Newborns are both adorable and yet very fragile creatures. Their every need depends on their parents. Giving the gift of life is a life-changing experience for any new mom. It is a role that mothers have to take on blindly with no instruction book whatsoever.
If a mom were to think about it, having an instruction book would be very helpful but life would be boring. However, there are just some things that many moms do with their brand new baby that they probably shouldn’t be doing. There are many different sources of help available to mothers these days, one has to take into consideration which sources to follow. Help from one may not coincide with personal beliefs.
Some of the things that moms do with their babes that they shouldn’t are things like the hot debate on whether or not they should vaccinate their babies, bathing their newborn shortly after arriving home, and bundling their child up beyond belief.
There are plenty of good reasons why there are rules or suggestions to follow when it comes to caring for a newborn, and that is to help keep them as safe as possible in this dangerous world. Children should be cherished and raised with love. Please continue reading to see some of the things that moms tend to do with their brand new baby that they really shouldn’t.
20 Bathing After Arriving Home From The Hospital
Many moms feel the need to try to bathe their little one as soon as they get home from the hospital. That is something that should never be done because it has the potential to lead to the baby’s umbilical cord area getting infected. The umbilical cord needs to stay dry until it falls off naturally.
Newborn’s don’t usually do much that causes them to get messy within their first week or two of life. But if your little one would need a bath, you are allowed to give your newborn a sponge bath as long as you avoid the umbilical cord area.
19 Leaving The Baby Alone With Pets
Pets are usually accepted into families as members of the family. As an animal lover myself, I understand how important it is to make sure that all members of your family – new babies included – love and accept your beloved pet as much as you do. But that does not mean that young children should be left alone with the family pet.
If you are trying to get your feline or fido acquainted with the new baby, it is best to always be supervising the two together.
There is a chance that everything will be fine, but there is also the chance that the household pet will not get along with your newborn. There is also the potential that the pet fur or body could accidentally block a young child's airway if the child is unable to move their head away from the animal's body. It is better to be safe than sorry.
18 Letting Young Children Hold The Baby
When you have more than one child, it is normal for parents to want to let their older child or children hold the newborn. But depending on the older siblings age, that is not always the best idea. Children under 5-years-old should not hold a young baby in case of things like they accidentally drop the baby for whatever reason.
If you are going to let your young child hold your new baby, you should always make you sure that you are also holding the baby so that it just appears that they are doing it on their own. Always make sure that you have a good hold.
17 Letting The Baby Sleep On Their Side Or Tummy
Many moms are already aware of the fact that a newborn or child who is too young to lift their own head and turn it from side to side should not be put to sleep on their tummies or sides; just their backs. Allowing a newborn to sleep on their stomach increases the risk of them developing SIDS.
SIDS is a condition that causes a young child to pass in their sleep. Although there is no known cause of SIDS, there are things that have been said to increase the chances of a child developing it such as sleeping in incorrect positions.
For the health and wellbeing of your baby, please always put him or her to sleep on their back until they are old enough to sleep on their front side.
16 Skipping Out On Vaccinations
Vaccinations are a very controversial and hot topic for many people. I have worked as a medical assistant in a family practice, and I cannot stress enough that I personally believe vaccinations are important. They can help protect your child from very serious illnesses that can have some ill consequences.
Some parents do not believe it is safe to vaccinate their child, and that is their choice. However, some believe the best way that you can help protect your child is by getting him or her vaccinated. If you have any questions about vaccinations, be sure to do ample research on the pros and cons of this important decision.
15 Sharing A Bed
There are far too many moms who believe in co-sleeping or sharing a bed with their little one. While that may seem like the best way to protect your baby, it can actually do more harm than good. When a young child is sharing a bed with mom, dad, or both parents, there is always the chair that the parent could roll over onto top their baby which is very dangerous.
There is also the potential that the child could get stuck in a crevice between their parent and the bed. Or the fact that they could get wrapped up in the bedding. It is just not a safe practice at all.
