Breastfeeding: Getting Started

When it comes to the best milk for babies, nothing is better than all natural mothers’ milk. Why? Unlike substitutes like baby formulas made from cow’s milk, human milk has just what babies’ need. Surprisingly, the past few decades of baby formula advertising, many mothers today are unfamiliar with breast feeding. That is why breastfeeding is important. Instinctively, breastfeeding should feel comfortable and natural to both mothers and babies. Although, the first couple week’s mother’s nipples may be sore, but after that, breastfeeding will be an enjoyable time for both babies and their mothers, at least for the next four to six months.

Truly, bottled milk and formulas are not necessary to meet infants’ nutritional needs, at least for the first six months. Unfortunately, hospital staff everywhere recommends bottle feeding when most new mothers express discomfort while breastfeeding. However, to firmly establish a strong mother-child bond, breastfeeding should not be taken lightly and dismissed because of mild discomfort from a suckling new infant.

Starting baby out right breastfeeding

Infants need help to start breastfeeding, and getting them to ‘latch’ on properly to the nipple may take some time, but don’t worry! Suckling a nipple is instinctive to all mammals, human babies included, it just takes a little time, but when the hunger sets in you’ll be surprised how fast a baby will learn to latch on to a nipple to get milk. Most nipple pain new mothers experience is caused by their babies not latching onto the breast properly. A baby properly latch onto the nipple will allow milk to flow easily, when a baby hasn’t made a proper nipple alignment/latch, babies will suck harder in an unconscious effort to draw more milk. This is what young mothers need to understand to start out the right way breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding at the hospital ASAP

As soon as possible, while in the hospital mothers should introduce the breast to their babies. Actually, scientific studies have revealed that infants will seek out their mother’s breast shortly after birth. In this regard, mothers and babies should be together as soon as possible. There really is no scientific reason why they should be separated after birth. Although, it is a common practice in hospitals for the convenience of new mothers who are frustrated and tired by their new baby’s frequent feeding needs. Breastfeeding, when done right, should be comfortable, natural and a heartily enjoyable experience for mother and child.

Artificial nipples should be avoided. Why? Artificial nipples can confuse a baby, and if they are introduced immediately after birth, then they may have difficulty learning to latch properly to the mother’s nipples latter on. Lastly, you should be aware that baby formula companies are very active in marketing their products in maternity wards, although new mothers may receive free samples, they should resist the temptation to bottle feed their children. If mothers want the best nutrients for their babies, then they should breastfeeds as soon as possible.

Baby care tips

Tips to Soothe Your Crying Baby

No matter what age or stage your newborn baby is, when it cries it gets on other’s nerves. This is especially true when out in public. There are ways to calm a baby when it’s crying at home, as well as out in public. Here is a list of the top six ways to calm a crying baby.

#1: Millikan Drops

If a baby has gas, they will naturally cry as a reaction to let their parents know. Sometimes patting their back isn’t enough to release these gas bubbles. Therefore, using Millikan drops, an over the counter gas relief remedy for babies, is an option to consider. If you explore this option, however, be sure to read the instructions for how much and how often to administer.

#2: White Noise Machine

White noise has been known to have a calming effect on people of all ages, especially a newborn baby. There are many ways to achieve this goal ranging from using a fan set on low or an actual white noise machine. Many pediatricians will advise against the use of using a fan because it could cause the baby to become chilled or it could dry out their nasal passageways.

#3: Baby Carrier

Some babies feel more comfortable when they are placed in their baby carriers. They will cry less often because they feel more snug, secure, and cuddled. Also, there is less occurrences of gastrula reflux when babies are on their backs and sleeping slightly upward at an angle. It is not a good idea, nor is it safe, however to keep a baby unattended in their baby carrier. If you choose this option, be sure you’re supervising.

#4: Bjorn

This is another way of swaddling a baby while out in public whereby the baby is carried directly against their parent. Some parents carry their baby in their homes using their Bjorn, as well, to provide extra body to body comfort and help their baby feel secure.

#5: Nursery Monitors

Use of nursery monitors prevents parents from rushing into nurseries whenever a baby starts crying. They can monitor whether their baby is just fussy, how long they’re crying, if they’re able to calm themselves, and so on.

#6: The Fussy Baby Book

This is an excellent resource written by Dr. Sears teaching new parents about how to allow babies to calm themselves, be in the area when babies are crying, and prevent over-stimulation.

Preparing for Winter Babies

Winter Babies Taking care of a baby is a full time job. It is easy to over look some small things because of the amount of care and support that a new born needs on a day to day basis. One of these things that is often over looked is preparing a baby for the winter. Sick babies are not something that any mother wants to deal with, and some winter sicknesses can be avoided simply by preparing well for the cold weather. It is important that your house is kept at the right temperature. If your house is too hot a baby is more likely to suffer from sudden infant death syndrome, and if it is too cold a baby may develop other medical problems.

