Ten Tips for First-Time Parents

Mother and father holding a smiling baby

Being a new parent is an exciting, life-changing experience, but it can also be scary. After all, nobody is born knowing how to be Supermom or Superdad. Here are ten helpful tips for first-time parents: 

  1. Don’t panic. Babies cry, spit up and vomit, which is usually normal. Even if you’re worried, panicking will not help because babies can pick up on anxiety, and it can upset them. 
  2. Be gentle but realistic. Supporting your newborn’s head when you hold him and washing him gently when you give him a bath are important practices. However, if your baby’s head isn’t fully supported for a second or if he gets some water in his eyes, he should be okay. 
  3. Get close. Hold your baby close to your skin. Skin-to-skin contact is calming and soothing both parent and baby – really! 
  4. Sleep when your baby sleeps. Your baby’s sleep patterns might be erratic for the first few weeks, so sleep when you can. If you have a partner, take turns getting up to tend to him. 
  5. Avoid scheduled activities. At least at first. As your baby adjusts to a regular routine, your schedule will become more regular, too. 
  6. Accept help when it’s offered. You can’t do everything yourself, and that’s okay. If a friend or family member offers to help you, ask him or her to do whatever will help you the most. 
  7. Go outside. If you become a little stir-crazy, take your baby for a walk. If you can, let somebody you trust watch your infant while you get some fresh air. 
  8. Take care of yourself. Eat properly, drink lots of water and sleep as much as you can. Taking care of yourself will help you maintain the energy you need to take care of your baby. 
  9. Skip less important chores. Leave clean clothes in the laundry basket, don’t worry about the dust bunnies under the furniture and/or have cereal and toast for dinner occasionally. It’s okay to relax your standards a bit while you adjust to your baby’s arrival. 
  10. Set limits with visitors. This means insisting that your visitors wash their hands before holding your baby or asking loved ones who are ill not to visit until they’re better. Also, let your friends and relatives know which days will work best and how much or how little time you have for a visit. 
Twitter Facebook Linkedin Email Search