Parenting Tip Ep 14: What to do when your baby is refusing milk?

When our baby was 6 months old, she started to refuse milk. Well, it’s not a 100% rejection but she would just stop drinking in the middle of it and it would take a herculean effort to get her to resume and finish the bottle.

We know she can finish the bottle but just cannot figure out why she is pausing halfway or sometimes three-quarters through. As a result, feeding time gets longer and we constantly worry if she is unwell. Is your baby going through the same thing?

If so, here are some suggestions to help you.

Weaning Season

At 6 months old, your baby is probably starting to wean. Not completely of course. In fact, all the way until 1.5 – 2 years of age, your baby is still going to rely on milk as their staple. However, as they wean, they will start taking in more variety of solid foods and the quantity of milk consumed may decrease but not too significantly.

Thus, you don’t really have to worry if baby starts to refuse milk or is taking in less. The tip is to adjust the quantity. We used to do 150 ml per feeding. We lowered it to 120 ml and it works. Alternatively, you can also split up the feeding into 2 sessions separated by a small time interval.

External Distractions

This is probably our most A-ha moment when we kind of figured it out one day as we observed our baby. Maybe we are slow to realise but at 6 months, your baby’s senses of sight and hearing are well developed. They can see and hear very well compared to when they were 2-3 months. So, what does this translate for you? Put simply, your baby is more likely to be distracted by sights and sounds which may not be a bad thing because it means their senses are normal.

Thus, every time we feed her, she would move her head from side to side at the slightest hint of sound or any moving object. This makes feeding a tedious effort and we ended up spending a longer time to feed her the full amount. Once we figured this out, we decided to experiment and would feed her in our living room which is cooler and during feeding time, we try to dim the lights (if it is night time) and make sure the surrounding is relatively serene.

You don’t really need to play soft music or anything. Just make sure there is no loud noise/sound or people moving around when they are feeding. In this way, they can settle down more quickly and we did this for a while and it worked beautifully.

Problem solved!

Are you still using your old teats?

As your baby grows, they will require a new flow rate for their milk bottle teats. At 6 months, are you still using the same teats meant for newborn (NB / 0+)? If so, it is a good idea to look into this and change into the proper teats. If the flow rate is too slow, your baby may feel frustrated and refuse to drink.

Generally speaking, teats are categorized according to their flow rates. So you would have teats meant for newborn (NB/0+), 1m+, 3m+, 6m+ and so on. Every baby will develop their preference differently, so the numbers on the packaging is just for reference. One piece of advice here…just because 3m+ and 6m+ seem so close, do not be tempted to buy the 6m+ teat because if you do, your baby may also end up rejecting it due to the fast flow rate that they cannot handle.

Yes, I know…it’s tedious but babies are delicate and so treat them with love and care (PATIENCE).

The Fact of the Matter is…

Every baby can be slightly different. The suggestions are for your good reference. They work really well for our case but one final word of advice…babies do not stay stagnant. Just when you think you had it all figured out, they start to evolve and your routine gets broken up. Do not be frustrated but learn to adjust for that is a sign that they are developing and growing.

Happy parenting!

Preserving the Nutritional Value of Baby Food

In our last article, we shared how you can prepare a banana cereal smoothie for your baby in 3 mins. It is a cost effective way of introducing solid food to your baby’s diet at the 5 – 6th month. However, it is quite likely that your baby will grow out of it after eating the same thing for weeks. A balanced diet is the key to good nutrition and health and is achieved by introducing them to different varieties of food intake.

To prepare different types of food requires time and energy, both of which are precious commodities to any working parents or even full time stay at home moms and dads. Don’t you always wish you have more time or an extra pair of hands? We did!

Today, we look at another product which may help to alleviate part of your burden, making it easier to prepare delicious and healthy meals for your baby. I am introducing the Steamer Blender from Philips.

Steaming your food keeps the vitamins intact

The steamer blender is a combination of two key functions that go into preparing healthy meals for your baby. Let’s go deeper into the basics of steaming food. Steamed food has the advantage of preserving the vitamins and nutritional value of the cooked food. When we processed food or let it come into contact with a stove or smoke of charcoal, the properties of the food is altered and not at their original nutrition. That’s why it is often advised (even to adults) to avoid processed food or at least reduce the consumption of it. We are what we eat and the same goes for your little ones.

