As parents, one of your top priorities is the safety and well-being of your children. With all the potential pitfalls of day-to-day life, however, navigating the risks can be difficult. Here’s great advice for parents on 5 key areas of concern for babies as they grow - read the full Medium article here.
Getting adequate sleep may seem impossible with a new addition to your family, but it is essential for managing stress and preparing for the day ahead. While there isn’t a magical formula for getting enough sleep, these strategies can help.
5 Ways for New Parents to Get More Sleep
(Family Features) Between feedings, changing diapers and household chores, sleep is often put on the back burner for new parents at the end of a busy day.
In fact, a survey of 2,000 parents, conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Mattress Firm, found the average parent loses one-third of his or her nightly sleep after a baby arrives, decreasing from an average of six hours per night to just four. The same study also found that nearly half (48 percent) of new parents said sleep loss is their biggest obstacle to overcome.
Getting adequate sleep may seem impossible with a new addition but it is essential for managing stress and preparing for the day ahead. While there isn’t a magical formula for getting enough sleep, these strategies can help:
Find time for rest
Establish a routine
Try soothing techniques
Choose the right mattress
Remember, the sleepless nights won’t last forever; the American Academy of Pediatrics notes almost all babies should be able to sleep through the night by 6 months of age. For more strategies for helping new parents sleep, visit DailyDoze.com and follow along on social media with #WorkHardSleepHarder.
Photo courtesy of Getty ImagesSOURCE:
For millions of school-age children in the United States, each day begins – and ends – with a bus ride. These tips provide parents with some additional measures to take and lessons to teach to increase safety going to and from the bus, and even during the ride.
School Bus Safety 101
(Family Features) For millions of school-age children in the United States, each day begins – and ends – with a bus ride. While the school bus is the safest way to travel to and from school, according to the National Association of Pupil Transportation (NAPT), it’s important for parents to teach their children how to stay safe in and around the school bus as obstructed views, distracted drivers and more can put kids at risk.
These tips from the experts at NAPT and the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) provide parents with some additional measures to take and lessons to teach to increase safety going to and from the bus, and even during the ride.
Before the Bus Arrives
On the Bus Ride
Leaving the Bus
For more information and additional school bus safety tips, visit BetterOurBuses.com.
An Alternate Form of Transportation
Many school districts are moving away from diesel buses in favor of buses powered by an alternate fuel, like propane, which offers numerous benefits for school districts and their students.
In fact, school buses powered by propane transport approximately 928,000 students to and from school every day at more than 840 public and private school districts in 48 states, according to a vehicle registration report compiled by PERC using IHS Polk new vehicle registration data.
“There’s a lot to like about propane school buses for community stakeholders and school officials, and school districts across the nation continue to take notice,” said Michael Taylor, PERC director of autogas business development. “Compared to other fuels, propane school buses are quieter and offer reduced emissions. Plus, they cost less for the district to operate, so schools can put more money back into the classroom where it helps students most.”
Start a discussion with your children’s school district about exploring a switch from diesel buses to cleaner alternatives by first downloading resources including fact sheets, videos, a toolkit and more at BetterOurBuses.com.
Photo Courtesy of Getty Images (Bus driver with girl, Two girls talking on bus)SOURCE:
Propane Education & Research Council
(BPT) - If you’re a parent, a big part of your job is making sure your children feel well. No matter how many times you wash their hands, sterilize their toys or keep a sparkling clean house, inevitably the germs will win. All parents know that taking care of a sick child can be a stressful experience that can leave you feeling helpless — especially when they have a cough that is keeping them up at night.
On top of that, if you’re trying to juggle a job, keep the house in order and get enough sleep yourself, the experience can feel overwhelming.
Emily Schuman, founder of the popular lifestyle parenting blog Cupcakes and Cashmere, has had more than her fair share of days spent taking care of her toddler when she is sick. The following are some of her best cough and cold remedies to help care for your little one when they’re sick.
1. Sleep is great medicine
Parents know that a sleepy child is a crabby child. Just as sleep is vital for a child’s mood, it is also a crucial step in combating coughs and colds. Naps and early bedtimes should be a priority. To help your sick child sleep better and longer, you might have to give them more cuddles than usual!
2. Reduce their coughing
One of the worst parts of taking care of a sick child is hearing them cough, which is also uncomfortable for the child. In fact, a recent Vicks VapoRub survey* found that nearly all (94 percent) moms say coughing from being sick makes sleeping difficult for their child, and 92 percent say finding symptom relief to improve their child’s sleep is top priority. Fortunately, Vicks VapoRub, a cough remedy moms have used for over 100 years, is safe, effective, has long-lasting vapors and is fast-acting for children ages 2 years and up. When applied on the chest or throat, the medicated vapors in Vicks VapoRub last up to eight hours, to help quiet the cough, which in turn helps moms and their children sleep better and get the rest they need.
