August 15, 2018
By: Cara Terreri, LCCE, CD(DONA) | 0 Comments
Deciding when to take baby out in public and around others for the first time is a pressing and sometimes worrisome topic for most new parents, and especially first-time parents. The concern is that infants do not have fully developed immune systems and as a result are unable to resist or fight off sickness.
According to most pediatric health experts, infants can be taken out in public or outside right away as long as parents follow some basic safety precautions. There's no need to wait until 6 weeks or 2 months of age. Getting out, and in particular, getting outside in nature, is good for parents and babies. Sunlight and fresh air provides health benefits like Vitamin D exposure and mood and energy boosts.
To keep your new baby healthy and safe, it's important to be aware of the environment and the people you encounter when going out in public for the first few weeks and months in order to reduce exposure to illness. When taking baby out and about, follow these few simple tips:
Limited direct sun exposure - The sun provides essential vitamin D, which all of us and especially new babies need. However, babies are also more susceptible to sunburn. Limit direct sun exposure to around 15 minutes, and then use a cover or sunscreen afterward. Talk with your doctor about your child's individual health to determine how much sun is safe.
Keep germy hands and faces away - This is an obvious and important tip to follow. You won't always know who is sick, but in general, it's a good idea to keep other children's hands and faces away from your baby's hands, face, and mouth. Also, it's generally smart to not allow strangers to touch or hold your baby. With family members, you can still be selective. Hopefully, a family member will instinctively not ask to hold baby if they know they are sick. Either way, you have the right to politely and firmly say no when anyone asks to hold baby. Their health is at stake!
Be selective about location - Schools, doctors' offices, hospitals, day cares, airplanes -- these places are known to be Germ Central Station and should be avoided when possible. If it's not possible, keep your baby close in your arms or carrier, or use a cover on your infant carrier or stroller. Also, be sure to wash your own hands frequently so as not to pass along anything you've picked up while touching surfaces or other people's hands.
Mind the heat (and cold) - Don't over or under dress your baby for the temperature outside. Parents and grandparents have a tendency to believe that babies need to be bundled up, but depending on the weather, that may not be necessary and could cause baby to overheat. Dress your baby in as many layers as you are wearing and bring a blanket just in case.
Caring for a newborn is a combination of common sense, gut instinct, and professional guidance. If your infant has special medical needs, your guidelines for bringing baby out in public may be different and it may, in fact, be critical for your child's health to avoid public places for a specific period of time. Do your research, use your head, and talk with your child's doctor to make the best evidence-based decision.
When Is it Safe to Take Baby Out in Public? ›
According to most pediatric health experts, infants can be taken out in public or outside right away as long as parents follow some basic safety precautions. There's no need to wait until 6 weeks or 2 months of age. Getting out, and in particular, getting outside in nature, is good for parents and babies.How long should a newborn stay home after birth? ›
There are no set rules about how long to wait before taking a newborn out into the world or when to let people near the baby. Some doctors recommend that parents wait until their baby is a few months old before going to crowded public places (like malls, movie theaters, and airplanes).Can you take baby out before vaccinations? ›
When can a newborn go outside in public? As for taking baby out to public places, it's recommended that you avoid bringing them into congested spaces, if possible—at least until they've had their first round of vaccinations.How do I protect my baby from coronavirus when going out? ›
How Can I Protect My Baby or Toddler From Coronavirus Infection? You can protect your little one by avoiding large crowds and keeping a safe distance from other people when out of the house. To help stop the spread of the virus: Anyone in your household who can get a COVID-19 vaccine should do so.How early can you leave a baby with family? ›
Between 4 and 9 months is the overnighter sweet spot. Before that, your baby may still be perfecting breastfeeding, waking up a lot at night, and bonding with parents, which makes it a less-than-ideal (but not impossible) time to leave them with a sitter overnight.Is it safe to take my 3 week old baby out? ›
According to most pediatric health experts, infants can be taken out in public or outside right away as long as parents follow some basic safety precautions. There's no need to wait until 6 weeks or 2 months of age. Getting out, and in particular, getting outside in nature, is good for parents and babies.Why no visitors after birth? ›
The mother may not want visitors when she is not looking or feeling her best, as may be the case after childbirth. The mother may desire privacy as she tries to establish breastfeeding. The parents may not want an audience as they get used to handling and changing their newborn.What shots do adults need to be around a newborn? ›
All close contacts to the newborn should be vaccinated with the annual influenza vaccine at least 2 weeks before meeting the baby. They should also have had Tdap in the last 10 years. If they have not received that vaccine, they should get a Tdap booster at least 2 weeks before meeting the baby.How often should you bathe a newborn? ›
There's no need to give your newborn baby a bath every day. Three times a week might be enough until your baby becomes more mobile. Bathing your baby too much can dry out your baby's skin.Do babies need fresh air everyday? ›
Babies need fresh air and light. Going for a walk outdoors is also stimulating and fun for your child. A healthy baby can go outside every day in any season, as long as the temperature isn't too hot or cold.
