15 things NOT to do when visiting a newborn

You risk facing the wrath of a new mother if you don’t abide by these essential rules.

Babies- 15 things NOT to do when visiting a newborn-1

Don’t you just love newborns? They’re all soft and squishy, with their pinkish skin, tiny finger and toe nails, and tuft of soft, soft baby hair.

But don’t get ahead of yourself and rush to the hospital the minute you hear that your bestie or a relative has given birth ― there are things you need to know.

First, the new parents are going to be tired. We’re not talking about a post-workout, or end- of-a-long-day-at-work type of tiredness. We’re talking about full-blown fatigue with no idea when they’ll get to enjoy their next instalment of two hour-long uninterrupted sleep.

Second, the new mum is likely to be feeling frumpy, hormonal, and desperately in need of a warm shower. So, tread carefully and throw all your expectations out of the window, because only her opinion matters right now.

Boundaries for visits can be sensitive, so make sure to follow a certain etiquette. Here are some things you absolutely should not do. Don’t:

 1. Show up unexpectedly

Newborns need to be in their mothers’ arms and on the breast for a large part of the day ― which means that you might disrupt the new mum’s and baby’s day a fair bit when you show up unannounced.

In addition, the baby may have colic and is crying for hours, the new mum may be sore from her C-section wound, or she may even be suffering from postnatal depression. Do the new family a favour ― send them your good wishes and congratulations and say that you’d love to meet the new addition, then wait for an invitation.

2. Make a lot of noise

Visiting a new baby is not the same as attending a toddler’s third birthday party. Don’t ring the doorbell, or knock loudly ― you’ll never know if mummy has just put bubba down for a much-needed nap. Speak in hushed, gentle tones, and take your cue from the new parents as to how much noise or movement you can make.

Overstimulation is a real thing, especially when it comes to newborns. Get them too worked up, and the wee one may be crying for hours all night long, much to their parents’ chagrin.

Newborns are extremely vulnerable, so, the new mum’s maternal instinct to protect her baby is very strong.

3. Grab or kiss the baby

Newborns are extremely vulnerable, so, the new mum’s maternal instinct to protect her baby is very strong. Most new mums would be upset if you assume that you can just grab the baby for a cuddle. Even if you ask, they may feel torn but obligated to pass their baby to you unwillingly. So, wait to be offered ― if she wants you to hold the baby she will ask you.

Never, ever kiss a baby on the lips, or even the face. Babies are extremely susceptible to germs and diseases, which you may be carrying even when you don’t feel sick. If you can’t resist kissing and cuddling the baby when you visit, it’s better to just send a card. The parents will thank you.

4. Come over when you’re sick

Don’t risk it. What may feel like mild flu to you, may turn into bronchiolitis for a newborn, or something even more serious. You don’t want to be known as that friend who came over and made the baby sick.

5. Smoke, or arrive just after smoking

New mums are extremely sensitive to smells, and anything that can put their baby in danger! Anyone reeking of cigarette smoke will certainly set off alarm bells in her head. According to a study published in the journal Pediatrics, third-hand smoke, or the toxins that linger in carpets and other fabrics and materials days after the cigarette is put out, poses a health hazard for infants.

6. Hog the baby, especially if he or she is crying

You may have had three or even four kids, but it doesn’t mean that you know how to soothe your pal’s baby. Most mums start to feel extremely stressed and anxious listening to their baby cry in another person’s arms. Hand the little one back to his mum. He may need a feed, a change of diaper, or maybe, he just misses her smell.