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Becoming a new mom is an exciting time of great change in your life and the beginning of an amazing journey for you and your baby.

It’s important to try to be as prepared as you possibly can. Part of that includes knowing what to do once your baby has arrived so we’ve put together some first aid tips and advice for you. There’s so much to cover in this vitally important topic that we’re splitting this into part one and part two.

This week we’ll be focusing on common ailments and next week we’ll look at what to do in more serious situations.

Bumps to the head

Comfort your baby and try to soothe them. Holding a cold compress gently to the bump can be soothing and reduce swelling and pain – try frozen peas wrapped in a tea towel.

Remember that minor head injuries are common, but seek immediate medical emergency help if your baby vomits repeatedly or has a seizure after a bump to the head.

Colds

If your baby has a cold you can expect them to have similar symptoms as an adult. Have a look at our January blog here for tips on what to do.

Diarrhea and Vomiting

This is usually caused by a virus or bacterial infection, or sometimes an allergic reaction. If vomiting lasts more than one or two days, or diarrhea more than five to seven days, seek advice from your doctor.

Remember that babies can become dehydrated more quickly than adults so it is important to maintain intake of fluids.

Signs of dehydration include:

  • sunken eyes
  • a sunken soft spot (fontanelle) on their head (this occurs in young babies)
  • few or no tears when they cry
  • a dry mouth
  • fewer wet nappies
  • dark yellow urine

If your baby has any of these symptoms then you should take them to see your doctor.

Raised temperature

A temperature of over 99.5F for a baby is generally considered to be a fever.

There can be lots of reasons a baby gets a fever but as a new parent it can be very worrying.

Make sure you buy a good quality thermometer so if your baby seems hotter than usual you can check their temperature accurately.

If your baby has a fever, you need to keep them hydrated. Keep offering and encouraging them to drink breast milk or formula, even if they don’t seem thirsty. You can also offer cooled boiled water.

Contact your doctor if your baby is less than three months old and has a temperature of 101F or more. For babies who are three to six months old, seek medical advice if their temperature is 102F or higher.

Paracetamol and ibuprofen can work to relieve pain and reduce fever but remember you cannot give them to your baby at the same time. Always read the label to make sure the dosage and type of medication you administer is appropriate for your baby’s age.

First Aid Courses

You could also consider going on a Baby First Aid Course. Organizations such as the American Red Cross run various First Aid Courses.

Attending a First Aid Course will equip you with lifelong skills and can help build your confidence as a parent if you have to deal with an emergency situation with your own baby or anyone else’s.

Sources

http://www.mommypages.co.uk/tools/emergency-information

https://www.nct.org.uk/courses/postnatal/baby-first-aid

http://www.parenting.com/article/dr-sears-guide-to-the-top-7-infant-illnesses

http://www.sja.org.uk/sja/training-courses/courses-for-the-general-public/baby-first-aid-course.aspx

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/head-injury-minor/Pages/Introduction.aspx

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/feverchildren/pages/introduction.aspx

http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/diarrhoea-vomiting-children.aspx

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Febrile-convulsions/Pages/Introduction.aspx

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