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It’s Tooth Fairy Time!

It’s Tooth Fairy Time!

Everybody knows that baby teeth must fall out to let the permanent teeth come in. The whole process takes at least six years.

Usually, children get very excited when they notice that one of their teeth is loose, because the Tooth Fairy will be visiting soon. But not all of them are happy about this rite of passage since sometimes they are afraid of feeling pain, or feel uncomfortable when eating, or may be worried about how they will look or talk without teeth.

Parents can help talking to their children about those fears, and letting them know they will probably will not feel pain. It is recommended to give them soft foods if they complain about discomfort when a tooth is very loose. Most baby teeth fall out on their own.

Children start getting their first baby teeth at the age of 4-7 months, in most cases, and should have all their 20 baby teeth by the age of 3 years.

Baby teeth usually fall out in the order your child got them. This means the two center bottom teeth are often the first to go, followed by the top two center ones. If your child’s baby teeth erupted late, they will probably fall out later.

Some kids lose their first baby teeth at the age of 4 years, while others start when they are 7 years old.

There are children who lose their baby teeth very young, when permanent teeth are not ready to come yet (this can be a consequence of an accident or a dental disease). In these cases, dentists use to put a temporary prothesis in order to keep the space for the permanent tooth, avoiding future teeth spacing problems.

If your child starts losing baby teeth before he/she is 4 years old, we recommend you to visit a dentist to make sure it is not due to a disease.

If your child is 7 years old and did not lose any tooth yet, although it is very common, it is also recommended to ask a dentist for an x-ray study.

When the permanent teeth do come in, you will find out they have ridges and may be slightly yellow. They are also much larger than baby teeth. Do not worry, because your child will grow into them.

Healthy toothbrushing habits become even more important now.


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Related article in Spanish: Cuándo comienzan a caerse los dientes de leche?


How can I teach my child that making fun of others is wrong?

How can I teach my child that making fun of others is wrong?

It’s very important to teach our children never to make fun of others. Children should learn that behaviors like teasing and bullying are harmful and affect our ability to relate to the people around us.

Making fun of others hurts everyone involved

We don’t often think about a child who makes fun of others as being a victim. But in reality, cruel behavior often disguises weakness and fear.

Making fun of others can be evidence of bad behavior learned at home, or can be a sign that a child is not comfortable in their own skin.

In some cases, children who have been victims of teasing lash out at other children to protect themselves.

Teaching values begins at home. Some parents fail to put a stop to behaviors such as making fun of others, simply because they don’t see them as a problem.

It may be that in their household, it’s normal to make unkind remarks about others. When this is the case, children copy what they see.

Aggression at home

When a child is making fun of others, it’s worth finding out why. A lack of affection or aggression at home can trigger bullying in children.

Kids who grow up in this kind of environment may take out their frustration on others, through verbal and physical attacks on their apparently weaker peers.

All parents should understand that making fun of others can trigger aggressive behavior in their child. It can also affect their performance at school and undermine their ability to form meaningful relationships with others.

In terms of discipline, parents who observe their children engaging in bullying must take action immediately.

Educating children on matters of emotions and relationships is something that takes time. Teaching a child not to make fun of others means helping them see that this kind of behavior is wrong.

Inviting children to put themselves in the other person’s place is one way to do this, by encouraging empathy.

Teaching Your Child not to Make Fun of Others

Making fun of others can lead to rejection, bad grades at school, low self-esteem, increased aggression and insecurity. It also exacerbates aggression and insecurity. It goes against every rule of social behavior.

Show them that others could do the same to them

When a child is making fun of others, they are trying to take control of a situation and get attention. This might be the only way to relate to others they know.

The best way to put a stop to this behavior is by talking to your child. Explain the damage it does to others, and how unpleasant it is to be on the receiving end.

It’s also important to show your child that making fun of others involves a risk. If they continue to do it, others may also decide to make fun of them or be aggressive towards them.

Lead by example

Parents must be a good role model and practice what they preach. It’s also important to reinforce positive behavior by praising the child when they do the right thing.

Love and affection are vital for teaching children not to make fun of others. A child who feels loved is less insecure, and far less likely to resort to aggression.

Respect and tolerance: fundamental values

When the child understands the damage caused by cruel words, they’ll learn to accept other people and respect their differences.

Developing values such as respect and tolerance will help your child to get along with others. As well as giving them a happier childhood, you’ll help them to grow up into a better person in the future.

Parental introspection

To teach your child not to make fun of others, it’s important to reflect on your own behavior.

