Health and Fitness

Baby Care Tips

Baby Guide

These tips can help parents who are nervous about taking care of a newborn feel relaxed and confident.

After the birth, getting help

Consider seeking help during this difficult time. Talk to the specialists while you’re at the hospital. Many hospitals have lactation specialists who can help get you started bottle-feeding. Nursing specialists are also a great resource, as they can show you how hold, burp, change, care for, and feed your baby.

Make sure to have everything you need before you diaper your baby. You’ll need:

a clean diaper

Fasteners are required if you use cloth prefold diapers

diaper ointment

Use diaper wipes or warm water with a washcloth or cotton ball.

Lay your baby on its back, and then remove the dirty diaper. To gently clean your baby’s genital areas, use water, cotton balls and washcloth, or wipes. If you are removing a boy’s diaper, be careful as he may urinate if he is exposed to the air. To avoid a urinary tract infections (UTI), wipe a girl’s bottom from the front. Apply ointment to prevent or treat a rash. After changing a diaper, always wash your hands thoroughly.

Diaper rash is common. The rash will usually be red and bumpy. Most rashes are caused by sensitive skin.

These tips can help prevent or treat diaper rash.

Your baby should be changed every other day, as well as as as soon after each bowel movement.

After gently cleaning the area with water and mild soap (wipes can sometimes be irritating), apply a thick layer of diaperrash or “barrier cream” to the affected area. Because they act as a barrier against moisture, creams with zinc oxide work well.

Use cloth diapers. Wash them with dye- and fragrance-free detergents.

Bathing basics

Make sure to give your baby a sponge-bath until:

The umbilical cord drops off and the navel heals (1-4 weeks).

The healing process takes between 1-2 weeks.

For the first year, it is okay to take a bath twice or three times per week. The skin may become dry if it is taken more frequently.

Before you bathe your baby, make sure these items are on hand
  • Use a soft, clean towel to wash your hands.
  • Shampoo and baby soap mildly scented
  • Blankets and towels
  • a clean diaper
  • Clean clothes

Sponge baths. You can make a sponge bath by choosing a safe and flat surface, such as a counter, changing table, or floor in a warm place. Warm (but not hot) water can be added to a nearby sink or bowl.

water. Put your baby on a towel. You can wipe your infant’s eye with a towel or a wet washcloth. Use water only. Wipe one eye first, then the outer corner.

The other eye can be washed with a clean corner of a washcloth or another cottonball. Use the damp washcloth to clean the baby’s nose, ears, and mouth.

You can then wet the washcloth again with some soap and gently wash your baby’s skin.

Additional to the products listed above, consider:

An infant tub with 2-3 inches of warm (not hot!) water. Water. (To check the water temperature, use your wrist or elbow to touch the water. An infant bathtub is a large plastic tub that can be placed in the bathtub.

Put your baby in warm water. The tub should be no deeper than 2-3 inches. Also, make sure there is no running water. You can support your baby’s head with one hand and guide them in their feet by using the other. Talk gently and slowly lower your baby to the bottom of the tub.

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