From Make me understand, parenting and health by Lukonge Achilees

Infant development. How your baby grew and matures

Introduction

This part covers parenting and child development of infants aged 0 to 2

The goals of this chapter is to survey what is known about how children develop between birth and age 24 months, a period known as infancy.

Children develop in many different ways at the same time. Different aspects of children’s development are never at rest or waiting for other parts to catch up. Instead, development is simultaneous. While physical growth and maturity are the most obvious signs that development is occurring, children also develop cognitively (mentally), socially, emotionally, and sexually. This chapter is organized so that each type of development is described separately and nothing important is left out.

The milestones of development are discussed in terms of easy to understand

measurements such as weight, height, or the presence or absence of reflexes. However, not all important aspects of development can be easily measured. Mental and emotional developments are difficult to measure directly. This describes the best available theories to understand what is occurring inside each child’s head.

The works of five theorists work are considered in the course of this book: Freud, Erikson, Kohlberg, Piaget, and Bronfenbrenner. Among these theorists, the works of Piaget and Erikson speak most directly to the infancy period of life covered here. Infancy corresponds to Piaget’s “Sensorimotor” stage of cognitive development, and to two of Erikson’s stages; the “trust vs. mistrust” stage during the first year of life, and the “autonomy vs. shame and doubt” stage that follows closely after. Piaget’s work describes how infants come to understand their world through their bodies and senses.

Erikson’s work describes how children develop an appreciation of both their individuality and simultaneous dependency on others, and how children’s attitudes towards themselves and others are influenced by their experiences and by the type of support and nurturing they receive.

Development is often described by referring to particular developmental milestones that are significant achievements of one sort or another such as crawling, walking, or first words. Developmental milestones are presented as occurring at particular ages. Even though developmental milestones do commonly occur at particular ages, children develop at their own pace. Some children will reach a given milestone early, while others will reach it later on. All of this is perfectly normal.

Infancy Physical development:

Baby Wasswa one of the twin from a homeless teenage mother being catered for at PTMOF

The first area of development to consider is physical development, which occurs in several important ways. Obviously, children grow in size and weight. As time goes on, they also become better able to move themselves around and to manipulate objects. Their senses become more refined. Each of these important types of physical development is covered in the following discussion.

Physical Development: Sensory Development

Piaget made infancy his “Sensorimotor” stage because he recognized that infants learn about their world by interacting with it through their senses. They don’t understand their environment very well at first, but are born exquisitely prepared to explore and learn. They learn how to make purposeful movements, how to make sense of things, how to speak, and how to perform other skills. All of these developments require babies to use all their senses: touch, taste, smell, hearing, and sight.

Babies can feel and respond to pain and touch from birth, and this is an important first connection between infants and caregivers. They can feel hot and cold, hunger and satisfaction, soft and rough textures, pain and comfort, and cuddling and abandonment. This is why babies can often be soothed at birth by their caregivers’ warm hugs or a warm bottle.

As infants grow, they begin to touch objects in their environment with their hands, feet, and mouths to learn about them. When babies put toys and other things in their mouths, they are not trying to taste them as much as they are trying to feel the texture and structure. It is important for caregivers to keep babies’ environments clear of dangerous objects such as small objects or poisonous substances.

While babies learn about their environment through feeling things with their mouths, they also learn by tasting. The senses of taste and smell senses are intertwined. When infants are born, they have the ability to distinguish sweet, sour, and bitter tastes, but they will prefer sweet tastes and aromas, such as breast milk. In fact, a baby’s ability to taste is so specific that he or she can tell the difference between her own mothers’ breast milk and that of another woman. As babies start to get older, between ages 1 and 6 months, they begin to have a taste for saltier solutions. This will prepare them to eat solid foods later on. When babies begin to eat solid foods, somewhere around 6 months, they will prefer sweet foods to bitter foods, and fruits to vegetables. As more and more foods are added over the coming weeks, they will begin to develop their own individual taste preferences.

Babies can hear at birth, and doctors can test infants for hearing problems right after birth. As infants grow, their mental ability to process and use information they hear improves. At birth, babies will turn their heads toward sounds in their environment. Research has also shown that babies prefer more complex sounds, such as speech and music, to simple tonal sounds. Furthermore, babies can even begin to distinguish different speech sounds soon after leaving the womb. As babies begin to mature, between ages 1 and 6 months, they are able to locate where sounds come from in their environment and to compile sounds into more complex chunks, such as musical phrases. By age 6 months, babies begin sorting out speech sounds from their own language and ignoring speech sounds that they recognize as not from their own language.

While some senses are fully developed at birth, others require time to mature before they become refined. Unlike their abilities to smell or hear, babies are not able to see as well as adults do. They develop their acuity, color perception, and ability to focus as they mature in the first months. At birth, visual acuity is only 20/600, which means that most objects farther away only look like dark shadowy objects. Newborns can best see objects and faces that are held 8 to 14 inches from their face, which is about how far away a caregiver’s face is when holding a baby. Babies’ eyes develop

Quickly, and by age 2 or 3 months they have the ability to see a full spectrum, or range, of colors and can focus on objects just like adults.

At this point, they can also recognize their caregiver’s face and can tell the difference between other people’s faces. By about 6 to 8 months, they develop the visual acuity of that of adults, about 20/20, and can track or follow objects in their line of sight with increasing accuracy. By about 9 months, they also develop depth perception, or the ability to see and understand that different objects are different distances away. They will be able to understand that they are sitting on a couch and will have to climb down to reach the floor.

Babies are not simply passive consumers of sensory information. They actively make sense of the information they take in through their senses. This process has an actual effect on the quality of their brain development. Babies that are properly stimulated, cared for, and loved actually develop better (faster, more robustly, etc.) than babies who are neglected. Babies’ senses can be stimulated in many ways: listening to caregivers speaking, looking at different objects and colors, and playing with toys that have different textures. Babies literally need touch and affection from caregivers in order to grow and to thrive properly. Babies who do not receive appropriate touch and affection may ultimately have developmental problems.

Infancy physical development. Motor skills

Namatovu zaam ahomeless Mother delivered twins one named Miracle and another Blessing

Infants need to learn how to move and to use their bodies to perform various tasks, a process better known as motor development. Initially, babies’ movements are simply the uncontrolled, reflexive movements they are born with. Over time, they learn to move their body parts voluntarily to perform both gross (large) and fine (small) motor skills. In general, babies begin developing motor skills from the center of the body outward and from head to tail. They learn to control their head and neck before they learn to maneuver their arms; they learn to maneuver their arms before they learn to manipulate their fingers. Babies learn to move their torso before they learn how to move their arms and legs.

