Tips for New Moms
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If you have a new baby there are tips for new moms on how to relax. Check out this video to learn more.
Transcript: "Being a mother is incredibly rewarding, but it can also be a bit scary at first. Dr. Mom is a physician...
"Being a mother is incredibly rewarding, but it can also be a bit scary at first. Dr. Mom is a physician and has also raised two children. Here are Dr. Mom's top three tips for new mothers:First of all, she should take a deep breath and relax. Babies are not fragile, they get sick, they have rashes, they have earaches, they cry. All of which can be handled usually at home, with no unusual measures. You need to be aware that a doctor may be needed, but don't jump to the worst conclusions. Breastfeeding is really good it's nice for the mom and for the baby, but it's not absolutely the only way to feed your baby. Even if you breastfeed, it's very important to get your baby ready to take a bottle. You need the time and the flexibility that having somebody else feed your baby occasionally will allow you. The most important advice I can give new mothers is: remember you are your baby's lifeline and you need to take care of yourself. That means taking some downtime, getting some rest, getting proper nutrition, occasionally leaving the baby and entertaining yourself with a movie or a book or friends. You're still a partner, you're still a member of the social world, and you still have interests outside the house. Take care of yourself and be good to your baby."More »
Last Modified: 2012-11-17 | Tags »
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Learning how to care for a newborn takes a little time and practice. What are the best ways to help your baby to burp after eating? How can you quickly diaper a squirming infant? Learn all the burping, bathing and bathroom basics here.
Transcript: A word of comfort to new moms and dads: You WILL figure this out! Newborns are a lot of work, but knowing...
A word of comfort to new moms and dads: You WILL figure this out! Newborns are a lot of work, but knowing some baby basics will help. Of course, one of your more unpleasant (and frequent!) jobs will be diaper duty. This isn't hard and will become second nature in no time. Before you start, be sure that you have everything you need at your fingertips. That means diapers, baby wipes, diaper rash ointment, and a change of clothes (just in case!) Lie your baby down and open the diaper. Parents with boys, watch out for that penis! Keep it covered with a cloth when he's undressed to avoid a spray surprise. Now fold over the diaper so that the clean side touches your baby's bottom. Lift your baby's legs and wipe the area well. If you have a girl, wipe her from front to back to keep her vagina bacteria-free. If you have a boy, prevent leaks by quickly fastening his diaper. As you replace the dirty diaper with a clean one, remember that disposables have tabs that go in the back and wrap around to the front. So what if your baby's made a REALLY big mess in his or her diaper? Bath time! Once again, have everything you'll need handy before you begin. Ensure that the room is between 75 and 80 degrees. Because babies lose body heat very quickly, this keeps them comfortable. Use an infant tub, or the sink, until your baby can sit up unassisted. Once the sink is filled with enough water to cover your baby's bottom half, slide him or her into the tub. When washing a newborn, use soap sparingly and stick to the hands, bottom and genitals. The rest of your baby's body can be washed with water alone. If you want to shampoo, use a drop of tear-free product once a week. If you have an uncircumcised boy, it's fine to wash his penis with soap and warm water. But a circumcised boy shouldn't be bathed until his penis is healed, so stick to sponge baths for now. It seems like when babies aren't dirtying diapers, they're nursing, and feeding babies need to be burped. Burp your baby when you switch breasts, or halfway through a bottle. Remember to have a burp cloth handy in case the baby spits up! The classic burping position is to hold your baby upright, with his or head on your shoulder. Support the bottom with one hand and use the other to pat the back firmly. If this doesn't work, try placing your baby stomach side down across your lap, turning him or her sideways. Or hold your baby in a seated position, supporting the neck and chest with one hand, and patting with the other. A newborn baby is a lot of work. But take heart in knowing that every couple DOES get the hang of burping, bathing, diapers, and everything in between!More »
Last Modified: 2014-02-24 | Tags »
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Is your baby constantly crying? It can certainly make you crazy like many other parents. Check out this video for tips on how to soothe your baby in detail.
Transcript: A constantly crying little one is enough to send even the most patient parent over the edge! Here, how...
