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New parents often worry for the safety of their baby. So what are the top concerns of new parents and is there a real risk involved?
Concern: I'm afraid my baby will stop breathing while sleeping.
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) has been greatly diminished since the 80s and 90s. To make sure your baby is safe; sleeping on the back is the best position. Also, you must remove any pillows, stuffed animals or extra covers from the crib. Make sure your baby is not overdressed or overheated when sleeping. Studies also show that breastfed babies have a lower risk for SIDS.
Concern: I will spoil my baby if I keep picking her/him up when crying.
Contrary to common belief, it's important to console your baby when crying. During the first year, babies are adjusting to their new world. With minimal communication skills, crying is the only way for babies to express hunger, fear or frustration.
Concern: My baby is not responding to my disciplining.
Not many parents know that disciplining is ineffective during the first year of age. By 8 months of age, you can begin rewarding positive behaviors with attention and verbal praise. Timeouts, does not work until your child develops an understanding of what it means to be "bad' and why he/she is placed in timeout.
Concern: My baby is not as tall/big as other babies in his/her environment.
Different children grow at different rates. Do not compare your child to other children unless you feel there's a reason to be concerned. If your child is gaining a healthy amount of weight each month, resting and eating well, and developing new skills, there is no reason to worry. Also discuss any worries with your pediatrician.
Check our age/height and weight table (add link)
Concern: My baby is always fussy and crying. Is he/she naturally grumpy?
If your baby cries after meals or during certain times of the day, you must consult with your pediatrician to rule out colic or other medical problem. Around 10% of babies are born with a "difficult" temperament in which they are easily stressed by new environments or new interactions.