Early Essentials of Baby Care - A Few Tips
As any health professional will tell you, and most parents know instinctively, the time in the womb and the first twelve months of a baby's life are the most critical in a child's upbringing. Mistakes and problems at that stage can have long term, sometimes permanent, effects.
The foetus and the baby after birth depend entirely on the parents, especially the mother. You are the baby's life, and it is your responsibility to ensure the baby is properly cared for. Baby care is not just about feeding; it is about everything you allow the baby to eat, drink, see, touch and hear. You are the source of its learning, the source of its health, and the source of its love
Baby care is a 24 hour job, and it involves every aspect of your own life and theirs. However, there are some basic essentials you need to apply, and here are a few tips for early baby care.
1. Be Adamant About Breast Feeding
There is absolutely no doubt that breast feeding is better for babies, and not just when they are babies. Studies have shown that breast fed babies are not only likely to be more happy and healthy as babies and infants, but right through childhood into their teenage years. Breast fed children tend to do better in school, adjust better to changes in their life, and have better attitudes to authority.
Breast milk is vitally important for a baby's immune system, and this is critical to fighting off infections and viruses. In tropical and poor countries this can be a life saver, as tropical and water borne diseases can be a threat to infants. Breast milk should be the exclusive food for at least six months, and then as long as the mother and child want afterwards. Solid foods can be slowly introduced after that first half year.
2. Ensure Baby's First Solid Foods Are Healthy
After about 6 months a baby will take an interest in what older people, especially Mom and Dad, are eating. With their teeth now developing, they will want to try. This is another crucial stage. To look after your baby properly, you must ensure good quality and nutritious healthy food. Do not feed them junk food such as fries and hot dogs, canned food, or other garbage such as donuts. they would set your baby on the road to ruin. Fresh fruits and vegetables should be the mainstay of the diet, with a mixture of fish and meats.
There is no agreement amongst professionals as to the need to puree food. In the case of our daughter, now 3 and a half , she wanted solids to be just that, solid. She wanted to eat what we had, which was mostly fish, vegetables, rice and fruit. Some advocate pureed food, but consider that babies in earlier centuries did not purify food, then it is worth trying small pieces of solid food. You can always mash or puree if the baby struggles; but our daughter insisted on what we had, and quite rightly too.
3. Always Remember Just How Important You Are to the Baby
When a baby is born, the parents and the siblings are the center of its life. A new baby is depending on the mother, and others who are close and frequently present. From its first moments, a new born baby will be picking up signals and learning from its immediate surroundings, which for much of the time involves the mother.
It is important to be aware of this, and to ensure the baby is brought up in a peaceful, warm and secure environment. If parents must argue, then it should be out of earshot of the baby. Concentrate instead on the bonding with the baby, through talking, touching, carrying, and assuring. It is up to the parents to exude happiness, so the baby too is happy. Always be conscious of the baby in all of your nearby actions, so that the influence will be a positive one, not something that will cause fear or confusion in the infant.
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