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Whilst still in the womb, your baby is contained in a temperature regulated, muffled, and soothing environment however that all changes once they are born. In just 12 short months, your helpless newborn baby takes their first breath and has their first food. They grow at a rapid rate and transform into an active toddler, fully engaged in the world.
Along the way, your baby might encounter one or more of the most common babyhood ailments such as colic or trapped wind, nappy rash and teething discomfort. Find out how you can identify what is bothering your baby, and how you can help.
Before birth, all the food baby’s require is delivered through the placenta and although their digestive system starts functioning before birth, it is still not mature. Normally a bit of wind or gas is not a problem – when winding your baby you might be rewarded with big burp or you might notice their poo is accompanied by wind resulting in a small explosion!
Sometimes however babies get colic – they fuss, cry, scream, arch their back, clench their wee fists and tuck their legs up. They might also try and quickly reject milk. This can be difficult for parents as this occurs most days for an extended period but there seems to be no obvious cause of their baby’s distress.
Colic tends to stop around 4 months but while you are waiting for this time to arrive, there are a few things that might help. If you are breastfeeding, you could try eliminating food commonly associated with wind such as beans and lentils, cabbage and broccoli. If your milk flows fast, try expressing off the fore milk so your baby is able to feed without gulping. Bottle fed babies may benefit from formula that has been designed for colic.
Belly massages can help calm restless babies and should be performed in a quiet environment and you can also try a colic remedy such as Weleda Baby Colic Powder – a natural powder containing fennel that offers relief from colic .
At around six months your baby’s first tooth might emerge. For some children the teeth pop through with little or no fuss, while for others might show symptoms for some months before the wee white bud finally arrives.
Teething symptoms include dribbling (often accompanied by a chin rash), biting, swollen gums, and restless sleeps. Some parents insist their baby also gets cold-like symptoms and a fever.
To help soothe your baby you can offer a cold wet facecloth to be sucked on, or a BPA-free and Phthalate-free silicone teether that has been cooled in the fridge. Weleda Baby Teething Powder can also help calm and soothe your teething baby.
Surprisingly, the delicate skin of a baby’s bottom is not easily irritated by short-term contact with urine and faeces. However, if an inflammatory rash does occur, with redness, sores or even bleeding, the bottom should be exposed to fresh air as much as possible, enabling the affected area to heal. A nappy cream also helps the skin to regenerate and prevents itching while changing the kind of nappy worn may also help.
Calendula Nappy Change Cream helps soothe irritated skin and reduces redness caused by nappy rash.
In the womb, your baby’s skin is protected by a waxy coating however once born, your baby’s skin is exposed to the world. Generally in the first few months your baby’s skin doesn’t require much care and bathing once a week is enough (‘top and tail’ them with a warm, damp cloth in between). An easy and convenient 2in1 product, like Calendula Shampoo & Body Wash can help make bath time easier, especially at first.
After washing or bathing, Weleda Calendula Body Lotion protects your baby’s skin and provides it with moisture.
Weleda’s range of natural, organic products for both mother and baby are available from weleda.co.nz, selected online stores, health stores and pharmacies.
This article was written with information supplied by Weleda