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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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 »
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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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As babies develop their motor skills, they are more prone to cuts, bumps and bruises. Watch our video on first aid for babies to help you take care of your little one.
Transcript: Cuts and bruises and bumps, oh my! When your baby suffers a mild injury, you'll want to be prepared to...
Cuts and bruises and bumps, oh my! When your baby suffers a mild injury, you'll want to be prepared to help. One of the most common baby "ouchies" is a standard cut or scrape, often acquired during a mild run-in with the ground. If your baby is bleeding from such an injury, use a clean towel and apply firm pressure to the area for a few minutes. At this point, you'll want to check for dirt, glass, or other debris that may be embedded in the cut. Remove such objects by flushing the area with cool running water, or by gently using tweezers. Now, wash the wound with warm water and soap and finish up by patting it dry. Small cuts and scrapes heal best with exposure to the air, so if your baby's injury is mild, it's not necessary to bandage. If a cut is deeper, apply an antiseptic ointment, then use an ordinary adhesive bandage to gently pull the edges of skin together. Change your baby's bandage daily-or whenever it gets wet-until a scab has formed on the wound. While cuts like this are common, babies are just as likely to be bothered by bruises-blame their active lifestyles and exploring personalities! Most black and blue marks are not painful and will heal on their own within a week or two. If you suspect that your baby is bothered by a bruise, wrap an ice pack in a towel and apply it to the area for 5-10 minutes. Your baby may resist this treatment, so try icing the area during a relaxing activity, like nursing. If a tumble results in a more serious injury, like a "goose egg" on the head, the ice pack treatment is also effective. But because a blow to the head can be serious, do a thorough check for injuries, and then keep a watchful eye on your baby for the next 24 hours. It is probably a good idea just to give the pediatrician a call whenever there is a head injury. If you notice signs of a serious problem, like: A large, soft area on the scalp, blood showing in the whites of the eyes, vomiting, unusual eye movement, or prolonged crying or a change in mental status... call your pediatrician, then take your infant immediately to the emergency room. Meanwhile, the pain of a more mild injury may be eased at home by offering your baby infant acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Talk to your doctor before you try this treatment, and also make an immediate appointment if your baby has a wound that will not stop bleeding, or one that looks very deep and jagged. A doctor's appointment is also necessary if a bruise doesn't fade in two weeks, or doesn't stop hurting in a few DAYS. Acting immediately and cautiously like this is vital, and may well prevent any long-term damage to your child.More »
Last Modified: 2014-04-24 | Tags »
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Babies reach for everything. And often, whatever they reach for goes in their mouths. Find out what to do if you ever have to make that 911 call, saying, "Help! My baby swallowed something."
Transcript: Around six months of age, babies start to explore the world in a whole new wayby putting things in their...
Around six months of age, babies start to explore the world in a whole new wayby putting things in their mouths! If your little explorer ingests something she shouldnt, the first thing youll need to do is determine what that was! It is very common for babies to swallow tiny, non-edible objects like marbles or pebbles. If your baby ingested something of this nature, shell probably have no problems passing it through her stool. Just call your pediatrician to let them know. Most doctors simply recommend watching and waiting to ensure that the object emerges. Sometimes, however, a baby will ingest something sharp, something metal, or some other dangerous item like a battery. In cases like this, its vital to enlist medical help to detect and possibly remove the object BEFORE your baby can pass it in her stool. This is necessary because these dangerous materials could pierce your babys internal organs, or even transfer hazardous chemicals to her body. Occasionally, a baby will try to swallow a small object like this, only to have it get stuck in her airway. If your baby is struggling to breathe, incapable of crying, or is turning purple or blue, try to clear your babys air way with back slaps and have your partner call 911. Then, if necessary, begin administering CPR. But what if your baby ingested something POISONOUS, like cleaning fluid, houseplants, or prescription medication? If this is the case, call your local poison control center, and follow their instructions, making certain to watch your infant for signs of poisoning, which may includeconvulsions, difficulty breathing, extreme fatigue, unconsciousness, and burns around the mouth. If your infant has any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately. On the other hand, if your baby isnt experiencing a serious reaction, still call the Poison Control Center. Once you dial, be prepared to answer questions about your babys weight, medical history, and what he or she ingested. Remember that no matter how serious the reaction, you should NEVER try to make your child vomit after swallowing something poisonous, WITHOUT being advised to do so by a doctor! Thats because an extremely acidic or alkaline substance could cause further damage when re-exposed to the throat and mouth. Instead, follow the Poison Control Centers instructions, which may include taking your baby to the emergency room. And to avoid scary situations like this in the future, check out our series on child- and poison-proofing your home.More »
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You know about the importance of brushing your own teeth. If you're not sure about baby tooth care watch this video for helpful tips.