Parents with low self-esteem who have difficulty forming friendships won’t be able to lead by example. For this reason, moms and dads must know and value themselves to help their children do the same.

What if my child is being teased?

When our children are on the receiving end of teasing or bullying, it’s especially important for parents to teach security and show them not to fear what others say about them. One strategy may include using humor to deflect cruel remarks.

If your child is being made fun of, offer them love and understanding. Reinforce their self-esteem and teach them to be true to themselves, regardless of what others may say.


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The Many Mood Swings of the Terrible Twos

The Many Mood Swings of the Terrible Twos

The life of a two-year-old isn’t always easy.

One minute you might be happily coloring with your new markers, and the next your mom snatches them from your hand and scolds you for drawing on the wallpaper. At the moment, nothing can feel more devastating.

Anyone who’s parented a toddler knows what happens next. The young artist bursts into tears, possibly hits mom, throws the nearest object or runs away. Of course, as soon as she sees another cool, new toy, she’ll settle right down.

It’s perfectly normal to have a moody toddler, but that doesn’t make it any less frustrating. Understanding what life is like in the world of a toddler can help you learn how to deal with terrible twos.

What is time?

Your toddler has a very limited concept of time. When he wants something, all he knows is that he wants it now. Not in five minutes, not in an hour (what’s an hour, anyway?). As such, when he doesn’t get his peanut butter and jelly exactly when he’s hungry, he may think he’ll never get his sandwich, even if you’re already in the process of spreading the jelly.

In some cases, the tears will stop as soon as you hand your toddler his lunch (or whatever it is he’s asking for). In many other situations, your toddler is making a request you can’t oblige. No, he can’t play with your kitchen knife. No, he can’t have candy before dinner.

Being told “no” isn’t fun, but luckily you can use that limited concept of time to your advantage, Parents explained. You can’t take him to the park right now, but he can play with his dinosaurs or his blocks. A new distraction becomes his new focus, and he’ll be happy once more.

Learning words takes time

Your toddler knows exactly what she wants. Unfortunately, she might not have the vocabulary to dictate that want. Even if she does, it might come out sounding like slurred and garbled nonsense. If parents had a nickel for every time they asked their child “what?,” they’d have very heavy pockets.

Not being able to clearly express their wants and needs is the source behind many toddler meltdowns. When your 18-month-old wants a cup of apple juice, but doesn’t know the word “apple” and can only ask for juice, she feels frustrated when she’s handed a cup of orange. She might yell, cry or throw the juice on the ground.

In time, she’ll learn the word “apple” and know how to ask for what she wants. Until then, be careful to communicate the names of her favorite items whenever possible to help her learn. When you pick up the apple juice, say “This apple juice is yummy” or “Do you want the apple juice?”

Additionally, teaching your child some simple baby signs can help alleviate language frustrations, LiveStrong explained. For example, to sign for “apple,” make your hand into a fist with your index knuckle extended. Touch the knuckle to your cheek and twist.

Emotional intelligence doesn’t come easily

When something has upset your toddler, all he knows is there’s a burning rage inside him. He might not know the words “mad,” “sad” or “frustrated.” He probably doesn’t know how to properly express those emotions, either; he’s only just developed them, after all.

Help your toddler learn about his emotions and how to display them. When his older brother knocks over his block tower, he feels mad. He might pick up his blocks and throw them at his brother. Tell your toddler, “That must have made you feel really mad.” Vocabulary will help your child understand that feeling mad is normal. Teach him that’s it’s OK to feel mad, but not OK to throw blocks.

Help your toddler learn about all his emotions, not just the negative ones. Help him identify when he’s happy, excited, sad, frustrated or mad. In time, he’ll not only learn how to determine his own emotions, but he’ll also start recognizing these in others – the first steps toward developing empathy, Parents noted.

Dealing with tantrums isn’t easy, especially when you’re in public or witnessing the third meltdown of a very tough day. It’s important to let your toddler know that throwing a fit isn’t the way to get what he wants.

Wait for him to calm down, then get to the bottom of the problem. In time, your toddler will develop a bigger vocabulary, a realistic concept of time and the emotional intelligence to stay calm, even when frustrated – it’s all a part of growing up.








Keeping Your Baby Cool and Cute in the Summer

Keeping Your Baby Cool and Cute in the Summer

Summer hasn’t even started and weather is getting very hot already. According to The Weather Channel, some areas of the U.S. have to wait until September to reach their highest temperatures. This means there’s plenty of time for fun left, but it’s also important to keep summer safety in mind. Here’s how to keep your child cool and cute:

Grab a light wardrobe

Kids’ fashion has come a long way, so you have the chance to get really creative. You can dress your toddler like a super-chic Anna Wintour in the making, or grab a sleeveless flannel shirt and some baby Doc Martens for a mini-punk look. Just make sure the clothes you choose are summer-appropriate. The right cuts and fabric keep your child cool and help prevent heat-related illnesses.