Are infants high risk for COVID? ›
Babies under age 1 might be at higher risk of severe illness with COVID-19 than older children. Newborns can get COVID-19 during childbirth or by exposure to sick caregivers after delivery.Is COVID a risk to newborns? ›
Current evidence suggests that the chance of a newborn getting COVID-19 from their birth parent is low, especially when the parent takes steps (such as wearing a mask and washing hands) to prevent spread before and during care of the newborn.Should you wear a mask around a newborn baby? ›
You should never use a mask on a child under the age of 2 years. It is harder for people to breathe with something covering the nose and mouth. Since babies and children younger than 2 years have smaller airways, breathing through a mask is even harder for them than it is for an older child or an adult.When can I leave my baby alone for the first time? ›
Once your child's around 2 or 3, she can probably safely play alone in a childproofed room for a few minutes (as long as you're within earshot, not across the street). While you're out of the room, listen for the normal babbles and squeals of your child playing.Can a 2 week old baby leave the house? ›
The idea that babies have to stay inside the house for several weeks after they're born is FALSE. In fact, as long as your baby is healthy, getting some fresh air can be great for mom and baby if you take a few precautions. First, be careful not to overdress or underdress your baby when you leave the house.Can I leave my 2 month old for a weekend? ›
How to determine the right timing. Ideally, between 4 and 9 months is the best time to leave your baby overnight for the first time. This is because before 4 months your baby will still be establishing breastfeeding and building a connection between both parents, so they're a little too young to be away from you.How long should my baby stay away during the day at 3 week old? ›
|Baby Age||Time between Naps||Nap Duration|
|Birth – 6 weeks||45 min – 1 hour||15 minutes – 4 hours|
|6 Weeks – 3 Months||1 hour – 1 hour 45 minutes||30 minutes – 2 hours|
|3 Months – 6 Months||~2 Hours||30 minutes – 2 hours|
|6 Months – 9 Months||2-3 hours||1-3 hours|
There is no rush to go on an outing. In some cultures, women stay in the house with their new baby for a month or more. But it is also fine to take your baby outside as soon as you feel ready. It is a good idea to go out when your baby is calm and happy.How do you go out with a breastfed baby? ›
A breastfeeding vest can cover your tummy. Some baby slings and carriers can also hide a feeding baby and a baby sun hat can work well too. If you feel self-conscious, try practising in front of your partner, a friend or a mirror. With time, you'll learn what you're likely to need while out with your baby.Can parents kiss newborn? ›
In order to prevent serious health issues, anyone and everyone, including parents, should avoid kissing babies. Due to the rise in cases of RSV and other illnesses, it's extremely important for all individuals to be aware of the dangers of kissing babies.
How long is the newborn stage? ›
The Bottom Line
The term newborn is often used for babies under 28 days or even up to 2 or 3 months of age, according to experts. After this period (and even during the newborn stage), your little one may be referred to as a baby or an infant up until they're around 1 year of age.
If a child will be around the baby and is not up to date with their whooping cough shots (called DTaP vaccine), they should get vaccinated. Preteens, teens, and adults who will be around the baby and have not already had a whooping cough booster shot (called Tdap vaccine) should get vaccinated.Should I allow grandparents without the pertussis vaccine near my baby? ›
That is why it's especially important for pregnant women, their partners, grandparents and anyone else who will be in close contact with your baby has a current whooping cough (Tdap) vaccination. Grandparents and other visitors should get the Tdap and flu vaccines at least 2 weeks before meeting your baby.Do new fathers need Tdap? ›
All adults and adolescents in contact with the baby need to get the flu and Tdap vaccines. This includes: partners, fathers, grandparents, caregivers, and siblings. The flu vaccine is recommended every year. Unless you are pregnant, the current Tdap recommendation is once during adulthood (after 19 years old).Can you put lotion on a newborn? ›
Skin care for your newborn
Many parents like to use lotions. But unless the baby's skin is dry, lotions really are not needed. Powders should be avoided, unless they are recommended by your baby's healthcare provider.
It's best not to bathe your baby straight after a feed or when they're hungry or tired. Make sure the room you're bathing them in is warm. Have everything you need at hand: a baby bath or clean washing-up bowl filled with warm water, 2 towels, a clean nappy, clean clothes and cotton wool.Do I have to change my newborn's clothes everyday? ›
And the answer is: it depends. Babies are notoriously messy, and you might need to change their outfits 2-4 times a day just because they spat and got their onesie dirty again. Factor in the outfit needed for their 'outside' time, and you'll quickly come to learn you might need a few outfit changes throughout the day.Do babies sleep better cold? ›
Do Babies Sleep Better in a Cold Room? Babies tend to sleep better in a comfortably cool room. Because babies have a greater proportion of exposed surface area for their weight, it is easier for them to lose body heat.Do babies sleep longer when cold? ›
Babies do not necessarily sleep more in winter, though it can be easier to care for them when the weather is cool. Like adults, babies like to feel warm and cosy.Do babies sleep better once they start walking? ›
By the time your baby is ready to begin walking, they will have (hopefully) settled into a regular sleeping rhythm.