With steaming, the principle is to distribute the steam across the food so that it is cooked evenly. This is a gentle cooking method and the food is not heated up rapidly which causes loss of vitamins and nutrients. In essence, a steamer uses the evaporation of water to steam your food. While this type of cooking method may have its oriental roots with Asians cooking this way more often, the movement has become global due to a rise in worldwide recognition of healthy living with the right diet.

Now that you understand why a steamer is beneficial for preparing your baby’s food, we look at the other function – the blender.

Blending for the right bite size…for different ages

The steamer is part one of the whole equation of preparing healthy cooked food for your baby. Solid food is usually introduced from the 5th to 6th month onwards and your baby will take some time to acustom to the feel of textured food. After all, they have been on the milk diet from birth till then and this is a new adventure for them.

You probably need to start with the finest solid food and work your way up from there. At 6th month or earlier depending on your child’s development, brown rice cereals mixed with milk is a good start as the texture is fine and easy for consumption. As your baby weans, you can increase the concentration of brown rice cereals to give it a more ‘solid’ texture. Well, this is for brown rice cereals and it is easy. You don’t need a blender for this. All you need to decide when using cereals is the ratio of milk to cereals, for this controls the texture of the mix.

A blender comes in useful when you start including cut fruits, vegetables and meat. Those are foods that are generally too big in size for your baby to consume directly. Hence, using a blender makes quick work of them turning them into baby bite sizes. Again, depending on how fine you want it to be, you can control by varying the blending speed and duration.

Usually it doesn’t take more than a minute to blend everything up before it’s ready for serving.

What kind of ingredients are suitable for your baby?

You probaby may wonder what kind of foods are suitable to prepare for your baby. If you need ideas, you can just visit your nearest super mart and head for the baby food section. There you will see all kinds of organic baby food, ready to eat puree.

For a quick reference, these are some ingredients that are baby friendly.

Different types of organic baby foods
Ingredient ideas from your nearby super mart
  • Banana
  • Brocoli
  • Carrot
  • Fruit Mix
  • Papaya
  • Peach
  • Pineapple
  • Potato
  • Pumpkin
  • Raisins
  • Spinach

You can add to this list your baby’s favourite ingredients. Our baby is fond of banana and anything with banana mixed in it goes very well with her. Banana is also great for preventing constipation along with others like prunes, raisins. Thus, our baby moves her bowels well on a daily basis and we avoid explosive poops…thankfully. When it comes to preparing solid foods for your baby, we think the best way is to experiment with varieties. Babies are all different even if they are of the same age. Mine loves banana but your baby may prefer another fruit or vegetable. In addition, even if your baby develops a liking for certain ingredient, make sure to try out different ingredients so that they can get a balanced diet and not be lopsided in one area of nutrition.

 

Putting them together…Philips AVENT 4-in-1 Steamer Blender

4-in-1 Steamer Blender from Philips
4-in-1 Steamer Blender from Philips

To prepare your baby food, you need about 20-30 mins. 15-20 mins is for the steaming and with the Philips steamer blender, once the water in the tank fully evaporates, it will shut off instead of running continuously. This is a nice safety feature which is probably installed for all the AVENT products. We also used their 3-in-1 Bottle Steriliser and it works on the same principle.

Once steaming is done, you can turn the jar over and start the blending process.

With the Philips AVENT Steamer Blender, the same jar is used for steaming and blending and how you switch between the two is to turn the jar over and insert it back onto the motor unit. Here’s a picture courtesy from Philips website.

Just turn jar around to switch between steamer and blender
Just turn jar around to switch between steamer and blender

I really like this feature because it means there is no need to transfer steamed food from one container to another, leaving me with less things to wash. If you are using a dishwasher at home, you will be happy to know that the Philips AVENT steamer blender (except for the motor base) is dishwasher friendly. For us, we don’t have a dishwasher installed but cleaning up the steamer blender takes less than 5 mins.

The Philips AVENT steamer blender has a 4-in-1 package. The other two features are defrost and reheat which are useful because the jar has a sizeable capacity of 1000 ml. What we do is to prepare the food for the whole day and have it split into 4 or 5 portions. The unused portions are kept in the refrigerator for later use.

