Baby Tips

It never hurts to have a little help when it comes to taking care of your new bundle of joy. If you’re a first-time parent, taking care of a new baby can be overwhelming. With all of the advice from friends, family, doctors and baby books, it can be hard to decide which information you should follow. For a crash-course in how to make things easier, check out these five baby tips for all of your parenting needs.

1. Teething:

Nothing can make a baby more uncomfortable than dealing with new teeth breaking out of the gums. Not only will your baby be fussy and cranky, he/she may be prone to biting. The next time your little one needs something to take out their frustration on, turn to the following foods and items: teething biscuits, a Popsicle (there are many specially made for teething babies), frozen banana, frozen bagel, cold spoon, cold bottle of water, teething ring, or a wet washcloth that’s been kept in a baggie in the freezer.

2. Putting your baby to bed:

The best way to get your baby to bed at a regular time is to start a routine early. Do your best to put your baby to bed around the same time each night. If your baby is having a hard time getting to sleep during this time frame, do what it takes to get him/her relaxed enough to fall asleep, such as giving your baby a bath, singing a lullaby, giving a gentle back massage after setting him/her down, or making sure he/she has a fresh diaper. In addition to putting your baby to sleep at the same time every night, be sure to use the same place. This will help your baby associate that particular area with sleep time.

3. Diaper rash:

When your baby’s bottom is irritated, try easy home remedies to soothe and calm them down. For diaper rash and chaffing, apply a generous amount of fresh aloe extract. You can purchase a bottle of aloe extract from any health food store or the nearest pharmacy. If you don’t have the time to go out and buy aloe, go into your cabinets and reach for vegetable shortening. Apply it directly onto your baby’s affected area. For really bad diaper rash, spread the vegetable shortening onto their diaper instead of their skin and fasten as usual.

4. Fussy or colic?

One way to tell if your baby is simply fussy or is suffering from colic (a common condition that involves intense, inconsolable crying for long periods of time), is to note how often and how long your baby cries. For babies who cry in the afternoon or evenings for longer than three hours a day, three days out of the week, colic is most likely the cause. Episodes of colic usually start suddenly for no reason. If your baby does indeed have colic, make an appointment with your doctor to learn how to care for your baby properly during this time.

5. Overfeeding and underfeeding:

Look for these signs to know if you have fed your baby just the right amount of breast milk: Alert and content, steadily gaining weight at a safe rate, takes to feeding between 8-12 times a day. Take note of these signs that may show your baby isn’t getting fed enough: baby’s face doesn’t fill out properly, skin stays wrinkles after his/her first month of life, doesn’t appear satisfied or content even after a complete feeding.