A constantly crying little one is enough to send even the most patient parent over the edge! Here, how to calm YOUR baby quickly. Because crying is your babys only way of communication, it can pretty much happen anytime your infant wants to tell you something, or even for no reason at all. As a parent, your job is to decode this message as quickly as possible to stop the sobs. Luckily, youll soon be able to anticipate your babys needs and read her cues. In the meantime, start by searching for obvious reasons for tears. Is your newborn hungry? If its been awhile since feeding-time, or if your baby is reaching for your breast, the answer is probably yes. If food isnt cutting it, check your babys diaper to be sure he doesnt need to be changed. If neither of these obvious methods work, verify that there is nothing that might be making your baby uncomfortable. Newborns usually need one more layer of clothing than adults, so your baby could be cold, particularly if you just bathed or changed your little one. Even something as minute as a scratchy tag could be cause for tears, so check to ensure that nothing is poking your infant. If the screams continue, your little one may just want to be held. Newborns need a lot of contact with warm, loving bodies. Try carrying your infant, massaging your little ones body, or holding your baby close to your heart so your infant can feel your hearts familiar and restful beat. Your voice, which your baby has known since before being born, is another great way to calm tears. Sing a lullaby, or narrate your day. Infants also find motion calming, so sit in a rocking chair with your baby or put your little one in the stroller and rock it back and forth. If you need a break, this is the perfect time to enlist the support of a mechanical swing! Of course, you already know that one of your babys most soothing skills is sucking, and that may be all thats needed for your little one to calm down. Offer your baby a pacifier, or even your finger, and let your infant go to town. If none of these soothing tricks work, it may be possible that your baby is ill. Take your childs temperature to be certain, and remember that its absolutely OK to call the doctor if youre concerned.More »
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Do you know swaddling your newborn is one of the best things you can do to make her feel safe and secure? Watch this video to learn how to swaddle a baby.
Transcript: Swaddling your baby isn't new-even Jesus was famously wrapped in swaddling blankets at birth! But why...
Swaddling your baby isn't new-even Jesus was famously wrapped in swaddling blankets at birth! But why swaddle at all? The act of swaddling, or wrapping an infant, from neck to toes in a cozy blanket, is one of the most effective ways to comfort a newborn in the first weeks of life. Because it's a warm, snug environment, a swaddle will remind your infant of the womb, a place that's still serenely familiar to your little one. Swaddling is also useful to ensure a young baby isn't disturbed or scratched due to the tendency to wave his arms and startle himself. Although swaddling is a great comforting tool, your baby will start to move more during sleep after the first month or so, and swaddling may lose its usefulness. Also, keep in mind that sudden infant death syndrome has been linked to overdressing and overheating an infant.If you'd like to try swaddling your own newborn, make sure you do so when your little one is not wet, hungry, or too tired. To start, fold the right hand corner of a receiving blanket down about six inches. Place your baby on the blanket, on your infant's back, with the head above the edge of the fold. Then, pull the side near your baby's left hand firmly across the body, tucking this edge under your baby's back on the right side. Pull the bottom corner of the blanket up under your baby's chin. Then, bring the loose corner over your baby's right arm, and tuck it under the back on the left side. Some babies prefer to have their arms free, and if yours is one of them, just tuck the blankets under at the chest. Or, try a special swaddling blanket, like SwaddleMe, Majamas, or Kiddopotamus, which feature Velcro tabs to make swaddling a cinch. Once you get the hang of swaddling, your newborn-and you-will be able to enjoy more relaxed moments in the chaotic weeks after birth.More »
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Every new parent knows that getting your baby to sleep can be a challenge. However, it doesn’t have to be. Learn more about this by watching this video.
Transcript: "People who say they sleep like a baby probably don't have one." If this sounds all too familiar, take...
