Caring for a newborn baby is not easy; there are many threats to health and well-being. Fortunately, there are a few things that you can do to try to keep your baby as healthy as possible. By being proactive, you may help to catch issues early or prevent illnesses or infections.
Be Selective About Where You Take Your Newborn
While keeping a baby inside of the house all of the time may not be the best for health, it is important to be selective about where you take your newborn when he or she is very young. Going to crowded restaurants, stores, airports, and hospitals can put your baby in contact with germs that he or she is not yet equipped to fight. Going outside in your yard or visiting relatives in the first few months may help to prepare your baby for other types of outings later.
Wash Hands Often
Washing your hands frequently can help to limit the types of viruses and bacteria that your baby is exposed to. If people ask to hold your baby, insisting that they wash their hands first may also be helpful. This is especially important during cold and flu seasons.
Communicate with a Pediatrician Regularly
Going to well-baby visits as scheduled is very important, as tests can help to spot developmental issues, birth defects or problems that were not noticeable at first, and even more serious problems like eye cancer that can be successfully treated if caught early. It is also helpful to form a relationship with the pediatrician so that you can call and ask about issues that you notice in daily life. Having open communication channels will help you to avoid unnecessary visits and keep your newborn healthy.
Breastfeed Even When Sick
It may seem that staying away from your baby when you are sick is advisable, but continuing to breastfeed may have some advantages. It may help to strengthen your newborn’s immunity against certain types of illnesses if you continue to breastfeed when sick. Your baby may also benefit from the touch and bonding, even if you are not breastfeeding.
Keep the Newborn Clean
Newborns can be messy and require a lot of cleaning and attention. Keeping the baby’s nose, fingernails, and body clean can help to prevent many issues and conditions. Since babies generally breathe through their noses, keeping the nose clean can prevent germs from entering the body. Keeping fingernails clean can help to prevent them from catching illnesses by putting their hands in their mouths. Keeping the body clean will help to protect the delicate skin and prevent cuts, rashes, and other issues.