Health Tip: New Moms, Protect Your Back
New moms have enough on their minds without worrying about throwing out their back.
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons offers this advice:
- Try to exercise and strengthen your back muscles as soon as your doctor says it's safe.
- Make an effort to lose the baby weight -- within six weeks is recommended.
- Keep your arms and baby close to your body when you lift the infant.
- When lifting baby, bend at the knees and lift with your legs, instead of your back.
- Always drop the side rail of the crib when lifting baby, rather than bending over the rail and hoisting baby out.
- Before lifting baby from the high chair, remove the high chair's tray.
- Carry baby in a pack on the front of your body, instead of your hip.
Health Tip: Caring for Your Newborn
Most first-time parents are at a loss when they bring baby home from the hospital.
The Nemours Foundation offers these suggestions for parental novices:
- Support baby's head with a gentle hand whenever you hold, carry or lay baby down.
- Treat baby gently. Never shake the baby for any reason, including to wake him or her up. Instead, tickle the feet or blow on the cheek to rouse your little one.
- Make sure you're using the baby car seat and stroller correctly, and that baby is safely secured.
- Newborns just need to be held and cuddled. It's too soon for games such as bouncing on the knee or lifting in the air.