Parenting Facts
Parenting Facts

38 Fun Parenting Facts

Karin Lehnardt
By Karin Lehnardt, Senior Writer
Published September 23, 2019
  • One parenting trend is a so-called "milk bath maternity shoot." The mother-to-be lies in a tub of milk for a photo op.[2]
  • Parents-to-be in Arizona caused a 47,000-acre wildfire and $8 million worth of damage at a gender-reveal party.[2]
  • Sugar itself does not make kids hyper. Any food that affects blood-sugar levels, either a tomato or candy bar, can create an adrenaline surge. Fiber can help balance blood-sugar spikes.[8]
  • Danish, German, and Japanese babies cry the least. British, Canadian, and Italian babies cry the most.[18]
  • Umbilical Cord Necklace
    Would you rather have an umbilical cord necklace or a baby tooth ring?
  • One popular parenting trend is jewelry made out of human body parts, such as umbilical cord-stump pendant necklaces, rings made out of preserved breast milk, and lockets that hold children's baby teeth.[2]
  • According to Greek tradition, parents should spit at a baby three times to ward off evil spirits, the evil eye, and bad luck.[5]
  • A popular parenting tradition in Ireland is to sprinkle a crumbled piece of the parents' wedding cake on top of their newborn's head while the baby is being baptized. This is to symbolize the circle of life.[20]
  • A lotus birth is when the umbilical cord is left uncut and attached to the placenta for about 3–10 days after birth.[20]
  • In one parenting tradition in Maharashtra, India, babies are tossed off the side of a 50-foot temple and caught in a sheet below. The tradition is thought to endow the newborn with courage and intelligence.[20]
  • The Wolof people of Mauritania spit on their babies. The believe that spit carries the words of the parents to children. Fathers spit inside the baby's ear, women spit on its face, and then they rub saliva all over the baby's head.[20]
  • Some new parents believe that eating the placenta helps prevent postpartum depression. They prepare the placenta in several ways, like making a smoothie out of it or putting it in capsule form.[20]
  • In 1962, an American pediatrician warned that hugging and cuddling a child could turn him or her into a socialist.[1]
  • You can learn many things from children. How much patience you have, for instance.

    - Franklin P. Jones

  • In the Middle Ages, parents swaddled their babies in linen bands until eight or nine months to help them grow straight.[19]
  • In contrast to "Tiger Moms," who tend to be aggressive, the "Panda Mom" parenting style is a hands-off style that tries to achieve the "perfect ratio of cuddliness and claw."[6]
  • European and American babies of the early 1900s were given lard baths by their parents.
  • Through the 1920s, many parents believed that babies who showed left-handed tendencies should be trained to be right-handed, often with painful braces.[9]
  • A 1932 US government pamphlet suggested that parents should start toilet training their babies right after birth.[9]
  • In an effort to expose their babies to fresh air and sunlight, city dwellers in the early 20th century hung baby cages outside their windows—and placed their babies in them.[15]
  • Baby Cages Fact
    I think I'll just take my kids for a walk around the block (Reg Speller / Getty Images)

  • In a 1958 issue of Mother & Baby, an article suggested that women who felt sad after having a baby should not see a psychiatrist or a doctor. Rather, they should strip furniture to feel better.[9]
  • In the 1950s, parents could put their baby in a "Sky-Cot" when traveling on a plane. It fastened to the luggage rack overhead.[9]
  • In Victorian England, parents calmed their kids with medicine laced with opium and other narcotics.[9]
  • Babies in Bali are not allowed to touch the ground until they are three months old. Touching the ground earlier is thought to defile their purity.[11]
  • Fathers in the Aka tribe in central Africa let their babies suck their nipples while the mothers go to work or hunt. In fact, Aka fathers are within reach of their infants 47% of the time, which is more time than fathers in any other cultural group on the planet.[12]
  • Strict Parenting Facts
    Strict parenting actually creates more behavior problems
  • Children with strict parents often turn into more effective liars because they are more afraid to tell the truth.[1]
  • In Bulgaria, parents historically believed that the devil became jealous when a baby was praised too much, so parents typically spat on their babies and said things such as, "may the chickens poop on you."[11]
  • Before WWI, parents typically dressed girls in blue and boys in pink. They viewed pink as the more masculine color and blue as more feminine.[14]
  • In the 1800s, women in America were advised to treat sore nipples (from breastfeeding) with boric acid. This acid is a common ingredient in industrial-grade insecticide.[7]
  • As late as the 1960s, some parents were advised that their child needed a lobotomy. The notorious doctor Walter Freeman conducted thousands of lobotomies, many of them on children.[4]
  • The terms "soccer mom" and "helicopter mom" gained traction in the 1990s, as moms signed up their kids for as many extracurricular activities as possible.[1]
  • A movement called Elimination Communication (EC) advocates raising children diaper-free from birth.[16]
  • Facts about Parenting
    There are no better parents in the world than yours

  • While American parents are typically ok with baby walkers, Canada banned them in 2004. Walkers cause more injuries than any other baby product and may delay motor and mental development. Canadians can be fined or jailed for even owning one.[10]
  • Parents in the United States use a lot of diapers on their babies, about 3.5 million tons of landfill waste per year.[10]
  • While American parents tend to put their children to bed early, in other countries, such as Spain, parents let their children stay up until 10pm most nights in order to learn how to socialize.[3]
  • Lawnmower Parent
    How would you characterize your parenting style?
  • The "lawnmower" parenting style is defined as going to whatever lengths are necessary to mow down  adversity, struggle, or failure for the child.[6]
  • Approximately 80% of American parents are more concerned with their children seeing sex on TV and in movies than they are about their children seeing graphic violence.[17]
  • The United States is one of the few countries in the UN that does have employer-mandated paid leave for new parents. In Austria, parents actually get a bonus if they take turns staying home.[1]
  • In Japan, children as young as four are allowed to ride public transportation, walk to school, and run errands by themselves.[13]
  • In Denmark, children are regularly left outside in their strollers while their parents go shopping.[13]

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