They’re known as the terrible twos for a reason. At this age, children are cute, but they become monsters, and parents dread having to deal with the stubbornness, attitude, and independence that comes along with it. However, while the terrible twos will likely happen to every child, there are a few things all parents can do before their child’s second birthday in order to maybe calm this year down a bit. Check out these six things to do before your child’s second birthday in order to keep you sane.
- Create a bedtime routine.
Bedtime is always a struggle for children of all ages, and while your child will always tend to want a sip of water or have to go to the bathroom only moments after you put them to bed, having a routine can make it a little more manageable. With a bedtime routine, you can get your child to do certain tasks, such as brush his or her teeth, read a book, pray, or anything else you’d like your child to do to unwind. Plus, by giving your child a little independence, such as picking out their own pajamas, you can make this event more exciting for your child in the long run. Set the routine as early as you can with your child before his or her second birthday in order to make bedtime a little more peaceful.
- Take them to the dentist.
Most parents don’t think about the dentist until your child is of school age, but that’s no longer the case. According to 44 West Dental, “Bringing children in to see the dentist around their first birthday has become more of the norm. It allows dentists to have a better view of the child’s oral health and makes the child more comfortable with oral care.” If you have yet to schedule a dental appointment for your child, now is the time to do it. Be sure to talk with your child about what will happen at the dentist beforehand too to help them become comfortable.
- Establish quiet time.
Two-year-old’s can be wild, but it’s very important to establish quiet time with your child as early as possible. Choose a certain amount of time, such as a half hour or so, and have your child do something quietly, such as read a book, color, or do puzzles. This allows your child to do something that calms them down a bit and gets them to find ways to entertain themselves. In addition, it gives you a little bit of time every day to enjoy some peace and quiet.
- Give a little freedom.
As your child becomes older, he or she will want to do most things themselves. For parents, this usually means temper-tantrums. However, there are ways to go about this in a good way by giving your child a little freedom. For instance, allow your child to pick out his or her own outfit, but do so by picking out 2 or 3 outfits and then having them select which one they want. This way, they still have a choice, but the end result will be theirs. Use this “choice” rule with everything, from deciding what to eat to which toy to play with. Doing this will help reduce temper tantrums as your child gets older.
Reading is an important skill your child will need to learn, and reading to your child at an early age has plenty of benefits, such as cognitive development and enhanced oral skills. Make time to read to your child often, whether it’s during the day or before bed. When you read, be sure to talk with your child about the story he or she read. This will also help with development and it can help your child have better reading comprehension skills as they get older.
- Make noise during nap time.
You have a life to lead, which means you have things to do, so when your child is napping, it’s optimal time to clean the house, do some laundry, or get some work done. However, if your child is used to complete quiet when sleeping, it will create more chaos, especially as they get older. When your child naps, be sure to have music or a white noise machine playing so your child doesn’t become easily rattled by sound.
Being a parent to a two-year-old can be stressful, but when you do these six things before your child’s second birthday, you’ll keep your sanity.