The joke about no owner’s manual for your kiddos never gets old. That’s because there’s always a new thing to learn when it comes to being a parent. For newbies, this experience can be rather daunting. Here are some newbie parenting mistakes that you’ll want to try to avoid.

Car Seat Issues

That simple car seat is one of the craziest challenges. After spending all of that time in the hospital with nurses and doctors keeping a watchful eye on how you are as a new parent, they’re just letting you leave with this tiny, fragile, little human that you didn’t have when you got there. It’s an insane feeling. One of the first things you have to consider is the car seat being installed correctly and used right.

You can visit a local fire station as they are willing to help you with the installation. ( Call ahead of time and make sure they have a car seat specialist on duty and check to see if you need an appointment. Also, get it installed a month or so ahead of time, because baby’s do come early!) They are great in making sure that you have it installed correctly, and showing you what you did wrong so that you can install it right the next time. However, many new parents install it without thinking about the next steps. Practice using the car seat with a stuffed animal before baby finally makes their appearance. Get comfortable with the straps and the placement, so when you place your actual real-life baby in there, you will feel much more confident in what the heck you are doing.

Sleep Basics

With sudden death infant syndrome or SIDS, there’s a national campaign teaching parents the right way to put baby to sleep. You should put your newborn to sleep on their back. In addition, you don’t want to have any soft bedding, toys, or other items in the crib with baby.

Burps

You burp all the time without much thought after a big meal or a fizzy drink, but burping your noodle isn’t always the easiest. You may worry about hurting your baby with burping, but getting a good burp out is best for baby. Leaving that gas in their little tummy can make them feel painful later on or cause them to spit up what they had just eaten. Just find the right burping method for you. There’s the over-the-shoulder burp or laying your baby down across your lap. You can even do bicycle exercises with their legs to help them burp.

Food Prep

Plenty of parents make mistakes when it comes to mixing up the formula that they feed their little sweetie. I’ve seen many parents add the scoops of formula first and then add the water to the oz. water line.  It’s easy to do when you’re tired and frazzled at caring for a newborn. The problem with having too little water in the formula is that your baby isn’t getting enough nutrition and can be very dangerous for your baby. Your pediatrician is sure to talk to you about how you’re feeding your little bae.

If you breastfeed, don’t think you’re off the hook here either. It’s important to talk with your pediatrician about how your baby is latching. You may think that your baby is latching on fine and sucking down the milk you’re providing, but that might not be the case. A lactation consultant may be another great source if you’re worried about how your breastfeeding is going and if your baby is getting enough to eat.  

Missing Tummy Time   

Does your little noodle stay in their bouncy chair, car seat or another sleeper more often than other positions? There’s a good chance you’re not giving your baby enough tummy time.  Tummy time is an important part of taking care of your baby. This is just a portion of the day – at least 20-30 minutes, although it doesn’t have to be all at once – that you set aside to let your little one play on his stomach. With baby on stomach, he can practice strengthening his back and neck muscles and trying to roll over, which will improve his coordination and balance. Tummy time is also excellent for stimulation and allowing them to start exploring their world.

Handling Fevers

Parents can go two ways when it comes to a fever with their newborn. They either over-react to it or they under-react. Babies younger than three months that have a fever of at least 100.4 or higher is serious. It’s definitely time to call your pediatrician right away. However, once your baby is a bit older, there’s a bit more to it. You need to see how your baby is doing overall. Are they eating and drinking normally? Do they seem like they are okay? Are there any breathing issues? How are they sleeping? In many cases, a fever is going to be relatively harmless. That being said, your pediatrician is going to be fine with you calling in to ask questions about your little one’s fever. They are used to new parents and their worries.  

Home Temperature

The temperature of your home is another potential mishap. Parents often worry about what temperature they should keep their home at to make sure baby is comfortable. Your thermostat should be between 68 to 72. The truth is what makes your comfortable is probably good for your mini-me. Your baby should feel warm to the touch, and if they feel too hot or too cold to your touch, add or remove clothing. Remember though that your newborn’s system doesn’t have great circulation just yet, so you may find their hands and feet are cool to the touch. * Please read my other blog, ” Ideal Sleep Temperature for Baby’ for a more in depth look on this topic.

Crowds

Taking your newborn out and about to show off what you made is often a tempting proposal. This action can be a mistake, especially if it’s cold and flu season. During the first two months of your little one’s life, they have a weaker immune system that’s developing and growing with them. Exposing your baby to germs can be dangerous. That doesn’t mean you have to stay cooped up indoors. You can go for daily walks and sit outside in your yard.

Are you guilty of any of these first-time parent mistakes? Don’t beat yourself up! WE ALL MAKE MISTAKES!! No Mommy shaming allowed! We are all doing our best and that’s what matters here!!!

Do you need help with handling some of these baby issues? Contact us today to learn about how our service can help.