Who ever said, “Dynamite comes in small packages” must have been talking about a toddler. Toddlers are just amazing, their brains are growing at breakneck speed and they are constantly learning new things. For example, a toddler can learn a new word every 90 minutes he or she is awake! At a potential 176 steps per minute, you have a seriously high-speed sponge on your hands.
With all this high-speed development going on, it’s not surprising that there are some extraordinary toddlers around the world. There are toddlers who are members of MENSA, a toddler who is an internationally recognised photographer (little Onafujiri ‘Fuji’ Remet) and even a toddler who was married at the age 4 (she was granted a divorce by age 8). Toddlers are tough, smart and capable of astonishing things. They are also vulnerable and need the protection and guidance of adults.
Some toddler facts that have made headlines around the world will make your hair stand on end:
1. The youngest smoker in the world is a toddler
Or more accurately, was a smoker. Sumatran born Aldi Riza shocked the world when a video of him smoking went viral. His father introduced him to smoking when he was a mere 18 months old, and by two and a half, he was up to 40 cigarettes a day. Thankfully, he’s quit the habit now. He is reportedly addicted to junk food nowadays.
2. One in five toddlers can open a childproof lid
It’s an impressive skill that some adults can’t master but many toddlers are able to get those bottles open, its bad news if your toddler is in the percentage that can. Keep medication out of reach just to be on the safe side. If your child does get hold medication, you can call the poison information centre at 0800 111 229 (toll free) or (021) 931 6129 to find out if there is any immediate action you can take before heading to the nearest hospital.
3. 10 000 toddlers in the US are prescribed ADHD medication
Even though the medication is not recommended for children under the age of six, the media reports that doctors in the U.S are medicating toddlers for ADHD. Despite the fact that the diagnostic criteria does not exist for children so young. If a doctor or psychiatrist recommends ADHD medication for your toddler, go get a second opinion. Better yet, contact ADHDSA for a recommendation.
4. By the time your child is two, you will have changed 7,300 dirty nappies.
At a (speedy) average of 2 minutes per nappy, you will have spent almost 250 hours, more than 10 full days, changing dirty nappies in the first two years. Incidentally, those nappies take an estimated 500 years to biodegrade, so consider cloth nappies if you can.
5. Sometimes, helping a toddler becomes a worldwide effort
Just ask the parents of little Noah Fisher, whose devastation at a prescription for glasses united adults around the world. The Facebook page his mom started, “Glasses for Noah,” quickly attracted worldwide attention, as glass-wearers everywhere united to convince the tot that glasses are cool. His mother says that messages and posts have come in from over 45 countries, and the support keeps pouring in. Little Noah doesn’t mind wearing his glasses at all anymore. There are also endless tykes who are reunited with lost teddy bears. The Facebook group “Teddy bear lost and found” is so heart-warming it’s worth visiting just to remind yourself how wonderful people can be. Viral sharing and good Samaritans unite to help little ones find their missing bears, and there are many many success stories. Keep a tissue handy!
– Kahea Rusch