"People who say they sleep like a baby probably don't have one." If this sounds all too familiar, take heart. You CAN win the newborn sleep struggle. The trick to getting ANY baby to sleep is to perfect a comfortable environment and to create a soothing bedtime routine. When setting up sleepy surroundings for your baby, maintain a temperature that is just on the cool side of comfortable. Even if your newborn sleeps better swaddled in blankets, make sure they're light ones so that your baby doesn't overheat. You'll know if the climate is appropriate by feeling your baby's neck. If it's sweaty, lose a layer, and if it's cool to your touch, add one. Some babies sleep best in a completely quiet room, but most prefer gentle background noises which may remind them of the sounds in the womb. Try the consistent hum of a fan - which will also help regulate the temperature! - or a sound machine that produces rhythmic noises. Meanwhile, it's NEVER too early to establish your baby's bedtime routine. To do it, pick a series of two to four calming activities pre-bed. Some super soothers include soft lullabies, a repetitive bedtime story, a small pre-bed feeding, a gentle cuddle, a bath, or time spent in a rocking chair. Whichever activities you choose, do them consistently before sleep, and you'll find your baby's internal clock responding. Remember though, that the trick behind a bedtime routine is to make your baby sleepy, NOT to make your little one fall asleep. In fact, you should put your baby down at the point where he or she is definitely drowsy, but hasn't dozed off yet. The reason for this is that you'll teach your baby to drift off on his own accord, WITHOUT relying on you to make him fall asleep. Hanging a mobile you're your baby's bed or adding a nightlight to nursery room may help smooth the transition from your arms to sleep. Once your baby drifts off to dreamland, expect your little one to stay there for two to three hours if your baby is younger than three months. Newborns will then wake and need to be fed, as their tiny tummies can't stay full for long. By your infant reaches 12 weeks, however, your baby may be able to sleep for five to six hours without a feeding. To encourage this, wait a few minutes before going to a crying infant in the night. Your baby may go back to sleep without your help. If you can't resist getting up to comfort your crier, avoid feeding your baby immediately, as this encourages the midnight snack habit. To further encourage all-night sleeping, don't change your baby's diaper in the middle of the night unless it's really soiled. Instead, put a heavy-duty nighttime diaper on your baby before you put your little one down. If you stick to your nighttime rituals, your soothing environment and your guns, you'll soon find that you've got a star sleeper!More »
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Don’t be alarmed if your newborn sleeps more than fifteen hours a day. Learn about the basics of baby sleep patterns in this video.
Transcript: Particularly when your baby is new, sleep may seem to be your infant's primary activity - OR you may...
Particularly when your baby is new, sleep may seem to be your infant's primary activity - OR you may feel like your newborn NEVER does it! When your baby is a newborn, she'll probably sleep A LOT...as in 14 to 19 hours per day, averaging out at about 16.5! Unfortunately, that sleep will come in bursts, and most newborns only get about two hours of shut-eye at a time. The reason for this is that your baby spends lots of time in REM, or restless eye movement, sleep. Although necessary for active brain development, REM sleep is more easily disturbed than deep, non-REM sleep, which is why your baby wakes up crying so often. Plus, infants have exceptionally teeny tummies and high nutritional requirements, so they need to eat every few hours to stay full. The good news is that by four months, your infant should start sleeping for longer periods at night and shorter ones during the day. Thank an increase in non-REM sleep, as well as a maturing belly which can hold food more efficiently. Still, your baby is unlikely to sleep through the night until AT LEAST three to six months of age. And remember that experts consider a full night for an infant to be a five to six hour stint - unlikely to be a full night for you! In fact, if you're looking for your OWN solid eight hours, you'll have to wait until your baby is closer to seven months or older. No matter your baby's patterns, however, you'll want to be aware of a sleeping scare called sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS. Known as the leading cause of death for one month to one year olds, SIDS is the unexpected and unexplained death of an infant-often between 10 PM and 10 AM. Although SIDS is frightening, experts DO know that they are ways you can reduce the likelihood that it will happen to your infant. For one thing, the risk of SIDS rises 13% when you place your baby on his or her stomach to sleep. That's because tummy sleepers may have more pauses in breathing, or may re-breathe the air they've just exhaled, resulting in deadly carbon dioxide levels. So always have your baby sleep on his or her back, and remind anyone who cares for your little one to make sure of this. It's also important to pick a firm mattress and to resist the temptation to fill the crib with pillows or stuffed animals. After all, cushy objects can easily obstruct your baby's breathing, leading to SIDS. According to studies, other ways to help prevent a crisis are to avoid smoking around your baby, to keep the nursery room well ventilated, and to be sure that your infant is not overly bundled for sleep. Still, between the risk of SIDS and your baby's erratic sleep schedule, the first several months of your little one's life are bound to be stressful. Luckily, these sleepy nightmares don't last-while the joys of your child do!More »
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Changing a baby's diaper is more than keeping your baby clean. It's important to know what to check for on your baby's bottom, plus other hygiene tips. Watch this video for everything you need to know about dealing with diapers.
Transcript: If you're anything like most parents, diaper duty won't be your favorite chore. But you gotta do what...
