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Parents Zone

New mothers are physically and emotionally exhausted, and their husbands have two simple tricks to help them relieve their emotions

Written by Chinese Doctor Yiu Yee Chiu

 

It is not easy to build a healthy and happy family. Starting from the first trimester, mothers-to-be have to face internal and external changes such as physical appearance, weight and weight, and even psychological and emotional changes. Mothers-to-be who are pregnant for the first time are more stressed and nervous. In addition, the stress may come from the partner and family members around her. I have seen some mothers who are pregnant with their second child and are overly worried because of the urgency of the sex of their child. In fact, children are a gift from God, so we should open our arms and obey God’s will, and our families should support us. However, there are many cases of postpartum depression. Therefore, I will share with you the treatment of postpartum depression from the perspective of Chinese medicine.

 

Prenatal and postnatal depression and blood stagnation

In Chinese medicine, there are six types of depression: qi depression, blood depression, phlegm depression, damp depression, heat depression and food depression. Postpartum depression is quite complex, with qi and blood depression being the most common. The theory of Chinese medicine is that “when evil qi is injured, the right qi will be deficient”. The body of the mother-to-be has to give a lot of nutrients and blood to the baby during pregnancy, and the pain, qi depletion and blood loss during the delivery process will cause the mother’s body to suffer a lot.

 

Later on, the mother’s busy schedule in taking care of the baby makes her physically exhausted, coupled with unclear dew and incomplete blood stasis, which causes the internal organs to be out of balance. At this time, the mother starts to feel weak, dizzy and headaches, pain in the lower abdomen, irritability and insomnia, and even affects the secretion of breast milk, such as lack of milk or low milk supply. In this case, the mother will feel frustrated, her emotions will be further affected, she will be irritable and prone to crying, and she will have a sense of loss and emptiness. These are all symptoms of postpartum depression.

Tips to relieve tension

 

In fact, postpartum depression can be avoided, and both Chinese and Western medicine have excellent therapeutic effects, so mothers should not be afraid to seek medical help if they start to notice something wrong. To prevent depression, mothers should have a regular routine before and after childbirth, plus dietary therapy and appropriate amount of exercise to maintain physical and mental well-being.

At home, husbands can perform some simple acupressure points for their wives to help relieve their tension:

1. Accelerate the heart and lung function to help relax the mood

Hold hands together and gently rub to stimulate the Yuzhi point under the thumbs and the Laogong point in the center of the palms, or press these two points with the thumbs for a few minutes.

2. Reduce head swelling and pain

Press the thumbs and middle fingers of both hands against the lateral solar plexus points and gently rotate them up and down for a few minutes to reduce head swelling and pain.

Whether you are pregnant or not, a husband who massages his wife can improve the relationship between the couple and make the family more warm and harmonious. If you have friends who are expecting mothers, remember to encourage each other and share your experience, which will also help mothers-to-be!

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Parents Zone

Failure to adequately address anxiety in young children may exacerbate separation anxiety

Written by: New Horizons Development Centre, Certified Educational Psychologist Pang Chi Wah

 

As the school year begins again, many children cry when they first go to kindergarten. However, there are also children who can go to school without any adjustment period because their parents can prepare them mentally and practice simulations. For children, entering kindergarten may be their first major challenge because some children are separated from their families for the first time when they enter kindergarten, but once they have enough time to become familiar with the school environment, they will feel safe in kindergarten life and will not cry.

 

What bothers parents and teachers the most is that after a few weeks of enrollment, children continue to cry or expressly resist going back to school. In better cases, they may not like to participate in extracurricular activities, and in more severe cases, they may refuse to go to school, and in some extreme cases, they may not allow their parents to leave their sight. These are all separation anxiety problems.  

In fact, there may be deeper reasons why children do not adapt to being separated from their families that need to be understood in depth. For example, some children are admitted to the intensive care unit when they are newborn because they are underweight or have physical problems, or they need to be hospitalized or undergo surgery because they are sick. Although such medical support is necessary for them, it may also lead to traumatic psychological experiences for them, and since then they may be afraid of strangers or unfamiliar places and easily develop separation anxiety, and their sense of security is lower than other children.

 

In some even worse cases, parents are not allowed to work, or that the child needs to be left with a babysitter, but the children do not want to be left behind, so the parents consider the reality of their needs and have to forcibly separate from them or lie to them. As a result of parents’ misuse of inappropriate methods, their feelings of insecurity during infancy and early childhood are reinforced. The so-called traumatic experiences are actually events that cause them to be psychologically afraid.