3. Bring out the humidifier
With winter comes dry air, and when you add in central heating, the air is even dryer. This is particularly uncomfortable when you have a cold or cough. Placing a humidifier near your child’s bed can do wonders as far as allowing them to breathe more comfortably and sleep better.
4. Feed them nutrient-rich foods
When you’re sick, it’s easy to gravitate toward comfort food like mac and cheese or sweets. But it is important to make sure your child gets plenty of nutrients from food like fresh fruits and veggies. Soups and smoothies are perfect ways to get your little ones to eat these foods.
5. Provide them with activities and distractions
Being sick is not fun, and not just because your child feels lousy. They’re also cooped up, bored and incredibly restless. Make sure you have plenty of rainy-day activities, like coloring books and special toys, ready for them. If they feel up to it, encourage them to make a fort out of the couch cushions. It’s also the perfect time to let them have extra screen time.
It’s hard to have a sick child at home, but getting ample sleep, having Vicks VapoRub on hand, using a humidifier, eating well and being prepped with some creative distractions can go a long way toward comforting your child and making things easier for the entire household. And remember as stressful as it can be caring for a sick child, nearly nine in ten (87 percent) moms say it can be a bonding experience.*
* This content is based on an online survey conducted by Kelton in October 2017 among a sample of 1,016 American mothers with children between the ages of 2 and 17.
Families are seemingly always on the go. From soccer games and school trips to excursions with friends and vacations with the family, people are constantly on the move, exploring new places and experiencing new things. As exciting as these new opportunities can be, it’s equally as important to make sure families – and kids – stay safe and protected at home and on the go.
Tips for Family Safety
How to keep your busy, adventurous family safe
(Family Features) Families are seemingly always on the go. From soccer games and school trips to excursions with friends and vacations with the family, people are constantly on the move, exploring new places and experiencing new things.
AROUND THE HOUSE
Know your neighbors
Help in an instant
AWAY FROM HOME
Tools to take on the road
Advanced Navigation: While built-in navigation systems in cars may just seem like an added convenience, they are also a key safety feature. Navigation systems offer easy access to directions and points of interest on the road, which can help eliminate distractions and reduce the possibility of accidents. Features like voice control can make navigation hands-free and allow you to concentrate on the road.
Smartphone Crash Detection: Today, the technology in your pocket is often more advanced than the cars you drive or ride in. Apps like Sfara Guardian can detect a car crash or incident and dispatch help. Because the technology is on the phone, it works whether you are the driver or passenger and in your car or someone else’s. Roadside assistance has a modern twist, too. If you need help with a flat or a tow, you can request service on your app and map the driver in real-time as he or she heads your way.
Lock Controls: In some vehicles, an adjustable setting allows you to control which car doors unlock depending on which door you open first or how many times you press the unlock button. This feature can allow a driver to safely enter the car on the driver’s side without unlocking other doors and potentially giving access to an intruder. Similar controls can keep mischievous kids from pushing buttons in the back and unlocking or opening rear doors or windows without your knowledge.
Photos courtesy of Getty ImagesSOURCE:
While school safety is of the utmost importance to parents, millions of school-age children begin and end their days with a bus ride. These tips can help provide some measures for parents to help increase safety going to and from the bus and during the ride.
Bus safety tips for back-to-school
(Family Features) While school safety is of the utmost importance to parents, millions of school-age children begin and end their days with a bus ride. To provide some measures for parents to help increase safety going to and from the bus and during the ride, the National Association for Pupil Transportation offers these tips.
Before the Bus Arrives
On the Bus Ride
Leaving the Bus
Discuss the Bus
Join the discussion (or start one) on school districts exploring a switch from diesel buses to cleaner alternatives by downloading resources including fact sheets, videos and more at BetterOurBuses.com.
A Safe Transportation Option
Beyond teaching safety precautions around the bus, there is another option to ensure kids are transported safely to and from school each day. Many school districts are moving away from noisy, pollution-inducing and expensive diesel buses in favor of buses powered by an alternate fuel, like propane, which offers numerous benefits for school districts and their students.
Safety: Jenna Bush Hager, a teacher, author, journalist and parent of two, has partnered with the Propane Education & Research Council to educate parents and school districts about the benefits of propane school buses.