Transcript: You brush and floss your own teeth regularly, but do you know how to care for your INFANT'S little teeth?...
You brush and floss your own teeth regularly, but do you know how to care for your INFANT'S little teeth? Although it's unlikely that your baby's first tooth will make an appearance BEFORE 16 weeks, you'll want to start cleaning your infant's gums prior to that time. To do so, gently, but firmly wipe your baby's gums with a wet washcloth or a piece of gauze during bath time. This will help your baby get used to having his or her mouth cleaned. It will also ensure that the tooth buds beneath the gums aren't threatened by bacteria. Once your baby DOES sprout a tooth or two, it's time to start brushing! Pick a baby toothbrush with a soft head and a handle long enough for you to grasp. Twice a day, wet the toothbrush and swipe the front and back sides of each tooth. Don't worry much about using toothpaste until your baby is old enough to spit it out, although infant toothpastes are available and safe to use in small amounts. To further prevent decay, it's important NOT to let your child go to sleep with a bottle in his or her mouth. That's because, when milk sugars pool in the mouth, your baby's body converts them into cavity-causing acids, and the growth of bacteria is encouraged. Finally, consider the mineral fluoride, which can be both a friend AND a foe to baby teeth. Too much fluoride can cause fluorosis, a condition that causes white spots to appear on your child's adult teeth. But SOME fluoride-about .25 milligrams daily-is necessary to strengthen tooth enamel in children under three. Many municipal water supplies are already fortified with fluoride, so your child will likely get sufficient fluoride from drinking formula and tap water. But if your water supply is not fortified, as is the case with well water, or if you aren't sure, talk to your baby's pediatrician about supplementing with fluoride drops. Additionally, follow the advice of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentists and take your baby to the dentist for the first time between six and 12 months. After all, it's NEVER too early for good dental hygiene!More »
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Childproofing your home starts even before your baby is born! Get tips on how to choose a crib, features to look for in changing tables, and other smart advice for keeping your infant safe.
Transcript: You've probably already selected a color scheme for your baby's nursery, but have you given thought to...
You've probably already selected a color scheme for your baby's nursery, but have you given thought to a safety scheme yet? Your baby is much more likely to find trouble once mobile and exploring, usually around six months or so. But even before then, you'll need to take important precautions to guarantee your newborn's safety in your home. The U.S. Code of Federal Regulations, or CFR, and the Juvenile Products Manufacturer's Association, or JPMA, recommend selecting a crib with slats no more than 2 and 3/8ths inches apart from one another. To measure accurately, make sure you CAN'T fit a soda can between the crib's bars. The sides should rise AT LEAST 26 inches above the mattress support. Next up? Ensure that the crib you choose is made of smooth wood, with no splinters. If it's painted, check for chips. The crib's mattress should be firm and fit snugly, with no more than two fingers' width between the side and the mattress. Although cutouts in the head or footboard of a crib LOOK pretty, you'll want to steer clear of them to ensure your baby doesn't get stuck. Once you've selected your crib, position it AWAY from windows, heaters, lamps, cords, and other furniture. Don't hang anything over the crib with a string longer than seven inches, and remove ALL hanging objects once your baby can sit up. You'll also want to keep your infant's changing table in a safe spot, preferably next to a wall. When Changing your baby's diaper, it's vital to keep one hand on your baby at all times and to use a safety strap, it can't hurt to put a soft rug underfoot. Ensure changing supplies are far from your infant's reach on the table. Finally, install a smoke alarm and a carbon monoxide detector in your infant's nursery, remembering to change the batteries in both at least once a year. Until your baby begins to crawl or scoot around, these precautions will help keep your little one safe from harm. Remember though, that there's a lot more childproofing to do once your infant is more mobile and active!More »
Last Modified: 2013-08-20 | Tags »
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As your baby starts to crawl, you'll want to be sure to check your house to keep her safe from a host of dangers, from household cleaners to a coffee table's sharp edges. Use our childproofing checklist and you won't forget a thing.