If you're anything like most parents, diaper duty won't be your favorite chore. But you gotta do what you gotta do, and these tips will help. When it's time to change your infant, always start by washing your hands-even if it's just with a hand sanitizer like Purell, or a baby wipe. Ensure that you have everything you'll need, like a clean diaper, wipes, ointment AND a change of clothes. Unfasten your baby's diaper tabs and-if you have a son-avoid a surprise shower by quickly covering his penis with a cloth. Then, fasten the tabs back on themselves so they don't stick to your baby, and fold the dirty diaper under him. Lift your baby's legs by using one hand to hold both ankles. Now, use a wipe to thoroughly clean your baby's genitals and backside. If you have a girl, remember to always wipe front to back to keep bacteria away from her vagina. If you have a newly circumcised boy, follow your doctor's instructions to care for his healing penis. This will probably mean using Vaseline and a gauze barrier on the penis's tip for a few days after the procedure. When you change an uncircumcised boy, you may notice whitish discharge, called smegma, on his penis. This is completely normal, and is simply a collection of old cells which have been shed from under your baby's foreskin. No matter your baby's sex, you should now swap the clean diaper for the dirty one, ensuring that the tabs go under your baby's rear. If your child suffers from diaper rash, apply a barrier ointment, like petroleum or white zinc oxide, to the irritated area. If your baby has especially delicate skin or is prone to rash, you can also apply ointment or plain petroleum jelly as a precautionary measure. If you prefer using powder, shake the canister's contents into your hands and apply, instead of directly putting the powder on your baby. Finish by pulling the diaper up between your baby's legs, then fastening it using the adhesive tabs. Diapers aren't foolproof, so if your baby's clothes are even lightly soiled, you should change them now to help prevent diaper rash. Once your baby is clean, re-tape the soiled diaper around its contents, and drop it in a diaper genie. When you dispose of a diaper in this manner, the soiled garment is sealed with a scented film to keep germs OUT and smell IN. At last, you're done with diaper duty-for an hour or two anyway!More »
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In order to help your baby let out gas, it is important to learn how to burp your baby. Watch this video to learn different methods.
Transcript: You already know that there's nothing more uncomfortable-or embarrassing-than gas. And while your baby...
You already know that there's nothing more uncomfortable-or embarrassing-than gas. And while your baby doesn't know about humiliation yet, she is familiar with discomfort. Babies swallow a great deal of air when they eat. This trapped air can lead to gas, an upset tummy, and spitting up. For this reason, burping your baby is one of the easiest ways to ensure comfort and happiness. To burp your little one, it's important to keep your baby upright, in turn allowing trapped air to escape. Additionally, you need to ensure that you apply gentle pressure to your baby's chest as you pat the back with a firm hand. Perhaps the easiest way to do this is to hold your baby sitting up in your lap or across your knee. Cradle your baby's chin using the palm of one hand and rest the heel of that hand on the chest. Then, use your free hand to pat your baby's back firmly. Or you can try laying your baby-belly side down-on your lap. Be sure that your baby's head is higher than his chest before burping in this position. You can also burp your baby by holding your infant against your chest, with your little one's chin resting on your shoulder. Support your baby's head with one hand and use your other to burp. While you're feeding, your baby may let you know when it's time to burp by fussing or looking pained. Even if your baby seems fine, if you're breastfeeding, try to burp your infant whenever you switch breasts. If you're using formula, burp your little one for every two to three ounces of fluid consumed. Remember that your baby may spit up, so be sure to protect your clothing with a burping cloth during this exercise! Now give YOURSELF a pat on the back-you've passed burping 101!More »
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New parents should know when a baby is okay and when to call the pediatrician. Watch this video to get the facts.
Transcript: If you have a newborn, you've probably programmed her doctor's number on your speed dial. But how do...
If you have a newborn, you've probably programmed her doctor's number on your speed dial. But how do you know when to push that button? Surprisingly, some of the worrisome habits of newborns are really just normal parts of development. For example, most newborn babies have very soft or even liquid bowel movements, which is typical and is usually NOT a cause for concern. Similarly, a newborn's spit-up may contain trace amounts of blood during her early weeks. If you're breastfeeding, this blood is very likely yours, as your cracked nipples adjust to nursing. Occasionally, your baby may also spit up forcefully enough to tear a tiny blood vessel at the base of her esophagus. This sounds scarier than it is, and it usually heals quickly on its own. Still, some health symptoms in newborns ARE cause for concern, and require you to use that speed dial. Watch out for a rectal temperature greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, which could indicate an infection. If your baby is wetting fewer than five diapers a day, or is not shedding tears when she cries, she may be dehydrated and need medical attention. Yellow skin or eyes are signs of jaundice, and require a call to the doctor. Bloody stool, greenish mucus in spit-up, and an infected-looking umbilical stump or circumcised penis also warrant check-ups. Other indications of a doctor-worthy problem may be less obvious, such as changes in your baby's temperament or cries. A once active baby who is suddenly lethargic, or who loses interest in feeding, may very well be sick. And if your baby is crying in a way that is unfamiliar to you, or if she refuses to be comforted, a call to your doctor IS warranted. Remember that you are the ultimate expert on your baby. If something feels "off," it very likely is - so check in with the doctor.More »
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Can teething cause a high temperature? It could, during certain stages of teething. Learn more by watching this video.
