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How many clothes will my new baby need?

How many clothes will my new baby need?

Author: Midwife Cath

If I had a dollar for every time a prospective parent asked me a question that began with 'Is it normal for the baby to...?' While it's normal to feel some degree of anxiety over whether or not you're doing the right thing, rest assured that if your baby is gaining weight and feeding well, you're doing your job just fine! Here's some of the most common questions I hear from new parents...

When dressing your baby, I keep to some simple basics. You need plenty of singlets, growsuits, and muslins for wrapping. You’ll need at least ten of each. Babies often vomit up a little milk after a feed, and nappies sometimes leak so a change of clothing should always be close at hand. Dress your baby in seasonally appropriate clothing, as you would yourself.

I like to put a singlet on babies all year round. It keeps the baby warm in winter and cool in summer. I find lots of parents tend to underdress rather than overdress a baby. Remember babies get hot and cold too! When home with the baby I would always put a growsuit on. They are compact and really easy for the baby to move when doing tummy time on the floor. If you go out (in winter) a nice jumper, or cardigan or a little coat will be enough for the baby. Use breathable materials like cotton and wool.

Additionally, no matter the temperature, make sure that your baby is shielded from the sun by his car seat or pram or just shelter. No matter the reason you have to brave the cold with your baby, just make sure your little one is bundled up well.

Here’s some more Midwife Cath tips -

  • Don’t forget a warm blanket if you are taking your baby outside for a walk. If you’re headed out in the pram, you can tuck him in with the blanket as an added layer; they can keep out the elements and keep the baby nice and warm
  • Abide by car seat safety. Once you get to the car, remove baby’s bulky coat because it can compress below the harness and be too loose in the event of an accident. He can still wear multiple thin layers in the car seat.
  • You can easily overheat your baby or toddler. Babies dressed in too many layers of blankets or clothing are at greater risk for overheating. If you’ve been out, remove your baby’s winter clothes as soon as you come inside.
  • Babies control their temperature mostly through their head and face, so do not put beanies or any other coverings on their head when they sleep. Mittens can pose a choking hazard, so do not let your baby sleep in them. Instead, look for growsuits that have sewn-in cuffs that can be folded over the hands when sleeping. This will help stops newborns from accidentally scratching their face.
  • Keep the room temperature cool. Putting your baby to bed in winter or summer, try to keep the room temperature between 19 - 21 degrees C. To make sure your baby is comfortable ensure he is not sweaty.
  • Skip the blankets at nap and bedtime. Dress him in a warm sleeping bag, but blankets are not needed. Loose bedding is also a risk factor for SIDS.

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