Transcript: Somewhere around your baby's sixth month, your little one will start crawling and exploring your home-and...
Somewhere around your baby's sixth month, your little one will start crawling and exploring your home-and it's up to YOU to keep your infant safe! Baby safety is EXTREMELY important, and you can help ensure that your home is as baby-proof as possible. Unintentional injuries that occur in and around the home can include: burns, falls, drowning, animal bites, choking/suffocation and poisonings from diverse substances such as lead, carbon monoxide, household cleaners, and prescription medications, It's sobering to learn that close to 20,000 deaths, and 21 million medical visits by children each year, are the result of injuries that happen in the home. But home injuries can be preventable! And childproofing is a VITAL part of preventing injury. We've got some tips to get you on your way! The best way to start the childproofing process is to put yourself in your baby's "shoes." Get down on hands and knees and crawl around each room. Take note of the tempting and the easily accessible things your baby will see from down there. Children explore the world by putting things in their mouths, so your first mission will be to confiscate any small objects that your baby can choke on. Now you need to protect every accessible electrical outlet by replacing standard outlet covers with ones that offer sliding safety latches. Next, check the ties and cords on every window's curtains and blinds. Shorten or remove all of them! After the small stuff is done, it's time to look at the bigger picture-your furniture. Avoid potentially deadly tip-overs by bolting big pieces of furniture to the wall and by pushing larger objects, like your television, back. Sharp corners on furniture can be hazardous, too, so cover these with baby bumpers. Because your baby will be more mobile every day, it's wise to install removable window guards, and to use a sturdy stop on doors. And your little one will soon have no trouble getting into your kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Because even seemingly harmless substances-like aspirin or vitamins-can be deadly to babies, it's KEY to lock each cabinet with a safety latch. Babies can drown in AS LITTLE as one inch of water, so the next thing on your childproofing list should be safeguarding against this. Install a safety latch on your toilet and, when bathing your child, NEVER EVER leave your baby alone in the tub. Place a soft plastic or rubber guard over the tub spout and add a nonslip rubber mat to the tub's bottom. Now, let's take our childproofing efforts to the kitchen, where you'll ensure that garbage and recycling receptacles have baby locks. When cooking, use the back burners on the stove as often as possible. Unplug all electric devices between uses and ensure they're stored OUT of your baby's reach. Avoid using tablecloths and placemats, which can cause an entire table's contents to come crashing down on your baby. And don't underestimate the usefulness of a baby gate! Choose a new model with a straight slant design; and ensure it's approved by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association, or JPMA. Remember though, that even the most vigilant childproofing and the best child safety products are no substitute for your watchful eye...so never let your baby wander to your blindspot!More »
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Babies need a car seat from the first trip home from the hospital. But shopping for baby car seats can be confusing. Get quick safety tips and facts on how to pick the best car seat for your infant.
Transcript: Using a car seat may SOUND easy enough, but did you know that up to 50% of parents install them INCORRECTLY?...
