Release the "mommy guilt," cut yourself some slack and take a little "me" time. I'm hoping to combine a cup of fact, and sprinkle in just enough of my own experience along with a dash of my failures to help you see that no matter the recipe you are a better mother than you give yourself credit for! If you have come looking for perfect punctuation and spelling, well then you are in the wrong place. In fact I am totally one of those people who use punctuation as an accessory. Ya know? Like hair bows.

If you need REAL advice from REAL working and stay at home mom's on pregnancy, childbirth and everything from the newborn to teenage year's. You have come to the right place! Sit back, relax, contribute your comments and......don't forget to take time to smell the baby lotion.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Excuse me. Did you wash your hands?

It's that time of year. August signals the start to fall. The kids start back to school and whether you have school aged children or not you will undoubtedly be exposed to the same things growing in those petri dishes we call school. Doesn't matter if it's public school, charter school or private school. Whether it's your first baby or your 6th, the risks are the same. Fall starts the beginning of cold and flu season. Which for your newborn can be devastating. How are you going to protect yourself and your family this year? I did the work for you, researched the sites and filled their fact with plenty of my opinion and the following is the result of my efforts.

1. Proper nutrition. Whether it is you are baby or your toddler, make sure everyone is eating healthy choices and drinking plenty of water. Stay away from refined sugars as I personally think they feed those stupid germs allowing them to multiply and take over. If anything they for sure restrict your bodies ability to ramp up the immune system and fight of virus's. Remember, babies immune system is very immature. Something that may be easy for our bodies to fight of could have serious complications if baby gets it.

2. Get your flu shots. Not just you, everyone in the family. I know all the arguments, I work in health care remember? I've heard it all, even from my colleges. You don't believe they work, or the last time you got a flu shot you got sick, or you get the flu anyhow so why bother? That perfect, beautiful baby is why bother! Your baby is depending on you to keep yourself healthy and in turn keep him healthy. You would give your life to protect your children right? So why not a stiff arm for a day to help protect them? While we are on shots.....everyone caring for baby should be current on their Tdap too. It's not the tetanus part as much as the pertussis. Pertussis or whooping cough has been making a come back in recent years. I can think of very little as sad as watching your baby cough until it turns blue and vomits or passes out or worse.

3. Hand washing is always important. Not only for good health but it is also just plain socially unacceptable to not wash your hands. It's super important for anyone who will be holding your newborn, especially during cold and flu season. It's not rude and it shouldn't be uncomfortable. It's your duty as a parent to insist that any visitors wash their hands. The only problem with hand washing is that often people don't do it effectively. If they are washing with soap and water they should do so thoroughly for at least 30 seconds. My favorite is to have hand sanitizer. I mean everywhere. I have it at each of the sinks in my house and I keep a big bottle just inside my front door. While it isn't the greatest decoration, if it's very visible people are more likely to just take a squirt. If you don't want to have to tell people and you think they will miss the hint of a huge bottle right inside your front door then post a sign. Just a little sign reminding visitors to wash their hands hands before holding the baby.

4. Don't take your newborn in public. Don't go to church and to the family holiday get together! It sucks to have to miss it. It's true, but it also sucks to spend a night or more at the hospital with your baby! Once flu season is in full swing, get yourself some indoor activities, find some help or someone to come in and take care of baby while you go out, or wait till your husband can be home with the baby.

5. So what if you do have to go out? You are just not capable of staying home. Covering the car seat with a blanket or those cute carseat canopy's that people have while in stores or public places or at family gatherings will help discourage well meaning admirers from touching your newborn and unknowingly spreading germs. (Just be sure to pull it back when in the car and keep a side or something pulled back when you are out. You don't want baby rebreathing to much of his own carbon dioxide) You should be sure to wash your own hands after touching door knobs and shopping carts and before you touch your baby. Pocket hand sanitizer is great for that.

When you practice these basic illness prevention strategies you can help prevent some serious complications from the cold, flu, or RSV. By making these simple changes you are making your newborn’s health a priority. Good luck and keep it clean. My favorite winter strategies are hand sanitizer, Clorox cleaning wipes and disinfectant spray.

Good luck and may good health be with you!

1 comment:

  1. very good advice. I learned this year that there is nothing worse than you're baby being in the hospital. I had my big kids washing their hands all the time and changing their clothes and shoes when they go home from school. But sometimes no matter how careful you are those nasty RSV germs still get in. :(