Congratulations! You went through nine long months of pregnancy and now your precious baby is here and you want to show them off to the world! However, some moms are hesitant to do so due to old wives tales that say you are supposed to keep your baby cooped up for the first few weeks or even months. You may be surprised to hear that most pediatricians will tell you that there is no medical documentation that supports this.
The main concern for new moms is that their baby will be exposed to germs. Yes, newborns have weaker immune systems but if you follow basic precautions you should not run into any problems. In fact, healthy newborns and mom too, can actually benefit from spending time outdoors.
In the beginning try taking your baby to open and airy places, for example going for a walk or a trip to the park. Avoid crowded places that have poor ventilation—such as airplanes or trains. The babble article, The Science of Immunity, offers the following guidelines for taking your newborn out:
- Avoid busy parts of the day- If you want to go to the grocery store or out to eat try to beat the rush. Typically these places are a lot less busy during morning hours. The less people around, the less likely your baby will be exposed to germs.
- Schedule doctor visits wisely- Obviously many of the children at a pediatrician’s office are sick. Most sick patients are waiting to be seen first thing in the morning or after school hours. Try taking your newborn in between those times and make sure you take advantage of sitting in the “well” waiting room.
- Be more careful with newborns under two months of age– Newborns this age have more vulnerable immune systems.
- Avoid letting children touch your newborn– Children are not as conscious of spreading germs as adults are. Anyone who holds your newborn should properly sanitize his or her hands first.
- Indirect sunlight– Newborns have delicate skin that burns easily. It’s best to keep them fully shaded with clothing or an umbrella.
Pediatrician Jennifer Shu stresses the importance of dressing your baby appropriately when taking your baby outdoors. Your newborn should be dressed in the same amount of layers as an adult. Bring a blanket for back-up. Shu also advises to watch out for temperature extremes. Depending on the age of the baby, 20°F and 90°F would likely be too cold and too hot for your baby to be outside.
Another way to keep your newborn happy and healthy is to qualify for a breast pump through insurance. Breastfeeding provides many health and nutritional benefits to mom and baby. Qualifying for your breast pump through Aeroflow Healthcare Breastpumps will allow for you to provide optimal nutrition for your baby even when you must be apart.