Transcript: But getting them isn't an easy process. Because of this, many myths abound about teething. A recent...
But getting them isn't an easy process. Because of this, many myths abound about teething. A recent study at done at the Cleveland Clinic, sought to parse truth from myth. And they found that teething does NOT cause a fever over 100 degrees. There MAY be a SLIGHT rise in temperature when the teeth come through the gum, but this does not MAKE a baby ill. There ARE a few surefire signs that your little one is about to get his or her first set of choppers: an increase in drooling, gum rubbing, sucking, and biting often occur. And teething may also lead to irritability, ear rubbing, facial rash, and a decreased appetite for solid foods. But remember, teething WON'T make your baby ill. So if your infant has a temperature over 100 degrees, call your pediatrician. Your baby MAY be sick and need treatment.More »
Last Modified: 2013-04-11 | Tags »
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Babies can be quite a handful when their first teeth start sprouting out.Learn about baby teething and its associated symptoms in this video.
Transcript: Some special babies are born with a tooth in place, and some don't begin getting pearly whites until...
Some special babies are born with a tooth in place, and some don't begin getting pearly whites until after their first birthday -one thing is for sure: teething is a major milestone! Most babies cut their first tooth between four and seven months of age. After that first tooth, additional teeth will break through, one at a time, often beginning with the front two on the bottom, called the central incisors. bottom central inc., top central inc., bottom lateral inc., top lateral inc., then the rest...and finally by the teeth along the top and bottom gums. Growing all those teeth is a long process, but by age three your little one will likely boast a full set of 20 baby teeth. The weeks of cutting those first teeth CAN BE easy and painless for a lucky few children-and parents! But many infants find teething uncomfortable, and may experience gum swelling, drooling, mouth sensitivity and general crankiness. Luckily, you CAN make the teething process less painful by giving your baby something cold to chew on. Tried and true favorites include a wet washcloth, a rubber teething ring, or-if your baby is eating solid foods-an unsweetened teething cracker like Zwieback. Infants who are eating solids may find a cold snack, like applesauce, to be soothing. Rubbing a clean finger firmly over your baby's gums may also help ease the discomfort of teeth pushing through. If these methods don't work, talk to your doctor about offering infant acetaminophen or applying a topical numbing gel. Finally, remember that a temperature, diarrhea, or inconsolable crying are NOT normal parts of teething. If your baby experiences these symptoms, contact the pediatrician immediately.More »
Last Modified: 2013-03-29 | Tags »
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Baby poop is affected by what you feed your baby. Watch our video to learn about what’s normal and when it’s time to consult your pediatrician.
Transcript: What goes in must come out, so expect frequent bowel movements from your constantly eating newborn! Here,...
What goes in must come out, so expect frequent bowel movements from your constantly eating newborn! Here, the scoop on baby poop. Immediately after your little one is born, he or she will pass a tarry substance that is thick and dark green or black in color. Known as meconium, this is simply your infant's intestines engaging in a post-birth cleanse. Expect four to six meconium stools spread out over your baby's first two to three days of life. After this point, stool quality will stem directly from what your baby's eating. While every baby is different, most start to fill their diapers with poop that's not wholly unpleasant smelling and which ranges in color from yellow to green to brown. If you're breastfeeding exclusively, expect to see poop that is loose in texture, often with a seedy or cottage-cheese like texture. Formula-fed babies may have slightly thicker poop, so if you're on diaper duty, expect to see something with a consistency similar to peanut butter. Later on, when you begin to feed your baby solid foods, you'll notice that stools become harder, smellier and generally more like yours. Whatever you're feeding your baby, expect poop anywhere from once a day to once after EVERY feeding! Both ends of the spectrum are normal, although it's common for formula-fed infants to poop less frequently than their breastfed counterparts. If, however, you notice that your baby's stools suddenly decrease OR increase dramatically, or if they become very watery OR hard, make an appointment with the pediatrician. Your little one may be constipated, or have an infection, or food intolerance to something you're passing through your breast milk. In general, it's important to realize that there is no "normal," baby poop pattern. As long as your little one seems happy, comfortable and content, the rule of thumb is that his or her poop is perfect!More »
Last Modified: 2014-01-27 | Tags »
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