As babies learn skills and tasks, they will build new skills on top of old skills. It is important to remember that each child is unique. There is a general sequence of milestones or developmental markers that children achieve, but each child will progress through them at different rates, ages, and sequences. This chapter will often list ages at which children reach certain milestones. It’s important to remember that these are only estimates; children attain or achieve them at a wide and healthy range of ages.

When babies are born, they are equipped with a set of reflexes, or automatic actions. Some reflexes help them perform basic tasks, such as breathing freely and drinking milk, while other reflexes seem to have no real purpose. All of these reflexes can help doctors assess babies for any neurological problems at birth and as they grow. As infants mature in the first few months of life and begin developing the ability to voluntarily move and use their bodies, most of these reflexes gradually and naturally fade away. This chapter will review seven of the most prominent reflexes babies have: sucking, head turning, rooting, grasping, stepping, Moro response, and tonic neck.

The sucking reflex allows babies to drink milk and nourish themselves in the first days of life. This is a permanent ability, but as babies grow, they can control when they drink. Another permanent and life-supporting reflex is head turning. This reflex allows a baby to turn his head if something (a blanket, pillow, or stuffed animal) is blocking his airflow. Another reflex that also helps babies survive is the rooting reflex. When babies root, they may nuzzle their face and mouth into the caregiver’s chest or shoulder. This may help them find a food source, such as their mother’s breast; this helps the baby communicate to caregivers that they are hungry and ready to eat. Rooting disappears around 3 weeks of age.

The rest of the reflexes have less survival value but are still notable. For the first 3 to 4 months, babies have an amazing grasping ability and reflex. They will grasp anything placed in their palm and hold it with amazing strength for their size; some infants in the first weeks of life can support their entire body weight through that grasp. While this reflex may not have any survival function in modern times, it does help babies bond with caregivers and family in the first weeks of life. Similarly, for the first two months, babies will “step” with their legs if they are held vertically with their feet touching a surface. Even though this reflex disappears months before babies begin walking purposefully, experts believe stepping helps infants learn how their legs work and can be used. The Moro response is another reflex that is present during the first 6 months of life, but doesn’t seem to have a purpose in modern life.

A baby will arch her back, flail out, and then curl up if she feels as though she is being dropped. The final reflex this chapter will mention is the tonic neck. During the first 4 months, when babies lie awake on their backs with their heads facing to one side, they will extend the arm on the side of their body that they’re facing and flex the other arm at an angle, in a position that resembles a fencing pose. This reflex may help prepare them for voluntary reaching later in their development.

Infancy physical development. Gross motor skills

Baby senses learn to interact with the environment, learn to crawl, and walk

Infant reflexes begin to fade as babies use their senses to learn to interact with the environment around them and as their bodies grow stronger and mature. One way babies learn to use their bodies is by learning to achieve large physical tasks, or gross motor skills, such as crawling and walking. Once again, it’s important to remember that while the following chapter will discuss gross motor development milestones in general terms, every child is unique. Children will develop at their own speed and pace, and there is a wide range of healthy ages at which they can achieve these milestones. Milestones help organize and summarize this information easily and clearly.

Scientists have observed that motor skills generally develop from the center of the body outward and from head to tail. These developments don’t just occur by instinct. The more chances babies have to practice these skills, the more they will be able to grow and strengthen. This means babies need time and space to explore and manipulate objects in their environment and use their muscles, having “tummy time.” Caregivers can place babies on their belly on the floor so they have an opportunity to use those muscles. By around age 2 months, infants’ backs continue to strengthen, and they are able to raise their head and chest up off the ground and rest their body on their elbows when they’re lying on their stomachs. Around this time, they will also kick and bend their legs while lying on their stomachs; this helps prepare babies for crawling later. By around 3 months, babies continue to mature as they can hold themselves up for longer periods, up to several minutes, and begin to hold their bodies in symmetry. That means that the tonic neck reflex disappears, and they are able to hold each arm in the same position on both sides of their body while on their backs.

Babies continue to strengthen their muscles and improve control of their body parts as they grow. Around age 4 months, they can maintain control of their head and hold it steady while they’re sitting up with help or lying on their belly. They begin to roll their body from their belly to their back on their own. About a month later, they will then be able to roll from their back to their belly. Also around age 5 months, babies will wiggle all their limbs while they lie on their belly; this strengthens their crawling muscles. As with all physical development, skills build one on top of another. Around age 6 months, most infants can sit up by themselves for brief periods and can begin to put some weight on their legs as they’re held upright with some support.

As babies enter the second half of their first year, they become more mobile and can move themselves around their environment on their own. Caregivers need to be prepared to be more active as they follow the babies and to baby proof ( Babyproofing )their home so that dangerous situations and substances can be avoided. Babies are eager to explore

their newly expanded environment. Babies may begin to crawl around age 7 months. At around 8 months, babies can sit up by themselves for extended periods and can pull themselves to their feet while they hold onto something for leverage and support, such as a table or the edge of a couch. By the next month, age 9 months, babies can not only sit independently for a long time, but also reach and play with toys while maintaining their balance. At this time, babies can pull themselves up into a stand without support. This is a critical time for exercising these muscle groups. The use of baby walkers, or devices that hold babies upright while they move their legs to move around, can delay this process. Research has found that the use of these devices prevents babies from developing the core torso strength necessary for walking (before developing leg strength), which can then lead to difficulty walking or running in the future. For this reason, walkers and other similar devices should not be used.

Babies continue to build on their physical abilities, and around age 10 months, they can stand on their own for extended periods. They are making progress toward walking, picking up and putting down their feet while they stand. They may make their first hesitant steps as they walk while holding onto something such as a crib rail. The ability to walk improves as infants walk while holding onto caregivers’ hands around age 11 months, and begin making their own first toddling steps around age 12 months.

In the second year of life, toddlers continue to become more mobile and more agile. Around age 15 months, babies begin to climb stairs, high chairs, and furniture, but they will not yet be able to get back down once they reach the top. They begin to transition more smoothly from one position to another, such as from lying down to sitting up and from sitting up to standing up. By age 18 months, toddlers’ balance becomes more stable as they can move more easily on their feet around objects and begin walking backwards, sideways, in circles, and even running. At this point, they can also begin walking up stairs using their feet and using their hands to hold onto a handrail.