When shopping for a summer wardrobe, choose loose, breezy fabrics made from 100 percent cotton. Avoid dark colors like black and navy; such hues absorb heat, increasing your little one’s body temperature. Opt for sturdy footwear with thick soles, especially if your toddler likes to climb and explore.

Also, if you plan to stay home all day and aren’t expecting any visitors, feel free to let your child run around naked! Just make sure to lather your baby up with sunscreen before going into the backyard – clothes or no clothes. The Environmental Working Group has a list of 19 baby sunscreen products with top ratings, so your summer safety regimen won’t include any harsh chemicals.

Guard against bugs and poisonous plants

Bug bites and the itchy, inflamed skin they leave behind are probably the least-liked aspect of summer. What’s worse, the number of insects infected with diseases is on the rise. This past June, a press release from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced an increased number of disease-carrying mosquitoes were seen across the southern U.S. this year. These insects are known for spreading Zika virus, West Nile virus, Dengue fever and many other illnesses.

If you live in a grassy or wooded area, you must also look out for ticks. These pesky bloodsuckers are notorious for spreading Lyme disease, which affects the joints, heart and nervous system if left untreated. Additionally, toddlers that are allergic to bee stings need to be exceptionally careful in spring and summer.

To keep your toddler safe from insects, coat your child with an insect repellant. The brand you choose doesn’t matter, but the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends repellant with at least 10 percent DEET, the active ingredient. A higher concentration doesn’t increase your child’s protection; the repellant just lasts longer. A product with 10 percent DEET lasts for about two hours, while one with 30 percent lasts around five hours.

Below are a few other bug safety tips:

  • Ditch scented soaps and sprays, which might attract insects, for fragrance-free versions.
  • Avoid areas where bugs tend to nest, including pools of water (mosquitos), summer-blooming flowers (bees) and wooded areas (ticks).
  • Stay inside during mornings and evenings when gnats and mosquitos are most active.

Prevent heat-related illnesses

According to the CDC, children under 4 are most at risk for developing a heat-related illness. These ailments include heat rash, sunburn, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke, and symptoms range from small red blisters to nausea, headaches and possible loss of consciousness.

Of course, as with any medical condition, prevention is always best. Use the following tips to improve your toddler’s summer safety and avoid heat-related illnesses:

  • Dress your toddler in breathable, lightweight clothing that’s light in color.
  • Use cool, but not cold, water when bathing your child.
  • Stay indoors when it’s overly sunny and warm. Sunlight is strongest at noon, but the temperature doesn’t reach its peak until about 3 p.m.
  • Give your toddler plenty of access to cool (not cold) water.
  • Never leave your child in a parked car, even if the window is open.

Enjoying the last bit of summer

Summer is officially over by the end of September. Choose the right clothes, grab a bottle of baby sunscreen, protect yourselves from bugs and heat, and you’re all set to enjoy the season safely.


4 tips for New Moms

4 tips for New Moms

baby safety

September is Baby Safety Month, which just so happens to coincide with our anxious wait for the arrival of our first child…how fitting! Leading up to September has been a fun and strange combination of gearing up while also paring down. We got the cute outfits, figured out how to execute the perfect “swaddle” and made room in order to create a cozy nursery. But just as important, we focused our energies on making our home safe for our little man.

First things first, my husband, JP, and I knocked out the easiest steps: checking our carbon monoxide detector and smoke alarm to ensure they were both in working order. Check! (Admittedly, creating and crossing off checklists became a serious sport for me during this time. It also perhaps gave me an inflated sense of accomplishment, which explains the exclamation points.)

After we got our crib—in 7,000 little pieces/husband not enthused—we assembled it and then made sure to make it a safe sleeping environment for baby. As tempting as it was to fill it with cute stuffed animals, a chic bumper and a bunch of sanity-saving accessories, those items have no place in a baby’s crib. Simplicity is the name of the game here: a firm mattress covered with a tight-fitting crib sheet is really all you need. Check!

Next up was our car seat. Being a Safe Kids employee doesn’t grant me immunity from an improperly installed car seat. In fact, 73% of car seats are not used or installed correctly. That’s why we made sure to review car seat safety guidelines and check out a local car seat check up event to ensure we’re safely transporting our bambino. Check!

