Being a parent is one of the hardest and the most lovely jobs in the world. Sometimes, new moms make some mistakes when they deal with their babies due to their new experience of motherhood.
So, I’ll share here with you 17 things that you should never ever do to your baby in his first year. If you already do some of these things, don’t blame yourself, just stop doing it now.
Parenting is about trial and error, and parents should keep learning the right ways to deal with their little ones.
** I know that a lot of mothers know all these information before reading this post, but at the same time there are some new mothers who do not have enough experience will take advantage of this post**
1- Adding sugar to your baby’s food:
Babies do not need to add the refined sugar to their diet. The sugar requirements of the baby can be met by food rich in carbohydrates and other naturally sweet food such as fruits. An added sugar to your baby’s diet in his first year may cause serious health problems like tooth decay, obesity, diabetes and lethargy.
2- Adding salt to your baby’s food:
According to various health organizations, infants should not be given any salt until 6 months of age. Their sodium needs are met by salt contained in mother’s milk.
Babies aged between 6 months and 1 year should be given no more than 1 gram of salt per day, which contains 0.4 gram of sodium. An added salt to your baby’s diet in his first year may cause serious health problems like kidney stones, high blood pressure, the danger of dehydration and brittle bones.
3- Adding honey to your baby’s diet:
Giving your baby honey before 1 year of age is not recommended. It can lead to infant botulism, which can be fatal.
Infant botulism is a fatal disease that caused when babies ingest certain bacteria that produce dangerous toxins in your body.
A baby’s digestive system is still not fully developed before 1 year of age and hence cannot tolerate certain kinds of bacteria.
Honey is a known source that contains spores of a bacterium called Clostridium botulinum which can develop in a baby’s digestive system, causing this rare but potentially deadly illness.
4- Giving your baby cow’s milk:
If your child is under 1 year old, you shouldn’t feed your baby cow’s milk, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
That’s because cow’s milk doesn’t provide enough amounts of vitamin E, Iron and essential fatty acids.
Another reason is that your baby’s system can’t handle the high levels of protein, sodium & potassium in cow’s milk.
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5- feeding your baby in sleeping position:
It’s the most common feeding position between breastfeeding moms, however, it’s preferable to make your baby in a position that his head is higher than his body, not the same level.
That’s because while feeding in sleeping position, there’s a chance to get gas for baby.
Another problem with this position is that milk may enter the nose, eyes and ears of the baby and it may lead to complications.
So to avoid these issues you should have to be aware best is to place the baby on your laps and then feed.
6- Giving your baby fruit juices:
Babies under 1 year shouldn’t drink fruit juices at all according to American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). That’s because of juice offers no nutritional benefits early in life, and it can take the place of what babies really need like breast or formula milk, and their protein, fat, minerals and calcium. Juices are not a healthy choice and they are not a good replacement for fresh fruits and just packs in more sugar and calories.
7- Giving your baby processed foods:
processed food is one of the worst food for babies. Ready to eat foods which are meant for older children and adults are definitely not good for babies. They often contain too much sugar, salt and fat and very low nutritional values. So instead of serving your baby deli meats which are often high in sodium and carry a risk of food poisoning, you can serve him small bits of roast chicken or minced beef.
8- Giving your baby caffeine:
Some people give the baby coffee or tea because in some cultures this is a common practice to treat constipation or sometimes diarrhea.
Caffeine including in coffee and tea can be dehydration to your little one. Not only that, but even small amounts of caffeine can make your baby’s heart beating faster, possibly causing palpitations or even bad headache.
9- Feeding your baby soy milk:
Soy milk shouldn’t be offered to a baby under 12 months of age. Soy milk doesn’t contain the nutrients that children need for their growth. Feeding your baby soy milk will lead to severe vitamin, minerals, fatty acid deficiencies that can be deadly.
