It's Christmas and it's time to celebrate! You may be taking your child to a few family functions this season that will include lots of eating. From meeting with friends, to Noche Buena and the day after, food is a large part of the holidays. Here are a few simple tips to avoid an upset stomach from overeating:
Your child's stomach is about the size of his fist so portion his food accordingly. It helps if you use a smaller plate as the amount of food looks deceptively more.
Make sure that your child eats some of the main course instead of just dessert.
Don't forget to actually sit down for meals. It is dangerous to "graze" at the buffet table. Part of the Christmas season is spending time with your loved ones. So sit down and spend time with them!
Watch what you're eating. Your child takes cues from you. If you are overeating, chances are so will your child.
You may be the recipient of large amounts of Christmas goodies (cookies, chocolate, etc.). A good way to teach your children to share during the holidays and reduce the amount of sugar they are eating is to spend some time at a local orphanage and donate some of those goodies.
If your child does end up with a stomachache this season here are a few things you can do to make him feel better:
Allow him to lie down on his left side—gravity actually helps “position” the stomach in a better place to help your child become more comfortable.
Keep a plastic bag (a.k.a. vomit bucket) handy just in case. Episodes of overeating may end up with some of the food coming back up.
Make sure he doesn’t have fever or any other symptoms that may signify a more serious cause for his stomachache than just overeating. Consult your doctor if he does.
About the Author: Rosanne Sugay, M.D., is an Internist and Pediatrician at the University Medical Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.A. She is constantly reminded by her two year old that children don't read the same pediatric textbooks as she does and will therefore always do the unexpected.