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Tips of the Week for March, 2018

Travel Tips
03-27-2018

​Traveling with children can be a delight and a challenge. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has the following tips for safe and stress-free family travel.
Traveling by Airplane

Allow your family extra time to get through security - especially when traveling with younger children.

Have children wear shoes and outer layers of clothing that are easy to take off for security screening. Children younger than 12 years are not required to remove their shoes for routine screening.

Strollers can be brought through airport security and gate-checked to make travel with small children easier.

Talk with your children about the security screening process before coming to the airport. Let them know that bags (backpack, dolls, etc.) must be put in the X‑ray machine and will come out the other end and be returned to them.

Discuss the fact that it's against the law to make threats such as; "I have a bomb in my bag." Threats made jokingly (even by a child) can delay the entire family and could result in fines.

Arrange to have a car seat at your destination or bring your own along. Airlines will typically allow families to bring a child's car safety seat as an extra luggage item with no additional luggage expense. Check the airline's website ahead of time so you know their policy before you arrive at the airport

When traveling on an airplane, a child is best protected when properly restrained in a car safety seat appropriate for the age, weight and height of the child. Children who weigh more than 40 lbs can use the aircraft seat belt. The car safety seat should have a label noting that it is FAA-approved. Belt-positioning booster seats cannot be used on airplanes, but they can be checked as luggage (usually without baggage fees) for use in rental cars and taxis.

Although the FAA allows children under age 2 to be held on an adult's lap, the AAP recommends that families explore options to ensure that each child has her own seat. If it is not feasible to purchase a ticket for a small child, try to select a flight that is likely to have empty seats where your child could ride buckled in her car seat.

Pack a bag of toys and snacks to keep your child occupied during the flight.

In order to decrease ear pain during descent, encourage your infant to nurse or suck on a bottle. See How to Nurse on an Airplane for more information. Older children can try chewing gum or drinking liquids with a straw.

Wash hands frequently, and consider bringing hand-washing gel and disinfectant wipes to prevent illnesses during travel.

Consult your pediatrician before flying with a newborn or infant who has chronic heart or lung problems or with upper or lower respiratory symptoms.

Consult your pediatrician if flying within 2 weeks of an episode of an ear infection or ear surgery.

International Travel

If traveling internationally, check with your doctor to see if your child might need additional vaccines or preventive medications, and make sure your child is up-to-date on routine vaccinations. Bring mosquito protection in countries where mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria are present.

In order to reduce jet lag, adjust your child's sleep schedule 2-3 days before departure. After arrival, children should be encouraged to be active outside or in brightly lit areas during daylight hours to promote adjustment.

Stay within arm's reach of children while swimming, as pools may not have safe, modern drain systems and both pools and beaches may lack lifeguards.

Ensure that your child wears a life jacket when on smaller boats, and set an example by wearing your life jacket.

Conditions at hotels and other lodging may not be as safe as those in the U.S. Carefully inspect for exposed wiring, pest poisons, paint chips, or inadequate stairway or balcony railings.

When traveling, be aware that cribs or play yards provided by hotels may not meet current safety standards. If you have any doubt about the safety of the crib or play yard, ask for a replacement or consider other options. (Also applies to travel in the U.S.)

Traveling by Car

Road travel can be extremely hazardous in developing countries. Make sure each passenger is buckled and that children use the appropriate car seat. Let your driver know you are not in a hurry, ask that there be no cell phone use, and emphasize that you will reward safe driving.

Always use a car seat for infants and young children. All infants and toddlers should ride in a rear-facing car seat until 2 years of age or until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by the car seat manufacturer. Once your child has outgrown the rear-facing height or weight limit, she should ride in a forward-facing car seat. Updated recommendations on safe travel can be found here.

Most rental car companies can arrange for a car seat if you are unable to bring yours along. However, they may have a limited selection of seats. Check that the seat they provide is appropriate for the size and age of your child, that it appears to be in good condition, and that the instruction manual is provided before accepting it.

A child who has outgrown her car seat with a harness (she has reached the top weight or height allowed for her seat, her shoulders are above the top harness slots, or her ears have reached the top of the seat) should ride in a belt-positioning booster seat until the vehicle's seat belt fits properly (usually when the child reaches about 4' 9" in height and is between 8 to 12 years of age).

All children under 13 years of age should ride in the rear seat of vehicles.

Never place a rear-facing car seat in the front seat of a vehicle that has an airbag.

