New parents look at pregnancy, labor, and delivery as the most challenging time of becoming parents. However, the reality is much different from what they imagine. The process of taking care of a child after they’re born is the most complex and challenging phase of first-time parents’ lives. Every day there’s something new to discover.
Sleeplessness and no time for self-care become the new normal, and things get tougher with each passing day.
From feeding and burping to dressing and diapering- every act comes with unique challenges. With everything going on at home, first-time parents also have several doctor appointments to fit in their busy schedules. With so much going on, it’s easy for parents to miss out on a few crucial things and compromise their baby’s health.
To help new parents enter this new life with ample essential information and necessary guidance, here are a few helpful tips:
Check For Birth Injuries
Visiting and consulting a doctor often for a newborn is a good idea, considering the various birth-related injuries and defects a baby is susceptible to. From Cerebral Palsy (damage to the brain resulting in weak mental and physical development) to Perinatal Asphyxia (oxygen deficiency resulting in seizures, shock, or coma), babies can sustain several birth injuries during childbirth
because of medical malpractice. First-time parents must read through several resources available on the internet like the Cerebral Palsy guide to understand whether their child is in danger or not. Once the baby’s safety is ensured, only then should parents bid farewell to the hospital and start focusing on the child’s safety and upbringing at home.
Complete Vaccination – Both Baby And Parents
Both the child and the parents (also other family members living in the house) need to complete recommended doses of vaccination to create a healthy environment at home. For the baby, preliminary vaccinations prescribed by the doctor after birth are essential for a healthy upbringing. Flu shots, immunization, and other booster shots are recommended for the parents.
This way, the caretakers have their fitness in check while caring for the baby. In simple words, how can parents imagine providing the proper care for their newborns if they are unfit and sick? The proper vaccination doses can keep grownups’ health in check, enabling them to take good care of the tiny human they brought to life.
Dress The Newborn Appropriately
First-time parents often go a little too overboard when it comes to dressing their babies. They either value beauty over everything and don’t wrap the baby in enough layers, or they value safety over everything and wrap the baby in way too many layers. It’s essential to dress the baby appropriately per the different seasonal temperatures so the child doesn’t get sick because of too hot or too cold weather changes.
Take A Baby To Other Places Wisely
New parents should consider where they take their baby for the first few months. Newborns are at their most vulnerable state at the beginning of their life. Therefore, parents must fight the urge to show off their baby to a crowd of people outside the safety of their homes.
First-time parents should avoid bringing their babies to shopping malls, restaurants, or other nasty public germ hotspots to keep them safe. Honestly, parents and the baby must try their best to stay at home as much as possible for the first few weeks after the birth.
Encourage Hand-Washing And Hygiene
It is not paranoid or rude to ask people to wash their hands before touching or holding a newborn. Parents must always clean their hands before coming close to their child to ensure they don’t give germs and other nasty microbes easy access to their baby. Moreover, it’s okay to ask sick family members to visit the new family member after they’ve recovered to ensure the baby doesn’t catch any disease they may be carrying.
These habits may seem a little too over the edge, but they can significantly impact a baby’s health and safety by preventing the spread of common viruses like cold and flu.
Don’t Stop BreastFeeding
These days, most new parents prefer giving their newborn formula milk or other supplements instead of feeding them breast milk. While everyone is entitled to their own opinions and preferences, doctors highly recommend feeding children breast milk for the first few months of their life.
The World Health Organization recommends that mothers feed their newborns only breast milk for up to 6 months. According to experts, this primary baby food supports a child’s health by granting them a greater level of immunity.
Train Other People For Emergencies
Although parents seldom leave their newborn baby’s side during infancy, it’s always good to have a backup plan in case of emergencies. It doesn’t take time for uncertain situations and circumstances to arrive when a newborn baby is involved. Therefore, it’s always a good idea for first-time parents to train other family members to take care of a newborn.
The training may contain everything from making a baby’s formula milk and changing their diapers to giving them medicine and consulting with the family physician. If family members know how to care for and provide for the child, the baby will always stay out of harm’s way if parents are unavailable, sick, or absent.
New parents need to remember that a newborn baby’s immune system and other parts of the body are still developing. This factor explains why babies are so fragile and vulnerable at the beginning of their lives. Developing serious complications at this stage is common if the child isn’t provided enough attention and care.
While the tips mentioned above can help protect a baby from germs, bacteria, and other nasties, parents must do everything in their power to keep their precious little human safe and healthy. These tips might give first-time parents a head start into their journey, but the direction they must take from there on wholly depends on their newborn’s unique situation and circumstances.