5 Baby Myths That All Parents Should Be Aware Of
There are a lot of baby myths out there, and many such myths come from parents themselves When parents ask each other for advice, they usually share their own experiences with their own children. Many of these experiences are shared around through word of mouth to the point that they have become myths that many parents simply take for granted. So, if you would like to know more about baby myths then here are a few examples that you should be aware of.
Waking A Sleeping Baby
There is the myth that babies should never waken from sleep. This myth comes from the fact that babies sleep longer hours than either children or adults. The idea is that if babies are forced to wake up, he or she will become more vulnerable to illnesses and ailments. This is true even if the baby hasn't drunk milk for a long time.
This is not true. Although babies do need a lot of sleep, it's also possible for them to have too much sleep. Newborns usually sleep between 16 to 17 hours a day, and they also don't stay asleep for more than 2 to 4 hours per day. Exceeding the average time for sleep can be bad for many newborns, not only because it prevents them from feeding, but also because it prevents them from being physically active. So, if your baby sleeps too much then don't be afraid to wake them.
Strict Feeding Schedules
Feeding schedules have been around for a long time. However, modern research has revealed that interval feeding may not be as important as previously thought. Although the practice is not harmful to a baby's development, it is not the best way to keep them fed.
In contrast, feeding a baby whenever they are hungry allows them to maximize their nutrient intake, and the faster they feed, the faster they can get back to sleep or have fun. Also, until they are 3 months old, babies are driven by hunger and fatigue, which means that you can't make them follow a strict schedule.
However, this doesn't mean that feeding schedules are no longer important. Babies who are either sickly or have low appetites may not be able to cry out for milk, in which case, they will need a feeding schedule. If your baby has this problem then you should consult your doctor for professional advice.
A good way to determine if your baby is getting enough milk is to look at the averages. Formula-fed newborns consume around 2 to 3 ounces of formula whenever they are fed, and usually require feeding every three to four hours on average. This means that newborns consume between 12 to 18 ounces of milk per day.
As babies grow older, however, they will start consuming more milk, usually 4 to 5 ounces of milk every three to four hours. So, if your baby milk consumption exceeds or drops below this average then you will need to adjust her diet for her.
Baby Formula is Just as Healthy as Breast Milk
Baby formula was originally developed as an alternative to breast milk and was used whenever mothers couldn't produce milk to feed their children. However, since the mid-twentieth century, milk companies began promoting their products as either being equal or superior to breast milk.
This assertion is based on the fact that baby formulas contain all of the nutrients and vitamins found in breast milk. These include Potassium, Vitamin A, Calcium, Vitamin C, Iron, Magnesium, Vitamin D, Vitamin B-6 and Vitamin 8012.
Although it's true that baby milk formula contains all of these nutrients, what their producers fail to point out is that breast milk offers more than just nutrients. It also increases immunity, reduces the risk of allergies in infants and helps reduce the risk of infant death syndrome. Baby milk formula does not offer any of these benefits, so to say that they are equal to or superior to breast milk is not true.
Another fact to remember is that breastfed infants generally consume less milk than formula-fed infants. In contrast, breast milk seems to contain a lot of nutrients that keep babies full for much longer.
Picking Up Crying Babies Will Spoil Them
This is true for older babies, but not for newborns. A two-year old may need to "self-soothe" but infants need a lot of attention. Remember that infants cannot cope with hunger, discomfort, fatigue and the need for physical touch, which is why they deal with such problems the only way they know how, by crying. So, if your baby starts to cry, don't hesitate to pick her up. She may be the pain, and even if she just wants attention, you should still give her what she wants. It's important for her physical and emotional development.
The opposite is true for babies who are around 2 years old. At this age, they need to learn to soothe themselves, become independent and learn not to rely on their parents whenever they feel discomfort.
Excessive Crying Means That Something is Wrong
Excessive crying is not as bad as many parents think. It takes a lot of energy to cry really loud. Serious illnesses will prevent your baby from crying or moving. So, remember that even if your baby is sick or hurt, the fact that they are still capable of crying means that the problem may not be as bad as it seems.
Remember that babies cry over all sorts of reasons, including discomfort, stress, pain or simply craving physical touch. So, when this happens the first thing that you should do is calm down and examine the situation carefully. For starters, you should check their body for signs of injuries or skin discoloration. If you can't find any, consider if your baby is hungry or has irregular bowel movements. If these aren't problems either then your baby may be stressed, in which case you should soothe them.
If you can't find anything wrong with your baby, consider the environment around you. Is it too hot or too cold? Is the environment stressful or chaotic? If these are the problem then you should relocate your baby elsewhere. If you still can't find what's causing your baby to cry then call the family doctor and ask for professional advice.