Quirky Baby Concerns 0-12 Months - Part 2

Fever Fears

Rectal temperature? Yuck. Do I really have to do this? No one loves using a rectal thermometer, but you should if your child’s 4 months old or younger and you suspect a fever. Other methods are not as accurate, and precise info about temperature is important for babies this little. Dr. Maypole suggests this method: Lay your infant face down on your lap and place one hand on her lower back. Put a bit of Vaseline on the tip of the thermometer and insert it just half an inch to an inch inside the rectum. Most thermometers give a reading in less than 60 seconds. You can also do it when your baby’s in diaper-changing position.

Quirky Baby Concerns 0-12 Months - Part 2

New Noises

What’s with all of those snuffling noises my infant makes? Is he having trouble breathing? Babies can make a lot of strange sounds. If your child is breathing heavily in his sleep (think Darth Vader), gurgling, or snorting, he probably just has a bit of mucus in the back of the throat, says Dr. Deuber. As long as he seems He may be sleeping often but not well. “A baby his age should be sleeping 14 to 16 hours a day - usually eight to ten hours at night with two daytime naps,” says Floyd Livingston Jr., M.D., chief of pediatrics at Nemours Children’s Clinic, Orlando. Broken sleep is often a learned behavior. If your son is used to being picked up every time he stirs, he may not be able to soothe himself. If the total amount seems right, introduce a routine of putting him in his crib while he’s awake. Keep him alert when it’s not naptime so he gets used to his schedule. Sticking to this plan should help him sleep through the night as well. My 5-month-old does nothing but sleep. He is u p for an hour, snoozes, is up again, and falls asleep. Is there such a thing as sleeping too much? Q A okay, don’t worry. You should be concerned, though, if the sounds are accompanied by decreased appetite, fever, or if he looks blue around the mouth - he may have a respiratory infection or a heart problem, or he could even be choking on a small object.

Delayed Response

Will I traumatize my child if I let her cry in her crib for a minute while I finish using the bathroom? Many parents are concerned about this in the beginning. “I hardly ever put my first child down,” says Julie Fields, a mom of three in Lafayette, Indiana. “I took her with me everywhere - even to work for my first two weeks back from maternity leave - despite the fact that there was on-site day care. Then I realized I was making myself crazy.” It doesn’t help that you’re probably sleep-deprived, making your anxiety levels higher. Although it’s important to show your baby that you’re there for her, she also has to learn how to soothe herself. So, it’s okay to let her cry in her crib while you finish your shower. Or get dressed. Or even watch the last minute of that rerun of The Office.