What are RSV symptoms in babies? ›
- Runny nose.
- Decrease in appetite.
Mothers with symptoms of COVID-19 are advised to wear a medical mask, but even if this is not possible, breastfeeding should be continued.Why are infants less likely to get COVID? ›
Newborns have immature immune systems. Early in life, they depend on antibodies transferred from their mothers during pregnancy for protection from infections, including COVID-19.Do newborns get sick easily? ›
First, infants do not have fully developed immune systems, so they are more susceptible to infectious illnesses. Also, when a newborn gets an infection, the illness is often more serious than when an adult or older child gets the same infection.How long does COVID last in infants? ›
Symptoms can last anywhere from 1 to 21 or more days, but most children are better within a week. If your child gets COVID-19 they should stay quarantined at home for 10 days after positive testing or onset of symptoms, and must demonstrate improving symptoms without fever for 24 hours.How can I protect my baby from RSV? ›
- Avoid close contact with sick people.
- Wash their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Avoid touching their face with unwashed hands.
- Limit the time they spend in childcare centers or other potentially contagious settings during periods of high RSV activity.
While it's understandable that grandparents are drawn straight to the new baby, they really should sit down with the older grandchildren first.Should I let other people hold my baby? ›
In their first two months, newborns are at the highest risk of infection, warns Dr. Hasson. So, it's advisable to avoid letting most people touch your baby and to avoid crowds, says the pediatrician.Can I shower while newborn sleeps? ›
3. When your baby is asleep. Don't panic that you can't hear your baby for the few minutes that you have a shower. I can assure you, if you left them warm, dry and settled before you jumped in the shower, then they will come to absolutely no harm for the few minutes you take to refresh yourself.How long should a baby stay at home? ›
There are no set rules about how long to wait before taking a newborn out into the world or when to let people near the baby. Some doctors recommend that parents wait until their baby is a few months old before going to crowded public places (like malls, movie theaters, and airplanes).
Can I leave newborn in bassinet alone? ›
Leave baby alone in the crib or bassinet
Baby should sleep alone on her back without bumpers, stuffed animals, blankets or pillows. It's okay to start using a pillow and blanket when your child is a toddler and old enough to move out of a crib and into a toddler bed — ideally between 2 and 3 years old.
While six weeks has long been the traditional timeline for rest and recuperation after a birth, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends ongoing postpartum care from birth to 12 weeks. Six weeks is also the standard recovery time allotted for childbirth-related short-term disability leave.Can you leave a 2 week old baby with babysitter? ›
This depends on your comfort level as much as your baby's. At two weeks old he's likely to be settled enough for you to leave him at home for a short while with a trusted adult. You may be surprised to find that you miss him more than he misses you!Is it OK to leave baby with grandparents for a week? ›
When is it okay to leave my baby with grandparents overnight? It's ultimately up to you. If your baby is able to eat well without you there and grandparents are able to take good care of your baby, it's okay to let your baby sleep over if that's something you want.How do I leave my baby for the first time? ›
- Give your baby opportunities to get used to being with other people. Ask friends and family to spend time alone with your baby while you're there. ...
- Practice saying goodbye. ...
- Stock up on your child's favorite things. ...
- Tell your child they can talk to you.
Mothers and babies have a physiologic need to be together at the moment of birth and during the hours and days that follow. Keeping mothers and babies together is a safe and healthy birth practice.What should you not do after giving birth? ›
Don't drink alcohol, use street drugs or use harmful drugs. All of these can affect your mood and make you feel worse. And they can make it hard for you to take care of your baby. Ask for help from your partner, family and friends.What is the most critical time for a newborn just after birth? ›
However, few women and newborns stay in the facility for the recommended 24 hours after birth, which is the most critical time when complications can present.What is the golden hour after birth? ›
The first hour after birth when a mother has uninterrupted skin-to-skin contact with her newborn is referred to as the “golden hour.” This period of time is critical for a newborn baby who spent the past nine months in a controlled environment.Should I carry my newborn all day? ›
The Bottom Line
As long as your baby's essential needs are being met and you actively engage them in a loving way, how much or how little you hold them is entirely up to you. If you want to hold them, do. If you want to put them down, even if they cry, that's fine as well.
What is the 5 5 5 rule for postpartum? ›
Prepare for the 5-5-5 rule: 5 days in the bed, 5 days on the bed, 5 days near the bed. This gives you a solid two weeks of focused intentional rest. It also helps to get your priorities in order when it comes to those eager visitors.How long does a vaginal tear take to heal? ›
How long does it take a vaginal tear to heal? Most women feel relief from any pain caused by a vaginal tear in about two weeks. If your tear required stitches, they will dissolve within six weeks.Can I go for a walk 1 week postpartum? ›
Start easy with short walks
It may not seem like much, but taking a short walk can help tremendously during your postpartum recovery. “I encourage patients to be getting up and walking around almost immediately after delivery,” Prager says.