Near the end of their second year, toddlers begin to develop complex gross motor skills such as throwing objects for distance and kicking. They continue to refine and to become more fluid in their movements. Their walking and running gaits become more natural and mature and less toddler-like as their feet turn inward while they move. By age 24 months, they can jump in place and balance on one foot for a short period and may begin peddling their first tricycle. They can go up stairs easily on their own, even though they may need some help climbing back down. At the end of the second year, toddlers are very mobile and can run and walk quickly from one place to another; however, they are still refining their ability to stop themselves once they get started. Around this time, they may run into a few walls or unintentionally walk into a dangerous situation, such as off the sidewalk curb and into the street, simply because their brain can’t get the message to their feet fast enough to stop moving. It’s even more important at this time that caregivers monitor their environment for safety and urge rules such as holding an adult’s hand while crossing the street. Babyproofing

Infancy physical development. Fine motor skills

stages of development in infant from birth to 2 years

Fine motor skills develop along side gross motor skills. Beyond just learning how to use and manipulate their bodies in large movements, babies are learning how to use their hands and how to coordinate smaller movements with their senses, such as sight. Like the gross motor skill development, fine motor development comes gradually as infants build one skill on top of previous skills.

Like others before it, this chapter will discusses development in terms of age-related milestones. Once again, it is important to remember that children are unique and grow at their own rate and speed. There is a wide range of healthy ages at which babies can acquire these abilities. Theoretically, babies could develop ahead of the average on their gross motor skills and behind average with their fine motor skills, or babies could develop one milestone later than average but develop the next milestone before the average age. The important thing to gather from this chapter is the general pattern children follow as their bodies and minds mature, so you are best prepared to give adequate support and nurturing.

From birth to around 2 months, babies are “pre-reaching.” They will extend their arm and hand toward an object that interests them, but they will rarely be able to make hand contact with that object. It’s important to remember that in those two early months, baby’s vision is beginning to develop the acuity and focus needed to grab an object they see. As their eyesight matures, babies can reach with more accuracy and make contact with objects, usually around age 3 months. Between the ages of 3 and 4 months, babies begin holding objects between their palm and their enclosed fingers in a clumsy ulnar grasp. By age 4 months, they will want to practice that hold, and will reach for anything in their line of sight. In another month or so, babies will be able to transfer objects from one hand to the other, as they are now able to sit up and play.

It’s important to remember that at this age, 5 months, babies are able to handle and pick up larger objects, but they will still only be able to touch and scratch at smaller objects such as a Cheerio. By around age 6 months, babies are refining their ability to manipulate objects as they learn by using their hands and mouths.

In the second half of the first year, babies continue to mature in their ability to use their hands and can manipulate even smaller objects. Around age 7 months, they can grasp pellet-sized objects crudely between their thumbs and the side of their forefingers, and between ages 7 to 9 months, most babies can pick up and drink from a cup. By around age 9 months, babies refine their ability to grasp tiny objects as they hold them between their thumb and forefinger in a pincer grasp. Another refinement around age 9 months is that babies can now set down larger objects gently where they want to place them rather than just flinging them down when they’re finished with them. Furthermore, by around age 10 or 11 months, they can also place smaller pellet-sized objects, like bite-sized cereal, where they want to, such as in a bowl or cup. By age 12 months, babies can now use their hands independently of one another in play. This will enable them to manipulate tools in the next year.

In the second year of life, toddlers begin using their hands for more tasks than just playing with toys and eating. By around age 15 months, toddlers begin to use tools such as cups, spoons, and crayons. They can begin feeding themselves with utensils. They can also open cabinets and drawers, so parents need to be sure that their homes are baby proofed in ways such as putting hazardous chemicals and cleaning supplies in high cabinets and putting locks on cabinets and drawers that are not safe for young children ( Babyproofing ). At this age, they can also turn pages in a book and build towers of 2 to 3 large blocks. By 18 months, toddlers are refining their ability to use tools such as crayons, and they can now draw lines and rough circles rather than just scribbling on a page. By age 21 months, they also have the ability to undress themselves and help dress themselves, as they may be able to manipulate larger buttons or zippers. By age 24 months, toddlers can use their hands with more dexterity as they can unwrap birthday presents or do simple puzzles. Their fine motor skills will continue to improve in the coming years.

Infancy physical development. Average growth

Kids children engaged in art and craft with pencils and paper learning and education concept

Babies grow at an amazing rate in the first months and years of life as they rapidly reproduce cells and grow in length and weight. In the first 2 years, babies grow to almost half their adult height and can quadruple their birth weight. During this period, it’s important for caregivers to take their infants to the pediatrician for well-baby checkups (during which they will be weighed and measured) on a regular schedule to make sure they are growing at the appropriate rate. During the first year, babies will continue to increase their level of body fat. This “baby fat” allows a baby to maintain their body temperature. As babies grow in size and begin to build muscle, this baby fat will begin to disappear.

In the first two years of life, a growing child’s bodily proportions also change. When infants are born, most of their body mass is in their head. As they grow older, the rest of their bodies catch up.

Just as they develop their motor skills from the center of the body outward and from their head to their feet, they also grow and gain mass in that order. Babies grow first in their chest and trunk and then in their arms and legs. Over the first year of life, babies’ bones and skeletons ossify, or harden. When babies are born, their bones are softer and more like cartilage. This allows them to be flexible, fit inside the mother’s womb, and pass through the birth canal. However, as their bones harden in the first year, the skeleton is better able to support their weight during activities such as crawling and walking. Babies also have “soft spots” in their skull because some parts of the skull haven’t fused together yet. By age 2 years, babies’ skulls are as hard as adult skulls, but in the first months, caregivers need to be careful how they handle the baby and protect their heads.

As noted before, infants grow exponentially in the first 2 years. In the first 3 months, they grow up to 2.5 inches and 3 pounds. Between the ages 4 to 6 months, they grow another 2.5 inches and gain an average of 4 pounds. Between 7 and 9 months, they grow an average of 2.5 inches and 4 pounds. Between 10 and 12 months, they grow another 2.5 inches and another 3 pounds. During the second year, toddlers grow about 1 inch and 2 pounds about every 3 months. Children’s growth slows considerably after age 2 years

Infancy coginitive development

Intellectual development in children, here two babies Matha and ketty learn some fine skills

Babies are not only growing physically during the first 2 years of life, but also cognitively (mentally). Every day while they interact with and learn about their environment they are creating new connections and pathways between nerve cells both within their brains, and between their brains and bodies. While physical growth and change is easily observed and measured in precise terms such as in inches and pounds, cognitive change and development is a little harder to determine as clearly. Therefore, much about what experts know about mental and cognitive development is based on the careful observation of developmental theorists and their theories, such as Piaget’s theory of cognitive development and Erickson’s psychosocial stages. Bronfenbrenner’s ecological model also helps explain infant mental growth to some extent.

