Looking after a newborn can feel like a full-time job. The sleepless nights, the feeding around the clock, and the constant worry about keeping your baby safe and healthy; it’s exhausting! And that’s before you factor in all of those daily tasks that suddenly become much more challenging with a baby at home: laundry, cooking, cleaning and finding time to rest, so you don’t crack under the pressure. We know. It sounds impossible. But hang in there! You can do this. Raising a baby is challenging but also incredibly rewarding – once you get past that first month! Once you get past the initial newborn stage, things will get easier and you’ll start feeling like yourself again. Until then though – be prepared for sleepless nights and some stressful days ahead. Here are our top 10 tips to help your baby stay healthy:
Keep your baby on a schedule
Babies whose days are more regimented tend to cry less and have fewer health problems (which means you’ll have fewer sleepless nights too!) Make sure you look at your baby’s feeding schedule and sleep pattern and try to keep it as consistent as possible. Newborns thrive on routine and consistency. It will make your life so much easier in the long run. If your baby has colic, try to keep him on a consistent sleep schedule during the day too. It might not cure the colic but it can help with disruptive crying and might make life a little easier for you.
Change your baby’s diapers frequently
Newborns usually go through several diapers a day. Since it’s not always easy to know when your baby needs to be changed, we recommend changing your baby every 2-3 hours during the day and every 3-4 hours throughout the night. If your baby pees in his diaper, it could get into his skin and cause a diaper rash. Diaper rash is a very common condition that affects many babies during their first few months. It’s caused by bacteria and can lead to red, swollen, and sometimes painful skin. If your baby has a diaper rash, we recommend using a diaper ointment to treat it. Also, make sure you’re using the right type of diapers. If you switch your baby to the wrong type of diapers they might not be as breathable and could lead to a rash.
Always have hand sanitizer and disinfectant on hand
With a newborn in the house, you’ll probably be touching a lot of dirty things (like dirty diapers, toys and blankets). You’ll want to keep your hands clean at all times to avoid getting sick. Luckily, it’s quite easy to do this with a few handy products: – Always keep hand sanitizer near you and your baby. – Keep a spray bottle of disinfectant by your changing table, diaper bin and anywhere else you’ll be touching a lot. – Wash your hands with soap and water when you’re done touching something dirty. – When you’re out and about, use a sanitizing wipe on anything your baby touches.
Don’t hesitate to ask for help from family and friends
Parenting usually comes with a lot of pressure to do everything “right”. You may feel like you have to be the perfect parent who cooks, cleans and does everything in between all on your own. But don’t do this to yourself! Be open to accepting help from family and friends when you need it. If you have a supportive partner and/or family members and friends who are close by, we recommend asking them to come over and help out with some of the more time-consuming tasks. Most people don’t mind helping out and would love to lend a hand but they just don’t know how to offer. Take advantage of the extra help while your baby is little, it will make your life so much easier!
Make sure you eat well and get plenty of rest
Babies need a lot of energy to grow and develop. But, they don’t get that energy from thin air – it all comes from what you eat and drink. Babies get all their nutrients from you. In order for your baby to be healthy and grow, you need to make sure you’re eating well and getting plenty of rest. You can do this by eating healthy meals that are packed with vitamins and minerals. If you’re breastfeeding, you can eat whatever you want (within reason of course). If you’re bottle feeding, make sure to read the labels on your baby formula to make sure it’s a healthy option for your newborn. And if you’re breastfeeding, try to get as much rest as you can while your baby is sleeping. It’s often easier to fall asleep while breastfeeding than while bottle feeding so you can use this time to rest.
Pack your own meals for breastfeeding moms
You can only eat so much broccoli, right? Well, yes but you’ll still need to make sure you’re getting all the nutrients needed to grow a healthy baby. That means you’ll have to eat well while breastfeeding. If you don’t have family and friends to help you out with meals, you may have to pack your own. Make sure you read the labels on everything you eat to make sure it’s a healthy option for your baby. If you don’t know how to read the labels or what is a healthy option, you can ask for help or check out our article about what to eat when breastfeeding. Hopefully, you’ll be able to find breastfeeding easy. Mothers have been doing it for thousands of years so it’s not as hard as some people think. If you’re breastfeeding, you may have to make some small changes to your diet to get the right amount of nutrients and vitamins.
Turn up the heat and don’t hesitate to use a humidifier
Newborns are very sensitive to their surroundings. They need to be cozy and warm to be comfortable. But often, the house will be too cold for the newborn’s comfort. Take care of this by turning up the heat before your baby comes home. You might even want to turn the heat up a few days before your baby arrives so it can reach a comfortable temperature by the time she is born. Babies are also very sensitive to loud noises and changes in air pressure. Having the house at a comfortable temperature is important, but it’s also important to make sure the air pressure is at a comfortable level. You can help with this by turning up the heat and using a humidifier to help keep the air moist and comfortable for your baby. Make sure the humidifier doesn’t put off too much moisture or it could be a drowning risk. If you’re not sure whether or not your humidifier is safe, ask your doctor.
Babies don’t come with instruction manuals – so yes, raising a newborn can be a bit challenging! But once you get past the initial newborn stage things will get easier. Remember to stay positive and remember that your baby will grow up fast!