Conclusion

Preparing solid foods for your baby/child can be a time consuming activity. We used to spend more time because we have a separate steamer from Tefal and also a Kenwood mini blender. Both work well but the Tefal 3 layer steamer is a bit of an overkill while the Kenwood mini blender is a bit too mini. Using both of them consume more time and electricity. That’s the reason why we invested in a steamer blender from Philips because it is really a great time-and-space saver.

If you are hard pressed for time and want to prepare your baby’s food all at one go, with fewer items to wash and store, we recommend you to check out the Philips AVENT 4-in-1 Steamer Blender from Amazon which may sometimes offer it at a discounted price.

How to Prepare your own Banana Cereal Smoothie for Baby in 3 Mins

Visit any supermart and you find the baby food section is commonly lined up with all kinds of cereals for your babies who are taking their very first bite of solid foods.

Among the food items, the banana fruit porridge or cereals is a hot seller. Banana comes with multiple vitamins good for baby’s growth and many parents buy it to complement the daily milk intake.

Before we go further, let’s look at the nutritional value of the ingredients:

  • Banana: Potassium, Vitamin B6, Dietary Fibre
  • Breast / Formula Milk
  • Brown Rice: Carbohydrates, Dietary Fibre, Iron

Today, we show you how you can avoid those long queues at the supermart and prepare your own delicious and healthy banana-nutrient-rich snacks for your little ones in 3 mins

All the items you need for this sumptuous meal preparation

Items you need

  • Brown Rice Cereals (You can also cook porridge but cereals are faster to prepare)
  • Milk (formula or breast milk)
  • Banana x 1
  • Cup or any bottle for holding the blended mix
  • A Blender (Ours’ is from Kenwood and it takes up little space)

3 min preparation for a healthy meal

1. Cut the banana into small pieces for easy blending. Depending on the amount you are preparing for your baby, you may not use up an entire banana. You can just gobble up what’s left behind. Usually I use half a banana for a single day’s intake split into 2 feedings but that’s just my style. Adjust to fit your baby and your schedule.

2. Mix the brown rice cereals, milk and banana and then blend it. Depending how solid you want the mix to be, adjust the amount of milk accordingly. For me, I use 30 ml of breast milk. Here is a sample of how mine looks like and I find this to be ideal for babies in general as they learn to handle (swallow) solid food for the first time.

Food container from Philips works great and fits into most electric warmers with no problem

The food container above is from Philips. We got it together when we bought their 3-in-1 Steam Steriliser. The size is handy and best of all, it is easy to clean. As stay at home parents juggling work and baby, time is always a premium and we always try to use our time effectively.

3. Once the banana milkshake is ready, either serve it directly to baby if they are hungry or have it refrigerated. You can warm it up before feeding. The good thing with the food container above is that it fits in well with our electric warmer from Tommee Tippee.

We hope this is helpful to you, especially newbie parents. It is an easy recipe to follow and you can do it without requiring a lot of equipment or ingredients. We recommend brown rice cereals as one of the staples though you can also do it without cereals simply by just mashing milk and banana slices together.

Last but not least, we really like the Kenwood blender and feel it deserves a second mention. The Kenwood blender is a powerhouse despite its small size and due to its compactness, can be stored easily on your kitchen top to dry without taking up precious space. Here’s a link if you want more details.

For parents who are really busy and want a ready fix without having to go through the process of buying bananas, blending and all that, you can consider the Gerber Oatmeal and Banana Baby Cereal.

 

Parenting Tip Ep 13: How to Train your Picky-Eater to be a Foodie

Every parent encounters this problem at one stage. Your kid starts to develop a habit of selective eating and each meal becomes a tug of war that seems to stretch on forever. And guess what? Over time, you will cave in and allow your baby to eat whatever they want because you are busy, you feel bad forcing them to eat or drink what you have prepared.

And…this is where the problem escalates.

Humans (small or big) are creatures of habit and your beloved little ones are no different either.

For babies or toddlers, they are constantly exploring their boundaries (i.e. testing the waters, we call it) and the moment they discover a crack, they will go for it. The crack may be a moment of emotion as you cannot bear to see him or her crying. We are not saying you should force-feed them food but they shouldn’t be the ones to make the choices for you.