Even though our baby won’t be eating solid foods for awhile, it’s never too early to think about choking prevention , too. Children under 5 should not be given foods that are small, round or hard (think hot dog pieces, cheese sticks or chunks, hard candy, nuts, grapes, marshmallows or popcorn). These food items can put your child at risk for a choking episode. And while we’re on the subject, it’s a great idea to sign up for a CPR class as a new—or repeat—parent as well. The more peace of mind, the better. Check!

As a soon-to-be new parent, I can attest that taking these preventative steps has been fairly simple but also has provided JP and me with a sense of confidence and calm. I know that we can’t control everything that may or can happen to our little guy. All those bumps, bruises and crazy little things that you can’t predict are part of growing up, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. But I also know that if you have the knowledge and tools to reduce serious risk, than why not check it off the list?


20+ of the Greatest Mom Tips Ever

20+ of the Greatest Mom Tips Ever

Even though some of my mothering skills came naturally, like realizing I could nurse my newborn son, Conrad, while walking up the spiral staircase, my confidence as a new mom was hard-won. I always assumed there was a book, or a gadget, or one of Angelina Jolie’s nannies, who knew how to do everything better than I could. Worse, I thought my lack of mothering-nerve was a blemish on the image of the perfect mom I wanted to be. (I hadn’t yet realized that trying to be perfect was ridiculous.) I kept my insecurities to myself and continued to shop for stuff I didn’t need and buy tomes that were better used as stacking blocks.

Then I got a card from an older family friend, and all she wrote was this: “One day you will feel like you know what you’re doing.” Six years, many mistakes, and another baby boy later, I do. But that card let me start to trust myself more every day. Well, dear reader, consider this your own card from an old friend. We’ve gathered the best, most ingenious it-worked-for-me tips from moms and childcare experts to help you sail, not sob, through all the small but significant day-to-day acts of being a mom. Confidence, here you come.

3 Insta-Soothers You Can Count On

Try The Triple Play Rub lavender essential oil on the back of your neck for a calming scent (feel free to swipe your kid’s Johnson & Johnson lotion). Then wrap your baby in a blanket and gently bounce on a fitness ball or the edge of the bed, suggests Jill Wodnick, a doula in Montclair, NJ, and mother of Nathaniel, 7, Sebastian, 4, and Emerson, 2.
Head To the Loo Need help fast? Run the bathroom fan and faucet. Low, droning noises remind your little one of hearing your heartbeat in utero, says Dr. Altmann, mother of Avrick, 4, and Collen, 2.
Create a Toddler Cocoon “When toddlers throw tantrums, they often need to block out stimulation in order to calm down,” says Corinne G. Catalano, school psychologist at the Ben Samuels Children’s Center at Montclair State University. So instead of picking up your tot, make a “cave” or cocoonlike space by throwing a blanket over a small table and allowing him to climb under it. If you’ve got a pop-up kid tent, that will work, too. Give him his lovey and a pillow, and he’ll have the soothing sanctuary he needs to regroup.

Help the Medicine Go Down (or In)
Who hasn’t squirted Motrin into her toddler’s ear when he’s putting up a feverish fight? Take a cue from Mary Poppins and mix a dose of medicine with chocolate syrup, suggests Tanya Altmann, M.D., author of Mommy Calls. For toddlers and older babies on solid foods, medicine will seem like a treat! Another option: Refrigerate OTC meds. Cold can mask the taste. For eyedrops, lay your baby on her back and put a toy on her belly so she’ll look down. If she’s old enough to follow directions, just tell her to close her eyes. Place a drop on the inner corner of the eye, right by her nose. When she looks up or opens her eye, the drop will fall right in. (Works for drowsing pets, too!)

10 Things You Never Knew You Could Do With One Hand
make spaghetti
feed a pet
wrap a present using a mini-shopping bag, tissue, and a stick-on bow
brush an older child’s hair
fold baby clothes and put back in drawers
repot a plant
write thank-you notes
whip up a smoothie
tend to husband’s personal needs (if you know what we mean)

Happier Hair Washing
Turn this often torturous process into something your toddler will look forward to: Treat her to a salon visit right in your own home, suggests Parenting Mom Squad expert Denene Millner, of Snellville, GA. What to do:

1. Talk in a fancy voice and ask her to lie down on the kitchen counter, with her head hanging over the sink, just like she would if she were sitting in the shampoo chair at a salon.
2. Roll Up a towel and ut it under her neck for support.
3. Let her lean back and enjoy. Use your fingers to give her a head massage while you shampoo.
4. Rinse, wrap hair up in a turban.
5. Accept kisses as tips.

