Here are 5 top tips from experts on protecting babies from germs.
Parents should keep the house clean, keep their baby away from anyone who is obviously sick, and stay up-to-date on immunizations,” says Philip M. Tierno Jr., Ph.D., director of clinical microbiology at New York University Medical Center and author of The Secret Life of Germs.
2. Keep Your Baby Close
“The biggest danger to babies is other people’s hands,” says Ken Haller, M.D., assistant professor of pediatrics at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, in Missouri. Did you know, more than 80 percent of germs are transmitted by touch. It is okay to ask anyone who wants to hold your baby to first wash her hands with soap and warm water for 20 seconds.
3. Avoid Crowded Places
Try to limit where you take your baby during his first weeks because newborns can easily pick up a bug when exposed to large numbers of people in a confined space.
4. Wash Your Hands
Do you know how to wash your hands properly? Keeping your hands clean will go a long way in shielding your baby from germs, especially after visiting the bathroom. Learn the proper handwash technique below. You are welcome!
5. Do Not Freeze Leftover Milk
Whether you feed your baby breast milk or formula, don’t keep leftovers as the saliva from the baby’s mouth can breed germs and bacteria in the milk. Throw out any leftovers. The same goes for baby food: Bacteria from a used spoon can cause contamination.
6. Wash Your Baby’s Clothes Separately
“Since family members’ clothes — especially underwear — may contain contaminants that could wind up on your baby’s sensitive skin, it’s best to do her laundry separately,” says Philip M. Tierno Jr., Ph.D., director of clinical microbiology at New York University Medical Center and author of The Secret Life of Germs. It’s also smart to occasionally run an empty cycle of bleach and hot water to kill bacteria that may be lurking in the machine.
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