What age is safe for children to start drinking tea?
Want to have a cup of tea with your little one? The good news is that with the right choice of tea, you can have a real tea party with them. Not only will you have a fun and enjoyable bonding experience with your child, but it will also help them to develop important skills, such as table manners and teach them how to safely and properly hold a hot drink.
There is no set age when your child should start drinking tea. The most important factor to consider is the caffeine content which occurs naturally in tea. For this reason, it’s often not recommended for young children.
For children aged 4-10 years old, it is recommended that they only be served herbal tea as it does not contain caffeine. Children aged 12-13 years old can start to be served green, black or even normal tea with milk. As long as the amount of tea they are drinking is moderate and limited to the daily caffeine limit for children, there should be no significant risks to their health.
What are the health benefits of drinking tea for children?
There are a number of health benefits that come with drinking tea.
A cup of tea has the potential to soothe tummy aches, treat constipation and can even help to treat coughs and colds. It can help to bring down the temperature in a child with a fever and helps to hydrate them. Tea can be very relaxing and offering your child a cup of tea can help to reduce their stress and anxiety levels.
Which teas are best for children?
Herbal teas are most suitable for children to consume. You should try to avoid adding sugar to children’s tea. Milk is not necessary with most herbal teas, but you can add a splash if you prefer.
- Rooibos or Honeybush tea: It is naturally sweet and has a deep color which makes it look like tea once it has been brewed. It is safe for toddlers or even infants as it is naturally free from caffeine.
- Chamomile tea: This tea is known for its calming properties and its positive effect on the stomach. It can be used to help treat colic in children, as well as to treat croup and fevers. Avoid this tea if your child has an allergy to daisies, ragweed, marigolds or chrysanthemums.
- Cardamom Tea: Cardamom tea can help to reduce stomach pain and aid digestion problems. It has also been known to help relieve headaches and reduce coughs.
- Ginger tea: This tea is best known for its ability to help soothe nausea and upset tummies, including helping to treat motion sickness.
- Fennel Tea: It can be used to help relieve the symptoms of colic and to aid the treatment of digestive problems in children.
Serving tea to children
Make sure that tea serving is always a supervised activity. The hot teapot should be kept well out of reach of children until it has cooled. You can make a lighter tea by using fewer tea leaves and steeping the tea for only two to four minutes. Make sure that the tea is lukewarm when you serve it to your child.
Initially, children may require a lot of help. You will need to be patient and have hand towels ready to deals with any spills. Ideally, you should serve tea whilst sat at the table and you may need to help your child learn how to handle the tea mug. Stay calm and try to make the experience a positive and enjoyable one.
The right teaware
You will want to avoid using fine china when serving tea to children! Japanese-style ceramic tea tumblers are durable and suitable for children to use. Small tumblers are easier to handle and allow the tea to cool faster. You can use traditional teacups with older children, but ensure that they are supervised at all times.
You can pour the brewed tea into an empty teapot, rather than serving the tea directly in your child’s cup to help it to cool. Make sure to test the temperature before serving it to your child.
About the Author: Ashley Halsey is a mother of two children, who enjoys traveling and reading. Ashley is a professional writer at Luckyassignments.com and Gumessays.com. She enjoys attending business training courses and has been involved in a number of projects throughout the country. Also, she tutors at Research Papers UK.