Going out with a newborn baby is overwhelming for new parents. There are so many questions hit your mind as a new parent about taking your baby outside while she is still so young.
As a matter of fact, it may get concerning when your baby is just a few days old. It is always a good idea to wait for several weeks after the baby’s birth to visit crowded places.
Although looking at those four walls could get new moms a cabin fever still it is advisable for moms to take precautionary measures when they leave home with a newborn baby.
You have to be super prepared with baby stuff, especially if you are going out by yourself only, just to venture out or out of necessity.
If you are visiting someone’s house, make sure it is smoke-free and does not have any other harmful conditions like mold, chemical fumes, etc.
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Helpful tips on going out with your newborn baby
New parents are concerned about when is it safe to take newborns out in public. well, it is advised to wait a couple of weeks until you decide to take your baby out in public.
Moms have to do chores, run errands and so much to manage with multiple kids and you cannot stay home with a baby delaying everything you have to do.
No matter what your tasks are when you have to head out with a newborn baby, you have to be super careful and vigilant.
Dressing up your newborn baby
Do not take inappropriately dressed baby outside: The number one thing is you should not take out your baby inappropriately dressed. Your baby has to be neither overdressed nor underdressed.
As a general rule, Your newborn baby needs one extra layer than what you are wearing. If you are wearing a light jacket, protect your baby with a light jacket and cozy warm blanket as an extra layer. if weather is warm, keeping baby covered with a muslin blanket as an extra layer is just fine.
Do not expose your baby to direct sunlight: you should not expose your baby to direct sunlight. Newborns have delicate skin. You do not want to leave without fully covered clothes and sunscreen.
Do not leave without a hat: newborns have significantly bigger heads than the rest of their bodies. That is the reason they tend to lose heat from their head much faster if they are without hats.
Newborn needs to wear a hat for the first several months after birth, no matter what weather it is.
Do not leave without getting to know the weather forecast: you should always check the weather forecast before you leave home with your newborn. Prepare accordingly, in case of rain, snow or flash flood warnings.
Tip: If there is nothing urgent, in case of the bad weather forecast, postpone your visit.
Sunscreen should be at least SPF15 and applied to even small areas of skin exposed to sunlight
Appropriate Clothing for cold weather
Winter season could be tricky for newborns. Mom and dad need to be super careful while taking the baby out during the winter and fall season.
Baby needs a hat, and blanket for protection from the cold windy weather. Also, baby ears need to be covered. You need infant car seat winter season blanket that would keep baby warm and cozy outdoors.
Despite how cold weather is, you need to make sure baby is not overheated sitting a car seat. Common signs of overheating are blushing cheeks and ears, and the baby seems less active and more sleepy.
Tips on how to avoid direct sun
It is best to keep babies younger than 6 months out of the sun because babies have thinner and more delicate skin than adults, thus they are more prone to sunburns.
Try to avoid peak sun hours from 10 am to 2 pm when the sun rays are strongest.
Keep your baby in the shade, keep head covered with a brimmed hat, thin long pants, and a thin long sleeve shirt to avoid direct sun rays.
Keep baby under large umbrella or stroller canopy.
Apply sunscreen safe for baby skin with an SPF of 15 or higher to all exposed areas like face, neck, hands, feet, and a tip of the ears. Be sure to apply 15 to 30 minutes before going out and reapply in 2 hours if you are still outside.
Just be sure the sunscreen does not contain Oxybenzone. there is a concern that this ingredient may affect hormones in the body.
Where to go with a newborn baby
Now, you are almost ready to head out, the next thing is where to go with a newborn baby?
Less crowded places
With a few weeks old babies, it is not recommended to visit crowded places because babies are vulnerable to catch germs really quick. Go to places where there are fewer people meaning your baby is exposed to fewer germs.
Make sure the weather is favorable
During pollen season, when children are getting seasonal allergies back and forth, you should avoid going out in the parks or staying outdoors.
This does not mean you cannot go out when you have a baby. With a newborn – just a few weeks old- is adjusting to a new environment so she is more vulnerable to catch a viral cold, flu or fever much faster.
Keep a thin blanket as per weather conditions and try to keep baby covered. When you come back home, change baby’s clothes, bath preferably.
Read more on how to treat seasonal allergies.
During hot weather, the blanket should be breathable and baby should not be overdressed as the temperature rises quickly if the baby’s car seat or stroller are covered with a canopy.
