The first month after a newborn comes home can be a whirlwind. From sleepless nights to the many demands of motherhood, new moms are forced to adjust to their new role. There are many opportunities for mistakes to happen along the way. Something as simple as installing the infant car seat can be a challenge.
Many women don’t have baby experience, but we’re here to help. We’ve compiled a collection of the most common blunders new moms make and how to fix them. Sometimes it just takes a small reminder to prevent these issues. Please enjoy this list of 10 mistakes new moms (often) make within the first month.
10 Not Following Safe Sleeping Standards
Some new moms make mistakes when it comes to following safe baby sleep practices. From placing their baby in an unsafe sleep environment to putting their newborn to sleep in a dangerous position, many moms don’t stay within the recommended guidelines.
This is one area where one wrong move could have dire consequences. Always place a baby on their back to sleep and make sure that their crib is free of bedding and blankets. If you decide to co-sleep, make sure to talk to your doctor and research carefully.
9 Incorrect Car Seat Installation
Another stumbling block that some new moms face is installing the infant car seat incorrectly. It can be a tricky endeavor but it’s crucial that your baby’s car seat be put in the correct way. An infant can be seriously injured in a car accident if it’s done the wrong way.
Be sure to read the owner’s manual that came with the car seat and follow the directions carefully. The center backseat is the safest place for the car seat to be placed. It’s also important that when strapping your baby in, the harness strap and chest clip should be even with their armpits.
8 Not Feeding On Demand
Learning how to often to feed your baby can be challenging so it’s no surprise than some new moms make the mistake of trying to put their newborn on a feeding schedule. Professionals recommend that a newborn be fed “on-demand”.
Some people may confuse this term and mistakingly believe that feeding on demand will create a demanding baby. The term actually means that you learn your baby’s hunger cues and feed them when they signal that they are hungry. It’s so much better for mom and baby if a feeding can happen before they are fussy and start crying.
7 Burping Issues
One mistake that a new mom can make is not burping her baby the right way or often enough. Newborns produce a lot of gas so it’s really important that they are burped after feeding to prevent them from gagging or spitting up.
Don’t be afraid to handle your baby get them in the best position to get those burps out. Otherwise, you’ll have a very cranky baby on your hands. Be sure to work at moving that gas for at least 10 minutes after a feeding. Try several different positions until you find the one that works best.
6 Keeping Baby Too Warm
Some new moms bundle their newborn up in way too many clothes and blankets. While it is important to make sure that your baby is warm enough, it’s really easy for a little one to get overheated. All too often, parents put layer upon layer of clothes on their baby. So, how much is too much?
A good rule of thumb is to dress your baby with only one more layer than you would wear to be comfortable at the same temperature. It’s also crucial to know the signs of a baby overheating. Be on the lookout for damp hair or red ears.
5 Not Napping When Baby Naps
One piece of parenting advice that new moms often ignore is to nap when the baby naps. Let’s face it, having a newborn can be exhausting. They are up and down all night and their feeding schedule can be quite demanding. This means that the time that they spend napping is precious.
It may seem tempting to get some housework done while the baby is asleep but it would be so smart to take advantage of that time and get some rest for yourself. The dishes and laundry can wait because it’s so important that you get enough rest.
4 Too Many Visitors
Another mistake that a new mom often makes is allowing people to visit the baby too often. The first month after a baby is born is a fun time and everyone is so excited to meet the new family member but it’s important that you don’t over-schedule your newborn.
It can be challenging to put limits on well-meaning visitors but you have to do what’s best for your family. Don’t be afraid to tell people that the baby has visiting hours. That way you can focus on feeding your newborn and making sure that you have time to bond as a family.
3 Neglecting Self Care
There are so many demands on new moms that it’s all too easy for a woman to neglect self-care. Chances are that your body will need a bit of recovery time after labor and delivery so it’s a huge mistake to not take care of yourself within the first month of giving birth.
Moms tend to put themselves last but it’s really important that you carve out time for yourself and make sure that you’re making healthy decisions. From drinking enough water to getting enough rest, just be sure to check in with yourself every now and again. You’ll be a much happier mom.
2 Refusing Help
While we're on the subject of self-care, another mistake that new moms make is to not allow anyone to help them. Newborns are demanding and take a lot of care and attention. Many mothers try to take on way too much and reject any offers of help.
The truth is, you may need a bit of help within the first month. Don’t be afraid to ask a grandparent to feed the baby or allow your partner to do bathtime so you can rest. Sometimes it takes a support system to keep a new mom from suffering serious baby burnout.
1 Not Reaching Out To Professionals
There are times when a new mom needs to reach out for help from a professional but mistakenly chooses not to. Perhaps they struggle with their baby achieving a good latch while breastfeeding. Maybe they find themselves feeling overwhelmed and having symptoms of postpartum depression.
It’s so important to seek help from your doctor or a lactation consultant if you find yourself struggling. There are so many resources available to help you, so there is no need to struggle alone. Don’t make the mistake of trying to handle too much within the first month of your baby’s life.