Information & Advice
It's easy to keep your child healthy, both mentally and physically, with these tips from wellbeing expert, Liz Tucker and Boots pharmacist, Angela Chalmers.
Health & Beauty Magazine Online Editor
Published March 2009
Children tend to act up when they are frustrated, explains wellbeing expert Liz Tucker. Incidents such as not doing as well in a test or arguing with friends can contribute towards children feeling down. ‘Get your child to realise their strengths, rather than emphasising on their weaknesses,’ suggests Liz. ‘Help them by working together to find realistic solutions to their problems.’
Parent tip: ‘I always say to my daughter that as long as she’s tried her best, it doesn’t really matter how she’s done. I wouldn’t want her to think that exams are the be-all and end-all,’ explains Martina, mum to Erin, 8 and Cameron, 18 months.
It’s not necessary to keep completely germ-free, but you can make sure your child is protected against most common bugs. ‘Teach your child the importance of washing their hands especially when they come in from school or when they’ve been to the toilet,’ advises Boots pharmacist, Angela Chalmers. By practising good hand-washing habits you can help protect your child from the spread of illnesses including colds, upset stomachs and eye infections.
Parent tip: ‘I use Palmolive Kids Liquid Hand Soap as the bright packaging encourages my daughter to keep her hands clean,’ says Anna, mum to Phoebe, 3.
‘Laughter is our body’s way of telling us that it is happy,’ says Liz. ‘We release endorphins, which make us physically and mentally healthy.’ Liz suggests making time each day to have a feel-good moment. ‘Remind yourself of all the positive things in your day and the things that make you smile,’ she adds.
Parent tip: ‘Dancing to her favourite CD always puts a smile on Olivia’s face,’ says Adam, dad to Olivia, 10.
‘It’s crucial your child gets a quality night’s sleep,’ says Liz. ‘Children who have a good night’s rest are likely to be perform better and less likely to have behavioural problems.’ Liz suggests getting your child into a routine to get them into a calm and relaxed state before bedtime. ‘Have set bedtimes and make sure your child and household are calm. This could be making sure the telly is off at a certain time and the house has quiet time.’
Parent tip: ‘I always make sure Thomas has a bubble bath and bedtime story. We use a night light so he doesn’t feel scared completely in the dark,’ says Paula, mum to Thomas, 6. Try In The Night Garden Night Light (available instore) which glows softly with a soothing light to ease your child to sleep.
‘Activity produces endorphins which act as a mood booster and helps to strengthen bones,’ adds Angela. Encourage your child to add activity to their daily routine by making exercise into a game.
Parent tip: ‘We count how many steps we take when we go to school or the park with a pedometer,’ says Kim, mum to Micah, 7. Take a look at Target Fitness Pedomini Pedometer (available instore).
Writer: Ese Odetah.
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