How to Take Care of a Baby

Infant care is very important. It not only involves physical development but also involves mental health. Infant not only needs proper diet but also need proper sleep. Sleep helps infant to grow and if infants help sleeps adequately they become energetic.

Baby Care Important Tips

  • In winters, do not over cover infants with extra clothes. Covering child with too much clothes leads to overheating, this is dangerous for child.
  • Make a habit that child should sleep on its back.
  • Never try infant to sleep on stomach.
  • Infant should never sleep on sideways. It is recommended that 15-20 minutes after breast feeding child can sleep sideways. But after some time, it should be seen that child should sleep on back.
  • When child takes feed in child, it is recommended that child should be taken on shoulders by either parent and child’s back should be patted. This helps child to take burp. This prevents child to regurgitate milk. If child don’t take burp then it is said that take while keeping child on shoulders or try for burp after 15-20 minutes.

Benefits of Sleeping on Back

It prevents child from SIDS (Sudden Infant Death syndrome). It is a condition in which child dies in sleep. Its main cause is when child sleeps on stomach. When sleeping on abdomen, child’s nose and mouth is covered inside bed. This results in difficulty in breathing.

It prevents child from respiratory tract infections like cough, difficutly in respriation and pain in ears.

Type of bed

Now a day’s beds are decorated and it is very attractive. It should be kept in mind that bed should not be very soft and spongy. Soft and spongy bed easily pressed and child’s head can struck inside bed. This may cause difficulty in respiration and can cause death.

  • Avoid soft pillows, bed and water bed.
  • Always use thin and little hard bed for infants as this kind of bed will not pressed and will be useful.
  • It is said that mattress of 1-2 inches thickness on hard cot is best bed.

Causes of sudden unexpected infant death during sleep

  • Suffocation
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • If a person accidently sleeps on infant
  • Sometimes cause is not known

Precautions of Infant Sleep

  • Child should sleep on back.
  • Always have firm sleep surface.
  • Patients should insist on room sharing and should not have bed sharing. Bed sharing can lead to accidentally lay on child.
  • Avoid soft bedding.
  • Avoid overheating.
  • Avoid exposure to tobacco smoke, alcohol and illicit drugs. This should not be used by parents.
  • Supine position is best position for child. A firm crib mattress with fitted sheet is the recommended sleep surface to reduce the risk of SIDS and suffocation.
  • Cribs with missing hardware should not be used. Many deaths are seen due to repaired cribs or cribs missing parts.
  • Only mattresses designed for that product should be used.
  • No pillows, quilts comforters etc should be placed under a sleeping infant.
  • Infants should not sleep on adult beds even alone due to risk of suffocation.
  • Infants should sleep in an area with less hazard, free of dangling cords, electric wires and other blind cords to avoid strangulation.
  • Devices like strollers, swings, carriers and slings are not recommended for routine sleep for infants.
  • Infants less than 3 months are higher risk of death while bed sharing.
  • Bed sharing should be avoided in case any of the parents are smoker.
  • In cases of intoxication when having use of drugs or alcohol or any other sedative medicines.
  • Soft objects like plush toys, pillows, quilts can obstruct nose and mouth leading to suffocation.
  • If room is overheated then it may lead to SIDS.
  • Dress for the environment, no more than 1 layer more than you the adult would wear for comfort.
  • Always evaluate for sweating or feeling hot to touch.
  • Baby should sleep on back. They should not sleep on sides as they can roll more easily onto the stomach. Child with problem of gastroesophageal reflux should sleep on their backs.
  • Newborns should be placed skin-to skin with their mother as soon after birth as possible at least for the first hour. After feeding, or when the mother needs to sleep or cannot do skin-to-skin babies can be placed on their backs in the bassinet.
  • If baby falls asleep in car seat, stroller, swing, infant carrier or sling, you should move him or her to firm sleep surface on his or her back as soon as possible.
  • Provide a safe sleeping environment night and day.
  • A safe sleeping place for infant reduces the risk of sudden infant death and various sleeping accidents which may be fatal.
  • Always place baby on the back.
  • Nothing else should be kept in crib except baby.
  • Never place baby to sleep on a couch, sofa or armchair as these places are dangerous.
  • Bed sharing when baby was premature or with low birth weight is dangerous.
  • If medicines or drugs are taken by parents which make it harder for them to wake up, then bed sharing is dangerous.
  • Breastfed babies have a lower risk of SIDS. Breastfeeding is recommended for at least 12 months, or longer when baby desire.
  • Keep the cot free of soft objects and anything loose or fluffy. It should not contain anything which causes suffocation or smother child.
  • Don’t use products which are sleep positioner, these are used to keep babies in a specific position. This can cause flat head (plagiocephaly). This increases the risk of suffocation.

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