You are the parents. You know better what’s good for them (at least for food and basic needs). When it comes to marriage and career later, they get to choose for themselves. Anyway you get the point. Parents, be firm with your kids or you may end up with an escalated problem that takes even more time and effort to fix later…

There is a saying in South Korea (I lived there for 2 years!) that habits developed before the age of 3 will last till 80 years old. Whether it is age of 3 or 4 or 5 in your country, the significance of this wise saying is not lost. During your kids’ formative years, make sure you’re setting the tone right for them and it will benefit them for life.

Today’s article is about food but the same principle applies to all aspects of life.

Well…back to food issue.

Why does your kid selectively choose his or her food?

The reason is simple. They have choices and who provides those choices. We. The Parents.

Yup, we encourage those situations when we allow them to act on their whims and fancy. No, we are not dictatorial parents but as mentioned earlier, it is the responsibility of parents to plan and decide what’s best for our kids when they are still so young and can’t make rational decisions.

Methods to help your kid become a Foodie

1. Parents set the examples in all situations. If you want your child to be a foodie, then first of all, parents and / or caretakers should live by example and enjoy taking meals of different varieties together with your kids. It doesn’t work when we just preach but not walk the talk.

2. Stick to routine timings for meals and feed the same amount. There may be occasions when your kid does not eat as much as usual and it’s okay to reduce the amount and let them make up with lighter feeding in between meal times.

3. Let your kids try different food at their natural state from young. This means avoiding unnecessary seasoning and keeping original colours and tastes as much as possible. As adults, we enjoy our food when it comes with seasonings (spicy, sour, sweet etc.) and unfortunately most of that is unhealthy but adults being adults, old habits die hard or won’t die at all. It is important to be patient when introducing new foods. Just because your baby is eating brown rice cereal (solid food) well does not mean all types of solid food would immediately go well with him or her.

4. Avoid fast food and processed food as much as possible. Fast and processed food are prepared in ways that whet the appetite but when consumed regularly can lead to obesity and other health issues.

5. Do not try to change the menu quickly the moment your kid resists it. By doing so, you are creating ‘options’ for them and encouraging them to be picky eaters. Instead, stay on the course and stick to the pre-planned meals. Sit them in front of their meals even if they do not eat it initially and gently coax them to take small bites.

6. Last but not least, it is important to create a happy and fun atmosphere during meal times. Have fun even in the midst of mealtime battles! If you get frustrated and try to force-feed them, this can backfire, leading them to dread every meal ahead.

Reasons why you want your kid to become a foodie

First and foremost, we all know that in order to grow healthier, a balanced diet is important and thus, it is crucial to set the habits right for your kid so that they don’t over-indulge in one area and malnourished in another. Secondly, feeding time can become a very time consuming activity if your kid constantly resists due to his or her picky habits.

Conclusion

The feeding habits of your child is an important aspect of their well being. In fact, it stretches into the future where their health too will rely largely on how they feed themselves. Many parents experience stress when they see their kids not accepting food or changing their eating habits. It is important to note that this does not mean your kid is having a serious problem that requires a special fix. Instead, be patient with them and help them adjust and build the right habits from young.

 

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Getting a Baby Crib Bumper

There is a need for baby crib bumper when your baby starts to tumble. Otherwise, they will just bang their heads against the sides or get their legs entangled in between the wooden slits. 

Here’s what I mean. 

My leg is trapped…Help!

It is a good thing we were around when this happens but after a few times, we feel it’s time to invest in an all-around crib bumper.

The crib bumper is placed around the four sides of the crib and protects your baby from hard knocks and impact. In addition, their tiny hands or legs won’t get trapped between the slits. 

When is a good time to get a crib bumper?

It depends on the size of your baby crib. A smaller crib would have a more urgent need for a crib bumper especially if your baby has already learnt to tumble. Our baby started to tumble when she’s 4 months old and these days, she is turning 360 within the crib. Without the crib bymper, she would have collected bruises all over and our biggest concern is her head. 

What type of crib bumper to get?