School buses powered by propane offer numerous safety advantages. Propane school buses are quieter than diesel buses when operating, making it easier for drivers to hear both inside and outside the bus. This can have a direct impact on student behavior, and many districts have reported fewer disciplinary issues as a result. An interactive audio quiz detailing the difference between the types of buses can be found at QuieterSchoolBuses.com.
“As a former teacher, I know parents often overlook how the ride to and from school can impact a child’s performance in the classroom,” Hager said. “A child’s attitude or behavior before they arrive at school can set the tone for the whole day.”
In addition, these buses meet rigorous U.S. Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards and each is equipped with an automatic shut-off feature that prevents fuel flow to the engine when not running.
Another safety consideration is the health implications of older diesel buses. The shorter height of younger students can put them face-to-face with a black cloud of diesel smoke every school day. With propane buses, however, students aren’t exposed to the harmful particulate matter in diesel exhaust, which is known to aggravate asthma and has been identified by the World Health Organization as a carcinogen. However, “low-NOx” propane engines are 75 percent cleaner than current federal emissions standards require.
Savings: Not only is propane consistently less expensive than diesel fuel, the buses themselves don’t require the same expensive repairs and replacement parts that today’s modern diesel buses demand. Saving money on transportation costs puts schools in a better position to appropriate budget toward meeting students’ needs in the classroom and other areas, such as fine arts and athletic programs.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Child hugging mother, two students on bus)SOURCE:
Propane Education & Research Council
The leisurely days of summer are over and it's time to re-establish healthy habits and back-to-school routines. In addition to dental checkups and annual physicals, pediatric medical specialists recommend adding a scoliosis screening to back-to-school checklists.
Back-to-School Health Check
Before school is the perfect time to screen for scoliosis
(Family Features) The leisurely days of summer are over and it's time to re-establish healthy habits and back-to-school routines. In addition to dental checkups and annual physicals, pediatric medical specialists recommend adding a scoliosis screening to back-to-school checklists.
Scoliosis, a musculoskeletal disorder that causes an abnormal curvature of the spine or backbone (sometimes resembling an "S" or "C"), is the most common deformity of the spine, affecting an estimated 6-9 million people in the United States.
Certain conditions can cause scoliosis, including muscle diseases, birth defects or injuries, but the most common scoliosis is idiopathic, which means the cause is unknown. Scoliosis is most commonly diagnosed between 10-15 years of age, during periods of rapid growth. Although 10 percent of adolescents may have the condition, not all will need care.
"Because most causes are unknown, early detection through routine screenings is key to providing the best possible outcome," said Amer Samdani, M.D., chief of surgery for Shriners Hospitals for Children® — Philadelphia.
Signs of scoliosis
Children and teens with scoliosis rarely exhibit symptoms and sometimes the condition is not obvious until the curvature of the spine becomes severe. In some cases, your child's spine may appear crooked or his or her ribs may protrude. Some other markers to watch for in a child who has scoliosis are:
• Clothes not fitting correctly or hems not hanging evenly
Treatment of scoliosis
"Some cases will just need to be watched; others will need physical therapy, bracing or surgical procedures to stop the curve from progressing," he said. "At Shriners Hospitals, we offer the whole spectrum of treatments under one roof, all working together to get the best possible outcome for each child. We also treat children regardless of the families' ability to pay, so that often provides a huge relief to parents."
For more information on scoliosis screenings, care and treatment, visit straighttalkonscoliosis.org.
Within a week of being diagnosed, Katie traveled to Shriners Hospitals for Children — Greenville, where she began treatment for an "S" curvature of her spine and was given a 98 percent chance of needing surgery. She was fitted for a brace, which she wore 20 hours a day and only took off for swim practice and bathing. Now on her fourth brace, she has been removed from the surgical list and hopes to continue to avoid surgery as she goes through her adolescent growth spurts; which for many scoliosis patients, can send their curves into fast-forward.
Early detection gave Katie a wider range of options for the treatment of her scoliosis. The strength of her core and daily stretching from swimming has helped manage and lower her double curves.
App Helps Parents Detect Signs of Scoliosis
To be used as an initial at-home check, the app can detect abnormal curves when the phone is moved along a child's spine and determine if a follow-up visit with a doctor is necessary to confirm a potential diagnosis. If your child has scoliosis or any other orthopaedic condition, Shriners Hospitals for Children has 20 locations in the United States, Mexico and Canada that provide expert care.
Photos courtesy of Getty Images (School bus and doctor check-up)SOURCE:
Shriners Hospitals for Children
Interested in Publishing on The Parenting IDEA?
Send your query to the Publisher today!