According to Piaget, newborns interact with their environment entirely through reflexive behaviors. They do not think about what they’re going to do, but rather follow their instincts and involuntary reactions to get what they need: food, air, and attention. Piaget believed that as babies begin to grow and learn about their environment through their senses, they begin to engage in intentional, goal-directed behaviors. In other words, they begin to think about what they want to accomplish, how to accomplish it, and then they do it. This is also when infants develop object permanence, which is the ability to understand that something still exists even if it can’t be seen. These two milestones, goal-directed behavior and object permanence, are the highlights and major accomplishments of infant cognitive development.

Piaget separated infancy into six sub-stages, which have been adjusted somewhat over the years as new research and discoveries have occurred The sub-stages include: reflexive activity, primary circular reactions, secondary circular reactions, coordination of secondary schemes, tertiary circular reactions, and beginning or representational thought. While these sub-stages sound highly confusing and complicated, they will be explained in more detail in the next paragraphs in order to simplify them and highlight the important aspects of each.

The first sub-stage is reflexive activity, which lasts from birth to approximately 1 month. According to Piaget, while babies are engaging in reflexive actions such as sucking when offered a bottle or the breast, or other reflexes covered earlier in this chapter, they are learning about their environment and how they can interact with it. Babies don’t think about behaving reflexively; they simply act out those reflexes automatically.

The second sub-stage is primary circular reactions, which spans the ages of 1 to 4 months. During this time, babies intentionally repeat actions that bring them pleasure and desired outcomes. In other words, they do things on purpose because it feels good or it gets them what they want. For example, a small infant may suck on her fist because it feels good to her and it soothes her.

Researchers believe that babies of this age may also develop expectancy about cause and effect situations. Babies will begin to see that a pattern of events is connected, and begin to expect the second event after they experience the first event. For example, a baby of this age may learn that when they see a bottle, they expect they will soon be fed. Babies’ expectancies about the predictability of their environment form the foundation of Erickson’s observation that young infants learn to either trust or mistrust their environment. If a baby learns the pattern that they have a need, such as hunger or discomfort, and that need is regularly addressed, they learn to expect their needs to be met and they learn to trust. On the other hand, if babies learn a pattern that they have needs and those needs are not regularly addressed, they will learn to expect that their needs will not be met and they learn to mistrust the world around them.

Next, babies begin to show secondary circular reactions. This sub-stage lasts from about age 4 to 8 months. During this sub-stage, babies begin to repeat actions onto objects outside their body that bring them pleasure and desired outcomes. The difference between this sub-stage and the previous sub-stage is that during this period, babies move beyond just repeating actions to their own body and repeat actions onto their environment. During this time, babies learn by feeling things out; they use their mouths, hands, and other body parts to touch and to experiment with toys and other objects around them. For example, by about age 5 months, babies will track an object with their eyes, even after it leaves their direct line of vision. They will turn their head or even their whole body to continue watching something that grabs their attention. While they’re taking in information and practicing cause and effect experiments, their memory continues to grow stronger.

Between ages 8 to 12 months, babies enter the coordination of secondary schemes sub-stage. During this time, they begin to show intentional means-end behavior, which means that babies begin to put different activities together to achieve a goal because they’ve learned how cause and effect works. Infants are now building on what they learned in the first three stages in order to get what they want. Babies at this age will mimic what they see others doing. If they see their caretaker clap, they will clap.

They’ll repeat the same sort of experiment with different objects to see how these events are similar or different and if there are different outcomes. For example, they may practice dropping different objects to see what happens. They’ll learn that when they stand up and drop a plastic toy on the hardwood floor, it will make a banging noise, but when they drop a stuffed plush animal on the same floor, it will make no real sound.

Another major development during this period is that of object permanence, the understanding that something still exists even if it can’t be seen. Before now, babies believed, in an implicit way, that when something moved from their sight, it no longer continued to exist. Now babies begin to understand that something might still exist even if they can’t see it. This is how the game “Peek-a-Boo” helps babies learn. Even though they can’t see their caretaker’s face hidden behind the blanket, their caretaker continues to exist and will reappear shortly.

Next, between the ages of 12 to 18 months, toddlers enter the tertiary (third) circular reactions sub-stage. During this period, toddlers continue to explore their environment and create experiments to see how things work. They will play with anything they can find; however, they do not yet realize that certain things like knives, electric outlets, and pots on top of a hot stove can hurt them. For this reason, parents and caregivers need to be vigilant about keeping their household safe by babyproofing their home.

Object permanence is not achieved all at once, but rather, gradually emerges.

KIDS IN THIS STAGE REALISE THAT SOMETHING CAN BE HIDDEN

During this sub-stage, babies come to realize that something can be hidden and moved and still exist. Now, babies will look for an object that has been hidden or moved. As babies’ ability to build memories grows and incorporates all their senses, they develop cross-modal recognition memory. This means that children are able to see a mental picture of an object they are holding in their

hand in their mind, without actually looking at it. They remember that object as a complete package through all their senses; they remember its texture and size in their hands, its sound through their ears, and perhaps even its smell.

Finally, between the ages of 18 and 24 months, toddlers enter the beginning of the representational thought sub-stage.

 During this time, babies begin to be symbol-oriented, which means that they create a general image of things in their minds and retain them as examples of some objects. They may create in their mind a picture of a stuffed bear, and use it to represent other stuffed animals he may play with or later see. Because of this, babies may look for their favorite stuffed animal in the toy basket because they know that’s where it’s kept even if they didn’t see their caregivers put it there. As well, babies’ recall and recognition memory also improve greatly. Around age 21 months, toddlers learn scripts, or routines, about how certain things are done. For example, they learn that to “go somewhere in the car,” Dad and toddler go out to the garage, Dad buckles baby in the car seat, and then Dad climbs in the front seat and starts the car.

There are other, more specific mental milestones during this period as well. Around age 21 months, babies grasp the idea of past, present, and future. They begin to understand things categorically, which is to say that they become capable of recognize a shirt as a shirt, even though they don’t all shirts do not look the same. They begin to recognize what things are alike and why, and what other objects fit or do not fit into particular categories. Toddlers keep building their capacity to think symbolically and categorically Around age 24 months, they develop the capacity to pretend and imagine things that aren’t there in front of them. As they achieve this new level of imaginative thought, they take their first steps beyond concrete thinking (e.g., only being able to think about things that are in front of you).

