As a parent, you may be asking yourself whether you’re doing everything you can to ensure your child’s positive growth. After all, no parent wants to make a mistake that would inhibit their child’s physical and mental health and development. This is especially true now when we’re dealing with a global health crisis that is COVID-19. The restrictions and rules that are being imposed to prevent the spread of the virus have impacted our daily routines in many ways, but they’ve been especially influential on our children’s mental health.
In times like these, it’s important that parents do everything in their power to keep kids on a healthy track. To help you out, we’re listing five effective tips for ensuring healthy emotional, mental, and physical growth of your child.
Make sure their diet is balanced
A big part of ensuring your child’s positive growth is making sure they’re eating a balanced diet. Both mental and physical health start on our plates, and what we put in our mouths impacts both the mind and the body. While healthy diet is a prerequisite for a healthy lifestyle, it’s even more important when it comes to children. Their brains and bodies are still developing, and they need a diet that’s abundant in nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
There was a study that examined the impact of gut microbiota on mental health. The results showed that individuals with diverse gut microbes were less likely to suffer from depression and anxiety. A balanced, nutrient-rich diet also helps boost the immune system – an essential component when it comes to combating the virus. To ensure your child’s eating healthy, focus on foods that stimulate human growth hormone (HGH). These include spinach, eggs, grains, oatmeal, fish products, as well as fresh fruits and vegetables.
Provide plenty of opportunities for physical activity
There’s no denying the vital role physical activity has in the child’s positive growth and development. Even light physical activity can have a positive effect on a child’s mental health as they grow older. But according to a study that measured physical activity of schoolchildren in Massachusetts, children are falling short of recommendations. Out of 453 children, only 15% met the recommended amount of physical activity of 60 minutes per day.
That said, not all is bleak. There are programs and franchise opportunities in Massachusetts that are designed around leadership and fitness and that could make a difference in the lives of youth and entire communities. By combining the elements of fun and exercise, these programs can significantly benefit children’s physical and mental health. They also provide a great opportunity to bond, play, and make friends – something that’s essential for elementary and middle schoolers.
Make sure they get a proper amount of sleep
A good sleeping pattern is an essential component of a healthy lifestyle. Not only does it have a direct impact on cognitive performance, but it can also affect children’s growth. According to a report by the National Sleep Foundation, children ages 3-5 need between 10-13 hours of sleep each night. For schoolchildren, that number is a bit lower – 9-11 hours, while teens need about 8-10 hours of sleep a day.
Anything lower than that could result in your child being at a higher risk of childhood obesity and sleep disorders. Kids who have trouble falling asleep could benefit from limiting screen time during the day and avoiding screens before bedtime.
Do your best to ensure a positive and healthy environment
Now that families are spending more time at home, ensuring a healthy and positive environment is more important than ever. Whether your child is a baby, a toddler, or a school-age child, try to ensure healthy, positive, and active interaction. Work with them on their communication skills, be responsive and caring, and give them opportunities to explore and learn. Focus on activities that encourage learning through play, keep your days structured, remain positive, and plan for one-on-one time.
By providing your child with an environment they can thrive in, you’ll manage to maintain balance and make it easier for yourself and your family to navigate this health crisis more effectively.
Set an example for your little one
Parents can only do so much to protect their little ones and ensure a happy, healthy, and safe childhood. There are so many other factors that may influence their physical and mental health and inhibit their growth. Factors like stress, exposure to drugs and alcohol, and various pressures from peers and social media all play a role in a child’s development.
While these factors may be out of your control as a parent, what you can do is set an example. Talk to your child about these different factors, and do your best to eliminate anything that can hamper their growth. That’s not to say that you should be a helicopter parent and watch their every move. It simply means teaching your child the right mindset so that they can make good decisions on their own.
Maintaining A Child’s Positive Growth
Raising a child is no easy feat, and it may seem even more challenging in the midst of a pandemic. But if you stick with the tips above and do your best to maintain a healthy, positive, and stimulating environment, you can rest assured you’ll be promoting a positive development and growth of your little one.
About The Author
Stephen Jones is a freelance writer and a new father. “Becoming a father for the first time is not easy, but it is so much happiness that complicated things are handled in the best way because the baby is the fruit of love and he brings great satisfaction.” Stephen enjoys writing about health, food, nutrition, and children’s health for other parents. “Freelance writing has always been my passion so I combined the two and hopes to be able to share my passion with others!”
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