9 Child Care Tips From Our Grandmas That Doctors Recommend We Forget About

Scientists assume that most modern grandparents don’t upgrade or renew their knowledge on how to take care of children. They only rely on their personal experience and give advice that may be obsolete in today’s world. And some of this advice could even be unsafe or dangerous.

Bright Side has scoured some parents’ forums and articles written by pediatricians to help figure out what irrelevant tips young moms and dads usually receive.

9. Without swaddling, a baby will be pigeon-toed.

In the past, swaddling was really common because parents thought it would keep their infant’s legs straight and that their baby wouldn’t be pigeon-toed.

But pediatricians insist that swaddling is bad because it can cause hip dysplasia. Mothers may swaddle babies with neurological disorders or in case of severe colic to calm them. If a baby falls asleep without any problems, you don’t have to “wrap” them.

8. A house where a baby lives should be as warm as possible.

No, it actually shouldn’t. Overheating is as dangerous as hypothermia. It’s recommended to keep the temperature in a baby’s room as close to 64ºF (18°C) as you can.

Scientists claim that this temperature contributes to good sleep for the infant.

7. To calm a baby, parents should dip a pacifier in something sweet.

Many grannies recommend dipping a pacifier in honey or peanut butter to calm a crying baby. But pediatricians are against these methods.

Sweet products are rather allergenic and you never know the way the body of an infant will react to these substances. Additionally, if a baby’s teeth have already started to cut, sugary things could give them cavities and honey can even cause botulism.

Don’t forget to listen to doctors’ recommendations if you don’t know whether it’s OK to give infants a pacifier or not.

6. There should always be a pillow and blanket in a baby’s bed.

In the past, moms used to create mini-replicas of their own beds. There was always a blanket and a tiny pillow.

But doctors remind us again and again: in the baby’s bed there shouldn’t be any pillows, blankets, or toys because they may cause asphyxia. If it’s too cool in a room, put warm pajamas on the baby, but don’t cover them with a blanket.

5. An infant should sleep on their tummy.

At first, this tip looks rather logical: parents lie their baby on their stomach so that the infant won’t choke. But doctors have found out that this is more dangerous than having them sleep on their back because:

  • this pose may cause airway obstruction;
  • if a baby sleeps on their tummy, there’s a lot of pressure on their abdomen and their thoracic diaphragm;
  • this pose may also cause overheating.

That’s why experts recommend that parents lie their children on their back and turn their head to one side.

4. A child should sleep in complete silence.

It’s hard for an adult to fall asleep if it’s noisy. But when it comes to infants, noise helps them sleep well. There’s just one nuance: it should be uniform and shouldn’t get louder.

Babies can sleep even if their mom is talking on the phone or if there is water running in the bathroom. Some parents turn white noise on to make infants fall asleep faster. Additionally, thanks to white noise, a baby won’t wake up if you decide to vacuum or wash the dishes.

3. Feeding a baby on a schedule.

Grandparents, and even some doctors, recommend following a certain schedule when feeding an infant. But in actuality, this method exhausts both the mother and her baby. Pediatricians think it’s great if you breastfeed your child on demand, and not according to a feeding schedule.

This approach won’t work with baby formulas as they have a certain feeding schedule you have to adhere to.

2. Add foods as soon as possible.

Young parents often hear that it’s recommended to give a 3-month-old baby a grated egg yolk and feed them with cereal when they are 4 months old. But doctors don’t think this is good advice.

According to the World Health Organization, complementary foods should be added when a baby is older than 6 months.

1. Animal milk is better than baby formula.

People often think that baby formulas contain many harmful substances and prefer animal milk. But doctors are sure that this is just another way to jeopardize an infant’s health. Remember that balanced baby milk formulas are just perfect, even for breastfed kids.

And animal milk is dangerous for several reasons:

  • It contains lots of minerals that a baby’s kidneys can’t deal with.
  • There’s no necessary amount of iron and that may cause iron-deficiency anemia. There’s also no necessary amount of vitamin C.
  • Proteins in animal milk may irritate the intestinal mucosa.
  • A baby may become allergic to animal milk.
  • Because of the unbalanced milk composition, a baby may gain weight.

That’s why it’s recommended to only give animal milk to children who are over the age of one.

Sometimes our grandparents make mistakes, but don’t forget that they possess huge amounts of useful information, invaluable experience, and support. Be patient and try to explain to them why they’re wrong. You may even invite your granny to visit a pediatrician with you and your child.

Remember that they want your baby to be happy and healthy and they want to know the best way to take care of them.

Do you usually follow your grandparents’ tips?

Please note: This article was updated in July 2022 to correct source material and factual inaccuracies.
Preview photo credit Depositphotos.com


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