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ISBN 9781726688512

CONTENTS

About the author………………………………………..xii

Preface………………………………………………… …..xiv

Acknowledgement……………………………………..xvi

Introduction…………………………………………….xviii

What is this book for?…………………………………xx

PART 1 PREPARING FOR THE BABY, GETTING STARTED

Preparing for the baby: the story………………..25

Over view…………………………………………………26

Chapter 1:  Child developmental theories 21………………….…33

Introduction; overview of child development theories…34

Developmental channels and Theories of development…..35

Developmental Stages milestones of child development……36

Sensitive periods in child development…………………………..37

Major child development theories and theorists…………39

Sigmund freud’s psycho sexual stages of development theory………40

Erik erikson’s psycho social stage theory………………………………….….41

Lawrence kohlberg’s moral understanding stage theories…43

Jean piaget’s cognitive development stage theory………………….…45

Urie Bronfenbrenner ecological system theory………………………46

Conclusion…………………………………………………………………….……48

PART 2 CHILD DEVELOPMENT AND PARENTING INFANTS (0-2 YEARS)

Chapter 2: How your baby grew and matures..……..56

Introduction……………………..…………….…….…56

Infancy Physical development……………………57

Infancy physical development. Motor skills…60

Infancy physical development. Gross motor…63

Infancy physical development. Fine motor …..65

Infancy physical development. Avera growth..69

Infancy cognitive development…………………..74

Infancy cognitive development. Language development…….77

Infancy Emotional/social development……….80

Emotional expression and understanding……85

Infancy emotional and social development….. 90

Social connections……………………………………..95

Infancy Sexuality and body awareness development……….98

Chapter 3:  Keeping your baby healthy and happy……….101

Introduction……………………………..………………102

Holding and Physical support…………………….103

Facilitating growth movement……………………105

Feeding and nutrition………………………………..107

How much to feed?……………………………………109

Expressing and storing Breast-feeding……….112

Selecting and preparing bottles ………………….114

Burping and spitting up…………………………….116

When and what Solid foods to introduce?……118

Feeding solids and how to feed solid foods…..121

How much to feed babies?………………………….124

Weaning …………………………………………………126

Elimination and how to diaper, and penis and cord car……..129

Sleeping, Bathing and soothing a crying baby130

Hygiene and dressing your baby…………………135

Well baby Checks and immunizations…………140

Common baby concern………………………………150

Nurturing children, discipline, baby safety…. 153

Conclusion……………………………………………….160

Chapter 4: Infant safety: Keeping your baby say

Introduction to infant safety…………………166

Playroom/nursery safety………………………..…168

Kitchen and bathroom safety……………………170

Fire/electrical, pet safety, and car safety………175

Out door safety and preparing for the worst…195

PART 3 CHILD DEVELOPMENT AND PARENTING EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT (3-7 YEARS)

Chapter 5: Development during early childhood, toddler, and pre-school stages.

Introduction: development during early childhood…………205

Early childhood development average growth ……………….206

Physical development. Fine motor skills……210

Early childhood physical development. Toilet training…….215

Introduction……………………………………….….219

Early childhood cognitive development symbolic function……235

Early childhood cognitive development intuitive thought…………240

Early childhood cognitive development. Language development………243

Early childhood emotional and social development. …………244

Early childhood emotional . Reflective empath……….………247

Early childhood emotional  Aggression…….…249

Conclusion………………………………………….……250

Early childhood emotional  identity and self-esteem…………252

Early childhood emotional. Social connections

Early childhood moral development……………256

Early childhood gender identity and sexuality……………….257

Conclusion ………………………………………….…..258

Chapter 6: Parenting your toddler, preschooler

Early childhood Toilet training introduction

Introduction to parenting your toddler……….262

Early childhood feeding and nutrition…………265

Early childhood sleep ……………………………….267

Early childhood hygiene ……………………………269

Early childhood exercise……………………………273

Early childhood love and nurturing……………275

Early childhood, its important to encourage reading……………………………………………………279

Early childhood medical care…………………….281

Early childhood mental care………………………284

Early childhood safety……………………………….287

Coping with transitions in early childhood: Getting a new sibling …290

Coping with transition in early childhood. Going to day care…………295

Coping with transition. Starting pre-school or kindergarten ……302

Conclusion…………………………………………….310

Chapter 7: Early childhood toilet training…….318

Early childhood toilet training introduction..320

The right time to start toilet training. Children’s readiness.323

Family readiness and red flags…………………..327

Pre-toilet training in early childhood………….330

Preparing the space for toilet training in early childhood….335

Toilet training friendly friendly clothing ……340

Early childhood toilet training methods…….344

Conclusion………………………………………………347

How to deal with toilet training challenges? When traveling……….350

Constipation and fear of flushing………………355

Bed-wetting, encopresis and enuresis………..357

Conclusion………………………………………………359

Chapter 8: Disciplining your toddler, preschooler…….360

Preventing early childhood misbehavior before it happens………362

The use of choice in early childhood………….363

A step-by-step guide for how to discipline children 370

Natural and logical consequences in early children .375

Combining choice and consequences in early childhood……..379

Childhood time outs…………………………..….384

Spanking in early childhood………………………388

Lying in early childhood………………………….…390

Supportive communication in early childhood and discipline…………………………………………..392

Conclusion ………………………………….……….394

Chapter 9: Nurturing your toddler, preschooler………….395

Introduction ………………………………………397

Creating nurturing space in early childhood.400

Physical nurturing. Gross motor activities…..403

Physical nurturing fine motor activities ……405

Cognitive nurturing in early childhood………409

Social nurturing in early childhood…………..413

Emotional nurturing in early childhood………416

Cultural and spiritual nurturing in early……420

Nurturing at home and outside……………….…426

Conclusion. …………………………………….…….…430

PART 4 CHILD DEVELOPMENT AND PARENTING MIDDLE CHILDHOOD (8-11 YEARS)………….……………..432

Chapter 10: Nurturing your middle childhood ………433

Introduction ……………………………….……………435

Child feeding and nutrition………………………..438

Components of healthy meals and importance of water…449

Child sleeping, and managing children’s ins……………..….…460

Child hygiene and appearance…………………..470

Preventive health care, dental and vision car, sun safety, ….481

Common childhood illnesses……………………490

Chapter 11: Middle children safety and education…………………..…511

Introduction…………………………………………514

Automobiles, biking safety, leaving children home alone, outdoor safety, swimming pool safety…………………….………………………….…520

Middle children education……………………….524

Introduction……………………………….………….528

Education and schools ……………………………530

Engaging with teachers, the school,and the educational proces…533

Helping children get their home work done.534

Handling school related discipline incidents 534

Chapter 12 Middle child discipline and guidance …………535

Introduction…………………………………………..537

Choices and consequences ………………………539

Grounding children and sticker charts………541

Children cores, nurturing and children’s need for privacy…544

Dealing with difficult middle childhood issues………….548

Introduction ………………………………….………558.