The most popular choice is the bumper pads. It is a common accessory and you can get it from Amazon or your nearest retail and usually they come in sizes that fit all types of crib. Before purchase, just make sure to check the size against your crib’s dimensions. Generally, you can go for the exact fit or if your crib does not fit standard dimensions, our advice is to go for padding that is longer as you can overlap the excess length, rather than having a gap. 

The other choice is a knotted bumper. It has a fanciful touch to it but if your baby is very active, the lower height of the knotted bumper may not offer much in terms of protection as your baby can quite easily go over it. Still, it is better than no protection…

Conclusion

The baby crib bumper is not an item you need to get at the beginning months. Most babies start to tumble after 3rd month and that’s when you want to pay attention to their safety and get a crib bumper. 

 

Products mentioned in this article

Parenting Tip Ep 12: Travelling with a Baby

If you are planning your first overseas trip with your baby, there are a couple of things to take note. 

First of all, you have only 2 pairs of hands and that is provided if you are travelling with your spouse. One of you will be carrying the baby while the other person is carrying the diaper bag and other necessities. Basically, you want to travel as light as possible without missing out a single essential.

What are the essentials you have to bring?

These are items we think you should bring. You can adjust according to the flight duration. The following is a good reference for a 4-hour flight. Also, you should add 2 hours or more to the overall duration to cover travelling time to and from airport. In other words, if your home and destination is each 1 hour away from the airport, you want to prepare for 4+2 (6) hours. 

  • Diapers x3 
  • 1 Diaper changing mat
  • Wet wipes
  • Pacifier
  • 1 set of extra clothing in case he/she soils the clothes
  • 3 bottles of milk (formula or breast) based on feedings of 2-3 hours per interval
  • A heat resistant container for warming up your milk since they will be kept cold in a coolant bag
  • Yes, you need a coolant bag
  • Baby passport!!! (We almost forgot to bring!)
  • A Diaper Changing Bag to hold all of the above
  • Your Baby Stroller – Check out our review for Babyzen Yoyo+ which is the friendliest stroller for travel

You can check in the baby stroller as well just prior to boarding the plane. Just make sure when you are at the boarding gate, get a tag from the customer officer. It is to identify you as the owner and for easy retrieval at the destination airport. 

Do you know…

You can board without joining the main queue (priority boarding) if you have a baby with you. Simply push your stroller with baby to the front of the line and the boarding officer will check your tickets and let you pass through in a jiffy. 

Take-off and Landing

During take off and landing, your baby may feel discomfort due to the change in atmospheric pressure. Adults resolve this easily by yawning, swallowing saliva but your baby won’t know how to do this. If she cries, it helps too. A less stressful experience for your baby is to use a pacifier. Alternatively, you can time your feedings at take-off and landing. This has the same effect as the pacifier and also keeps your baby fed. 

We usually try to feed her at take off and landing. Not only does it solve the air pressure issue, we won’t have to worry about feeding her until we reach our hotel or home. 

Feeding your baby on the plane

Any parent can agree to this. Feeding your baby on the plane is not the easiest thing to do especially if you are on exclusive breastfeeding. We tried it once and frankly, it resulted in a lot of spillage and wet clothing (both baby and mom). Eventually, we decided to go easy on ourselves and bottle feed using expressed milk. 

With bottle feeding, you need to keep the expressed milk cold throughout the journey. At the point of feeding, use a container filled with hot water to heat up the bottled milk for 5 mins. We find this to be the most convenient and fastest way since there is no way you can use an electric warmer unless you are taking First Class with power outlets.

Anyway, cabin crew are usually friendly and have a softer spot for babies. I asked for a cup of green tea and it took 15 mins because the crew member forgot about it but our baby had her milk readied in 5 mins. No complaints here though 🙂 Babies come first!

*By the way, we fly SQ from Singapore. Despite the challenges in air flight service lately due to increasing traffic, it is still by far the best airline we had flew. Keep it up!

Sleeping on the plane

At some point during the flight, your baby will need to sleep. Airlines provide bassinet for newborns as long as they are not more than 1 metre in height but you have to request in advance when you book your tickets. I think a comfortable range would be 80-90 cm. Otherwise, your little one may feel very cramped and unhappy. Our baby is 70 cm and already she fits the bassinet snugly. 

