Cute baby being stimulated by learning to walk

Ensuring that your kids are entertained and maintaining hygiene levels for the sake of their
health can be a tall order on an average day. Add a pandemic into the mix, and it can be a
strain on your sanity and your resolve.

Here is a comprehensive guide to help you outlast the strains of being at home and worrying about your precious little ones physical, mental and emotional wellbeing.

Help them to learn

Work has been thrown into chaos with many people working from home while caring for
their babies, toddlers and small children full-time. Making sure the babies and toddlers are stimulated can be tough, but there are a few ways you can make a difference. Use toys that have a dual function, both entertaining and educational. Sensory toys for small babies are great, or toys that require fine motor skills for toddlers will help to ensure they are not only entertained but also stimulated.

Keep them socialised

Social stimulation is an essential feature of growth and development. In times when people
are social distancing and isolating themselves in their homes, social development can fall by the wayside. To get your little one’s socialised, start with members of the family inside the home – mom, dad, grandparents and siblings. Encourage your baby to engage with the members of your family as much as possible to help them develop early social skills. Use eye contact, smiling, singing and talking to form the basis of communication. Play games like peek-a-boo and copying to foster turn-taking and encourage small babies and toddlers to share with different members of the family wherever possible.

Practice good hygiene habits

From basic handwashing to a daily hygiene routine, it’s important to create a ‘new normal’ for staying germ-free. Your baby’s health is the number one priority, and in the face of a
pandemic, it all starts with good hygiene habits. Regular handwashing with soap and water
is the first step – a gentle baby wash or moisturising cream bar is the perfect mild choice for young skin. You can also opt for hypoallergenic and sensitive skin products for everything from hand washing to bath time to help protect delicate skin.

Get outdoors

This can be a challenge, especially if you are living in a high-density space like a flat or an
apartment. Getting into the garden or park or simply going for a walk will do wonders for
your little one. A new environment is an excellent way for them to learn about what the
world has to offer. Babywearing or putting your little one into a stroller is ideal for
controlling how much they are exposed to their surroundings while ensuring they get a bit of fresh air and a new view of the world.

Use the time for bonding

It can be difficult to see the silver lining of a global health crisis, but if you look a little
deeper, you will see that there are actually plenty of perks. For starters, many people are
getting the opportunity to spend more time with their loved ones, especially their small
children, adding to the vital process of bonding. Bonding with baby is a special way to foster attachment and connect, which is integral in your little one’s growth and development. Use baby bathing, skin to skin and even reading a bedtime story to really foster bonding and make the most of the extra time that you have.

Parenting can be a challenge in the most ideal of circumstances, so it’s no surprise that the advent of the pandemic has caused uncertainty when it comes to raising little ones. There is no one size fits all manual for parenting because each situation has its own set of
circumstances. Use these tips to help guide your own personal way of doing things and
remember there are no perfect parents, only real ones.