Fifty Key Messages – Name the feeling

How can you help your child understand their emotions and learn to regulate them?

Play the ‘name the feelings’ game. When your child is laughing or happy, it is important to name these feelings. The same applies for sadness, anger, etc.

Positive Feelings
Happy, silly, excited, playful
Neutral Feelings
Calm, interested, comfortable, patient, safe
Negative Feelings
Angry, sad, jealous, frustrated, afraid

Talking about Feelings

  • You can look through books and point out the characters’ emotional expressions on their faces, etc.
  • You can draw happy, sad, crying, angry etc. faces on a paper and use them to discuss emotions.
  • Encourage your child to think about other people’s feelings as well as their own.
  • Talk about emotions and how different things can affect people. For e.g. if watching TV talk about the interactions between people and discuss reasons for why people may be feeling the way they are. Allow your child to discuss their views and allow that they may see things differently from you.

If you want to explore more Key Messages to support your parenting see https://www.tusla.ie/parenting-24-seven/

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Infant Mental Health Awareness Week runs from June 13th-19th.           

This week provides an opportunity to focus attention on the wellbeing, social and emotional development of our babies and young children. It highlights the importance of early relationships and a relationship based approach to interventions with infants and families. As our understanding of IMH and its evidence base develops, so also does our knowledge of how to apply this knowledge and an ‘IMH lens’ to interactions with infants, parents and caregivers in health and social services. 

What is infant mental health?

Infant Mental health (IMH) refers to the healthy social and emotional development of Infants starting at conception up to three years of age.

The first 1000 days of life are recognised as a critical period of opportunity to support infant mental health. Decades of research have shown that it is the quality of the early caregiver relationship that is a significant determinant of the infant’s healthy social and emotional development and in turn physical health, right up to adulthood.

 

The National Healthy Childhood Programme has embedded IMH as the foundation of the development of its resources and in the approach of the delivery of the universal child health service. This embedding of key messages can be seen in the My Child suite of books (www.mychild.ie/books) and also on www.MyChild.ie  where key messages around bonding and relationship building have been embedded for the parent/caregiver.

 

In clinical practice the topic of IMH has been included for the first time in the National Standardised Child Health Record. To build on this, the National Healthy Childhood Programme have just completed a suite of three eLearning units which are now available on HSEland for healthcare practitioners / caregivers who are working with children and families.  

 

Throughout the week you will see videos and key IMH messaging being promoted on the HSE MyChild social media pages ( Facebook / Instagram ). Keep an eye out in the National Newspapers for articles from our experts also. (IrishTimes article)  

 

In addition The National Healthy Childhood Programme have developed a series of ten practical videos with HSE expert advice which are now available on YouTube and on the relevant pages on the www.mychild.ie website.

These videos (2-3 minutes each) are aimed at parents/guardians of children (0 – 3 years).

These new video resources are available here while lots more expert advice for every step of pregnancy, baby and toddler health can also be found at www.mychild.ie

There are a suite of posters available focusing on the promotion of IMH messaging to order from healthy.childhood@hse.ie

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