Pollution is a big worry for all of us in today’s day and age. We often feel poorly when any germ or disease infects our bodies, but infants especially are vulnerable to this wild nature. Asthma attacks increase as air pollutions increases and that especially affects our little ones.
Illnesses like cough, fever, vomiting and nausea are common to infants. They are prone to skin infections because their skin is not as tough as ours. Rashes and skin irritation appear due to tight underwear or wet diapers irritating the skin.
Even if parenthood is new to you and you fear you don’t know anything about newborns, you will quickly get used to and be able to distinguish between your baby’s hungry and tired cries. You learn to know how he or she prefers to be rocked, burped and held.
You eventually become more comfortable with and more confident in your parenting skills. But then the normal paranoia kicks in and you start wondering, is he getting enough milk, is this level of crying normal, does he look ok?
Then you start searching online, reading up about the behaviors healthy babies exhibit, normal development and appearances. And of course you find the million different opinions the Internet is famous for.
You have started at pregnancy site which told you how real mothers do it and ended at webmd telling you how real mothers should be doing it. And frantically, you are now even more confused than before.
If and when your child is calmed by your presence, it is the first sign that he or she is bonding with you and that they are developing well on an emotional level. Talking to your baby surely wont turn off the crying, but because your voice was the soundtrack they were listening to in your womb, it should be comforting to them none the less.
If you are changing 8 to 10 wet diapers per day and your baby continues to put on weight, this is a good sign that he/she is getting enough milk. One often gets concerned about the amount of milk your baby is getting in when you breastfeed, this is a sure way to tell.
Babies don’t feed the same every day, so keep this as a guideline and don’t stress too much if this varies a bit. Unfortunately a woman’s breast and bladder don’t quite work the same, so you will not feel that your little one has now drank their fill.
The first few weeks your baby will be feeding approximately ever 2 hours and sleeping around 16 hours per day. Babies from around 1 month of age begin to be more alert, look around more and start taking in their surroundings. If this is not the case, feel free to raise a concern with your pediatrician.
Here are a few health threatening signs you should never ignore:
Blue lips. This is a definite sign that your baby is not getting enough oxygen. You should seek immediate medical care. There could be something obstructing his airway or another reason why sufficient oxygen is not reaching his bloodstream.
Strained breathing. If their breathing is either laboured, hard or fast, and you can see the nostrils flare out, it is time to seek medical attention.
Fever. If your new-born has a fever of over 38°C, you should take him/her to a doctor. Fever in a new-born could be an indication of many health issues and its best to have a doctor check it out. A prolonged high fever at such a young age could indicate a serious underlying issue.
Dehydration. If your baby is not producing wet diapers, you need to look at their hydration. A good guideline would be two diapers for a two day old, three diapers for a three day old, and so on. An easy way to check for proper hydration is the skin.
Pinching it and having it stay in that shape after you pinched it spells serious dehydration and you should be giving this immediate attention
Throwing up green bile. Babies throw up a lot. They can even throw up from crying a lot. But if the vomit looks like dark coffee grounds or is green in colour, do see a medical profession immediately.
Green bile could be an indication of intestinal blockage which needs immediate attention. The coffee ground coloured vomit may be an indication of internal bleeding. Your baby needs to be evaluated immediately.
There are a few ways you can ensure your infants well being on a day to day basis however. Vaccination is one way of ensuring your infant does not suffer from a lot of life threatening illnesses. Vaccinations boost the infants immune system and helps their bodies fight of diseases.
Diseases such as polio cause serious health issues. Its important to educate yourself on all the vaccines and their functions and to regularly visit your doctor or clinic to check your baby’s weight. Your baby can get up to 24 vaccinations against diseases such as measles, tuberculosis, typhoid, rubella, influenza and hepatitis A and B.
There are some people that believes that vaccinations negatively impacts on a child’s health but when looking at history, especially the time before vaccines where commonplace you can safely deduce that this is simply not true
Some babies also suffer from jaundice. When their liver is not strong enough to break down the bilirubin present in their blood, the baby gets a yellowish coloured skin because of the excessive amount of bilirubin in their bloodstream.
If the jaundice gets severe it can cause damage to your infants brain and neuron tissue. His or her body will continue to be yellow if the disease persists and you will have to check with your doctor for the first few weeks to get it clear.Jaundice in infants is normally treated by placing the baby under a halogen or fluorescent lamp with their eyes covered.
This lowers the bilirubin levels in your baby’s blood through a process called photo-oxidation. You need not worry as many parents before you have already gone through this. The procedure is safe and very effective and the doctors administering it know exactly what they are doing
Another health issue with infants is cough and excessive crying. Your infant is a fragile and gentle little person, and he or she can spit up or cough out milk with the first few feeds. If this persists after the first few feeds you may have to consult your doctor as it could be a sign of digestive issues or a problem with their lungs.
Crying is normal in infants, but excessive crying should not be ignored. At times it feels like a struggle to keep him or her happy, and you should always take care to change diapers regularly, check their temperature and keep their feeds regular.
Your infants breathing and respiratory system should also be monitored. You should study the movement of their body and chest, and if abnormal breathing is noted a few days after his or her birth, you need to consult your doctor as there could be a serious underlying medical condition.
Babies are warm, comfortable and safe in the sterile conditions of the womb, but after birth are suddenly exposed to germs, viruses and bacteria. By following these few parenting tips you can help keep them happy and healthy.
Some parent are also worried about the their baby having a hearing or eyesight problem. Rest assured that this feeling is natural.
Closely observe your baby as it becomes accustomed to its new surroundings. With time it will learn to filter out background and important noises and will likely start turning towards these noises.
You can safely assume that they can at least hear, although you might have to wait a while before you can test their level of hearing. Fortunately, instruments available today can determine this with some degree of accuracy too.
The same applies to your baby’s eyesight. Watch closely as you reach out to him. Does his eyes track the movement of your hand? If at first this does not happen you don’t have to start worrying immediately.
They control of the eyes are done by muscles, just like any other body part. Babies unfortunately, do not get born pre-programmed and slowly start learning to take control of their body and their surroundings.
Certain muscles like the eyelids, heart and breathing does happen automatically because if this does not happen, all of us would probably be blind by now, having our eyes dry out and fail.
The final sign that your baby is on its way to be a healthy human being is them supporting their own weight. As muscle control is learned with time and the muscles get stronger with use, you will see this happening. From about one month you could be able to see your baby lifting up it’s head as it tracks your movement.
Even if this only happens briefly, it can be a sure sign to you that your child’s development has kicked into overdrive. From here on, you should not stop and blink your eyes for to long as you might miss a developmental aspect happening right before your very eyes