Dealing with life’s tough topics…………………565

Teaching in children social skills………………573

Cigarettes, alcohol, and drugs at home, …….577

Romantic crushes and questions about sex..582

Sibling rivalry, encouraging children to support one another …587

Bullying and peer abuse and prejudice………593

Conclusion ………………………………….………….595

PART 5   CHILD DEVELOPMENT AND PARENTING ADOLESCENCE (12-24)

Chapter 13. Child development theory. Adolescence………606

What is adolescence?……………………………….608

An overview of adolescence development……612

Adolescence physical development……………620

Adolescence cognitive development…………..628

Adolescence emotional development…………634

Adolescence social development…………….660

Adolescence moral development……………….680

Adolescence sexual development………………695

Middle to late adolescence ages (15-22) the age of romance ….723

Conclusion……………………………………….……724

Chapter 14. Children and internet addiction in families….725

Introduction to Internet addiction……………726

Symptoms of Internet addiction……………….730

Children and media issues……………………….735

Types of media, its benefits and challenge…..765

Managing and controlling children media usage…770

Reference…………………………772

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lukonge Achilees (Achilles)is highly experienced social worker, psychologist, Psychiatrist, Counselor/Therapist currently working with Pelletier teenage mothers foundation (PTMOF) helping over 100 vulnerable with the remarkable ability to create, discover, tell, treat and educate important social work articles that can teach us all the most important lessons in our families, health and our life. With Make me understand about family Parenting and health, he strives especially to help parents, children, students in social work learn how to nurture a health family. Providing them opportunities for getting help in matters concerning family, and to help students and parents understand their roles and responsibilities in upbringing a child, in a health environment.

Make me understand about family parenting and health is a must read for everyone in the family, and those working with children like care givers, teachers, guides and others fall in that category. Lukonge Achilees takes the reader on a wonderful journey, balancing all family and health sections, good therapeutic technique, and family empirical styles during the trip. Given that Lukonge Achilees elaborated aspects required in nurturing a health family, and any reader using this resource should increase their understanding of how family works, and how to raise good children, and how to stay safe and healthy in the family system.

Make me understand about family parenting and health is a fantastic book, well executed by a master! Achilees, systematically leads readers through every step of raising children, and provides examples for achieving a wide variety of specific goals.

 PREFACE

This first edition of the Handbook of Parenting and health appears at a time that is momentous in the history of parenting. The family generally, and parenting specifically, are today in a greater state offlux, question, and redefinition than perhaps ever before. We are witnessing the emergence of striking permutations on the theme of parenting: blended families, lesbian and gay parents, teen versus Fifties first-time moms and dads. One cannot but be awed on the biological front by technology that now renders postmenopausal women capable of childbearing and with the possibility of designing babies. Similarly, on the sociological front, single parenthood is a modern-day fact of life, adult–childdependency is on the rise, and parents are ever less certain of their roles, even in the face of rising environmental and institutional demands that they take increasing responsibility for their offspring.

The Handbook of Parenting is concerned with all facets of parenting. Despite the fact that most people become parents and everyone who has ever lived has had parents, parenting remains a most mystifying subject. Who is ultimately responsible for parenting? Does parenting come naturally, or must we learn how to parent? How do parents conceive of parenting? What does it mean to parent a preterm baby/infant (0-2years) parenting early childhood (3-7years) parenting middle childhood (8-11years) and parenting adolescents (12-24years)?

To be a younger or an older parent, or one who is divorced, disabled, or drug abusing? What do theories in psychology (psycho sexual stages of Sigmund frued, psycho social stages of Erik Erikson, moral understanding theory of Lawrence Kohlberg, Jean Piaget’s cognitive development stage theory, and Urie Bronfenbrenner ecological system theory for example) contribute to our understanding of parenting? What should parents do with each stage? For their children?

These are some of the questions addressed in this first edition of the Handbook of parenting… for this is a book on how to parents much as it is one on what being a parent is all about.

Put succinctly, parents create people. It is the entrusted and abiding task of parents to prepare their offspring for the physical, psychosocial, and economic conditions in which they will eventu-ally fare and, it is hoped, flourish. Amidst the many influences on child development, parents are the“final common pathway “to children’s development and stature, adjustment and success.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This journey would not have been possible without the support of my family, professors, and mentors, and friends. To my family, thank you for encouraging me in all of my pursuits and inspiring me to follow my dreams, iam especially grateful to my parents, who supported me emotionally and financially. I always knew that you believed in me and wanted the best for me. Thank you for teaching me that my job in life was to learn, to be happy, and to know and understand myself; only then could I know and understand others. Thank you my mother, Nakayemba Rose, for guiding me as a person, a social worker, psychologist and teacher to finish my degree and giving me an upper hand in this process of book writing

I must thank all social work Lecturers and professors at Muteesa 1 Royal university  who tought me all what I know in social science structures, thanks for showing me what it means to be a dedicated, each in their own unique way. Each of you have given of your time, energy, and expertise and iam richer for it: Lecturer Lwanga Edward Bita, Lecturer Luttamaguzi John Bosco, Dr. Tumukunde Aloysious, Prof. Mukiibi

I would like to give special thanks to my inspiring roll models, I owe a debt of gratitude to Lecturer Lwanga Edward Bita for his time and careful attention to detail in everything I know in social work. To teacher Lukwago Ibrah I thank him for his untiring support and guidance throughout my journey. To my Father Profesor Mutaawe Richard, To Mr. Luttamaguzi John Bosco, thank you for modling great teaching and furthering my thinking about Social work and family, Psychology, anthropology, social work theories, community rehabilitation, social work intervation, and many others, Mr. Lwanga E.Bita thanks for furthering my thinking about Sociology, and statistics in social research, Mr. Mukiibi Andrew Adrian thank you for furthering my thinking about Gender mainstreaming, Research Methodology. Dr. Tumukunde Aloysious you modeled me in Social work courses.

To my family, RODI family headed by Prof. Mutaawe Richard and Prof. Londo Johnson, you are the reason why I finished my studies, no words can describe your presence in my life, and may God bless you all.

To my mentors at a work place PTMOF, Maama Ptmof, Mrs. Solome Nanvule, Mrs. Namuwulya Alice, Nagawa Mariam, Nakulima Winnie, Nakaweesi Agather, Nakalumba Salma , and mentors from Lwemodde, Speaker Bbaale Mudashiru, Chairperson Lusiba Mikidaadi, Wetaka Neithan.

To my mentor Sue Taylor from United States of America, thank you for your guiding advice, thoughts, and building words, and all things you have done toward my life.