Using a car seat may SOUND easy enough, but did you know that up to 50% of parents install them INCORRECTLY? This sobering statistic may be the reason that some 90,000 children under eight are injured in car crashes each year. Clearly, selecting the best car seat and installing it properly are VITAL to your infant's well-being. Before you hit the stores, note that there are three types of car seats. An infant-only model is a rear-facing seat designed for children who weigh less than 20 pounds. A convertible, or infant-toddler car seat, usually holds babies up to 35 pounds, and is designed to face either the rear or the front. Finally, a belt-positioning booster seat is a front-facing model that is made for children over three who weigh at least 40 pounds. For safety and comfort's sake, most experts recommend purchasing a new car seat for each stage of your baby's development. Even more importantly-because safety requirements for infant seats AND for vehicles changed in 2002-you should NEVER use an older, secondhand seat. In September 2002, the LATCH, or Lower Anchors and Teethers for Children, regulation was put into effect. This standardized system makes all infant seats safer by attaching them directly to anchors built into the car, as opposed to using the car's seat belt as a fastener. Rear-facing infant seats are required to offer bottom latches only, while convertible and booster seats also boast latches at the top. In addition to the LATCH system, you'll want a model that appears easy to install and that does NOT need to be adjusted after every ride. Ensure that the seat is generously padded for your baby's comfort, and check that the pads are removable and machine washable. You'll also want to make sure that the model has adequate restraints to hold your child. A five-point safety harness is best. Before you install the car seat of your choosing, CAREFULLY read the installation instructions, and ensure that you understand them. A car seat should be installed in the center of the back seat of a car. And remember that babies SMALLER than 20 pounds and younger than one year, should ALWAYS sit in a rear-facing seat. After your baby is buckled in, double check that the seat ITSELF is securely attached to the car! Try to move the car seat around toward the front or back of your car. If it gives more than an inch, your baby isn't secure enough. Keep in mind that you'll need to repeat this process every single time you take your child for a drive, right up until your child is eight years old. It may SEEM like a hassle, but NEVER skip the car seat-your child's safety is at stake!More »
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It is extremely important for newborn babies to get their essential vitamins. Watch this video about the importance of infant vitamins.
Transcript: While your newborn is eating up a storm, there are SOME vitamins and minerals that your little one may...
While your newborn is eating up a storm, there are SOME vitamins and minerals that your little one may not be getting enough of. Before your infant's sixth month, she's probably consuming only formula or breast milk, BOTH of which provide the majority of vitamins and minerals she needs. But there are three nutrients your baby may NOT be getting enough of: Vitamin D, iron, and fluoride. Vitamin D is a nutrient that our bodies make following exposure to sunlight. We also get it from the foods we eat. Small infants, however, should never be in direct sunlight, and therefore cannot produce sufficient amounts of Vitamin D. The bad news is that they can't get enough from you either, as Vitamin D is one of the only nutrients that is NOT passed in adequate amounts from mother to child through breast milk. Because a Vitamin D-deficiency can lead to a bone disease called rickets, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends giving your baby daily "D" supplements, starting at age 2 months. Aim for 200 IUs of Vitamin D a day from a supplement like Gerber Vitamin Drops or Tri-Vi-Sol. Tri-Vi-Sol Drops are a particularly popular choice because they offer up Vitamins A and C, along with that daily dose of Vitamin D. Plus, the Tri-Vi-Sol formula is available fortified with iron. Iron is vital for a growing baby, because it is a key component of hemoglobin, which keeps oxygen flowing smoothly through the body. Most babies are born with plenty of iron to last them about six months, at which point they start to consume the nutrient through food, like fortified cereal. But because most of an infant's iron stores are made during the last months in the womb, a premature baby may need a doctor-specified iron supplement. And just as your baby's body needs iron, a baby's teeth need fluoride. This mineral is necessary in children older than six months, as it helps strengthen teeth, and encourages them to grow. Most babies get plenty of fluoride from tap water, but infants who drink bottled or well water may require a fluoride supplement. Fluoride drops are available only by prescription, so talk to your pediatrician if you're concerned. In fact, talk to the doctor if you're concerned about ANY vitamins or minerals in your baby's diet. You'll be glad for the peace of mind!More »
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