New mums rejoice: you are not alone. Babies get sick all the time, particularly in the early stages of their development. New born babies tend to catch between four and nine colds per year, let alone all of the other little sicknesses that crop up from time to time.
Due to their undeveloped immune system, young children are more susceptible to sickness and their symptoms can be more severe than that of an adult. We’ve put together a handy guide on five ways you can keep bub healthier and happier (and help you grab some extra Zs at night).
- Protect bub from the sun
To protect your bub from the elements, you’re going to need more than slip, slop, slap. Your baby’s delicate skin needs a little more tender, love and care. The best way to keep your baby protected is to keep them indoors from 11am to 3pm, which is the time when the sun’s rays are the strongest. Second to that is your physical barriers, which include your sunshades over prams, and long-sleeve tops. It is also really important to apply an SPF30+, with which you can be very generous.
The other side of the coin is that getting out in the sun with your baby is the easiest and quickest way to get some Vitamin D, which is so important for your baby. As long as you apply sunscreen, monitor your baby to ensure they’re not getting too hot, and giving them lots of water, you will be fine.
- Crowd control
Young babies are yet to develop an immunity to sicknesses, and can quite easily contract illnesses that are airborne. To keep bub safe, it is better to keep away from large crowds, or people who are sick. Once you’re past the three-month mark, it is easier to start being a little more adventurous.
That’s not to say you can’t explore with your newborn, but it helps to be prudent with large crowds of people. Whilst you’re out, make sure that you are keeping your little one hydrated and be continually wiping your baby’s mouth and hands.
- Food is life
Once your baby is ready, it makes sense to give your baby really healthy food. Fruits and vegetables, wholegrains, legumes, fish and lean meats are at the top of the list. It is important to expose your bub to all sorts of different nutrients, and what a perfect time, before their preferences kick in. We recommend sweet potatoes, which are a great source of potassium, vitamin C and fibre, and also contain truckloads of beta-carotene.
Avocados are a fantastic addition to any baby’s diet, as they contain good fats that can make your baby feel full and keep their little hearts healthy! Yoghurts are really important as they are a great source of calcium, protein, phosphorous, and have some great probiotics, which are great for babies.
- Let baby lead the way
Especially for first-time parents, life can be particularly stressful. Everyone feels it their moral obligation to tell you what to do. When it comes to your baby’s health, it is best to let your baby lead the way. Listen to your instincts and trust your baby, because they usually have fantastic methods of communicating with you.
- Keep up the fluids
When it comes to your water intake, there is about a 1.5-hour time lag between being thirsty and actually feeling thirsty. It is so important to habitually keep water close-by, and make sure as they start to move around a lot more, they are increasing their water intake. Another great way to ensure your kids are getting their fluids is integrating fruit and vegetable with a high-water intake, such as strawberries, watermelon and cucumber.