At times when you hold your little star within your arms,
you can feel the map of your own bones beneath your hands;
or the smell of your skin
beneath the nape of his neck.
That’s the beauty of Motherhood–
finding a piece of yourself, your existence-
separate and apart
without whom, you cannot live without.
Motherhood is indeed a special phase which every women goes through in her life. I too wish to experience it someday, but there is time to it. But, do we need a reason to love and cuddle babies? Not really! I am very fond of babies and thankfully, we have 3 new additions to our family over the last 3 years. The youngest among them is 11 months old, Ayeza.
She is a very calm and well-mannered baby. She is bright, lively and many times, the reason behind strangers smiling back at us as they would talk to her in a babyish manner, while she flaunts her toothless smile.
When I asked Aunt about how she manages to nourish her this well, she told me of secret tips her mom gave her which aid in better child development. She shared the fact that newborns need to develop a skin-to-skin care with their mother, which primarily helps in their transition to life outside of womb. For me, this was something new. I searched online to learn if this concept exists, and I must say, old traditions and rituals does hold truth.
The Additional Benefits of Skin-to-Skin care between Mother and Child are:
- Temperature & Breathing regulation
- Pain relief & Calming effect
- Brain & Immune System Development
- Enhances early breastfeeding
- Introduces baby to mom’s natural bacteria
- Amazing bonding between mother and child
Little Ayeza has this unusual love for newspaper, as she has looked up at how grandpa reads it in the early morning and now that she babbles, she toddles towards my grandpa and tries to snatch it from him and if her demands aren’t fulfilled, the house would end up in an outcry. When she initially started to babble, her first words were Eza. That was funny to me, as usually babies say ma-ma, pa-pa or da-da.
Unlike Hasnain, who is a little elder to her, she is less cranky and not completely attached to her parents. She loves to wander about. But, Aunt takes special care in making sure that her discoveries doesn’t affect her skin.
5 prominent tips to keep a baby’s skin soft and safe:
- Touch Me Not!
An infant’s skin is the ultimate blank slate, free of all the marks we accumulate over a lifetime. It is said that many organs develop early in pregnancy, whereas it takes almost the entire 9 months in the womb for a baby’s skin to mature. Hence, we must remember to touch their face skin as less as possible, as it may contract various infections. The basic rule is don’t do anything to aggravate the skin. The less we wipe and irritate it, the better.
2. Bath Me Right!
It is advised to give the child a gentle sponge bath during the early days. Babies must be Tub-bathed twice a week until they start eating solids and crawling- getting dirtier. Soap can irritate baby’s skin, hence skipping it or choosing mild, scent-free products is best. Whatever we may use, the lesser the variety of chemicals used, the better for the baby.
3. The Laundry Duty!
Babies, especially newborns, tend to have sensitive skin, so it is advised to wash new clothing and towels before using them. Although there are special ‘baby’ laundry detergents, which leave less residue after washing, it’s perfectly fine to use regular detergents.
4. Sun, Sun, Go Away!
A baby’s skin is sensitive and fragile, hence, babies under 6 months, should not be exposed to direct sunlight. Babies have more skin surface than adults, hence, they receive a higher dose of chemicals which increases the odds of an adverse reaction, Instead, keep babies under 6 months in the shade and use protective clothing.
5. Diaper Diaries!
Diapers and babies compliment each other. The materials that keep diapers from leaking also prevent air from circulating, creating the perfect environment for a rash to breed.
The cleaner and drier a baby’s bottom, the less likely their skin will become irritated. Cleaning baby with water and a washcloth or baby wipe during every diaper change, then allow his skin to dry completely before applying a diaper cream that contains moisture-blocking zinc oxide. Also, give baby some diaper-free time on a towel a few minutes every day.
Keeping a note of the above points would do a great deal of safety for your newborns and toddler’s skin.
A baby is a little bit of heaven sent down to earth
Image Courtesy: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
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