Are you a new parent figuring out how to handle the wonders of parenthood? Welcome to the club! Taking care of your newborn can be an exciting but challenging experience. With only 24 hours in a day, it may feel impossible to know how best to spend your time so that everyone stays well-rested and happy – especially considering your small human’s seemingly endless needs. Fortunately, there are some tips you can use as you settle into life with your child.
In this post, we’ll go over helpful tips for taking care of your newborn and doing it with ease. So get comfortable, and let’s dive in!
1. Establish a Routine
Create a schedule for your newborn for feeding, napping, and playing to help you better understand their needs and plan accordingly. Feeding is an essential part of taking care of your little one, and establishing a routine can make the process easier.
Start by scheduling feedings when your baby seems hungry, usually every two to three hours during the day, and longer stretches at night. You can also use the time in between feedings to fit in naps and playtime.
2. Ensuring Safe and Nutritious Feeding
Making sure your little one is well-fed is essential, and while many parents choose to breastfeed, others opt for formula. If you choose to go the formula route, be sure to research the different types available and consult with your pediatrician to determine the best one for your baby. It’s also important to be aware of any potential risk factors associated with formula, such as contamination or mislabeling, which can lead to serious health issues for your baby. In some cases, parents have even filed a baby formula lawsuit against manufacturers due to issues with the safety or quality of the product.
If you have any concerns about the safety of the formula you’re using, don’t hesitate to seek help, including the possibility of joining a class-action lawsuit, if necessary.
3. Practice Skin-to-Skin Contact
Skin-to-skin contact is an important part of taking care of a newborn. This simple act helps them stay calm and soothe themselves when they’re crying. It also promotes bonding with their parents, as the baby begins to recognize their parents’ scent, voice, and touch.
To practice skin-to-skin contact with your newborn, take off your shirt or unbutton the baby’s top and hold them against your bare chest for 10–15 minutes at a time.
Swaddling is an ancient technique used by many cultures to help bring comfort and security to babies. When done correctly, swaddling helps to prevent the startle reflex that can wake babies up during sleep; it also helps them feel snug and content while in your arms. When swaddling a newborn, use a thin blanket and make sure the baby’s legs are free to move around.
5. Keep Track of Their Sleep
Sleep is essential for babies and parents, so it’s important to keep track of the amount of sleep your little one gets throughout the day.
Try keeping a journal or using an app to record when your baby sleeps, how long they nap for, and any other notes about their sleep habits that might be helpful down the road. This will help you identify patterns in their sleeping schedule as well as recognize times when your baby needs more rest than usual.
6. Make Safety Your Top Priority
Safety is of utmost importance when caring for a newborn, so take the necessary steps to protect them from potential hazards. Install safety latches on kitchen and bathroom cabinets that contain dangerous items, such as cleaning products or sharp objects.
Invest in a baby monitor to keep an eye (and ear!) on your little one while you’re away from the room. Lastly, make sure your baby sleeps in an appropriate space with no pillows or blankets — just a firm mattress covered by a fitted sheet.
7. Keep Your Baby’s Environment Clean
To help keep your baby healthy, it’s important to regularly clean their environment. Wipe down toys with a mild soap and warm water, wash the bedding every week or two, and vacuum the floors often.
Make sure to also sanitize any items that go into your baby’s mouth, such as pacifiers or teethers, by running them through the dishwasher.
8. Get Creative with Playtime
Keeping your little one entertained is an important part of taking care of a newborn. Stimulating their senses helps encourage development as well as reinforce positive associations between people, places and things. Try using different textures, colors, shapes, and sounds during playtime to provide your baby with new experiences. Clapping games, bouncing on your lap, singing songs — the possibilities are endless!
9. Keep Your Newborn Hydrated
In addition to their milk or formula feedings, it’s important to make sure your little one stays hydrated. Babies can quickly become dehydrated if not given enough fluid throughout the day, so be sure to give them small sips of water every few hours in between feedings (unless the doctor has recommended otherwise). Keeping a bottle of cooled boiled water near your baby’s bed or changing area can help remind you to keep them hydrated.
10. Create a Calming Bedtime Routine
Developing a calming bedtime routine can be very beneficial in helping your little one transition from being active during the day to getting ready for sleep. This could involve cuddles, stories, gentle music, or lullabies – whatever works best for you and your baby. A regular pre-bedtime routine will become comforting after a while, letting them know that it’s almost time for sleep.
Caring for a newborn can be exciting and challenging, but with these tips, you can feel confident in providing safe and nurturing care for your little one. Every baby is different, so don’t be afraid to adapt these tips to fit your family’s unique needs. And if you ever have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to your pediatrician or another trusted healthcare provider. With a little patience, love, and support, you and your baby can enjoy a happy and healthy start to your new life together.