Between potty training, tantrums, and sleep challenges, raising a toddler can be a difficult time. And sometimes the “Terrible Twos” turn into the “Terrible Threes and Fours.” We recently interviewed actress Ali Landry who is currently parenting with two toddlers in the house! While she says life with two little ones at home is just a “bit chaotic,” she advises all moms to “just breathe” and “be in the moment” with your kids. Kids In The House has gathered their best experts and advice to help you through these transitional years. Here is our advice on the four most talked about topics on raising toddlers!
Knowing when and how to potty train your toddler can be difficult because each child is different. For some, potty training can be easy and natural; however, for many toddlers it’s a hard transition for them to make. Neuropsychologist Peter Stavinoha says there is no “perfect age” to potty train your child, but that the average age is between 2 ½ to 3 years old. However, Stavinoha encourages parents to be active from a young age in teaching their kids about using the bathroom to help them be ready for it. This makes the transition much easier for both the parent and the child.
Crib To Bed
When a child starts to potty train, this is also a good time to start transitioning them to a bed. This is developmentally the time when children are starting to become more independent. Psychotherapist and sleep expert, Kim West, explains that many parents make the transition easier by having both the crib and the bed in the same room, and then slowly transitioning them to the bed and eventually taking the crib out entirely. West also encourages parents to monitor their child’s newfound freedom and to encourage their kids to stay in their beds. Be careful not to start any bad habits like sleeping in the room with them as these can be hard habits to break.
Once you start feeding your child more solid foods, you may begin to realize that you have a picky eater on your hands. Dietitian, Nicole Meadow, has seen this many times with families and it usually revolves around children refusing to eat fruits or vegetables. Meadow explains that the first thing to do is to make sure you are eating fruits and vegetables as a way to model to your children proper eating habits. The second thing to do is to involve them in the process of picking and cooking the food. Research shows that the more kids are involved in the process, the more likely they are to eat the food. Lastly, she encourages parents to give the same vegetable or fruit to a child for a week to two weeks. They may not eat it at first, but by the end of the week they will usually eat it.
Last but certainly not least, is the concern about dealing with toddler tantrums. Parent educator and author Betsy Brown Braun explains that there are biological dimensions to tantrums and that they are often a result of frustration with a little child trying to do big things. “Tantrums, once they begin, have to run their course, explains Braun. “If your child has begun to have a tantrum, the train has left the station.” She encourages parents to let the child calm down to a place where they can talk about what is wrong and you can work out with them how to solve the problem.
Since every child is different, you probably have questions about your own toddler. Join us on Thursday, April 30th at 12:30pm PT for “THE TERRIBLE TWOS: Helping Your Toddler Go From Terrible to Terrific.” We will be joined by parenting experts Vicki Hoefle, Mercedes Samudio, and Tina Louise-Balodi who will be answering your questions during a live Q&A discussion! Click here to RSVP and start asking your questions!
Do you have questions you want to ask our experts?
Join our #KITHangout “THE TERRIBLE TWOS: Helping Your Toddler Go From Terrible to Terrific” on Thursday, April 30th at 12:30pm PT! It's a Google Hangout hosted by Kids In The House with experts Vicki Hoefle, Mercedes Samudio and Tina Louise Balodi who will be answering your questions live. Start tweeting your questions with the hashtag #KITHangout!
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