14 Using Regular Detergent
Babies, especially newborns, have very sensitive skin. Their skin can be so sensitive that regular laundry detergents can irritate their baby soft skin or give them an unwanted rash. That is why they make natural detergents that are much gentler on a baby’s skin. Plus, when a baby is a newborn, parents are not aware of what allergies their child may have.
Allergies are a major reason that you want to proceed with caution when trying out things like new soaps, detergents, or even baby lotions. If you are going to try something new, please only try a little bit of the product on your child’s skin until you are able to begin to tell what your child may or may not be allergic too.
13 Giving Them Their Favorite Toy At Night
Once you notice that your newborn is starting to bond with a toy and one becomes their favorite, it is only natural to want to give your baby their favorite toy when you put him or her down for a nap or even bedtime. However, you may want to hold off until your baby is a bit older and is able to move their head from side to side.
The reason for this is so that if the stuffed animal or toy winds up in front of their face they are strong enough to lift their head and move it out of the way to keep their airway from getting blocked.
12 Cleaning Their Nose With A Finger
It is a very well-known fact that human hands contain tons of germs and viruses that you don’t really want to expose your newborn too. Way too many moms have the notion that it is okay to clean their baby’s nose with their finger, which so many moms have done before. But it really is not a good idea to expose your little one to all those germs when you stick your finger in their nose.
Newborns have immune systems that are not yet fully developed and this added exposure has the potential to make your little one ill.
This is why you should always try to use at least a tissue. Plus, newborns don’t know how to blow their nose yet so if you stick your figure up there, there is always the chance that you are pushing more up there and getting it stuck. It is best for all moms to purchase those baby nasal aspirators.
11 Forgetting Oral Hygiene
Some moms, especially new moms, tend to overlook how important it is to care for their newborn’s oral hygiene. Just because a new baby does not have any teeth does not mean that their gums should be neglected.
Never try to use your bare fingers when cleaning your little one’s gums for the same reasons that you should not clean their nose with your finger; your hands are riddled with germs that you don’t want getting into your baby’s mouth.
Plus, part of caring your newborn’s gums is making sure that whatever they stick in their mouth – including pacifiers and the tops of their bottles – is also clean to avoid things like thrush from developing. When cleaning your baby’s gums, it is best to use a clean, warm washcloth or they even sell finger shields with ridges to help keep their gums clean.
10 Leaving The Diaper On Too Long
Diapers are very expensive, and we get that. Some moms even choose to go green and use reusable cloth diapers. Regardless of what method you choose to use for pampering your baby’s bottom, one thing is still very important; moms all over have to make sure that they are changing their little one’s diaper enough.
Another thing to keep in consideration is that if you are buying diapers on a budget like most moms are, that you are paying attention to labels because not all diapers are made equal. The same can go for the fabric on cloth diapers. Leaving a diaper on too long can lead to an uncomfortable rash for your little one. When a baby has a diaper rash, it can cause them some pain and make them very fussy and irritable.
It is not wise to skip out of diaper changes to try to save money either. Newborns older than 6-days-old usually have between 6 and 8 wet diapers a day, and that does not include number two’s. Another serious risk to leaving a diaper on too long is that it has the potential to lead to a UTI, which is very painful and uncomfortable; just ask any adult who has ever had one!
9 Not Using Changing Table Straps
Most elevated changing tables have safety straps on them for your baby’s protection. They are there for a reason, yet many moms tend to skip out on using them. However, every time you have your child on that changing table you should be buckling the safety straps in case your little one would wiggle around a lot and fall.
Babies love to wiggle and they tend to move pretty fast. There is no guarantee that if your baby were to fall that you would be able to catch him or her. If you were to turn around for even just one second – if your child is not strapped in – your child could be on the floor before you even realize it. Always try to use all safety measures that are available for your little one.
8 Giving The Baby Cow’s Milk
Newborns have special diets that honestly does not consist for much; either breastmilk or formula. Whatever way you choose to feed your little one is completely up to you as their mother. Some moms have the idea that because babies drink milk that it would be okay to give them cow’s milk. However, that is not that case. Babies, especially newborns, should not be given cow’s milk for a few reasons.
