|Newborn Tips#1: Don't Hush-A-Bye-Baby|
|You don't have to be quiet while the baby is sleeping. The womb is loud, and newborns are used to the noise. When ours first came home, we watched television and I would vacuum, wash dishes and talk on the phone around her while she slept. She got used to sleeping with noise, and I could get stuff done. I am still able to vacuum in her room while she sleeps (she is 14 months), and she is peaceful and well rested when she wakes up.|
|Newborn Tips#2: Soothe Your Wailing Newborn|
|When my baby cries, I comfort her by patting her back in a heartbeat-like rhythm. That helps her burp more quickly, and it also helps her relax if she's crying from insecurity. If this doesn’t work, I also try one or all of Dr. Harvey Karp's five calming moves: swaddling, shushing, holding her on her side, swinging her or letting her suck. Sometimes it takes all six!|
If you have been put off in the past from using reusable nappies because of their bulk, then you might like to know that nappy manufacturers have been busy experimenting with new materials for them that will make them much more user-friendly. And recent breakthroughs has already made the nappies much slimmer fitting than the old terry towelling varieties.
Studies have indicated that reusable nappies can save a family up to 500, and more if they are used on a second child. The savings you can make are pretty obvious, but can washable nappies help save the planet as well?
Close to 3 billion nappies are disposed of in the UK each year, most of these end up in council land fill sites, where they can linger for hundreds of years before decaying. Incinerating disposable nappies is not an option as the pollution caused by emissions would be harmful as well, so encouraging people to purchase reusable nappies would seem like the only logical way to help the environment.
Surprisingly though, a Governmental report has found little difference in the impact on the environment between the two types of nappies. Conversely though, the report did not equate the fact that reusable nappies are often used for a second child and that the nappies may be washed in energy-efficient washing machines or drying them in their gardens on washing lines.
A counter report by the Women's Environmental Network has calculated that by using just twenty-four nappies, washing them in A rated, energy-efficient washing machines at 60 degrees Celsius then a household can reduce the carbon footprint by nearly twenty-four per cent more than the Governmental report suggested.
|Newborn Tips#3: Help Get Your Baby to Latch|
|If you are having latch-on issues while breastfeeding your baby, you can use breast shields to help the process. This was a wonderful tip that I learned from my lactation consultant. I had to use the shields for an entire month before my baby would latch onto my own nipple without them. Had it not been for the breast shields, I would not have been able to continue nursing my baby.|
|Newborn Tips#4: Get Prepped|
|At 3 weeks, babies’ days and nights become more predictable, and you can focus on yourself in addition to your newborn. One way to do that is by reducing your stress level - and having everything ready for your hungry baby and yourself is one way to do that. Start by prepping for the next feeding as soon as the previous one is over. For example, after an 11 p.m. feeding, get ready for the 2 a.m. one by prepping whatever you need for feeding and putting out fresh drinking water for yourself so you don’t have anything to think about in the middle of the night. During the day, take advantage of the baby’s naps to work out, shower or catch up on e-mail, or take a nap too.|
Reusable nappies are now available in many styles, designs and patterns, helping families to find the ideal nappy for their child. Change time can become much more fun as well with nappy colours and patterns being matched to the baby's outfit. Reusable nappies can be purchased in 'one size' versions that will last the infant from birth to the potty, or in a multitude of sizes. A one size system will doubtless save your family money, but will be rather large when worn by a new-born baby and rather small on a potty training toddler. It is a very good idea to research the reusable nappies market before deciding on one for your child. Below I have listed a few of the varieties.
All-In-Ones – these are appealing because of their ease of use and simplicity, these are made from a plastic outer layer with an absorbent inner. These nappies tend to take longer to dry as all the layers are sewn together. There is also a single layer of protection at the legs to prevent any leakage.
Pocket Nappies – attempt to replicate the ease of use enjoyed by the above nappy but without the prolonged drying time. The nappy consists of a waterproof outer layer with a softer inner that has a gap where a parent can insert the absorbent part of the garment, usually a folded terry insert or a pad.
Two Part Nappies – these consist of an inner absorbent cloth nappy that has a separate waterproof outer. The fact that these parts are not joined makes them much quicker to dry, and the outer waterproof wrap will not require changing every time the inner is. The wrap can be made from a polyester material, a fleece like fabric or even wool. The inners are mainly constructed from terries or pre-folds layered for maximum absorbency.
Reusable nappy laundering can be a very welcome service to those parents that do not relish the thought of all that washing and can be a very affordable practice and usually works out much cheaper option than buying disposables. These services also have energy-saving benefits when so many reusable nappies are washed all in one lot.
|Newborn Tips#5: Keeping Your Baby Awake During Feedings|
|When our baby was eating slowly and sleepily, my husband and I would massage her cheek to stimulate her to eat faster. A gentle stroke with a fingertip on her cheek was all it took, and on those long sleepless nights, this simple trick was a godsend! Our friends have found it works great with their infants too. When babies eat efficiently until they're full before going to sleep, they sleep for longer between feedings. And that means you’re both likely to be calmer!|
|Newborn Tips#6: Help Your Baby Bond with Dad|
|Make sure your baby has ample time alone with Daddy. His touch and voice are different than yours, and this will begin a bonding process and give you a break. Plus, it gets the baby used to being with someone other than you. The first few times can be hard. Make sure your baby is fed and well rested, as this will give you at least one or two hours before you're needed again. Then leave Dad and the baby alone. If you stay nearby, make sure the baby can’t see or hear you, and resist the urge to go into the room and "fix" things if she starts crying. Your baby cries with you and you experiment to find out what's wrong. Dads need time to do this too - in their own way. By allowing this time, your child will learn there is more than one way to receive comfort, which will help immensely when you leave your baby with a sitter or another family member for the first time. You could have your partner bathe her, put her to bed or just read or talk to her.|