When it is your first time going out with a baby, start small. Take a short trip, just around a block in the neighborhood. Heading out of the house could be quite an adventure with a newborn. Your visit success depends on your baby’s temperament, tolerance of stimulation.
Babies get crankier at the end of the day, or sometimes a visit to a grocery store may take a whole day of an adventure with a newborn.
Rest assured, this is not to imply that you should not go out with newborn babies, the whole point is to get used to with this new change.
Remember, babies are not adults, they get tired pretty quickly before you even arrive at the destination. Be prepared for hunger, overstimulation, sleep, overwhelm and crying – each and every case is real. Start small, test the waters and gradually stretch your visit hours when you head out of the house.
When to go out with your baby
Some cultures dictate that moms should not leave the house for about 4 to 6 weeks after childbirth until then moms have also recovered from postpartum struggles. whereas some believe that going out with a baby may keep you from developing cabin fever. In a nutshell, it is up to a mom how healthy she feels herself to go out with a baby on her own.
However, you need to check these options when you plan a visit with your newborn.
- When you are well-rested. If you are sleep deprived, there is no point in going outside and increase your stress levels.
- When your baby is well fed or just after a feeding.
- when places are less crowded or off-hours
- Preferably when you have help to go out with you and also someone can lend you a hand with logistics.
What to take with you when you go out
Babies have a lot of stuff and there is pretty much everything you may want to take with you while going out with a newborn baby.
- First, you have to decide, for how long you are heading out?
- How old is your baby?
- What is baby’s schedule of eating, pooping and sleeping? That’s what they do at this point.
No matter how long or short your trip is, never leave home without ENOUGH diapering supplies. Newborn babies need frequent diaper changes so you need to take, diapers, wipes, disposable changing sheet, disposable diaper sacks, just in case a diaper cream.
Onesies should be in your backpack at all times. Expect to have at least one change of clothing for your baby, and for yourself too. Be prepared for diaper blowouts, leaks, spit-ups, spills, and whatnot.
Breastmilk, formula milk or on the go baby food
If you are a breastfeeding mom, you may want to have a nursing cover to breastfeed in public. You can take bottles with you, the formula in milk dispensers, and also water to prepare formula feed for your baby.
If your baby is about 6 months old, you may want to take a ready on the go baby food.
Expect your baby to get hungry the moment you leave the house and a painful crying ride while you drive to the destination.
Baby carrier or a bassinet
Some baby carriers are not designed for newborn babies, If you plan to use one, always check the minimum weight limit first. Find baby carrier which you think is workable for you as per your comfort, baby’s neck and back support. Moreover, you have to make sure it is adjustable to newborn size.
Well, you cannot head out without a stroller. It is a staple to have one and it depends on your choice of stroller you want for your convenience.
For newborn babies, you cannot have an umbrella stroller that does not have a rate of recline. However, there are some umbrella strollers that can be reclined also ensure sun protection.
Newborn babies need a certain degree of recline to have proper neck support because their development does not allow them to sit upright and hold heads high.
Although Jogging strollers are not recommended for babies until 5 or 6 months old when they get good head control while sitting upright. You can still have a jogger travel system for infants with a car seat so you can easily head out and jog around.
However, you still want to have a stroller that comes with a travel system. A car seat compatible with a stroller. This is the best option for newborns when you go out. It has the ease of taking your sleeping baby out of the car without interrupting her sleep and put a car seat in the stroller.
Experts do not advise parents to have newborn babies sit in the car seat more than 2 hours at a stretch for a variety of reasons. Newborn babies should be on their back most of the time and not in the reclining position of a car seat.
For that reason, it is good to have a travel system with a bassinet when babies can stay on their back and you can stroll around the neighborhood while they enjoy a good slumber.
These travel system with bassinets are getting popular among new parents for its versatility and healthier option for babies.
Canopy or Seat cover
You can buy a separate cover for baby’s car seat to keep your baby protected from germs and uncertain climatic conditions.
Also when your baby starts sitting without back support, then you may want to have cart cover for your grocery store visits with your baby. You may want to have a clean and soft surface for your baby for your Target runs.
Last but not least, it is up to you, how healthy you feel to go out with a newborn as it takes a lot of energy and at the end of the day, both you and the baby are exhausted.
Besides what you choose for your baby, you have to keep your convenience in consideration too. Moms now have access to all kind of baby gear, choose wisely and invest in your sanity.