As a parent, you have a lot of responsibilities. The lessons you teach your children can stay with them for their entire lives. An important part of raising your children is teaching them about their bodies and the best ways to take care of them. Especially for little girls, these lessons can be vital in ensuring you raise healthy, well-rounded adults.
If you’re a parent and are lost on how to help teach little girls how to take care of their bodies, the women’s health experts at Covington Women’s Health Specialists are here to help. While these physicians are dedicated to the care of women, these tips will work for little boys as well!
Let’s start with the basic tips below on teaching your kids how to take care of their bodies.
Bodies Come in Different Shapes and Sizes and All are Beautiful
Diversity is an important lesson, so start early. Show them that bodies come in different shapes, sizes, and colors. Let them know that their body belongs to them! Tell them that their body is perfect and normal, just the way it is, and so is everyone else’s.
Teaching them these body-positive lessons early will really empower them to love themselves and who they are. Every little girl should feel this way!
Teaching them that their bodies belong to them will give them a sense of pride and lays the groundwork for them being able to recognize inappropriate touching from others.
Physical Strength is Healthy
Exercising, eating healthy foods, and avoiding unhealthy behavior such as smoking will help keep your children strong and will help them avoid illnesses. A strong body is more productive in helping your child have fun at play, do their daily chores, and exercise will help keep them deal with stress if this occurs.
Teach your Children about Mental Health
Let them know all the ways the mind is powerful, it lets them learn our world and themselves. Their ability to learn and think is very special and important to keeping your kids happy and healthy, too.
Encouraging them to discuss their feelings. Let them know that discussing their emotions is healthy. Make a promise to always be there for them to talk about what is happening or what is bothering them.
When they tell you what they tell you their ideas, let them know that you like the way they think! When they tell you what they have learned, praise them for learning the information and sharing it! Answer their questions, even if you have to Google the subject before answering! Encourage their quest for knowledge.
Inform Them About Puberty
Telling your child what to expect as she grows is empowering and will help her not be frightened as her body changes. Explaining the process and giving them great detail will not only teach them that this process is normal, but it can also lessen stress and worries during the experience itself. Promise to be there if she has questions or wants to tell you or show you how things have changed for her.
Talk About Sex
Included in the talks about puberty should also be discussions about sex! Many parents believe that not discussing sex with children will discourage them from participating in it. However, this is not a great tactic.
Children are curious and it is normal for them to touch themselves while trying to figure out what their body parts are for and why they feel the way they do. While this is NORMAL, please let your child know that this should be done in privacy and that no one else should touch them in that way. Answer their questions in a way that you are comfortable but punishing them and telling them that this is bad may be harmful.
Let them know how relationships and sex work when you feel they are old enough. Teach them how they should handle their feelings and urges when the time comes. Most importantly, teach them about respect. Remind them that others should respect them and that they should respect others.
Reassure your kids that you will be there if something uncomfortable happens to them or if they have questions and concerns.
Show Them Healthy Habits
Encourage your children to keep up healthy habits by keeping up with healthy habits yourself! When you exercise and eat healthy foods in reasonable portion sizes, they will learn from you.
The goal of exercise is to keep the body strong and healthy. Avoid obsessing over your weight or talking about the goal of being “skinny.” Avoid smoking since children will want to smoke if you smoke.
If you have any more questions about how to help teach little girls how to take care of their bodies, reach out to the women’s health experts at Covington Women’s Health by clicking here or giving us a call at 770-385-8954.