Even though we have so much information at our fingertips, it is easy to become confused by old, incorrect information about baby care, especially if it is passed down from older generations. However, there’s no need to worry. We have compiled a list of myth-busting facts in this Mom’s Land article. Here are 10 of the most common myths in baby care:
"My milk is not enough – I should give my baby formula.” The biggest concern of brand new mothers is that they think their milk is not enough and their baby will go hungry. They may prefer to give formula to their baby right away. This is not necessarily true. If your baby wets himself/herself five or six times a day, it means that he/she is getting enough breast milk and there is no need to use formula. Only an expert can confirm the insufficiency of the breast milk and instruct when formula reinforcement is appropriate.
"I should eat foods to boost breast milk production.” Even though many foods and drinks claim to boost breast milk, none of them are scientifically proven for doing so.
"Why are my baby’s eyes watery?" Watery eyes are caused by the irritation of the hyaloid membrane. Eye watering is a protective reaction by the body against allergic, physical or microbic factors. Sometimes it is due to lacrimal duct obstruction.
"My baby has wind: I should give him/her herbal tea." Herbal teas have no proven healing effect on babies with gas pains. It is best to continue feeding your baby with milk and take recommended measures to alleviate wind.
"My baby’s poo is green: is he sick?” If your baby’s poo is green, it is an indication of a good diet. A newborn baby can poo between four and nine times a day. Green poo indicates that the milk fed to your baby is being removed without being processed in the bowels. This does not affect the health of your baby.
"My baby should be exposed to the sun for vitamin D." We know that the sun is the main source of vitamin D. However, even though that is true, you should not expose your baby to strong sun for long periods of time. Avoid exposure to direct sunlight at noon in summer when the sun is very hot. You should use high factor sun lotions (if he/she does not have any allergies) and protective clothing when you take him/her out.
"I should not bathe my baby too much or he/she might catch cold." Your baby will not get sick from bathing. It is recommended that you bathe your baby every three days in winter and every day in summer. Furthermore, bathing is important for your baby's development, not least because it helps babies to sleep. Even if your baby does not like being bathed initially, he/she will get used to it and even enjoy it.
"It might be dangerous if I rock him to sleep." Since babies are rocked while they are in the mother's womb, they are used to this rhythm. The rocking rhythm stimulates a baby's middle ear and helps develop balance. In short, there is no harm in rocking your baby gently.
"A chubby child is healthy." An overweight child does not necessarily mean that he/she is healthy and can even indicate obesity. For that reason, if your baby does not want to eat, do not force him/her into it. It is not necessary for a child to eat more than he/she needs.
"I should cut my baby’s nails after he/she is forty days old." There is no specific date for cutting your baby’s nails. It is a fabrication and superstition to do so forty days of the birth. You should cut them as soon as they become long enough to scratch himself/herself with.