Though bassinets will be provided to babies, do make sure to book your tickets earlier if possible to avoid any unforeseen circumstances such as shortage of bassinet seats for example. In our trip to Sydney last December, there was a total of 11 babies on the flight. It was quite a symphony throughout that flight. 

If it so happens that bassinet runs out, you may have to hold your baby from take-off to landing. You will have sore arms after that. Here are two interesting alternatives for your consideration. No, we have not used them before but we found these from our research. If you have any experience with them, please leave a comment below.

The Infant Airplane Seat works by latching one end to the back of the seat in front. It can be ideal for very small babies but we are not quite sure if it works well for bigger size babies. The advantage is that you can see your baby all the time.

The Skybaby Travel Mattress is basically attached to the parent, allowing the baby/child to be firmly secured closely to the parent. For shorter trips, this can be a good idea but if you are going to try this for the long haul flights, it will be a challenge physically.

Poo and Diaper Change

Bassinet for baby to sleep

No parent wants to encounter this but sometimes it is beyond your control. If you don’t want your baby to poo onboard, you can try to train him/her to poo in the morning or evening and if your flights do not overlap those hours, you can maybe escape a poo explosion. 

No one wants to deal with a poo situation on the flight. 

The space for doing diaper change is very small and you need to work within very cramped conditions, sometimes with a line of people waiting behind you. Crying baby, stressful parents…

Here’s our tip to improve this situation. You can change your baby’s diaper using the bassinet provided. The bassinet is about a metre in length and seriously, it really makes things much easier. You may feel conscious that other people are looking but really they just marvelling at how great you are as a parent to “operate” under those kind of conditions. 

In our recent trip, I did a diaper change in less than a minute using the bassinet. When I turned around, I expect people to be applauding but most of them are sleeping or engrossed in their own work. So there…the concern doesn’t really exist.

Conclusion

From check-in to landing, we have covered what you need to take note when travelling with your baby. At first, it may not be easy and as first-timers, you may even lose your cool. But hey, travelling with a baby isn’t all that difficult once you get the basics.

Know that you can’t move around as fast as you would like in the past. You can’t push your baby around like a F1 racer like what you used to do, and going through security checks take a bit more time as well. So it’s better to start off a bit earlier and have allowances for delay here and there.

Secondly, if it is a shorter flight of 3-5 hours, try to time it so that your baby would want to sleep after they board. This may mean keeping them occupied with a bit of play time before setting off to the airport. Our baby slept throughout most of the flight yesterday, and only woke up for feeding before landing.

Well, that’s a perfect landing!

 

Products mentioned in this articles

Parenting Tip Ep 11: Healthy Play Time For Your Child

Do you fret over what to do with your child during your off days or on weekends?

Here’s a suggestion for you. Bring them out to venues where they can play, run around or even splash a bit of water (under close supervision of course!)

The benefits of outdoor play on your child’s development cannot be overestimated. Studies have shown and parents have attested to better social and overall development if they plan outdoor activities for their children. Well, it may require more effort and logistics to bring them out but would you rather they be cooped up at home safely with an iPad?

On 28 Feb, we brought our baby out to Sentosa. This is a tourist attraction in Singapore and while we have been there a few times, this was a first for our baby. Seeing her chubby little face lit up with delightful smiles and chuckles, we knew we made the right decision.

Visiting Sentosa on a weekday has its perks…less crowd and plenty of room for your children to splash around

We visited the Palawan Water Park known as Port of Lost Wonder. It is a child friendly water theme park and best of all, admission is free. You are only required to bring your own swimwear / swim diapers for your children and make sure you are properly decked in appropriate swim suit as well. From here, it’s all fun and laughter as parents and children bond together over water games.

The park welcomes children above 110 cm. As for the younger toddlers or babies, they can enjoy the fun if parents accompany them by their side. 

In sunny Singapore, this is really a cool place to bring your children to. More importantly, it is really beneficial for your children to participate in outdoor activities such as these which help to shape their physical development and creativity. 

How To Get There?

Palawan Pirate Ship Entrance: Admission is FREE

The Palawan Water Park is near to the beach station. You can take the Sentosa monorail from Vivocity (sentosa station) and once you reach the beach station, just walk for about 3 mins in the direction of palawan beach and you will see the water park.

