Having your first baby is such an exciting but daunting experience. While you may be used to doing everything together as a couple, you now have a new person in your life for whom you’ll be responsible – and nothing can prepare you for this significant lifestyle change.
No one said parenting is easy, but it is one of the most rewarding jobs you will ever have. Navigating your way through parenthood is a task that all new moms and dads must conquer, but with some help and advice, you’ll get through it somehow.
Here are some key tips for new parents:
Follow your gut instinct
You’re probably bombarded with information from all sources as to how to look after your newborn to the point of being overwhelmed. However, sometimes, it’s important to take a step back and trust your gut instinct. There will always be individuals who will be keen to offer their opinion based on their own experiences, but only you know your baby and what is best for them.
If ever you have that gut feeling that there is something wrong with your baby, seek the advice of a medical professional. If they’re constantly crying, it could be that they’re suffering from the common illness in babies known as colic.
Be kind to yourself
If, like many other new parents, you have barely been in the presence of a newborn, having your own is a whole new experience that you’ll need to grow accustomed to. You’re not going to know everything on day one, and you’ll still be learning in the months to come. Don’t be hard on yourself – you’re doing the best you can, and that’s all you can do. After going through the trauma of labor and birth, pat yourself on the back for what you have achieved and talk to yourself as you would to a best friend.
Know the rules of diapering
On average, you should be changing your baby’s diaper at least 10 times per day to avoid diaper rash. Red, bumpy and inflamed skin is the key sign of diaper rash, but this should go away in a few days. Before your baby comes home, it would be best to have all of your diaper supplies on hand so that you’re ready to go once you bring the baby home, including cloth or disposable diapers, ointments, wipes, and baby changing pad covers.
Get as much sleep as possible
You’re more than likely aware that new parents never get a good night’s sleep with a newborn baby. It’s common to be woken up multiple times throughout the night to see to your baby’s needs which will, no doubt, start to have an impact on your mood and energy levels in time. With this in mind, aim to get as much sleep as possible when your baby is sleeping. This will help you cope with the lack of rest during the night and keep your health and energy levels up to take care of your little one.
There you have it, some top tips for new parents when navigating parenthood for the first time.