
- Show affection by cuddling, hugging and kissing your baby. This will help them feel loved and cared for.
- Acknowledge your baby’s progress by praising them.
- Have playtime when your child is alert and relaxed. If you spot signs of fussiness or tiredness, take a break.
- Put your child in the crib if you see find them yawning or fussing. This will help them learn to fall asleep on their own.
- While you’re giving your all to your child, don’t forget to take a break physically, mentally and emotionally. Remember that it is easier to be a positive and loving parent when you are feeling good yourself.
For toddlers (2-3 years)
Once your infant turns 2, there are a lot of significant differences you’ll be able to notice. For starters, your toddler exercises newfound language by constantly babbling and repeating things. She’s curious about the world around her, and you can help nurture this curiosity positively. Below are a few parenting tips:
- Don’t compare your toddler with others her age. This is a mistake many parents make and one that affects their confidence.
- Give your toddler responsibilities. These could be small chores around the house. You will notice your toddler volunteering to help. This helps them feel important and seen.
- Be wise with your words. The words you use during your child’s early years greatly impact them. If they’re scared to get into the pool, instead of saying, “stop being a coward, it’s nothing”, you could say, “It’s okay to be afraid; get into the pool only when you’re ready.”
- By age 2, you know your toddler and what triggers their frustration. This will help in minimizing tantrums.
- Toddlers are learning to interact and socialize with people around them. Encourage interactions, introduce them to new people and encourage them to create new friendships.
- Have a strong set of rules around the house. 2-year-old kids see everything in black and white and need a strong disciplinarian. Although that doesn’t mean you need to be rude or obnoxious, use positive language instead.
- Coordinate with the people around you that help with your child. Talk to them to identify any behavioural issues and find solutions.
- The toddler stage is difficult for parents to keep up with since this is the time your child has just learnt to become rebellious. Keep your cool when your child becomes defiant, and avoid berating. How you behave during a conflict can leave a lasting impression on them.
- Be a role model. Your child is going to mimic and imitate you. Know that your child is watching you and observing you. Make sure that you are polite and humble, for example, say thank you to the waiter to set an example for outdoor interactions. Also, avoid using cuss words and bad language since they’ll be sure to repeat it.
Parenting is difficult, and it is important that you take care of yourself while you’re ensuring the best for your child. Raising Superstars, founded by Raghav Himatsingka, helps you become the best parent for your child. The programmes are designed to make parenting easier with a step by step framework, convenient for super busy parents with learning and activities that take just 5 minutes a day and help parents not feel exhausted in this 24/7 job.