The winter winds have started blowing and it becomes quite cold in the morning. As compared to older children, a newborn is vulnerable and more prone to catching a cold. Especially when it’s the baby’s first winter, you need to take extra precautions to ensure that your baby is warm and snug. Here are a few ways by which you can take care of your newborn in the winters:
Since a baby’s skin is very delicate, you need to cover your child appropriately. If you don’t feel too cold, doesn’t mean that your baby also won’t and if you cover yourself in too many layers doesn’t mean you make your child bundle up too! You need to look out for cues to ensure that your baby is comfortable.
You need to choose the right clothes and in the right quantity for your newborn. Always dress up your child in lightweight cotton clothing with a woolen layer if you notice that your child is feeling cold.
Here are some tips for dressing up your child in winters:
#2. Massage & Bath
Although it isn’t a must to bathe your child every day in the winters and you can always do it in the afternoon once the sun is up and bright. Try and keep the bath time as short as possible. Do not bathe the baby with very hot water. It should neither be cold nor too hot as hot water can cause skin dehydration and even chapping. Most doctors do not recommend using a soap as most baby soaps contain chemicals and fragrances that take away the natural oils of your baby’s skin. Even then if you wish to bathe your baby with a soap, choose a soap that is fragrance-free and contains natural moisturizing elements which can replenish the moisture of the skin and keep your baby‘s hydrated.
A baby’s skin is very delicate and very prone to getting dry and chapped. It is not uncommon to find babies with red, dry and cracked skin and so you need to moisturize your little angel to keep it soft and supple.
Here are a few ways of keeping your babies moisturized in winters:
- Never overdress your child as it can cause overheating and rashes on baby’s skin
- Dress up your child in a full-sleeved t-shirt with full-length bottoms or a jumpsuit, along with soft cotton socks, mittens, and a cap.
- As the temperature decreases, you can add an extra layer of woolens.
- It might be a good idea to lay a soft blanket on the bed and make your baby lie on it as it will make the child warm but should you see any sweating, remove it immediately.
- Although readymade sweaters look really nice and are easily available, it is better to make your child wear hand-knitted woolens, since they are snugger and the yarn does not irritate the child.
- Always iron your baby’s clothes when it is extremely cold as they become cold and wet in winters and can make the baby catch a cold.
A baby’s diet also needs to be adjusted during the winters.
Here are a few tips to help:
- Massage your baby’s skin with almond or coconut oil as they help to moisturize the skin deeply.
- It is best to massage the baby at night. Not only does it easily penetrate the skin; it also makes your baby get a good night’s sleep. Also, it saves your baby from the chilly morning. Children feel really cold in the morning while at night they are more at ease.
- One of the first places that go dry is baby lips and often mothers tend to forget this. If you find your baby licking his lips too often, it’s time to moisturize them. Take a few drops of homemade ghee and massage gently on your baby’s lips.
#4. Health & Hygiene
The winter season is the most dreaded as this is the time when most babies fall sick. Most babies catch a cold and have a blocked nose in winters. Their immune system is still developing and so they are more prone to falling ill.
Here are a few tips to ensure that your baby falls ill less often:
- If your child is less than 6 months old and still breastfeeding, you should do it more often as it helps to keep the baby warm. After all, babies don’t have as much body heat as adults do!
- Nursing mothers should refrain from eating foods that have a cooling effect on the body. (Curd, cucumber, melons) Instead, eat foods that keep the body warm (apricots, guava, basil)
- Include more garlic in the diet as it is a natural antibiotic and the nutrients will be passed from your body to the baby’s body while feeding.
- For babies older than 6 months, you can include more of soups in the diet, that can be given lukewarm to the baby.
Putting a heavy blanket might not be the best way to make your child feel snug. If he/she hasn’t started rolling over, you can wrap your baby in a soft cotton cloth. This will not only make the child feel snug and secure but also save you from the trouble of putting the blanket on the baby every now and then. If you are still breastfeeding, you can feed your baby to sleep. Close contact with the mother makes the baby feel warm and feeding induces sleep.
Since baby skin is delicate and becomes dry in winters, you might have to use different products during the cold weather.
- Unless your child has started indicating pee and poop, it is advisable to make him/her wear a diaper else you would have to change all the clothes and while doing this, the child can feel cold!
- Keep checking the diaper every now and then. Being in a soiled and wet diaper for long will make the child feel cold and it is very unhygienic too.
- Make sure your child has a flu shot.
- If your child’s skin is cold to touch and he/she is teary-eyed, add a layer and keep him close to yourself.
#7. Outing with Baby
This is the weather we all like to go out. The cold winds are sure harsh but it feels nice outside.
Well, for going out with a baby, you need to take care of a few things:
- Use a mild moisturizing body wash for bathing the baby
- Opt for a hydrating body lotion to moisturize the baby’s skin after bathing
- Go for a soothing oil like coconut or almond oil for massage
- Wash baby’s woolens with a special detergent so that they don’t shrink and have a longer life.
A baby’s first winter is extremely crucial and one needs to be very careful during this time.
- If the weather is too cold, I would recommend you keep the baby indoors unless absolutely necessary.
- If you really have to go out, keep your child covered while carrying him/her from the house to the car and vice versa.
- If you’re going to make the baby sit in a car seat, please refrain from making him/her wear puffy coats as it can cause overheating.
- Remove those heavy jackets and coats. Belt up your child in the car seat and now put a blanket on him/her. You can make the child wear the jacket/coat when they step out of the car.
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