Being a first-time parent is one of life’s truly great joys. There is nothing more rewarding than nurturing life’s creation and caring for your child during those precious, intensely vulnerable months. Of course, that does not mean that taking care of a baby is not immensely challenging.
If you are caring for one of the 3.6 million babies born in America this year, you undoubtedly have a lot on your plate. A newborn baby has unique needs and must be shown very specific forms of care during every step of their day. However, knowing how to take care of a newborn baby is not rocket science. Simply follow these basic tips to get started.
When taking care of a baby, swaddling is the first thing you should learn. Swaddling is often the one thing that will stop them from crying. It also offers the safest way to put a newborn to sleep and to keep them secure during the day. Of course, it must be done correctly and gently. Read this guide on how to swaddle a baby to learn exactly how to get it right the first time.
Breastfeeding is an absolutely essential part of baby care, something that has undeniable health benefits for both mother and child. It is worth noting that you can choose any position you like for breastfeeding, as long as you are both comfortable. Make sure to support the baby’s head when feeding and try to keep the baby resting on your stomach. Take cues from the child and make sure they are not having any access issues.
Knowing how to care for a baby means knowing how to keep your baby clean. Bathing a newborn can be a lot of fun and is often a great way for a parent to bond with a baby. Again, this is not too difficult. Check that the water temperature is warm without being too hot – about 100 degrees Fahrenheit is fine. Bathe the child in shallow water and wash them gently, using a small damp towel. Do not dry too vigorously and use talcum powder or another baby powder.
You will quickly realize that newborns spend a lot of time asleep. After all, being a part of the big wide world for the first time can be pretty exhausting! For a parent, sleep time can also be a source of anxiety, but there is no need to panic. Your newborn will likely spend as much as 17 hours a day asleep, but this is fine.
Make sure they are sleeping flat on their back without any loose bedding or pillows in the crib. This will significantly reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Check on your baby regularly, but don’t pick them up if they are stirring.
Now That You Know How to Take Care Of a Newborn Baby…
Now that you know the basics of how to take care of a newborn baby, it’s time to think about the coming weeks and months. If you’re in need of some tips and strategies for keeping your baby safe, happy, and healthy during this important time period, we have got you covered. Consult our expert Parenting guides to learn more.