The first thing to do to prepare for your baby for his first winter is to make sure that you have a warm swaddling blanket. Many swaddling blankets are design to keep your baby cool. This is great in the summer months. A thick swaddling blanket would make your baby miserable, unless it is cold outside. These blankets can be purchase, and they can really help keep your baby healthy.

The second thing you want to do to prepare for your babies first winter is make sure you have a good aspirator. If your baby develops a cold, a lets face it he probably will, you will want to be able to clear his nose so that he can breath more clearly. Some aspirators work better than others, so it is important that you have an aspirator that you like before your child gets sick.

The third thing that you want to do is make sure that you are giving your child vitamin D drops. Many breastfeeding mothers who are dedicated to being natural forgo the vitamin D drops that are recommended by pediatricians. This is most likely okay in the summer months, when a baby can get the needed vitamin D from the sun, but in the winter when the baby will be spending most of his time inside it is necessary to use the drops.

A new baby is an exciting thing, but sometimes they can also be overwhelming. Their is a small individual dependent upon you for his welfare. It is your job to ensure that he is safe and comfortable during the winter months. Make sure that you prepare your baby for the colder months of the year.

5 Car Seat Mistakes You Must Avoid

New parents take a lot of time picking out items to create a beautiful and baby safe nursery. The same kind of care needs to go into choosing the right car seat for your vehicle. Over 50 percent of parents use a car seat incorrectly. Take the time to learn to use the car seat correctly. Your baby’s safety is at stake. There are five commonly mistakes made when using a car seat that are easily avoided.

Old Seat

Car seats actually have an expiration date. A car seat is only good for a 6 short years. The plastic on the car seat starts to weaken once it passes its expiration date, making the seat unsafe. If using a seat from an older child, make sure that the expiration date has not passed. Buying a car seat from a yard sale or borrowing one from a neighbor is not recommended. You do not know the history of that car seat and it could have been in an accident.

Straps and clips

Parents are afraid of making the straps on the car seat tight for fear that they may hurt the baby. However, it is the opposite that is true. If the straps are not tight enough your little wiggle worm will be able to get free. Also if you are in an accident, the loose straps will not keep your baby from getting whiplash and other injuries that can occur. There is a simple test to check to see if the straps are too loose. Try to pinch the straps at the shoulder location. If you can get the material to fold without applying too much effort, the straps need to be tightened. The location of the clip is important as well. The chest clip needs to be aligned with the baby’s arm pit. The clip could injury the stomach if not properly placed.

Clothes

It is a natural reaction to bundle your baby on cold wet days. However when placing a baby in a car seat, this is actually a mistake. In an accident, the layers of clothes are compressed by the straps. This will leave room for your baby to be whipped around in an accident.

Forward

The baby’s first birthday is usually celebrated by being moved to a forward facing position in a car. This is a mistake. Wait until the baby reaches the maximum weight and height of the car seat.

Getting the Balance Right With a Balance Bike

Balance Bike Does your child want to learn to ride a bike without training wheels? Teaching your child to ride a bike without training wheels is simple as long as you have patience and they are willing to try. Actually, training wheels are not as safe as people may think. They are weakly made and it is much safer if a child can ride without them. Training wheels hinder a child from learning how to do something that can help them develop their balance over all. Most child learn to balance when they walk but child better their balance once they learn to balance a bike while riding it.

First Step in teaching without training wheels

Buy the proper size bike for your child. You will also need to buy helmets and the proper padding to help protect them, because they will fall. After buying the proper stuff you need then you can teach your child how to ride a bike. Make sure your child’s helmet and pads are on them properly and secure.

Teach your child how to ride their bike

Have your child climb on the bike, while you are holding it steady for them. Then, have them to put their feet on the pedals and then they need to start pushing the pedals in order to get the bike moving while you are holding on to the bike running beside them. Once they are moving steady and they are not wobbling then you can let go.

Once they are moving good without wobbling then they should be good to go, however they may crash. They will just need to get up and try again. Remember the saying, practice makes perfect. It will take them a few times to get riding a bike down to a science, but once they learn how they will never forget. Most children who learn to ride a bike has learned something they will keep with them a lifetime.

Benefits of riding a bike

Bike riding can be for the whole family and also could also be a great way of exercise. Getting your child to learn how to ride a bike without training wheels they can go further that they think they can. Some of the best benefits of riding a bike are the exercise you can get. Riding a bike gets your heart pumping which helps you burn calories.

So get out and teach your child how to ride a bike without training wheels and they whole family can have some fun.

Best Baby Walkers to Support Baby’s First Steps

Babies grow up before your eyes. You watch them slowly grow up and love them all the way. Parents who have babies who cannot walk yet may start looking into a baby walker. A baby walker helps a baby be mobile even when the baby’s legs are not strong enough to hold up their body. Buying a baby walker is something every parent should consider.