Doctors will recommend soy formula if they believe an infant should avoid cow’s milk protein or lactose or if the baby simply doesn’t tolerate milk-based formula.
Otherwise, the milk-based formula is healthier than the soy milk one.
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10- Giving your baby food that leads to choking:
Children can choke with food at any age, but those under 3 are at higher risk, and especially babies under one year who just started learning how to eat.
According to the CDC’s most recent data, there were 463 choking deaths related to food.
So, to save your children lives, it’s better to put in your mind a list of DON’Ts when you prepare your food to your beloved one.
• Hot dogs.
• Chewing gum.
• Peanuts and other nuts.
• Cherry tomatoes.
• Chicken with bones.
• Large chunks of fruit, such as pineapple and apples.
Pomegranate is also one of the food that leads to choking, despite it is full of nutrition and it is one of the brain foods that make your kids smarter.
So, it is preferable to postpone introducing pomegranate to your baby after he finishes his first year.
11- Giving your baby whole grapes:
Grapes are a good snack for kids, but when they are older- not for babies.
The skin is difficult to break down completely, and the firmness and size of the fruit make them a serious choking hazard.
So if you want to serve your little one grapes, it’s better to make it puree with banana, apple or pears.
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12- Heating the milk bottle in the microwave:
Heating breast milk or infant formula in the microwave is not recommended. It can create hot spots which can burn your little one’s mouth, also heating meat and dairy in the microwave can change the molecular structure of food (creating carcinogens).
You can read here more about how microwaves change the molecular structure of food.
The ideal method of heating milk is placing the bottle in hot water in a metallic bowl, it takes about 10 minutes but it worth it to keep your baby healthy.
13- Feeding the baby in his car seat:
It’s best to burp the baby and not feeding him in the car seat. If you have a long trip, take breaks every 4-5 hours for feeding so that the baby doesn’t get gas. Gas would be very painful for a baby.
Another risk of feeding the baby in the car seat is that if he starts to choke, you will not be able to react fast enough.
14- Exposing your little one to smoking:
If one of the parents smokes and then cuddle the baby while the smoking smells still in his mouth, hands and on his clothes, then the baby will be on risk of getting severe health problems or even sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
The cigarette poisons lead to asthma, chest and ears infections and lung cancer for babies.
So, to save your baby’s life, your partner (or you) should take a shower and change the clothes after every single cigarette before he can cuddle the baby.
15- Using chemical scents around your baby:
It’s strongly recommended that all soaps as scent free and dye free as possible, especially as a newborn. Chemical scents can irritate their delicate skin and some of the scents are overwhelming to them as well.
Many scents and lotions are made from petroleum products and other chemicals which a lot of people are sensitive to and it can be harmful to human health, especially little ones.
So, to keep your baby healthy, it’s better to use essential oils as a safer alternative to chemical scents.
16- putting too many clothes on your little one:
Too much warm clothing and too many blankets increase sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) risk according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
You probably already know that stuffed billows and blankets should be kept away from your sleeping baby and that you should put him to sleep on his back.
But, how can you know that your little one is overheated? The answer is by checking how warm he is by touching his tummy/ chest under the wrap.
17- Letting your baby play with small pieces:
Children under 3 naturally explore things by putting them in their mouths. Objects can get easily lodged in their throat and choke or suffocate them because their coughing reflexes are undeveloped. Most of the toys nowadays contain a warning label that there are small parts not suitable for children under 3.
But what about other household things that don’t contain a label, how to know if there’s a choking risk with it or not?
The answer is that there is a tool called ( the small parts test fixture) is used to measure the toy parts. It is a cylinder tube that’s 1.25 inches in diameter and between 1 and 2.25 inches deep.
It is designed to mimic a child’s mouth and pharynx. Anu object that fits in the tube is considered a small part and it is a choking hazard for children.
There are common things that children may choke with (despite the food) like pins, batteries, clothes buttons, balloons and balls with a diameter less than 1.75 inches.
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