Your new baby was born into a different world than you were, so it makes sense that advice on baby safety, baby care, and parenting has changed in the last few decades, too. While your family and friends will likely dole out baby tips, it’s possible that their well-intentioned pointers may lead you astray. Here are three outdated pieces of parenting advice you can feel free to ignore.
Outdated baby safety tip number 1: You will spoil your baby if you pick him up too much.
Someone may tell you to let your new baby cry it out, but it’s okay to give this piece of advice a pass. Newborns usually cry because they have a need — whether it’s a diaper change, a feeding, or just a cuddle — and soothing your baby helps him feel secure and loved. The truth is, babies simply cannot be spoiled. In fact, the more consistent you are at meeting his needs before he’s 6 months old, the less demanding your baby will be later on in life. So the next time you hear your baby crying, feel free to shower him with love and attention.
Outdated baby safety tip number 2: Your baby needs complete quiet to sleep.
Common wisdom once held that babies need a hushed household in order to get the rest they need. Turns out that they are actually used to hearing background noise from their time spent in the womb. So go ahead and run the vacuum during naptime if you like. The humming of the machine may help ease your baby to sleep, and you can get some cleaning done while she rests.
Outdated baby safety tip number 3: Your baby should be put on a strict feeding schedule.
It was once thought that babies should be fed every four hours after leaving the hospital. The belief was that feeding on demand — in other words, whenever a baby was hungry — would spoil a baby and even increase the risk of contracting an intestinal infection. Now, however, many doctors recommend against setting a feeding schedule and suggest following your baby’s lead when satisfying her hunger needs.
Baby care advice has certainly evolved over the years. What hasn’t changed is that parents want to do everything possible to keep their baby happy and healthy.