Spring 2016 Health Link Online

HealthLink Online

Uniting Children, Parents, Caregivers, and Health Professionals

Hitting children teaches them that it is acceptable to react violently when angry. It does not help them learn how to get what they need in a socially acceptable way. Children with challenging behaviors have a reason for their behavior. Finding out why the child is using the behavior opens opportunities to meet the child’s needs appropriately. Programs in Keystone STARS can ask their Regional Key for an early childhood mental health consultant at
https:/ /www.pakeys.org/ pages/ get.aspx?page=Programs_ECMH

Sometimes the child is expected to do something beyond the child’s level of development. In this situation, expectations should be lowered to a developmentally appropriate level. Some children use challenging behavior to seek attention that they are not getting for desired behavior. Some are temperamentally easily excited. They may misbehave when over stimulated. Closely observing children can reveal cues about when and why the child is misbehaving. Adults can use these cues to help the child solve problems.

A recently released position statement of the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly oppos- es striking a child for any reason. Children can be physically harmed by being hit.

Whenever an adult feels a need to strike a child, it is best to step back from the situation. Take a deep breath and get control of the feelings about the misbehavior. Give the child an opportunity to take a break from the situation too. The child is not “bad.” What the child was doing is a problem that needs to be solved.






  1. Which of these nutrients can you get from eating whole fruit, but is not usually in juice?
    1. Vitamins
    2. Minerals
    3. Fiber
    4. Sugar
  2. Which of these fruits is a souce of vitamin C?
    1. Pineapples
    2. Strawberries
    3. Oranges
    4. All of them
  3. Fruits are a source of which of the following?
    1. Folate
    2. Vitamin D
    3. Calcium
    4. Protein
  4. Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables as part of overall healthy diet may protect against certain types of cancer.
    1. True
    2. False
  5. Many Americans don't get enough of the nutrient potassium. Which of the following is a good fruit source of this mineral that is known to help regulate blood pressure?
    1. Dried apricots
    2. Bananas
    3. Orange Juice
    4. All of the above

Children are “growing up digital.” They need to learn to use only safe and healthy digital media. Parents and other caregivers should teach children these skills. The Council on Communications and Media of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) offers a list of tips to help parents and other caregivers guide children. The AAP gives permission to use all or some of the tips in print, acknowledging the AAP as the source.

  • Treat media as you would any other environment in the child's life. Set limits. Children need them. Know who are your children's friends, both online and off. Know what platforms, software, and apps your children are using. Know where they are going on the web. Watch closely when they are online.

  • Set limits on use of media and encourage playtime. Unstructured offline play stimulates creativity. Give priority to unplugged playtime every day. Join the children in play without media often.

  • Families who play together, learn together. In media activities, family participation encourages social interactions, bonding, and learning. If children play a video game, caregiving adults should play the game with them. Use the activity to teach and model good sportsmanship.

  • Be a good role model. Teach and model kindness and good manners during online activities. Limit your own media use. Make yourself available and connected with your children. Interact, hug and play with them instead of staring at a screen.

To prevent burns, follow the PA State Regulations about warming formula/milk. The regulations state bottled formula may not be heated in a microwave oven PA Regulation §3270.166(7). Hot water temperature in areas accessible to children may not exceed 110°F. PA Regulation §3270.69(b). Microwave heating creates hot spots in liquids and foods which can cause severe injury. Temperatures over 110°F. can be reached in crock pots and bottle warmers. Do not use these devices to warm infants’ bottles.

Infants’ bottles do not have to be warmed. Feeding bottles that are cold from the refrigerator is safe and healthy. Talk with parents about how feeding cold bottles is OK. If warming is desired, put the bottle in a bowl of warm tap water for no more than 5 minutes.

Early care and education providers are becoming more aware of their role in helping families prevent childhood obesity. Share these easy steps with families in your program:

5 or more fruits and vegetables daily. Farmer’s markets reopen in the spring. Spring produce is a great way to add new fruits and vegetables to meals and snacks. The more colorful your selections the better. Gently encourage children to try fruits and vegetables that are appropriate for their age. Offer praise when they do. Model good eating habits. Food should not be used as a reward or punishment.

2 hours or less of recreational screen time daily. Children younger than 2 years should not have any screen time. Children older than 2 years should have screen time limited to those programs which are developmentally appropriate. Be sure there is no violence, sexually explicit material, stereotyped material, or advertising. Make a family rule: no screen time during meals and snacks.