 

The main reason for the lack of security in young children is the separation from their families and the failure of parents to handle the situation properly. Ironically, some caregivers do not provide a safe and adequate living environment in their daily lives, and more importantly, there are frequent changes in caregivers or places, and there are strong contrasts in caregiving practices, causing them to go through psychological adjustment tests before

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Parents Zone

Wear face mask for long time during Epidemic. How to make children learn to “look at people’s eyebrows and eyes”?

Written by: Hong Kong Speech and Swallowing Therapy Centre
Senior Speech Therapist Eunice Siu

In our daily interactions with others, we not only observe others’ behaviors, but also “explain” and “predict” others’ behaviors. Theory of mind is the ability to infer or substitute other people’s mental states, such as their thoughts, beliefs, desires, and intentions, etc., and to use this ability to explain other people’s thoughts, perceptions, and predict their behaviors. Theory of mind can be subdivided into “emotion recognition”, “beliefs” and “pretend play”.

The developmental period for children’s theory of mind is from approximately 3 to 7 years of age. However, before the age of 3, children need to master the following skills to effectively develop theory of mind skills.

1. noticing and imitating the behavior of people around them
2. recognizing the emotions of others and using words to express them (e.g., happy, sad, angry, surprised)
3. participates in pretend play
4. understands that different people have different desires and preferences
5. understands that people will act to get what they want (e.g. reach for candy)
6. understands the causes and consequences of unsympathetic emotions (e.g. if I hit my brother, my mom will be mad and then she will scold me)

Ways to improve theory of mind are:

1. Use more psychologically relevant words when talking to your child

Using psychologically related words to communicate with children can help children understand their own and others’ psychological conditions more specifically. Examples of psychologically related words are “think,” “pretend,” “know,” “believe,” “feel,” and words related to emotions. Pay attention to what your child is trying to say and then respond. For example, “Ah! You want cake”, “Don’t be afraid! You think I’m gone, but I’m still here,” and “Mommy’s mad at you for hitting your brother. Parents can also explain to their children the psychological situation of others, e.g., “Mei-mei is smiling so much when she receives a birthday present, she should be very excited.

2. Participate in role-playing games with your child

Role-playing games encourage children to put themselves in different situations and characters’ perspectives to draw inferences about their behavior. To begin, children can pretend to be common everyday characters, such as mothers, doctors, teachers, and drivers. Parents should pay attention to the fact that both the words and behaviors in the game should be substituted for the role played. This activity helps children experience a variety of emotions, thoughts and interactions in different social situations, and learn to observe, imitate, anticipate, review and adjust their thoughts and behaviors.

I hope parents can make good use of the opportunity to share and communicate more with their children in daily life, so that they can learn to “look at people’s eyebrows and eyes” (meaning read people’s faces) and become a “mind-reading detective”!

Source:
Hollin, P., Baron-Cohen, S.,& Hadwin,J.(1999). Teaching children with autism tomind-read. West Sussex, England: Wiely Press

Lowry, L.(2015).” Tuning in” to others: How young children develop theory of mind. The Hanen Centre.

Spastics Association of Hong Kong (2005). Connecting: Developing social skills in children with autism. Spastics Association of Hong Kong.

Ways to improve theory of mind are:

1. Use more psychologically relevant words when talking to your child

Using psychologically related words to communicate with children can help children understand their own and others’ psychological conditions more specifically. Examples of psychologically related words are “think,” “pretend,” “know,” “believe,” “feel,” and words related to emotions. Pay attention to what your child is trying to say and then respond. For example, “Ah! You want cake”, “Don’t be afraid! You think I’m gone, but I’m still here,” and “Mommy’s mad at you for hitting your brother. Parents can also explain to their children the psychological situation of others, e.g., “Mei-mei is smiling so much when she receives a birthday present, she should be very excited.

2. Participate in role-playing games with your child

Role-playing games encourage children to put themselves in different situations and characters’ perspectives to draw inferences about their behavior. To begin, children can pretend to be common everyday characters, such as mothers, doctors, teachers, and drivers. Parents should pay attention to the fact that both the words and behaviors in the game should be substituted for the role played. This activity helps children experience a variety of emotions, thoughts and interactions in different social situations, and learn to observe, imitate, anticipate, review and adjust their thoughts and behaviors.


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