Even when she's not louder than a fire truck, your newborn can inspire plenty of worries about her health and well-being. For example, there's that question of should you nurse on demand at the risk of your milk supply. You can rest a little easier because this is one of five common myths about newborns that just aren't true.
Need to Nurse
Lisa Marasco of the La Leche League International refutes the
idea that on-demand nursing is bad. She writes that it can actually optimize
the mother's milk supply. The site says a mother who breastfeeds an average of
9.9 times a day in the first two weeks will have plenty of milk production. In
fact, the site says the milk supply goes down when the feedings aren't frequent.
Some parents believe exposing a newborn to things like
educational videos will subconsciously boost the child's brain power. You're
better off letting the child grow a few months, if not years, before it will do
any good. Doctor Natasha Kasbekar on the Kids Health Partners website writes
that the baby can't possibly relate all of those images to anything he'll apply
in the real world. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests no TV at all
until the baby turns 2.
Wave off the comment "It's just gas" when your newborn
grins. According to the AAP, infants start experimenting with basic smiles in
their first few months. By the second month, a baby can smile in a social way
when he's feeling contentment or pleasure.
Even though cleanliness is important, the idea that a newborn
needs a daily bath is nothing more than a myth. A baby needs a full-on bath two
to three times per week, according to "Fit Pregnancy" magazine. Soap
can quickly dry on delicate skin. Just use a warm, wet cloth to cleanse her
diaper area, skin creases and neck in between baths.
Even though the baby's soft spot, or fontanel, may seem like it
makes his brain vulnerable, it doesn't. While you shouldn't poke it, doctor
Andrew Adesman, Schneider Children's Hospital's chief of developmental and
behavioral pediatrics, tells "Fit Pregnancy" magazine the brain is
well protected even when the fontanel isn't fully closed.