Here are 5 things your toddler needs for a Healthy Growth:
1) Uninterrupted Sleep, baby wakes up when hungry, untidy or colicky. Breastfed babies rarely get cramps.
- A newborn baby sleeps for at least 20 hours in a day. Restrict the visitors, elder siblings and other relatives from Showering affection. Baby does not like it but is too polite to say; No' as it cannot express itself but feels being cranky for sure.
- The hours of sleep reduce a bit by every month. It does not mean that baby is growing to be unfriendly or shy of people.
- This is the way nature wants it to grow rapidly.
- Put a Do Not Disturb -the sleeping baby sign if need be.
2) Breastfeeding promotes healthy growth as outside infections through top feeds leading to gastric infections are not possible. If a top feed is needed, feed with a spoon.
- Say No to feeding bottles to promote the growth of toddler.
- Do not stop breastfeeding during gastric infections also.
- During summers ORS can be given as a supplement but breastfed babies do not get dehydrated unless exposed to sun /water loss by sweating.
- Some Quacks tell mothers to stop feeding during diarrhoea -IGNORE the advice and continue feeding. Rarely intravenous fluids are needed during this temporary phase but quacks do give I/V fluids to convince parents of gravity of the situation.
- Milk of mother gets reduced if given a break for 4-5 days while the toddler is receiving erratic treatments.
3) Teething has nothing to do with diarrhoea.
- The vague connection between the two is that at around 6 months toddler starts to crawl, picks up things from floor puts in the mouth as a reflex and gets infected.
- Do not Console yourself that it happens during teething. Baby can be irritable due to the pain of tooth erupting but gastric infections are not brought along with erupting teeth.
4) Some mothers give a full cream milk of buffalo, wishing for a 'fat' baby.
- Fats present in this rich milk are difficult to digest by the tiny liver, not yet matured enough and baby gets prone to gastric infections, leading to lower growth.
- Cow milk is the best alternative as a supplement to breast milk. Not even tinned fancy labelled milk can be a substitute for fresh milk of cow, sold in packets or got direct from dairy.
5) Get vaccinations done as scheduled.
- Do get the weight of baby checked and do compare with the charts /graphs available with the doctor.
Never compare your toddler with others, not even with own siblings. Each toddler has an Identity!