Babies are delicate and it is essential that we take good care of them. We also know that in light of this delicate nature, there are many precautions to be taken when handling newborns and when we have newborns among us, present in our homes. These precautions range from the physiological health of the baby to the safety of the external environment.
Keeping in mind that in the womb they always had mum’s protection, it’s safe to say that they’re going to need some extra help when it’s gone. This is why vaccines are important - to ensure prevention of and protection against certain diseases and ailments, in order to lead to a healthier and happier life for the baby. Why deal with unnecessary problems when there’s a solution so readily available?
Newborns take time to build their own immunity outside the womb. Until their immunity is strong enough, they are extremely susceptible to germs. For the healthiest lifestyle for your baby, it’s important that your house is clean at all times. Anything that your baby might come in contact with, from the cradle bars to your hands, must be clean and sanitized before your baby lays hands (and mouth) on them - to prevent any bacteria infecting your newborn.
Any food that is consumed by your baby must be thoroughly washed and cleaned. When feeding your baby, make sure the food is extremely well cooked to kill any germs or bacteria that may have been present. Not just food, but anything that goes in your baby’s mouth. Special care should be taken for those objects which frequently go in your baby’s mouth, i.e., pacifiers, thumbs, blankets, toys. Babies have a tendency to put anything they come in contact with into their mouths. Things which go in regularly have a tendency of catching germs which means that they need to be kept clean and germ-free all the time. This not only means that you need to keep your own hands clean before handling your baby, but also that your baby’s hands must be cleaned often before it ends up in his/her mouth.
If your baby is sick, do not hesitate to pay your friendly neighborhood doctor a visit. The longer you wait, the worse it gets. The earlier you go, the faster you can ease your baby’s discomfort. As useful as home remedies can be, you don’t want to take chances when it comes to your little one.
Apart from keeping cabinets and doors locked, getting furniture locks and straps also serve an important purpose. While locks ensure that your baby isn’t crawling into random spaces or getting his/her hands on potentially harmful/hurtful objects, furniture locks and straps ensure that when your baby is crawling around and probably into furniture, there is no possibility of this furniture toppling over.
Babies love exploring so these are useful items to utilize in order to baby-proof your house. This means strapping bookshelves and cupboards to walls and sofas and chairs to the floor to limit movement of these objects as much as possible.
You’d be surprised at how many things can serve as choking hazards when it comes to babies. This is mainly because babies have no filter when it comes to what goes in their mouths. If they can pick it up and it fits (sometimes, even if it doesn’t) it goes in.
So, as parents, it’s our duty to be mindful of the things that are lying around the house, within the reach of babies, keeping in mind that there are unusual items that could also serve as choking hazards. It’s also our duty to be mindful of the whereabouts of our babies and what they decide to taste test.
An important but often ignored safety concern for babies is the way in which they are handled - the way they’re picked up, held, and played with. When holding your baby, ensure that you support the neck in order to support the still weak neck muscles. Also make sure that any and all furniture or places that your baby will ever be in are secured with railings and baby-proofed. If you’re taking your child out in the car, make sure that somebody sits in the back with the child or that you have the appropriate car seat in place. Never leave your baby alone when he/she is free to move around.
These few health and safety tips can go a long way in making yours and you baby’s life healthier, happier, and easier. Babies are a handful, but they’re bundles of joy who deserve some top quality care. Never be shy to ask for help or tips because at the end of the day it benefits your little one.