You love your baby and want to give them the best, and that means making sure that they are as healthy as they can be. Some things are out of your control, such as whether your baby is born with a health condition, but fortunately, the things you do can have a huge impact on your baby’s health. Here’s a look at some of the basic things you can do to make sure your baby is as healthy as possible:
Follow Safe Sleep Recommendations
Sleep is essential to your health and to your baby’s health. If your baby isn’t getting enough sleep, you won’t be either, and the health of you both will suffer.
Your baby should be getting anywhere from 14 to 17 hours of sleep each night during the first few months, and then about 11 to 15 hours until the first year. Babies are notorious for not sleeping, but they get that rep because they wake up frequently.
Don’t expect your baby to sleep 14 hours straight, but do make sure your baby gets that much sleep in a 24-hour period. You can ensure adequate sleep by sticking to a regular schedule and creating a good sleep environment.
Safety should also be a priority during your baby’s sleep since SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) is a risk throughout the first year. Choose the right baby mattress, keep blankets, and other items out of the crib, and always lay your baby on their back to sleep. Put the crib next to your bed or use a video monitor to ensure that you keep close tabs on your baby while they are asleep.
Giving your baby plenty of sleep and ensuring safe sleep will help him grow, develop appropriately, and maintain optimal health.
Provide Healthy Foods
For the first six months, your baby only needs breast milk or formula. If you can provide it, breast milk offers optimal health benefits, and it’s free! Not all mothers can breastfeed, nor do they all want to breastfeed.
But if you can and want to breastfeed, it will help strengthen your baby’s immune system, encourage optimal growth and brain development, and encourage a strong bond between you, which is good for physical and emotional health.
If you use formula, choose the best kind that you can afford to give your baby the most nutrients with the least amount of additives. Follow the proper feeding schedule through the day and night, and keep tabs on your baby’s length and weight to ensure that they’re growing at the right pace.
When your baby moves up to solids, choose the most natural ingredients possible. If you can, make your own food by pureeing fresh fruits and vegetables.
Get Regular Medical Care
Just like regular prenatal care was necessary for the health of your pregnancy, regular well-baby checkups are necessary for the health of your baby. A qualified pediatrician performing regular check-ups will be able to spot any health issues at their earliest stages so that if treatment is needed, it will have a greater chance of success.
Your pediatrician will also be able to monitor your baby’s growth and development and offer feedback if the right gains aren’t being made.
You should also see your pediatrician as a resource. You can get information on things like the best formula to choose, the safest toys, how to pick a quality babysitter, and so on. Your pediatrician is your partner in ensuring your baby’s best health, no matter what health conditions may have been present at birth.
Ensuring your baby’s optimal health doesn’t require any special foods or supplements. It doesn’t require that you buy organic shampoo or plastic-free toys. It requires that you do the basics that you already know how to do for yourself – give your baby good sleep, the right foods, and right medical care.
It also helps to have a good first-aid kit on hand to deal with things like rashes, dry skin, and fever. But again, that’s where your pediatrician comes in to help. Spend the rest of your time focusing on creating a strong bond with your baby, which will help him achieve optimal emotional health later in life, as well.
“Post provided by Sara Stringer”