If you are driving, you can park at the Beach Station Car Park for $0.02/minute. Please check this rate yourself as it might change with time.

Once you get there, admission is free and thus the whole family can enjoy healthy fun without burning a hole in the pocket. 

Conclusion

The inclusion of outdoor play activities for your little ones should not be overlooked. Children thrive when they are in environments that help to unleash their creativity. Instead of distracting them with mobile devices, it is a better idea to get out and engage in healthy play time. 

 

Trending: Diaper Changing Care Package left in diaper changing room

I’m not sure if you ever had the experience of your baby exploding (poo…I mean) after several days of inactivity. It happens and to add oil to fire, what if that hits you when you are out with your baby with no extra diaper on hand.

When that happens, there’s only a few things you can do.

  1. Run back home quickly and hopefully you are not that far away. Otherwise, the journey will be an awkward one with stares from other commuters wondering where the smell comes from.
  2. Buy a new bag of diapers. Anyway, you need to replenish stock…but you just bought a bag two days ago.
  3. Hope that there’s a kind samaritan family around with extra baby diaper to spare. You got to be real lucky.

The above situation is not unique to any parent. Despite your best efforts to remember every item for your baby, there are just days when you are overwhelmed and rushing. Forgetting to pack in extra diaper does happen.

Recently, there was a case of someone leaving a diaper change care package in the diaper changing room of a shopping mall. It was neatly packed and on it, the note says “For any needy parent. Love from another parent who received similar help many times.” I didn’t use it because I brought my own extra diaper but the kind gesture from this unknown parent warmed my heart and probably it did benefit someone out there.

This is a case of paying it forward, making parenting less stressful for others and I think it would be really nice if more people catch on and do this for one another.

What do you think of the diaper changing care package? Do you have any similar encounters?

Parenting Tip Ep 10: A Simple Guide to Baby Tooth Care

Our baby loves to grin at people and it’s cute because she has what you call a toothless grin. 

At 5 months old, she is at the beginning stage of teething, so there is no tooth. Though there is no tooth, it is still a good idea to clean her gum daily. You can do it after each meal. If not, at least once a day would be good. Usually, we clean her gum at the end of the day, right after her last feeding.

What’s the way to clean your baby’s gums?

The easiest way is to use a soft cloth. Wet it with water and then wrap it around your finger. With that, gently clean her gums top and bottom, front and back.

The alternative of using a soft cloth is a finger brush.

The Oral Care Rabbit from MAM: Your baby will love this!

This is how one looks like and you can get it from Amazon or your nearest retail. It is convenient to use, easy to wash and relatively inexpensive.

When’s the best time to start cleaning your baby’s gums?

You can start cleaning your baby’s gums even before the first tooth appeared. There is no harm in doing so, and in fact, it is a good way to develop the habit of tooth care from a very young age. At first, your baby may resist it a bit but once you develop a routine, they will get used to it and even look forward to the cleaning each time.

Our baby loves it and we clean her gums after the final feeding for the day. Over time, it has become a routine for her to go to bed after the cleaning. Babies love routine actually!

Myths and Facts

  • Baby’s first teeth are not permanent, thus there is no need to be too concerned with their care. Indeed, a baby’s first set of teeth is not permanent but failing to care for them properly can lead to gum infection which in turn can affect the future teeth.
  • Drinking tap water is good for teeth protection. Yes and No. Depending on where you live, you want to check to ensure the water is safe for drinking, especially by your newborn. Tap water usually contains fluoride which protects the teeth from acid attacks. The alternative to tap water is using fluoride toothpaste which is suitable for your child when they turn 2 years old. When using fluoride toothpaste, caution should be exercised to use only a small amount of toothpaste. This helps to ensure your child does not swallow excess toothpaste.
  • Babies drink milk predominantly and thus there is no need for oral care especially if they have no teeth. The gums are an important part of your baby’s well-being. In addition, starting early with oral care also helps them to build a good habit from young.

Tooth or not, it is a good practice to have your baby’s gums cleaned on a daily basis. Both you and your baby will experience the far-reaching benefits of oral care from starting at a young age.

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