The Haba Walker Wagon is a product that parents may consider when looking for a baby walker. This particular walker has wooden rims with rubber tires, and the breaks are adjustable. It also has a seat to push around a friend and a storage bin so that the child can take their toys with them. Because of its sturdy construction, it is a great baby walker choice.

Another great choice for a baby walker is the Hape Wonder Walker. This walker has all non-toxic finishes. It also has many movable parts, such as gears and balls, so children can play with it even while they are sitting still. It also includes a place for carrying toys. This makes it a wonderful choice when choosing mobility for your child.

The Chicco Dance Walker Activity Center is the perfect walker for babies who love music. It has an Mp3 hookup for music on the go. The nylon seat is removable so that it can be washed at anytime. This walker also converts into a stationary play center. Another great choice for your mobile baby.

Is your baby independent? If so, the Hape Galloping Zebra is the choice for you. Not only does it have cute zebras on the front, but it provides your child a sturdy base to pull himself or herself up into a standing position. So there is no need for help. The wheels protect all of your floor surfaces so that your child can roam wherever he or she wants. The perfect choice to make your independent baby mobile.

If your child likes sounds and lights the Safety 1st Sounds and Lights Activity Walker is the choice for you. This walker has a washing machine safe seat and removable activity center. The seat can adjust to three different heights so your baby can use it as he or she grows. This is a great choice in mobilizing your baby.

There are many baby walker options out there. Looking into them and making sure they fit your baby’s needs is the most important part.

Creating Play Mat Heaven For Your Baby

Play Mat  For Your Baby

Children need plenty of space and time to play as this develops the brain, social skills, and a feeling that life is fun. However, there are considerations to be taken, especially before a child can walk. A play mat is a great way to safely let a child explore the world, enjoy their toys, and develop their tiny muscles. Here are some things to consider before buying one.

Consider Texture And Material

There are several different materials mats come in. Some mats are thicker and softer so as to be more comfortable and sound absorbent; these mats are often difficult to wash. Some others come with a crinkly texture that while exciting to an infant, this can give grown-ups severe migraines. Some mats have fun patterns and reflective surfaces to stimulate babies during tummy time.

Hygiene And Parent’s Comfort

It’s important to keep in mind cleanliness of the mat. A mat that can be disassembled so that the mat can be washed and the attachable toys cleaned is ideal. It is best to find a balance between safe and convenient. While it is nice to disassemble toys attachments and roll up the mat when guests come over, having a toy that has poorly connected parts that come apart too easily is a danger to babies. Using good judgment and research in regards to safety and finding a toy and mat system that a parent is comfortable with assembling, disassembling, and washing is essential for turning mat time from a dreaded experience to a fun daily activity.

Pick A Pillow, But Not Just Any Pillow

Many baby mats come with a baby sized pillow that either attaches to the system in some secure way, or can simply be moved around. Designed to support the neck and shoulders of the baby during play, this adds to their comfort and helps ensure that they will not roll over and suffocate. The pillow can also be used under the tummy to make it easier for a baby to play with their toys. When choosing a pillow, make sure that the baby isn’t allergic to any of the stuffing materials.

Alternatives

Mothers and fathers on the go don’t always have the option to pack a bulky mat. Luckily, if staying at a friends house or in a hotel, an individual can lay a blanket and some pillows down with some toys for mat time. Be vigilant during this improvised mat time as these materials work in a pinch, but aren’t designed to be baby proof. It is best to supervise the infant to make sure they don’t get caught up in the blanket or change position on the pillow as this can lead to discomfort or suffocation if left uncorrected.

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Items New Mothers Should Be Without During Baby’s First Year

Items New Mothers Should Be Without During Baby's First YearThere are several items that all new mothers can really benefit from having before their first child is born. Beds, storage, and plenty of blankets are a given but there are some other items that can be really helpful. One very important item is a cool mist vaporizer. Until babies reach four months of age they cannot be given very many medications. If a baby becomes ill before four months a cool mist vaporizer is usually one of the first items doctors recommend to sooth a sick newborn. In the first year of life there are ten important items that every new mother should have; before the baby is born, if possible.

Furniture

When it comes to newborns there are three must have items. These are a bed, a storage item, and a car seat. If a woman has these three pieces of furniture ready for when the baby arrives it will make taking the baby back and forth to the doctor safe. It will also ensure that the mother has a place prepared for the baby and the baby’s things. The bed can be a bassinet, cradle, or a crib; a crib is the best option for the entire year. Any storage item will do including a dresser, wardrobe, shelves, or closet. One item that is optional, but is so close to necessary is a baby swing. Most babies are soothed by swinging to sleep. It can be especially helpful for colicky babies.

