If this is your first winter as a mom, you may be worried about what to do. Between the harsh weather and cold and flu season, you want to make sure your baby is protected against the season.
To help you keep your baby safe and warm this winter, here are some winter survival tips for all the new moms out there:
1. Introduce Baby To Winter Weather Slowly
Cold weather can be a big surprise for baby. So make sure when you introduce them to the weather, that you go gently. Take them out first on a cooler day for just a few minutes. That way they can experience the feeling. Keep repeating until finally your baby gets used to the differences in weather.
2. Try This Traditional Scandinavian Technique
In Denmark and other Scandinavian countries, mothers often have their babies nap outside in the stroller. The cold air helps them not only acclimate to the changing weather, but actually supports their natural sleep cycle. So next time its nap time, take your baby for a walk out in the cold. They’ll get a great sleep and won’t be so shocked by the cooler weather.
3. Be Smart About Winter Clothing
Pack a thick jacket whenever the weather is very cold, but make sure you dress your baby in layers. That way if the weather changes or baby’s temperature increases, you can remove the layers as necessary.
4. Ditch The Coat In The Car
Your baby should never wear puffy or thick coats when riding in their car seat. They are unsafe because you have to loosen the harness to accommodate them. In a crash, that leaves a gap that can put your child at risk. Instead, warm up your car, then strap baby in their normal clothes. If the car is cold, strap baby in and then tuck a blanket around them,
5. Use Hand Warmers Under Baby Blankets
During the swaddling stage, hand warmers can add great comfort and protection against the winter cold for baby. Simply tuck a hand warmer into the layers of the swaddle to add extra warmth. Just be careful to add plenty of layers between baby’s skin and the hand warmer so they don’t get burnt. Also monitor the hand warmers to make sure they are adding comfort and not overheating baby.
6. Keep Those Hands Clean
Babies touch everything; it’s part of how they interact with the world. They then put their hands in their nose and mouth, making it very easy to spread germs. So make sure to always wash baby’s hands. To wash their hands, lather a mild soap on a washcloth with warm water and then gently scrub their hands for 20 seconds each. Then dry thoroughly so their wet hands don’t get too cold from the weather. You also want to make sure that you are constantly washing your hands. You can also use a hand sanitizer for yourself, but never use one on baby’s hand because they can irritate their gentle skin.
7. Bathe Baby More Thoroughly
During the winter, germs are everywhere. At bath time make sure to take a little extra time to scrub them down. Also, the warm water provides a nice comfort after a long day of being in the winter weather. So spend a little extra time at bath time.
8. Keep Baby’s Skin Moisturized
Your baby’s skin loses moisture twice as fast as yours. This increase during the dry winter months and can lead to raw and chapped skin. Make sure to pour on plenty of moisturizer during the winter months to soothe baby’s skin and to protect them against the dry air.
9. Get Baby A Flu Shot
The flu can be deadly for babies. It can also cause a range of serious health problems including nasal lung infections. So make sure that you take baby to get a flu shot to ward against the flu this year. You can get the flu shot at your doctor’s office or from your pharmacist. You should also get one too, because it’s very difficult to take care of a baby when you are down with the flu.
10. Keep Winter Essentials In The Diaper Bag
Along with the usual necessities of diapers and formula, add some winter essentials to your diaper bad. Bring some extra warm clothing like a sweater and cozy socks. Add a blanket and some hand warmers. If you have one, also make sure to bring a bottle warmer with you, since formula can get cold or freeze in the harsh weather, making it harder for baby to sleep.
11. Deck Out Your Stroller
You should also consider decking out baby’s stroller for the winter weather. Here’s a great list of ten winter stroller essentials from Disney’s Babble to consider getting this winter. These will help protect baby from the elements, make pushing the stroller in the snow and ice easier, and keep baby nice and cozy on any excursion.
12. Have Plenty Of Indoor Activities To Do
During the winter months, everyone gets cabin fever, even baby. So make sure that you have plenty of great activities that you and baby can do together since you can’t go outside. Load up on toys and games, and keep yourselves entertained so you don’t end up with the winter blues.
13. Brush Up On Fireplace Safety Tips
Lighting a fire is wonderful during the winter months, however fires can be extremely dangerous around children of any age. Beyond the chance of burns, there is also a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning if you don’t vent your fireplace carefully. So before lighting a fire this winter, brush up on these fireplace safety tips from This Old House.
14. Switch From Baby Food To Baby Soup
Instead of feeding them the typical baby food, consider feeding them a warm pureed baby soup. This warm meal can help them stay cozy and comfortable during the winter months. Here are some great recipes for baby soup from Bumps N Baby to try this winter.
If you follow these simple tips, baby will be safe and warm all winter!