Who this book is for

We all believe being a parent is one of the most important jobs we can do, but it can also be one of the most difficult and we all have had times when we are frustrated, confused and stressed by our children. Therefore, This handbook is written for parents of young children, teens, youth, and adolescents. Students who are doing social sciences, those wish to join and those who are practicing it. This handbook is for Therapists/Counselors, Teachers, Lecturers, Activists, and everyone working with children, youth, adolescents in families and community members.

It aims to give you a better understanding of your child’s behavior and what is it that your child is trying to communicate through their behavior.

It also offers parenting tips and ideas on how to raise and nurture a good health child. It gives you a step-by-step guide for child development and parenting infants aged from 0-2 years, child development and parenting early childhood aged 3-7 years, child development and parenting of middle childhood aged 8-11, child development and parenting adolescents aged 12-24.

Consists of both theories and practical parts that take you through early child development techniques.

From the experience

I consider parenting to be one of the most important and most enjoyable things my parents got to do in their life. So, I think about it a lot, read about it, research it, and I write about it. I think parental choices and attitudes matter a great deal in our children’s lives. Parents like my parent sometimes get bad rap, for sure we are accused of being too involved.

My parents are what researchers call a “child centric parent” this means they tend to put their child’s well being above their own well being. I call that evolution tomato-tomato I guess. Whatever you want to call it, recent research suggests that by putting our children’s well being above our own, we experience a bump in our well being as parents.

This development is big because on the other side of this argument is the idea that we have to put ourselves first in order to be good a parent and have a good family life. My opinion lies somewhere in the middle, as I as grew up seeing my parent love time with family, and friends, working, and going to the events. However, they have also been known to turn down an opportunity or event because it would take them away from their children for too long, after all their kids happen to be the coolest people they know on this planet.

 Tell me about the study

The research actually includes two studies. In the first study, the researchers surveyed parents on child centricism, parent styles and well-being. They found that parents, who were more child-centric, reported higher levels of happiness and meaning associated with parenting role. Taken at face value this gives with my parents’ experience of parenting, therefore they do enjoy spending time with their kids, don’t always love leaving them and would happily sacrifice for them

The first study relied entirely on self report and therefore could have been affected in social desirability in how parents report. Therefore the second study used a diary reconstruction method. This basically means, the researchers asked the parents to walk with them through the previous day and related how they felt during each activity, for each activity like walking the kids to school, parents rated their positive effect, negative effect and sense of meaning during the activity. Not surprisingly, parents who were child centric reported higher levels of positive effect and meaning the lower levels of negative effect when they were involved in child care activities

Here are my child centricism quiz

In measuring child centricism we go through series of items or tools, so be reviewing the questions below you will get the idea how child centric you are;

  1. my children are center of my life.
  2. the happiness of my children is more important to me than my own happiness
  3. my children are the most frequent topic of my discussion
  4. I don’t mind leaving my children to spend time with my friends (reverse the item)
  5. I would be willing to make almost any sacrifice for my children
  6. my schedule removes around my children
  7. The needs of my children come before my own.

Excerpt

We all believe being a parent is one of the most important jobs we can do, but it can also be one of the most difficult and we all have had times when we are frustrated, confused and stressed by our children. Therefore,This handbook is written for parents of young children, teens, youth, and adolescents.Students who are doing social sciences, those wish to join and those who are practicing it.This handbook is for Therapists/Counselors, Teachers, Lecturers, Activists, and everyone working with children, youth, adolescents in families and community members. It aims to give you a beater understanding of your childs behavior and what is it that your child is trying to communicate through their behavior. It also offers parenting tips and ideas on how to raise and nurture a good health child. It gives you a step-by-step guide for child development and parenting infants aged from 0-2 years, child development and parenting early childhood aged 3-7 years, child development and parenting of middle childhood aged 8-11, child development and parenting adolescents aged 12-24.Consists of both theories and practical parts that take you through early child development techniques.This books also aimed at anyone who experiences anxiety, stress, and depression, it looks into the causes, its effects, symptoms, and what to do to reduce it to a manageable level, it further draws some of research findings about stress, anxiety and depression caused during early stages that can cause negative impact of a child at later stages.This books aims to teach family members how to treat themselves using home remedies and tips in preventing expensive diseases like Cancer, heart diseases, skin diseases, cold and flue, hepatitis B, asthma to improve health and reducing costs of treatment. It further dig deep to understand right approach to combat HIV/AIDS and other Sexually transmitted diseases, importance of circumcision and attitudes towards it. This handbook further aims to make us understand about our social family addictive behaviors like masturbation and its effects to our general health, drug addiction and its effects and practical guide to combat all forms of social family addictive behaviorsThis handbook aims to make us understand about the importance of fitness, exercise, diet and nutrition at home, foods that we must eat on breakfast, lunch, and supper, for children and adults and food we must stop to take.It teaches us therapy at home or in families, its importations, right time to see a therapist, domestic violence and its effects and a step by step guide to counseling and guidance.Lastly it has go good classic stories for babies and children, it will help your little one to explore the hysterical wonders of the world through tales that can help to build their cognition and memory.

From the experience I consider parenting to be one of the most important and most enjoyable things my parents got to do in their life. So, I think about it a lot, read about it, research it, and I write about it. I think parental choices and attitudes matter a great deal in our children’s lives. Parents like my parent sometimes get bad rap, for sure we are accused of being too involved.My parents are what researchers call a “child centric parent” this means they tend to put their child’s well being above their own well being. I call that evolution tomato-tomato I guess. Whatever you want to call it, recent research suggests that by putting our children’s well being above our own, we experience a bump in our well being as parents.This development is big because on the other side of this argument is the idea that we have to put ourselves first in order to be good a parent and have a good family life. My opinion lies somewhere in the middle, as I as grew up seeing my parent love time with family, and friends, working, and going to the events. However, they have also been known to turn down an opportunity or event because it would take them away from their children.

Buy the book, and follow the author on social media:
Learn more about the writer. Visit the Author’s Website.
Buy the Book On Amazon.
Visit the Facebook Fan Page.
Visit the Twitter page. 

OR get your e-book from this link https://www.spreesy.com/archileeslukonge/2

HOMEOPATHETIC APROACH TO CANCER TREATMENT AND MANAGEMENT.

HOMEOPATHETIC APROACH TO CANCER TREATMENT AND MANAGEMENT.

cancer Cancer become any age group person may cancer, but nearly all types are more common in middle aged and elderly people than in young people. Skin is the most common type of cancer for both men and women. The next most common type among men is prostate cancer; among women, it is breast cancer. Lung cancer, however, is the leading cause of death from cancer for both men and women . Brain cancer and leukemia are the most common cancers in children and young adults.

