|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!|
Mothers use toys to quiet and distract their babies from their fussy moods. Every mother desires a few precious moments of peace and collectibles can give babies the engagement that will allow mothers to have a moment or two of relief. What most mothers don't know is that this same distraction is actually good for their babies.
A baby's brain develops in the first three years of her/his life and toys play a very essential role in this development. The right stuff help in proper development of tactile responses, gross motor skills, fine motor skills, hand eye coordination, and social responses. In the first few months after a baby is born, they get busy exploring and understanding the world around them. They want to taste and touch everything in sight. They like colors and sounds. They are busy learning everything they can through interaction with the things in their surroundings.
For example, a baby learns about gravity by dropping things. He/she realizes that every time an object such as a toy leaves his/her hand, it falls straight to the floor. Once a baby realizes this, the experimenting begins. With this knowledge, dropping anything within reach becomes a game. So whenever a baby hurls something delicate or precious to the ground, instead of getting angry at the loss, realize that the baby is learning in his/her own way and instead remember never to leave anything breakable within their reach. Also always have soft plaything at hand for the baby to hold, touch, squeeze, and throw to their heart's content because this is how they will develop.
|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.|
Trinket for a baby should always be unbreakable, and shouldn't have any sharp edges or small parts that could be swallowed by the baby. Kids stuff should be soft if possible or otherwise light weight so as to prevent injuries to others when the baby starts throwing toys for fun.
Toys Specifications that Help Learning
Some toys that help in development are:
- Plaything in bright colors because colors attract the baby to want to hold and interact with the toy.
- Music playing toys because these toys help sharpen the auditory skills of the baby and also soothes and makes them laugh.
- Robotic walking toys that have a soft outer edge because babies like moving objects. They start mimicking these toys and attempt to crawl and walk.
- Round edged story books with big pictures as these pictures opens up the baby's imagination and creativity.
- And toys that the baby can interact with and is safe for the baby.
Toys have been known to save mothers from losing their minds by creating a distraction and giving them time to compose themselves. Now that they are also known to help the babies' development, it is wiser to look at the toys from a point of view that is development focused instead of seeing toys as something that might spoil the baby.
|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.|