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baby will fill up on water and skimp on milk, which is her sole source of nutrition in the first few months. Breastfed babies do not need extra water,” explains Pippa. Trust your gut instinct though and give your baby some cooled boiled water (a teaspoon or so) if it is really hot.
Once your baby starts solids, you can also give her some water to drink in a sippy cup. “Black rooibos tea without sugar is also safe to introduce when you start solids. Avoid regular Ceylon tea as it contains caffeine,” says Pippa.
When it comes to juice, it’s a definite no-no before six months. If you have to give your baby juice, be sure to use pure fruit juice and to dilute it heavily with water (one part juice to three parts water). “Try to avoid it for as long as possible due to the high levels of sugar,” says Pippa. And never send your baby to bed with a juice or milk bottle, as this will cause tooth decay. Water is the safest way to go. food allergy, which means that mothers are given conflicting advice about when complementary feeding should start. “Most allergy and gastrointestinal opinion leaders suggest that complementary feeding may occur from four months of age onwards, while the World Health Organisation recommends that complementary feeding should only start after six months,” says Kath. Besides the age factor, there are other signs to look out for that will tell you your baby is ready to start eating solids. Pippa advises that the following are signs that baby is ready to start eating solids:
Your baby is more than 17 (full) weeks old.
She’s doubled weight (at least).
Is able to sit supported and hold head steady by herself.
Shows an interest in your food and eating.
Wakes at night when she was previously sleeping through.
Seems hungry despite her milk intake.
Remember that each mom and baby is unique, so always discuss your situation and your baby’s needs with your healthcare professional before making a decision. ensure that the correct dose is given. Paracetamol is the safest form of pain medication to give to a baby (under six months) for pain and fever.
From six months onwards, you can give your baby paediatric ibuprofen or paracetamol liquid or suppositories. Paracetamol and ibuprofen can be administered on the same day (alternating) every eight hours, with not more than three doses per day and not more than three days continuously.
Q SHOULD MY BABY BE WEARING SUNSCREEN?
ANSWER Dermatologists strongly recommend that babies and children up to the age of three years not be exposed to direct sunlight, as the skin’s own protection system is not fully developed yet. The Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA) warns parents that just one blistering sunburn in childhood more than doubles a person’s chances of developing melanoma later in life. Because of this we need to be extra vigilant when it comes to protecting our children from sun damage.
However, if you are going to be in the sun with a very tiny baby for a very short period, apply a baby-specific hypoallergenic SPF all over her. Also dress her in long sleeves and a hat.
You can use childrenspecific SPF formulations to protect your baby against reflected sunlight from six months. Always test the sunscreen on a small area of your baby’s skin to check for any skin reactions. YB