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Dressing

There is nothing cuter than baby clothes but how do you put them on and how many layers?

Clothes Safety Tips

  • Safe changing is key – either changing on the floor or low surface on a changing mat or a changing table – if changing them on a surface higher than ensure watching them at all times not turning away or leaving them even for a moment – if you need to get something ensure to put the changing table safety belt or transfer to the floor first
  • Ensure they are not too warm or too cold especially for sleep.  The recommendation for amount of clothes to wear is no more than 1 layer than you would be comfortable wearing as an adult in the same environment – for awake time and sleep time (this includes the swaddle or sleep sack as 1 layer) 
  • Ensure to use the right size of clothes so fit your baby
  • Ensure the clothes are soft, have a low fire danger label and no loose trimming
  • If go outside in the sun or warm weather cover as much of their body with a thin layer and put on a sunhat

Changing Table Safety Tips

    • Ensure no gaps in the changing table where they can trap their fingers or other body parts
    • Ideally choose a changing table or mat with raised sides
    • Ensure the changing table is sturdy, with no faults and any locking devices working well – if any issues ensure fixed by the manufacturer or change for another type
    • Depending on your changing table or mat design stand on the side or the end – if there is an open side stand facing that side
    • Have everything ready so you do not need to leave the changing table for anything – if you do take your baby with you or place on a mat on the floor
    • Have one hand on your baby at all times to prevent them rolling or wriggling off – this is also important if using a safety belt as there are cases of babies still managing to roll off when the safety belt is used.
    • Keep any products that could harm your baby far away from their reach as babies love to take things and try and put in their mouth

If in the event your baby rolls off the changing table pick them up and hold and comfort them.  Do a full check for broken bones, bumps to the head and concussion.  Monitor them closely over the next 24 hours and sleep in the same room.   If they have more than a small bump on the head or if they have any of the following signs seek medical immediately:

    • Anything more than a minor bump showing on the head
    • Pain when touching or moving any area of the body 
    • Pain on dressing or undressing your baby 
    • Extreme irritability
    • Cannot stop crying.
    • Blood or watery fluid coming from nose or ears
    • Unequal size pupils (the dark centers of the eyes)
    • Excessive sleepiness or difficulty waking up
    • Vomiting

Putting Clothes On

    • For vests, tshirts, jumpers, sleep suits with no front zip – open the top hole as wide as you can and pull over the head – back of head first then the face – for short arms just guide the hand through the arm – for long sleeves gather up the materials of one arm and widen the sleeve hole and reach through to find your baby’s hand and slide the sleeve on gently guide the hand through the sleeves – then slightly roll and lift your baby to pull down the back of the top before doing the same with the other long arm
    • When babies become older and fidget or move their arms and legs more you can distract them with a toy, making faces at them or saying a rhyme
    • For pant based sleep suits do up the poppers
    • For long leg sleep suits with closed toes place the foot of one leg in the foot part and then do the same with the other leg before closing the poppers
    • For trousers do the same as with the arms and gather up the materials of one leg and widen the foot hole – then reach through to gently hold the foot and gently slide the trouser leg on as you guide the foot through the foot hole as you slide the trouser leg on then do the same with the other leg – slightly roll and lift the baby to pull the back of the trousers up over their nappy

Taking Clothes Off

    • To take clothes off do the above in reverse

Clothes in Hot Weather

    • Keep to just a nappy or singlet if completely in the shade – beware of sun coming through trees or parasols as they do not always fully protect from sun rays.
    • When outside in hot weather make sure your baby is wearing a thin layer of clothes or wrap covering their whole body ideally with the fabrics having a UV protection factor rating (UPF) – if no rating make sure the fabric is closely woven and not transparent
    • When outside in hot weather always ensure they are wearing a sunhat covering the head, neck and ears and shading their face from the sun – baseball caps will not provide enough protection
    • Sunscreens are not recommended to be used until 6 months by the FDA and American Academy of Paediatrics as they can cause rashes – speak to your Paediatrician if you are looking to use a sunscreen before 6 months.

Clothes in Cold Weather

    • It is recommend to use layers so they can be easily removed when go inside again – they should not wear more than 1 layer than you are comfortable in in the same environment temperature
    • Recommended to wear a hat when outside in cold weather as babies mainly lose their heat through their head but remember to remove as soon as inside again to prevent overheating

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