Set a good example by always wearing a seat belt, even in a taxi.

Children often become restless or irritable when on a long road trip. Keep them occupied by pointing out interesting sights along the way and by bringing soft, lightweight toys and favorite music for a sing-along.

Plan to stop driving and give yourself and your child a break about every two hours.

Never leave your child alone in a car, even for a minute. Temperatures inside the car can reach deadly levels in minutes, and the child can die of heat stroke. See Prevent Child Death in Hot Cars for more information.

In addition to a travelers' health kit, parents should carry safe water and snacks, child-safe hand wipes, diaper rash ointment, and a water- and insect-proof ground sheet for safe play outside.

Additional Information & Resources:

Car Seats: A Guide for Families

10 Tips for Flying with Breast Milk

AAP Statement on Senate FAA Reauthorization Bill

Child Safety: Keep Your Little One Safe When You Fly (FAA.gov)

Traveler's Health (CDC.gov)

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Published
6/6/2016 8:00 AM

All information provided by HealthyChildren.com. For additional information please go to https://www.healthychildren.org/english/news/pages/travel-safety-tips.aspx

Feeding & Nutrition Tips: 4-to 5-Year-Olds
03-12-2018

​​​Children feel better when they eat well. During the preschool and kindergarten years, your child should be eating the same foods as the rest of the family.

Your job as a parent is to offer foods with nutritional value in a calm environment and to have regular times for eating. Your child's job is to decide whether he or she is hungry and how much food to eat when it's offered.
8 Tips for Parents:

Offer a range of healthy foods. When children eat a variety of foods, they get a balance of the vitamins they need to grow. Healthy options include fresh vegetables and fruits, low-fat dairy products (milk, yogurt, cheeses) or dairy substitutes, lean proteins (beans, chicken, turkey, fish, lean hamburger, tofu, eggs), and whole-grain cereals and bread.

Don't expect children to "clean their plates." Serve appropriate portion sizes, but do not expect your child to always eat everything served. Even better, let your children choose their own portion sizes. It is okay if children do not eat everything on their plates. At this age, they should learn to know when they are full. Some four-year-olds may still be picky eaters. Parents can encourage their children to try new foods, but they should not pressure eating.

Offer regular meal times and sit together. Serve foods at regular meal and snack times. Try to be careful to not offer foods between these eating times. Children who are eating or "grazing" throughout the day may not be hungry at mealtimes, when healthier foods tend to be available. When it is meal or snack time, turn off the TV, and eat together at the table. This helps create a calm environment for eating.

Limit processed food and sugary drinks. Another parent role is to limit how much processed food is in the house and to limit fast food. Most important is to limit sugary drinks. Sugary drinks include soda, juice drinks, lemonade, sweet tea, and sports drinks. Sugary drinks can lead to cavities and unhealthy weight gain.

The best drinks are water and milk. The best drinks for children are water and milk (including non-dairy milk). Milk provides calcium and vitamin D to build strong bones. Ice cream is okay once in a while, but it should not be offered every day. Whole fruit is preferable to fruit juice—even if it is 100% juice—as juice is a concentrated source of sugar and low in fiber. If you offer juice, make it 100% fruit juice and limit it to 4 oz. or less per day. It is best to serve juice with a meal, as juice is more likely to cause cavities when served between meals.

Small portions for small children. It is important to pay attention to portion sizes. Four- and five-year-olds need smaller servings than adults. Encourage your children to choose their own serving size, but use smaller plates, bowls, and cups. See Energy In: Recommended Food & Drink Amounts for Children.

Turn off the TV—especially at mealtimes. Television advertising can be a big challenge to your child's good nutrition. Four- and five-year-olds are easily influenced by ads for unhealthy foods like sugary cereals, fast food, and sweets. The best way to avoid this is put in place a "media curfew" at mealtime and bedtime, putting all devices away or plugging them into a charging station for the night.

Teach table manners. At this age, your child should be ready to learn basic table manners. By age four, he or she will no longer grip the fork or spoon in his or her fist and be able to hold them like an adult. With your help, he or she can begin learning the proper use of a table knife. You can also teach other table manners, such as not talking with a full mouth, using a napkin, and not reaching across another person's plate. While it's necessary to explain these rules, it's much more important to model them. Your child will watch to see how the rest of the family is behaving and follow their lead. It's easier to develop table manners if you have a family custom of eating together. Make at least one meal a day a special and pleasant family time. Have your child set the table or help in some other way in preparing the meal.

