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Christy Valentine, MD

Dr. Valentine is a mom of a seven year-old daughter, a specialist in pediatrics and internal medicine, and the founder of the Valentine Medical Center in Gretna, LA. www.ValentineMedCenter.com

What’s your favorite parenting tip? Don’t give in to tantrums. I found that when my daughter started having tantrums, if I didn’t give in to them, she quickly learned that tantrums don’t work. Boundaries are so important for kids. They need to know where those boundaries are. If you give in to tantrums, they’ll have tantrums for the rest of their lives.

What has surprised you most about parenting? I thought parenting would be more like a job. Like I’d think: Ok, I’m leaving work now to do my “mom” job. But being a mom is the opposite of having a job. It’s so much fun!

How do you get your daughter to eat healthy food? I don’t give my daughter many choices. I’m one of seven children, and in a big family you can’t be picky. My mom didn’t have the time go be a short-order cook. I either ate what my mom cooked, or she figured I wasn’t hungry.

How do you work exercise into your family’s life? I work hard to make this a priority. The nurse practitioner I work with and I joined an early morning boot camp.  It really helps me to have a buddy for work outs.  That way we keep each other motivated and can encourage each other.

How do you recharge your batteries? First thing in the morning, I like to keep the house really quiet—no TV, no radio, no extra noise. This helps me to center myself. Life is so stimulating, I really enjoy some peace and quiet each morning.

Dr. Valentine’s Q&As

I just found out I’m pregnant, and I’m beginning to panic. This is a huge responsibility. How did you cope with the weight of that?

I’m newly pregnant and nervous about what I eat. Did you make any changes in your diet, regarding food safety?

I’m in my third trimester and my shoes no longer fit. Do I need to buy new shoes or can I live in flip flops?

How did you cope with a whiny toddler?

How did you make taking your toddler to an amusement park easier and safer?

How do you make time for yourself to boost your mood?

How do you make time to eat well and exercise?

The information on MommyMDGuides.com is not intended to replace the diagnosis, treatment, and services of a physician. Always consult your physician or child care expert if you have any questions concerning your family's health. For severe or life-threatening conditions, seek immediate medical attention.