Q & A with Heather Harrison

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1959 North State Street, Provo, phone # 801-373-2001
Specializing in Family Medicine, Obstetrics, Pediatrics, and Women's Health

My child is 5 months old and isn't rolling over yet. Could there be a problem? What can I do to help teach him how to roll over?

Most infants roll over between 3-6 months, usually they roll front to back first, and then back to front. You can help them with rolling front to back by giving them tummy time (infant lies on belly while awake). Help your infant to roll up on their hips and tuck the arm to assist in rolling over. Also, put items of interest just out of their reach to encourage movement to get to them. If your infant has not rolled over by 5 months, I would not say that it is a problem but something that you should keep working on.

At what age can I let the grandparents start giving my child candy

Grandparents love to spoil their little ones ... I would encourage that you ask your parents to hold off giving your child sweats until after 1 years old. Again, it is important to instill healthy eating habits, including snacks, early on. Tell them they are more than welcome to give them celery, carrots, granola bars, etc.

Are there any tricks to getting my toddler to let me brush his teeth?

There are several things you can try for getting a better brushing teeth experience. Have your toddler pick out their "special toothbrush," then let him/her brush their teeth and then you have a tooth brush to follow along with afterwards. Let them keep holding their special toothbrush and give positive reinforcement for what effort they gave. You can also use just a warm wet washcloth for younger children to wipe off their teeth.

When should I start taking prenatal vitamins? Why are they so important?

Prenatal vitamins are important before you even realize that you are pregnant. I recommend that any women of childbearing age that is not on Birth Control should be taking prenatal vitamins due to the chance of getting pregnant. If planning a pregnancy start your prenatal vitamins at least 2 months before anticipating pregnancy. The most important part of the prenatal vitamin is the Folic Acid (800 - 1000 mcg/day) that is important for early development of the nervous system and spinal canal.

My baby is three months old, and he has a little 'dip' on the top of his head. Why?

The dip on top of your infants head is called the anterior fontanel or soft spot. This spot is there to allow for the brain and the cranial bones to grow during the early years. This soft spot usually closes by 18 months.

I'm so confused about what I can and can't feed babies. Can you give me a list of foods not to feed a baby?

We recommend that infants are solely fed breast milk or formula until 4-6 months of age. After that time you can start introducing rice cereal (start in the evening). By 6 months you can add in vegetables and fruits with only introducing one new food every 3 days (i.e. sweet potatoes for 3 days, then add in green beans, but it is still okay to continue with sweet potatoes if there are no sign of allergies). By 9 months you can add in the combination baby foods (i.e. turkey dinner). When they get more teeth, you can do cheerios and some table foods, but watch for choking risks. By 1 year old you can basically feed them what you are eating. We recommend holding off on dairy products (i.e. cows milk, cheese, and ice cream), honey, peanuts, and strawberries until 1 year. If there is a family history of food allergies hold off on introducing that food until 2 years old.

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