The cold and flu season is not a fun time for anyone, especially not when you have a newborn to worry about as well. I understand that during this time, Corona Virus/COVID-19 might be a big concern, but this article will focus more on a “normal” cold and flu season. However, these measures will assist in keeping your newborn safe from most things they can catch.
It is important to know that a newborn’s immune system does not mature until they are about 2 to 3 months old. However, just after birth, the antibodies from the mother stick with the baby for the first couple of weeks. There are a few steps you can take to make sure your baby is as safe as possible.
Limit the Baby’s Outdoor/Away From Home Time
While you do need to do your day-to-day life activities, or you might want to show off your baby to your friends or family, the world outside of your home is a wild place of bacteria and viruses. The best precaution to avoid this is to limit how much time your baby spends away from home. For the first two months, it’s best to keep your baby inside as much as possible, or covered and away from other people if outside.
Limit YOUR Time Away from Home, and be Careful About it
If you need to do something outside of the home, be mindful of who and what you touch. If there is one good thing that has come out of this COVID-19 situation, it’s that many people are much more conscious about germs. This can play to your advantage. However, it is still best to stay at home as much as you can. When you do come home…
Clean and Disinfect Yourself When Coming Home
You might be able to keep your baby at home for two months, but you might need to do something. Hopefully, you and your partner can take turns watching your newborn. Regardless, when you come home, you should go straight to the bathroom and wash up. Wash your hands with soap and warm water, and I would even suggest a change of clothes. While you may want to cuddle your baby as soon as you get home, it is best to be safe! Cold and flu viruses can live on clothes for 8-12 hours.
Limit Those Who See Your Baby
Family and friends are going to want to see your baby, and you might want grandma to watch the little one while you and your partner get out of the house. While this is extremely helpful, you have to be careful. It doesn’t hurt to ask if they have been around anyone sick, or when they were sick last.
You especially want to limit the younger visitors: children. Children can be a breeding ground for germs. The last thing you want is for that to be around your baby. While a hazmat suit is not needed, it’s your baby, and you make the rules.
Keep up with Vaccines
Vaccines are developed for a reason, and they do work. One of the best ways to make sure that your baby remains healthy is to keep them up to date with their vaccines. There are many deadly conditions that can be avoided with a few simple vaccinations.
It is also a good practice to make sure that whoever is around your baby has been vaccinated as well. There are things that can be passed on by adults if they were not fully vaccinated.
Premade formulas are a great option, but breastfeeding offers so many more advantages: antibodies, white blood cells, enzymes, and more. These all help boost your baby’s immune system. If you do not want to breastfeed or if you cannot, talk to your doctor about which formula might be the best for your baby.
Know when to call a Doctor
No matter how many steps you take to try and keep your baby as healthy as possible, they can still get sick. While you can always look online for tips and tricks about what to do for certain symptoms, you can’t always play doctor. If your baby’s temperature gets over 100.3 degrees, call your doctor right away. A fever this high will lower your newborn’s already low immune system.
Keeping your baby safe needs to be a top priority. You know better, but they do not. If you follow these steps, it will definitely help make sure your baby remains the healthiest they can be. Nothing is foolproof though. Anything can happen. If you are proactive when you need to be, and quickly reactive when you need to be, then you will do a good job in taking care of your baby!