The more we can learn about what causes cancer, the more likely we are to find ways to prevent it. Scientists study patterns of cancer in the population to look for factors that affect the risk of developing this disease. In the laboratory, they explore possible causes of cancer and try to determine what actually happens when normal cells become cancerous.

Our current understanding of the causes of cancer is incomplete, but it is clear that cancer is not caused by an injury, such as a bump or bruise. And although being infected with certain viruses may increase the risk of some types of cancer, cancer is not contagious no one can “catch” cancer from another person.

Cancer develops gradually as a result of a complex mix of factors related to environment, lifestyle, and heredity. Scientists have identified many risk factors that increase the chance of getting cancer. They estimate that about 80 percent of all cancers are related to the use of tobacco products, to what we eat and drink, or, to a lesser extent, to exposure to radiation or cancer-causing agents (carcinogens) in the environment and the workplace. Some people are more sensitive than others to factors that can cause cancer.

Many risk factors can be avoided. Others, such as inherited risk factors, are, unavoidable. It is helpful to be aware of them, but it Is also important to keep in mind that not everyone with a particular risk factor for cancer actually gets the disease; in fact, most do not. People at risk can help protect themselves by avoiding risk factors where possible and by getting regular checkups so that, if cancer develops, it is likely to be found early.

These are some of the factors that are known to increase the risk of cancer.

Tobacco – Tobacco causes cancer. In fact, smoking tobacco, using “smokeless” tobacco, and being regularly exposed to environmental tobacco smoke without smoking are responsible for one-third of all cancer deaths. Smoking accounts for more than 85 percent of all lung cancer deaths. If you smoke, your risk of getting lung cancer is affected by the number and type of cigarettes you smoke and how long you have been smoking. Overall, for those who smoke one pack a day, the chance of setting lung cancer is about 10 times greater than for nonsmokers.

Smokers are also more likely than nonsmokers to develop several other types of cancer (such as oral cancer and cancers of the larynx, esophagus, pancreas, bladder, kidney, and cervix). The risk of cancer begins to decrease when a smoker quits, and the risk continues to decline gradually each year after quitting.

The use of smokeless tobacco (chewing, tobacco and snuff) causes cancer of the mouth and throat. Pre-cancerous conditions, or tissue changes that may lead to cancer, begin to go away after a person stops using smokeless tobacco.

Exposure to environmental tobacco smokes, also called involuntary smoking, increases the risk of lung cancer for nonsmokers. The risk goes up 30 percent or more for a nonsmoking spouse of a person who smokes. Involuntary smoking causes about 4,000 lung cancer deaths in this country each year.

If you use tobacco in any form and you need help quitting, talk with your doctor or dentist, or join a smoking cessation group sponsored by a local hospital or voluntary organization.

Diet: Your choice of foods may affect your chance of developing cancer. Evidence points to a link between a high-fat diet and certain cancers, such as cancer of the breast, colon, uterus, and prostate. Being seriously overweight appears to be linked to increased rates of cancer of the prostate, pancreas, uterus, Colon, and ovary, and to breast cancer in older women. On the other hand, studies suggest that foods containing fiber and certain nutrients help protect us against some types of cancer. You may be able to reduce your cancer risk by making some simple food choices. Try to have a varied, well-balanced diet that includes generous amounts of foods that are high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. At the same time, try to cut down on fatty foods. You should eat five servings of fruits and vegetables each day, choose more whole-grain breads and cereals, and cut down on eggs, high-fat meat, high-fat dairy products (such as whole milk, butter, and most cheeses), salad dressings, margarine, and cooking oils.

Sunlight :Ultraviolet radiation from the sun and from other sources (such as sunlamps and tanning booths) damages the skin and can cause skin cancer. (Two types of ultraviolet radiation–UVA and UVB–are explained in the Medical Terms section.) Repeated exposure to ultraviolet radiation increases the risk of skin cancer, especially if you have fair skin or freckle easily. The sun is ultraviolet rays are strongest during the summer from about 11 a.m. to about 3 p.m. (daylight saving time). The risk is greatest at this time, when the sun is high overhead and shadows are short. As a rule, it is best to avoid the sun when your shadow is shorter than you are.

Protective clothing, such as a hat and, long sleeves, can help block the sun’s harmful rays. You can also use sunscreens to help protect yourself. Sunscreens are rated in strength according to their SPF (sun protection factor), which ranges from 2 to 30 and higher. Those rated 15 to 30 block most of the sun’s harmful rays.

Alcohol. Drinking, large amount of alcohol increases the risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, and larynx. (People who smoke cigarettes and drink alcohol have an especially high risk of getting these cancers.) Alcohol can damage the liver and increase the risk of liver cancer. Some studies suggest that drinking alcohol also increases the risk of breast cancer. So if you drink at all, do so in moderation-not more than one or two drinks a day.

Radiation: X-rays used for diagnosis expose you to very little radiation and the benefits nearly always outweigh the risks. However, repeated exposure can be harmful, so it is a good idea to talk with your doctor or dentist about the need for each x-ray and ask about the use of shields to protect other parts of your body. Before 1950, X-rays were used to treat non-cancerous conditions (such as an enlarged thymus, enlarged tonsils and adenoids, ringworm of the scalp, and acne) in children and young adults. People who have received radiation to the head and neck have a higher-than-average risk of developing thyroid cancer years later. People with a history of such treatments should report it to their doctor and should have a careful exam of the neck every 1 or 2 years.

Also, radiation used in the treatment of some types of cancer can increase the risk of developing a second cancer. Patients having radiation therapy may want to discuss this issue with their doctor.

Chemicals and other substances in the workplace being exposed to substances such as metals, dust chemicals, or pesticides at work can increase the risk of cancer. Asbestos, nickel, cadmium, uranium, radon, vinyl chloride, benzidene, and benzene are well-known examples of carcinogens in the workplace. These may act alone or along with another carcinogen, such as cigarette smoke. For example, inhaling asbestos fibers increases the risk of lung diseases, including cancer, and the cancer risk is especially high for asbestos workers who smoke. It is important to follow work and safety rules to avoid contact with dangerous materials.

Hormone replacement therapy :Many women use estrogen therapy to control the hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and osteoporosis (thinning of the bones) that may occur during menopause. However, studies show that estrogen use increases the risk of cancer of the uterus. Other studies suggest an increased risk of breast cancer among women who have used high doses of estrogen or have used estrogen for a long time. At the same time, taking estrogen may reduce the risk of heart disease and osteoporosis.

The risk of uterine cancer appears to be less when progesterone is used with estrogen than when estrogen is used alone. But some scientists are concerned that the addition of progesterone may also increase the CANCER risk of breast cancer.