Updated: Friday, 15 Feb 2013, 9:20 AM EST
Published : Thursday, 14 Feb 2013, 7:00 PM EST
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - Dr. James Fahner, Division Chief or Pediatric Hematology and
1. Use plenty of positive words with your child. Try to avoid using sarcasm. Children generally don't understand it and if they do, it can create a negative interaction.
2. Respond promptly and lovingly to your child's physical and emotional needs. Banish put-downs from your parenting vocabulary and listen to your child when he or she needs you.
3. Make an extra effort to set a good example at home and in public. Use words like, "I'm sorry," "please" and "thank you."
4. When your child is angry or in a bad mood, give him a hug, cuddle, pat or give other affection and then talk to him when he's feeling better.
5. Use non-violent forms of discipline. Parents should institute both rewards and restrictions to help prevent trouble during the teenage years. Allowing children of any age to constantly break rules without being disciplined only encourages more rule violations.
6. Make plans to spend time alone with your younger child or teen doing something he or she enjoys. Send a Valentine's Day card to your kids or make cards together.
7. Owning a pet can make children feel better by stimulating physical activity and offering a constant companion.
8. One of the best ways to familiarize your child with good food choices is to encourage him or her to cook with you. Get your kids involved in the process and then eat the meal together as a family.
9. As your child grows up, he or she will spend most of their time developing and refining skills and abilities in all areas of their life. Give your child lots of encouragement!
10. Your child's health depends on the care and guidance that you offer during the early years. Take your child to the doctor regularly for preventative health care visits.
11. Put family game nights on the calendar so the entire family can do something together.
12. Help your child foster positive relationships with friends, siblings or other community members.
13. One of the most important gifts you can give as a parent is to help your child develop self-esteem. Your child needs steady support and encouragement to discover strengths.
14. Don't forget to say "I love you" to your child no matter how old they are.
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