Better Bangs: The unfortunate hallmark of an at-home trim is poorly cut bangs. The secret? Don’t cut them from ear to ear. Instead, trim them in from the outside edge of each eyebrow.

Car Seats on the Fly
Many a parent has suffered a long flight with a crying baby only to discover that she can’t get the car seat out of the airplane seat. Because airline seatbelts open with a pull lever, the belt can easily get wedged in the car-seat back once it has been tightened. If you can’t pull the lever, well, you’re stuck. Avoid this problem with two solutions that are FAA compliant: Ask your airline attendant for a seat-belt extender, suggests Troy Lanier, coauthor of DadLabs Guide to Fatherhood. The extender attaches to and lengthens the belt so you can reach the buckle when deplaning. If you can’t get their attention in time, simply turn the buckle over so that the clasp opens in a different direction.

How to Defuse Road Rage
We’ve all been there: You’re making great time on a trip home from the mall and then, bam!, traffic. Your child, who was happy moving at 50 miles per hour, is hysterical when your speedometer drops below 10. Some quick tricks to avoid crying jags.

Turn on cool tunes As soon as you see a stream of brake lights ahead, pop in a customized CD that sings your child’s name in every stanza ($14.95 to $19.95; “When my girls hear their names in a song, they instantly stop crying,” says Tomlin, who’s the author of Chaos 2 Calm: The Moms of Multiples’ Guide to an Organized Family and mom of 3-year-old twins, Peyton and Sydney.
Dial it in Low-tone cell-phone ringtones can be calming, says Catalano. And that’s why when Nancy Caron’s 18-month-old son, Parker, is inconsolable, she whips out her cell phone and plays tones that are heavy on the drum and bass. (If she’s in the driver’s seat, she pulls over first!)
Stash some magnets Dig out an old metal cake pan or small cookie sheet and load it up with large magnetic pictures or letters (they should be larger than 1 3/4 inches in diameter). The magic of magnetism can keep them entertained for hours (okay…many, many minutes).

3 Nighttime Tips
Think Big To avoid 2 a.m. diaper leaks, Brooke Harmon of Phoenix puts her son in a diaper one size up: “It absorbs all the pee and never makes a mess.”
Go Backward Tonia Tomlin of Plano, TX, got so tired of her twin daughters’ late-night ritual of ripping off their pj’s that she put their footless zip-up sleepers on backward.
Do Diaper Prep Pre-fill newborn dipes with ointment before bed to save time during middle-of-the-night changes.

Better Mothering Through Technology
Heather Gibbs Flett and Whitney Moss, authors of The Rookie Mom’s Handbook, offer up four ways to convert your iPhone into the ultimate mother’s helper.

Make It a Baby Monitor You’re at a dinner party and are worried you won’t hear your sleeping baby in your host’s bedroom. Download the application at$4.99), then stash your phone near the babe. If he stirs, your phone will call a number you’ve chosen (e.g., Daddy’s cell).
Let it Lull Download the white-noise ambient application ($1.99; and place the phone in your baby’s car seat or stroller. The app also offers a variety of sounds, including some as quietly calming as lapping waves and rain.
Turn it into a Tracker Log your baby’s diaper changes and feedings with the applications at (99¢, $7.99). Both store a history of your data, in case you need to share it with your doctor.
Have it Wooo Them Download the Wooo Button ( It’s simple: You press a button and a man shouts “Wooo!” Kids love it, and it’s so harmlessly addictive that you’ll be amazed at what you can accomplish!

Must-Know Multitasker
Now that you have a kid, you’ll never get to go to the bathroom alone again. How to master the pee-and-feed with ease.
1. Wear elastic-waist pants or a comfy skirt you can lift with one hand.
2. Get the babe happily latched on.
3. Do your business.
4. Flush later—no need to chance a startle.

Tasty Teething Trick
Frozen washcloths are great, but your baby may stay at it longer and get more relief if you add some flavor into the mix. Try putting large chunks of these in a mesh teether:
Sour pickles (surprised? kids adore all things tangy)
Cool cucumbers
Sweet carrots

Stand-Up Comedy (aka the Vertical Diaper Change)
1. Wrap one arm around your child’s belly to hold him still, then tear off the old dipe.
2. Ask him to touch his toes if he can, then use your free hand to wipe.
3. Place new diaper over the front of his body, push it through his legs, and then over his butt.
4.Secure tabs. Hike it up gently, then adjust tabs again if necessary.