As per CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), the birth rate in the U.S. in 2020 had declined. The rate dropped down to 4% compared to 2019 and it has been declining for the past decade. Although it is too early to tell if there would be a baby boom or bust per the effects of Covid-19, being a new parent, especially at this time is surely not easy.
Being a parent can be overwhelming, especially if you have a new baby to care for. There is no such thing as a perfect parent, as all moms and dads make mistakes. We learn from trial and error and often do whatever works for our kids. We change from experience or learn from the experts, so we can be well guided. To help you be at your best, we have provided the common mistakes that new moms and dads should avoid.
Trusting everything you hear
Everyone will have different opinions based on their experiences, but not all of them are correct. A few of your mom friends may offer advice about co-sleeping or room-sharing. Others may suggest playing with your baby longer during the day so he can sleep through the night. Since it concerns your baby's health and well-being, it is best to read articles from experts or seek your doctor's advice on what is best for your baby.
Buying stuff your baby don’t need
New moms and dads are often excited when buying baby stuff. They tend to purchase high-quality, expensive things, as they want the best for their baby. The downside of this is not all the baby stuff will be used or loved by your little one, and they are just not necessary. Examples of these things are; crib bumpers (not suggested by AAP), baby shoes as newborns don't need shoes for the first few months of life, changing table as changing pads are more convenient, and bassinets as your baby will grow fast and you will need to transfer her to a crib. We suggest doing research on what to buy and what to put in your baby registry.
Comparing your baby
You may be worried that your baby doesn't know how to sit up at 4 months, not like your friend's baby. Do not compare your child to other babies. Each baby is unique, and they have their own time of developing skills. As long as they are within the average range, your baby is fine! Be happy and celebrate each milestone. Your baby will learn them at their own pace, so do not force them to do so.
Not allowing your baby to cry
It is normal for babies to cry. They may cry while you are addressing their needs, like when feeding or when changing their diaper. You do not have to guilt yourself every time they cry as it is their means of communicating. Attend to your baby's needs or cuddle them to feel secure. If your baby is crying for several hours, unable to soothe, or if you feel something is off, it is best to call a pediatrician to check on your baby.
Sweating over small stuff
Many new parents cannot avoid being worried when it comes to their babies. For instance, you found tiny white spots on your baby's nose and cheeks. You worried so much that you think she caught a disease. You consulted her doctor, only to find out that those tiny spots called "milia" are normal and will disappear in a few weeks. Babies are born resilient they can be able to withstand difficulties. Caring for a newborn is supposed to be spontaneous, which every parent should enjoy. Forget about your worries and cherish those precious moments with your little one!
Taking your newborn to gatherings
While you may want your relatives and friends to meet your baby, it may not be a good idea to bring them to crowded places. Your baby's first 2 months of life are delicate as their immune system is not yet developed. You will need to protect them from germs, bacteria, and potentially sick people. Since crowded places are not advisable, feel free to take your baby for walks, or simply sitting on the porch and enjoying the view is okay, too.
Car seat installations
Take your baby's car seat installation seriously as it concerns your baby's safety. While we parents are focused on baby things and all, we should also include the car seat as one of the things we should prepare before your baby's arrival. Experts advise that you will need the car seats ready, as it is where you need to place your baby when getting home from the hospital. Installing a car seat can be a challenge for some parents, but you can always ask a technician from the National Child Passenger Safety Certification site for help.
Ignoring healthy oral habits
Many new parents often forget that they also need to take care of their baby's oral hygiene. Experts advise not to give milk at bedtime when your baby's teeth start to grow as cavities will develop. Also, wipe your baby's gums with a clean cloth or gauze and you can use a toothbrush when your baby turns one. Fluoride is also advisable for children, you should ask your dentist when your child can get fluoride.
Not knowing when to call a doctor
It is important for new moms and dads to know when to call or bring their baby to a doctor. If your baby feels warm, it is best to take your newborn's temperature rectally. A temperature reading of 100.4 F, means it is an emergency. The exception to this rule is when your baby had an immunization within 24 hours therefore, fever is just a normal body reaction. Do not disregard if your baby feels warm. A wise mom will always check her baby's temperature immediately.
Not giving enough time for your spouse
Although this is not baby-related, this is what most parents face when they are so focused on their little ones. New parents tend to be exhausted caring for their newborn that they unconsciously neglect their spouse's needs. Sometimes marital troubles arise during this phase. You and your partner must remain connected in your marriage so you can be a power team. Hire a babysitter and spend time with each other, schedule a date, talk more often, and make it a routine. Prioritizing your spouse is important.
Taking care of a newborn is a tough job for both moms and dads. It may be hard at first, but there is no challenge you can't overcome. All that matters is that you are doing your best and enjoying all the precious moments with your little one!