Additional Information:

The Benefits & Tricks to Having a Family Dinner

Preschoolers' Diets Shouldn't Be Fat-Free: Here's Why

Sample Menu for a Preschooler

Food and TV: Not a Healthy Mix

Choosing Healthy Snacks for Kids

How to Shape & Manage Your Young Child's Behavior


Last Updated
9/26/2016

Source
Section on Obesity (Copyright © 2016 American Academy of Pediatrics)

The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.

All information provided by Healthychildren.org. For additional information, please go to https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/preschool/nutrition-fitness/pages/Feeding-and-Nutrition-Your-4-to-5-Year-Old.aspx

Breakfast for Learning
03-07-2018

 

 

​Nearly half of all American families regularly skip breakfast. Is your family one of them? When it comes to getting your children to school, a healthy breakfast is just as important as gym shoes and sharp pencils.

How Breakfast Betters Your Child

Breakfast has been associated with everything from:

  • Better memory
  • Better test scores
  • Better attention span to decreased irritability
  • Healthier body weights
  • Improved overall nutrition

Rise & Dine

It’s easy to see how breakfast has come to qualify as one of the nutritional challenges of parenthood. Whether it’s your own parental time constraints or your child’s busy schedule, getting the whole family ready to set off to child care and/or school in the morning, play dates, or any of a whole host of other common early-in-the-day commitments, breakfast is often neglected.

If the words “slow” and “leisurely” don’t exactly describe your morning routine, we’d like to suggest that you commit a little extra time and effort to protecting the nutritional integrity of your child’s morning meal.

Breakfast-Made-Easier Tips for Parents

Whether you opt for a simple breakfast or a more elaborate one, any effort to make it nutritious is better than no breakfast at all. Whether that means a glass of low-fat milk and a piece of wheat toast or an all-out feast, the following breakfast-made-easier tips will hopefully help you rise to the occasion and overcome some of the most common barriers to a healthy breakfast.

  • Schedule accordingly. While we’d like to remind you that sitting down and sharing family meals is beneficial, we’re willing to bet that sitting down to a leisurely breakfast with your kids each morning simply isn’t realistic for most of you. What is realistic, however, is making sure you carve out enough time to allow your child to eat without pressure. Especially for infants and toddlers, this includes factoring in enough time in the morning’s schedule to allow for both assisted- and self-feeding.
  • Fix breakfast before bedtime. In other words, plan ahead. As with just about all other aspects of feeding your child, a little advance planning can go a long way toward having a wider range of healthy foods on hand. Simple examples such as hard-boiling eggs ahead of time or having your child’s favorite cold cereal dished out the night before to pair with some presliced fresh fruit can mean the difference between time for a balanced breakfast and running out the door without it (or, as is often the case, with some commercially packaged and far less nutritious alternative in hand).
  • Grab-and-go breakfasts. If the reality of your schedule is such that you and your kids routinely run out the door with no time to spare in the morning, then try stocking up on a variety of nutritious foods that you can prepare and prepackage for healthier grab-and-go convenience. In addition to hard-boiled eggs, consider other fast favorites like sliced apples, homemade muffins, or a bagel with low-fat cream cheese.
  • Make sure sleep is on the menu. Applying the age-old adage, make sure your child is early enough to bed that she rises early enough to allow time for breakfast. No matter what their age, tired kids tend to be cranky, and cranky kids are far less likely to sit down for a well-balanced breakfast. Not only that, but sleep has proven itself to be a crucial ingredient in children’s overall health.
  • Broaden your horizons. You’ll certainly want to keep safety in mind when figuring out what’s age-appropriate to offer your child for breakfast, but don’t let yourself be constrained by artificially imposed labels to determine what is good to serve for a morning meal. Think protein, think fruits and vegetables, and think outside the box when it comes to expanding your breakfast horizons beyond just breakfast cereals and milk.
  • Look for child care and school support. Be sure to check out what breakfast options your child’s school or child care provider offers. With much-deserved attention now being paid to the food our children eat in out-of-home settings, you’re more likely to find balanced breakfast options on the menu, and your child may well be more receptive to eating them if all of his friends are eating alongside him.

Additional Information:

Last Updated
3/31/2014
Source
Healthy Children E-Magazine, Back to School 2012
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.

All information provided by Healthychildren.org.  For addiiontal information please go to https://www.healthychildren.org/English/healthy-living/nutrition/Pages/Breakfast-for-Learning.aspx

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