Our View: Be a responsible parent | CraigDailyPress.com

Our View: Be a responsible parent

Raising a child takes an extraordinary amount of time, patience, love and giving. Bringing children into this world is a big commitment and a full-time job.

In order to be a successful parent, you have to put your child's needs above your own, and fully commit to loving and protecting your child.

Ensuring that your child has all the care he or she needs to thrive and survive is an important element to being a parent, which is why we'd like to take the opportunity to highlight that April is the Month of The Young Child in Craig and Moffat County.

Nationally, April is Child Abuse Prevention month, which is incredibly important.

Ensuring a child is safe — from conception to birth and throughout a child's entire life — should be at the forefront of parents' minds. However, that doesn't always happen, which is why there are so many organizations that aid in the care of children's well being.

Lack of money can also make it difficult to give a child all the care he or she needs, which is why local organizations exist in the community that work endless hours to provide help to those with limited financial resources.

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Dental care is one basic need that every child should have, and thanks to the Northwest Colorado Dental Coalition, kids can see a dentist even if their parents can't afford it.

It's vitally important for a child's overall health to have cavities filled and teeth cleaned. Even though they'll lose their baby teeth, the health of those teeth makes a huge difference in the condition of their adult teeth.

Also, avoid feeding babies and kids sugary drinks such as soda pop and fruit juices, especially through a bottle, particularly when putting your baby or toddler down for a nap or the night.

"Your child needs strong, healthy baby teeth. These teeth help your child chew food, speak and have enough space in his or her jaw for the adult teeth to grow in straight.

Tooth decay can happen when your child's teeth come in contact with too much sugar. This sugar helps bacteria grow. Acids that the bacteria make cause the teeth to decay," according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine website.

Basic health screenings are vitally important and are administered through pediatricians at a number of places throughout Craig, including the Visiting Nurse Association and The Memorial Hospital.

Eyecare Specialties of Northwest Colorado also offers infant eyesight screenings.

The importance of getting early services for your child — learning, speech, eyes, hearing, dental — is incredibly important, so please make time for such screenings.

Additionally, don't drink, smoke or use drugs while you're pregnant. You're hurting your unborn baby's development and putting it at great risk for major health problems.

Yampa Valley Pregnancy Center in Craig offers wonderful services to pregnant mothers and those who have young children and dads.

We are asking readers to be more than adequate parents. Give your child and yourself an opportunity to thrive mentally, physically and socially. Be responsible and hold others accountable if they're not being good parents.

Editorial board:

Renee Campbell — Newspaper representative

Amy Fontenot — Newspaper representative

Noelle Leavitt Riley — Newspaper representative

Corrie Ponikvar — Community representative

Bonnie Hulstine — Community representative