6 Ways to Care For Your Newborn Baby

Caring for your Newborn

Bringing home a newborn can be the most exciting moment in a parent’s life. Simultaneously, it can be the most uneasy experience. Worrying about keeping the baby safe and healthy is the number one concern. Below are just a few pointers which will surely encourage cautious care for your newborn baby.

1. Umbilical cord care:

  • While the umbilical cord is cut at birth, a piece remains connected to the newborn’s belly button. Eventually, the remainder of the umbilical cord will detach, but in the meantime, here's how to care for it over the next month:
  • Soak a cotton swab in warm water and mild soap. Squeeze out the excess water. Gently wipe around the sides of the stump and the skin around it.

2. Feeding time:

3. Dressing your newborn:

  • It can be difficult to dress a newborn comfortably for all weather types (hot, or cold). It's best to remember to put layers on your precious infant.
  • While babies often require extra layers of clothing, be sure to avoid overdressing your child. As soon as you return home form running errands, be sure to remove any extra clothing.
  • The simplest way to check if your child is dressed appropriately is to touch the nape of baby’s neck. If it is too sweaty, be sure to remove a layer.
4. Sleeping patterns:
  • The sleep cycle for a newborn is much shorter than an adults.
  • Babies typically sleep for about 16 to 17 hours per day.
  • Newborns spend more time in the REM (rapid eye movement) stage of sleep.
  • It’s always best to assist the baby in learning the difference between night and day, while still giving him or her a chance to fall asleep.

5. Pets:

  • Many may be under the impression that pets should be kept far away from newborn babies.
  • Pets who have been the focus of the family can become jealous of the baby. For this reason, be sure to closely monitor this interaction.
  • It is best to avoid allowing your pet to lick your baby’s face. This could transmit infectious material (such as feces) into the baby’s mouth or eyes.

6. Cleanliness:

  • It is important for family and friends to wash their hands when around your newborn. When a newborn first arrives, their immune system is very weak. Their bodies have not yet gained the ability to fight off germs and illnesses. Enforcing the rule of "wash your hands" around the baby will decrease the baby's chances of contracting an illness.
There are no rules set in stone for parenting. Veteran parents who offer advice and tips are going merely from experience. When your baby is born, granted they are unable to speak your language. However, they are so intelligent, they find other ways to communicate their wants and needs with you. Your job as a parent is to watch and listen for the signs. Be sure to remain cautious and provide a healthy, loving, and safe environment for your new bundle of joy. Sources: http://www.baby.com/baby-health-safety.html http://www.babycenter.com/404_should-i-keep-my-pet-away-from-my-newborn_9944.bc THE CONTENT OF THIS ARTICLE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment. If you have a medical emergency or question, immediately call your doctor or dial 911 for assistance.