Motherhood is one of the most beautiful experiences a woman can have. It is also, however, one of the most challenging. There are many things to consider and take care of when you have a baby, from the moment they’re born until they’re all grown up.
It can seem daunting, especially with studies showing that new mothers often take at least four months to feel confident in their parenting abilities. But there’s no need to worry — getting some insight into the essential tips for caring for your baby can help make motherhood smooth.
Here are some key things to keep in mind when caring for your baby:
Establish a flexible feeding schedule
One of the most important things you can do for your baby is to establish a flexible feeding schedule. Your little one will need to eat frequently every two to three hours. So, it’s essential to listen to your baby’s cues and feed them when hungry, rather than on a strict schedule.
If breastfeeding, let your baby eat until they’re full and satisfied. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that breastfeeding continues for at least 12 months. In some cases, you may need to supplement with formula if your baby isn’t getting enough milk. In this case, it’s best to use iron-fortified formula. You should also avoid soy-based formulas unless your baby’s doctor recommends them.
When you know your baby is hungry, sit down in a comfortable position and hold them close. Burp your baby frequently during and after feedings. After quite some time, you’ll get to know your baby’s feeding patterns and will be able to establish a more routine schedule.
Create a comfortable sleeping environment
Your baby will need a lot of sleep, so creating a comfortable and safe sleeping environment is crucial. The ideal sleeping space for your baby should be in their crib or bassinet in your room. Ensure the crib or bassinet has a firm mattress and a tight-fitting sheet.
The AAP recommends putting your baby to sleep on their back to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). You should also remove obstructing pillows, blankets, toys, or other objects from the sleeping area. Doing so will lower the risk of your baby becoming tangled or suffocating.
To create a calming environment, you can consider using a white noise machine to help your baby sleep through the night. You can also establish a bedtime routine, including activities such as bathing, reading, and rocking. It’s a simple yet helpful trick to help your baby wind down and get ready for sleep.
Keep your baby clean and dry
A big part of caring for your baby is ensuring they’re clean and dry. Keeping the umbilical stump clean and dry is essential for newborns until it falls off on its own. It usually happens within one to two weeks.
You should also frequently bathe your baby. Newborns only need a few baths each week, but as they age, you need to wash them every day or two. Always use mild and fragrance-free soaps and shampoos on your baby’s delicate skin.
It’s also essential to keep your baby’s diaper clean and dry. You should check it every few hours, especially after feedings and naps. When changing a diaper, always use a clean diaper, wipe from front to back, and apply diaper cream if needed. This way, you can help prevent diaper rash.
Caring for your baby’s skin
Your baby’s skin is delicate and sensitive, so you need to take extra care of it. Exposure to the sun can be harmful, so it’s essential to keep your baby in the shade, especially during the peak hours of 10 am to 4 pm.
Newborns are prone to prickly heat, so keeping them cool and dry is essential, especially during the hot summer. When dressing your baby, always choose loose and breathable clothing.
It’s also essential to moisturizing your baby’s skin frequently. Use a hypoallergenic and fragrance-free lotion to avoid irritating their skin.
But what if your child already has them? In that case, moringa oil is an effective bungang araw remedy for babies. It contains natural nutrients that can soothe, protect, and moisturize your baby’s skin. It’s a natural and safe alternative to conventional treatments.
Caring for a baby can be daunting, especially for first-time moms. But by following these essential tips, you can help ensure your baby is healthy and happy. From feeding and sleeping routines to keeping them clean and protecting their skin, these tips will help you every step. So don’t hesitate to ask for help when needed and enjoy this special time with your little one.