One reason is that a baby’s tummy is unable to digest it properly until they are about one-year-old. Babies should not be given any form of dairy. Another reason that a newborn should not be given cow’s milk is that it contains minerals and proteins that can cause stress to a baby’s immature kidney’s, according to Healthychildren.org. Plus, cow’s milk does not contain the iron that newborn’s and babies need to thrive.
7 Letting People Touch The Baby’s Hands
Babies are notorious for putting their hands, along with anything that they can get their hand on, in their mouth. So, if other children or adults are touching a newborn’s hands, they are cross-contaminating and giving all those icky germs that were on their own hands directly to the baby.
Newborns have weakened immune systems that have not fully developed yet which can lead to them getting sick much easier than an older child or adult. Adults and children alike should always wash their hand with soap and warm water and make sure to rinse well before touching a baby’s hands. We should also not be relying solely on hand sanitizers either.
6 Allowing The Baby Sleep Upright
Far too many moms allow their newborns to sleep sitting up in either a car seat or a baby swing. It is okay to let your little one drift off while sitting in either one, but as soon as they fall asleep or your notice his or her bobbing around, they need to be placed in their play area or crib to prevent serious complications related to respiratory issues.
If a baby’s head tilts the wrong way and the child is too young to hold their head up on their own, there is the possibility that their airway could become blocked.
It is understandable that most babies will fall asleep in their car seat while in a moving vehicle. But as soon as you are able to, either wake your baby up or move him or her so that they are lying flat on their back.
5 Using Crib Bumpers
A few years ago, it was common to see crib bumpers in almost every baby’s crib. They may look nice, but they can be very dangerous to a little one. Babies love to move around and wiggle – even newborns. Crib bumpers can sometimes get wrapped around a tiny one which could be very dangerous. Also, some babies have actually pressed their face up against the bumpers on accident, and if a young baby is unable to move their head away from the area it can lead to the baby’s airway becoming blocked.
Plus, if the bumpers are not cleaned properly it can easily become a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. Crib bumpers increase the risk of SIDS in young children. They may look pretty, but using them is not advisable.
4 Putting On Too Much Clothing
On those cold winter days, it is understandable that you want to keep your little one nice and warm by bundling him or her up. But there is such a thing as making your baby too hot – even for cold weather. Plus, when clothing is being layered on, usually the clothing on top is too large which can lead to the baby getting tangled in it.
When a baby is overheated, the risk of SIDS increases. This also includes making the baby’s room too warm for how they are dressed. The ideal temperature for a newborn’s room is 68 to 72 degrees F.
3 Leaving The Baby Alone Near Water
Most moms are already aware of this, but it is so important that it needed to be mentioned. Children, especially young children, should never be left alone near water. It does not even matter if it’s only an inch. I personally knew a woman who left her 7-month-old child alone in the bathtub for a moment, and sadly her son has passed away.
It is a serious matter that affects more people than some realize. When you are bathing your child, make sure that you have everything you need. Triple check if you need to. If you forget something while your baby is in the bath, make someone else get the item. If that is not possible, make sure that you bring your little one with you.
2 Kissing The Baby’s Face
When a baby is born, people love to cuddle and kiss the newborn. However, kissing the newborn on the face is something that should be avoided at all costs. This is because there are tons of germs and bacteria in the human mouth. When you kiss a baby, all those germs are being transferred over to them and because of a newborn's immature immune system, they could easily become ill or even develop some unpleasant diseases.
There have been documented cases of babies developing herpes on their mouths from someone who either knowingly or unknowingly had the disease and kisses the child on the face. Plus, sometimes the things we put on our own faces, such as makeup or creams, could irritate a newborn’s sensitive skin.
1 Letting The Baby Cry It Out
Newborns are not able to speak to us to tell us what they want or need so they cry. That is their way of letting us know when they need something. Using the “cry it out” method is not recommended because when babies cry, there is usually a reason for it. Children need nurturing and letting them cry it out will do nothing to “toughen” them up either.
We are not saying that you should throw the dish you were washing on the floor in order to run to your child the instant they make a peep because that would also be insane. But shortly after your newborn starts crying, you should plan on making a trip to their bedroom to go check in on him or her. You always want to ensure that their basic needs are being met!