Medical supplies

Diaper rash cream, extra formula, distilled water, and Tylenol or Motrin are four of the most important medical items to have on hand for newborns. Diaper rash cream helps immediately soothe any irritation or rash; often stopping it before it gets worse. Extra formula comes in handy as well as water for natural emergencies, car problems, or lack of funds. Tylenol or Motrin is very important for fevers that can spike without warning.

Baby supplies and clothing

Babies always need extra changes of clothes but almost equally important is the diaper bag. Another essential item is a diaper changing pad or extra changing blanket so that babies can be changed on a clean surface. It also helps keep friends homes and bathrooms cleaner than laying a baby directly on a bed or counter where germs can be transferred.

Conclusion

Babies come with a lot of needs but it takes very few items to make it through the first year. A few toys, storage items, a place to sleep, food, and love is all that is needed for baby’s first year. Often parents are holding and caring for their child so a lot of furniture or items to entertain them are not necessary.

Baby Activity Centers : Best Gift Your Baby Has Received

Should your child have a Baby Activity Center?

Baby Activity Center

Sensory experience is critical for babies. Babies need Visual, kinesthetic, and auditory stimulation. A baby activity center will provide stimulation in all these area. The underlying principle is much like the one that applies to the basic kindergarten curriculum, but on a much simpler scale. There are two primary kinds of baby activity centers: Activity centers with a solid, stationary base, and walk-around models with a stable center pivot.

Central Casting

Stationary baby activity centers are round in shape with a central seat and an attached tray.

Upstaging

A walk-around activity center adds physical activity to your baby’s curriculum. Your child will walk or scoot around a secure base.

Toys

Baby Activity Centers : best gift your baby has receivedMost activity centers have a play surface and many have other options, such as interactive toys that engage a youngster and one and encourage motor skills and educational experiences.

For example, such items as a vinyl picture book, colorful beads, blocks, songs, animal sounds, and lights, are attached to the tray of some a baby activity centers.

These objects engage a child, promote a sense of touch, and help develop fine motor skills. In addition, picture books encourage visual skills and promote language development, a variety of textures provides sensory stimuli; colorful beads, plastic blocks, and wooden shapes support logic and pre-mathematical skills.

Tips:

If you are in the market for a baby activity center, look for these attributes:

  • a strong, durable frame
  • soft, comfortable seat fabric
  • padded seat that can be laundered
  • toys designed for a baby’s hands
  • a center with height adjustment potential

Remember, it is very important to talk to your baby, but chances are, you do not have time to keep up a running dialogue 24/7. A baby play center will keep your child close by, but engaged and happy while you are busy.

Auditory, visual, and kinesthetic stimulation are all very important for babies. A baby activity center provides stimulation in all three areas. Play centers provide little ones with the opportunity to develop and practice early learning skills by way of colors, shapes, and sounds.

You can start using a baby play center as soon as your baby can sit up, usually between 4 and 6 months. Play centers occupy babies and keep them happy when you are busy. Play centers also provide little ones with the opportunity to develop and practice early learning skills by way of colors, shapes, and sounds.

Simple Tips on Purchasing Baby Clothes

CottonBetween changing lots of diapers and babies spitting up, you want to ensure that you buy clothes that are easy to take on and off. There are several tips that can help you get the perfect clothes for your baby, without costing you a lot. Even though some outfits are super cute, they may not be easy to undo during diaper changings, or may not be comfortable for your baby.

When in Doubt, Choose Cotton

There are several outfits that are made of different materials. Babies, however, may not be able to wear certain outfits because of the material. It may irritate their skin or scratch them. Jeans for babies are not always a comfortable choice either. Babies sleep often and should be comfortable at all times. This is why cotton outfits are perfect for babies. It will keep them snug and still look super cute.

Don’t Go by The Label

Just because an outfit says three months and your baby is three months of age, doesn’t mean it will fit. The size on the label is just a suggestion for the baby’s age. It’s always best to use your best judgement before purchasing. If you are unsure if the outfit will fit, get the next suggested size. It’s better to get the outfit bigger to ensure your baby will get to wear it.

Get a Variety

It’s easy to pick up a pink outfit for a girl and a blue outfit for a boy, but remember there are other options available. Babies look great in any color that is available. Be sure to add a splash of color to their wardrobe. Onesies, which comes in a variety of colors, may become your best friend! They have snaps near the diaper, which make it easy for you to change your baby’s diaper when needed.

Saving Money

Clearance racks are a great way to get babies clothes they will need for the next season. Generally summer clothes will go on the clearance racks after summer has ended. This is the perfect time to pick up some clothes for the following summer at discounted prices. Winter clothes will even go on clearance racks, after winter has ended. All you need to do is figure what age your baby is going to be that following year and buy clothes of that suggested size. Since babies grow at different rates, you could even pick up the next bigger size.