18 to 24 Months old Baby

Normal development:

Gross Motor: Runs stiffly. Sits on small chair. Walk upstairs with one hand held. Explores drawers and baskets.

Fine Motor: Makes a tower of four cubes. Imitates scribbling. Imitates vertical and circular strokes. Dumps pellets from a bottle.

Language: 10 words. Names pictures. Identifies one or more body parts. Uses 2 words sentences like “up daddy”, “want cookie”. Speech is 25%understandable to strangers.

Cognitive: Feeds self. Seeks help when in trouble. May complain when wet or soiled. Kisses parents with a pucker. Can identify 2 colors (blue and red). He can formulate negative judgements like “a pear is not a cookie”. He may begin to distinguish “you” from “me”.

Appetite slump in Toddlers

A toddler eats in cycles, he will eat good for a day and then refuses to eat for next two days. Their calorie requirement has reduced so this behavior is OK. Their diet menu only contains 4-5 things and they may like to eat same thing over and over again. Try to bring a variety but it is sometimes very hard to do so. Don’t ask them if they want a particular food. They would just reply with a NO. Rather give them the option of having this (peas) or that (carrots). Usually a toddler will pick the second choice and his compliance will be better as he will feel he opted for it. Vitamins: Poly vi sol or half a chewable vitamin a day. A toddler need supplementation as his diet is not varied.

Tips for Feeding Your Toddler

  • Try to get your child into a routine, with meals and snacks served at about the same time every day.
  • Give her smaller portions of food than what you would eat. For instance, give one tablespoon of food for every year of her age.
  • Give your child less than you think she’ll eat, and let her ask for more.
  • Don’t force your child to clean her plate. If she says she’s had enough, respect that. Forcing her to finish those last bites may make her overeat, or develop an unhealthy attitude about food.
  • Even though play time may build your child’s appetite, give her a little quiet time before she eats. She’ll eat better if she’s relaxed.
  • Stay close by your child as she eats in case she starts to choke.
  • Offer foods that appeal to children, like cut-up raw vegetables and other finger foods.

Potty Training

Lots of toddlers are ready for potty-training right around the time they turn two, or soon after. (Boys are ready a little later than girls). It’s possible that your child might be ready a little sooner. You’ll know she might be ready if she:

  • Has bowel movements on a fairly regular schedule. (You can almost predict when she’ll have a dirty diaper.)
  • Doesn’t always have a wet diaper. This means her bladder can hold urine.
  • Can and will follow instructions.
  • Wants to imitate her parents or brothers and sisters in the bathroom.
  • Can tell you, or even show you by a change in activity or a look on her face, that she knows her bladder is full, or that she’s about to have a bowel movement. Tells you when she peed and poopped.

You can help your child get ready for potty-training just by keeping her potty chair nearby and talking to her about the whole process. Keep in mind that the more she understands about it, the less scared she’ll be about it. Keep in mind, too, that your child must want to take this big step. She’ll be ready when she wants to become more independent and please you too.

When she is ready, encourage her, but don’t pressure her. Let her know how proud you are of her successes, but don’t make a big deal out of the accidents (and there’s sure to be some of those). If you think your child is ready for potty-training, you can:

  • Let her sit on the potty chair with her clothes on. Just tell her about the chair, and what it’s for, and when to use it.
  • Let her sit on the chair with her diaper off, her feet firmly on the floor. Try to make the potty part of her routine...have her sit on it several times a day.
  • Try changing your child’s diaper while she’s sitting on the potty chair, and empty it into the pot under her...this shows her what the chair is for.
  • Encourage her to use the potty in the right way. You might let her play near the potty without a diaper, reminding her to use it when she needs to. Remember, praise success, and don’t fuss over accidents.
  • Switch from diapers to training pants once you think she’s gotten the hang of it.
  • Remember that nap time and nighttime training may take a little longer. Plastic mattress covers can help you get through it.

Whatever happens, don’t get discouraged. You probably don’t know of anyone who started kindergarten wearing a diaper!

Farah Naz, MD - Pediatrics
2459 East Hebron Parkway, Suite 100, Carrollton, TX 75010
Office - (972) 395-8600 | Fax - (972) 395-7119