Newborn Care Week 2019: Seven common mistakes that most new parents make

At the start of the Newborn Care Week 2019, from 15-21 November, we look at some of the most common mistakes that first-time parents make in the first year.

Myupchar November 15, 2019 12:37:51 IST
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Newborn Care Week 2019: Seven common mistakes that most new parents make
  • Sharing a bed with the parents is one of the biggest causes for sudden infant death syndrome or SIDS

  • New moms and dads are often told to get some sleep when the baby sleeps, but most ignore this golden rule in the initial stages

  • Babies should ideally eat and drink nothing but breastmilk until they are six months old

Becoming a parent is possibly the biggest, most beautiful change in any couple’s life. But it is a huge responsibility, too. The first year of parenting is all about getting to know your baby and falling into a new rhythm of things. Despite their best efforts, every new parent makes a few mistakes. No matter how cautious they are.

At the start of the Newborn Care Week 2019, from 15-21 November, we look at some of the most common mistakes that first-time parents make in the first year of parenting:

Newborn Care Week 2019 Seven common mistakes that most new parents make

Representational image.
Image by Pexels from Pixabay

1. Not sleeping when the baby sleeps

Even though newborns sleep for 18-20 hours a day, there’s precious little time for the new mom and dad to relax. This is because the baby will wake up every two to three hours for his/her feeds.

New moms and dads are often told to get some sleep when the baby sleeps, but most ignore this golden rule in the initial stages. Instead of taking the weight off their legs, they end up working or completing household chores. The result: sleep deprivation that affects their productivity and leaves them feeling tired and frustrated.

2. Panicking at the drop of a hat

It is natural for new parents to worry about the health and safety of their baby. However, first-time parents tend to be overprotective. They panic even if the baby sneezes or spits up. They overthink every simple or small change in regular activity. New parents often take time to understand that while babies need tender loving care 24x7, they are not as fragile as we think.

3. Ignoring the fever; thinking the baby is just warm

Most first-time parents ignore babies’ fever thinking that he is just feeling warm, and panic at other unnecessary things like spitting up and small changes in bowel movements. 

In the first three months of a baby’s life, a temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher is the most common sign of infection and illness, and parents should consult the doctor right away. The only exception to this rule is if babies develop a little bit of fever soon after they get a vaccine.

4. Not letting the baby cry

For a parent, it is hard to see their baby cry. Yet, crying is the only way babies can communicate. In fact, it is an important part of being a baby. Babies may cry even if they are completely fine and satisfied. First-time parents should learn that it is perfectly okay to let the baby cry for a while. However, don’t ignore the crying if the baby has a fever or an infection.

5. Not burping the baby after every feed

Babies are soft and delicate and it is natural for first-time parents to feel nervous while handling them. That is the reason why, instead of burping the baby properly, many parents prefer to put the babies down to sleep after feeding them. But burping actually saves your baby from a lot of pain and discomfort.

6. Not saying a firm ‘no’ when someone tries to give your baby honey

It might be a tradition to have babies taste honey as soon as they’re born, but it is a dated and potentially dangerous tradition. Honey may contain bacterial spores that could give babies stomach infection - also known as infant botulism. Babies should not be given honey before they turn one. In fact, they should ideally eat and drink nothing but breastmilk until they are six months old. Take your baby to a paediatrician if he/she has tasted honey and shows signs of constipation, weakness, and difficulty feeding.

7. Not getting a crib for baby, or getting one and not using it

Even if you're afraid you'll wake the baby up if you try to put him/her to bed in his/her crib, do it. Even if you're super tired after a feed and the child is sleeping sweetly next to you, get up or get someone to put the baby to bed in his/her crib. We cannot emphasize this enough: sharing a bed with the parents is one of the biggest causes for sudden infant death syndrome or SIDS.

It is perfectly fine to make mistakes, but the faster you learn from them, the smoother the sailing will become.

Health articles in Firstpost are written by myUpchar.com, India’s first and biggest resource for verified medical information. At myUpchar, researchers and journalists work with doctors to bring you information on all things health. For more information, please read our articles on Botulism: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment.

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