WHAT MOST DADS DONT KNOW

IF YOU GO NO FURTHER THAN THIS PAGE, KNOW THAT …

The first 3 years are THE most important years of a person's life  because this is when the brain is being wired-up. What happens to (and around a baby) during this time will stay with them for the rest of their life. If you give your baby all the time and the loving attention they needs during the first 3 years, you are giving your child self-esteem and confidence that is a foundation for the rest of their life.



In a happy household your baby feels protected and safe … and will become a stronger, more secure child … and a well-adjusted adult.

Angry language, abuse or violence in the house disrupts the fragile wiring that is going on in your baby's brain. Frightening experiences - even if they don't happen directly to the baby - will affect your baby's developing brain.

Dad-time begins right at the start. Both you and your baby will miss out if you wait til she's old enough to go fishing or kick the ball or ride a bike. Doing things with your tiny baby is good for you and good for baby. And the more you do it, the better you'll get at it and the more you will enjoy your baby.  

SMOKING AROUND YOUR BABY …

              …  IS AS BAD AS BABY LIGHTING UP HERSELF!

Your baby's lungs are very sensitive. They are deeply affected by what they breathe. Babies who are exposed to secondhand or 'passive' smoke:

  • are more likely to have been born with a low birth weight
  • are more likely to die of cot death 
  • have less developed lungs
  • are twice as likely to get bronchitis or pneumonia
  • have a higher risk of developing asthma
  • are more likely to be hospitalised before they reach their 2nd birthday
  • will suffer more from colds, coughs and sore throats and take longer to recover from being sick
  • are more likely to suffer ear infections, fluid in the ears, 'glue ear'
  • will stay home from school more often due to illness

This isn’t just about your partner. It's about you and also about the people who come into your home.

It is up to you and your partner whether your baby is exposed to cigarette smoke … or other drugs.

A "SMALL BABY" DOES NOT MEAN AN EASIER BIRTH!

When some women hear that she will have a 'small baby' if she smokes or drinks while pregnant - they might think this means an easier birth. These women have got it wrong! The labour will probably last longer be more complicated.

A 'small baby' often means the baby is delicate and weak and may need to stay in an incubator just to survive. 

A low birth weight can cause health problems for the baby's whole life. Adults who were 'small babies' are more likely to suffer from a stroke, have high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes.

Alcohol and or smoking do not mix with pregnancy. Encourage your partner to quit these things, at least while she is pregnant and while the baby is young. Quitting these things yourself to support your partner to quit, too.

 

COT DEATH

STAYIN ALIVE, STAYIN ALIVE

A lot of parents find themselves freaked-out that their baby may just die in his sleep. Cot Death – or what is now referred to as Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy (SUDI) is when a baby can’t arouse herself – and just stops breathing.

But parents have a lot of control over the things that contribute towards cot death.

Your baby is more vulnerable to cot death if he is under 6 months old and…

  • his mother smoked during pregnancy
  • there is smoke anywhere where the baby is, even sometimes
  • he was born more than 3 weeks early
  • he was small (less than 2.5kg or 5lb7oz) at birth
  • you, his mother or others around are drinking or taking other drugs
  • he is bottle fed
  • he is unwell

      The more of these things happening around your baby, the greater the risk.

WHAT A DAD CAN DO TO INSURE A HEALTHY BABY?

1) Quit smoking and support your partner to do the same

2) Be sober and unaffected by alcohol or other recreational drugs

3) When putting your baby to down to sleep, handle her gently, and …

  • see that she is on her back and tucked-up in a way that keeps her that way and unable to turn over.
  • see that her face is clear and there are no pillows or other soft things in her bed that could obstruct her breathing
  • see that there is NO SMOKE in the air
  • remain aware of your baby … sleep within hearing distance

 

contact@greatfathers.org.nz

Three things
Your baby's brain
Crikey! Your own baby
Why babies cry
The Zombie Zone
Sex, Pregnancy and the Home Invasion
Your own Dad
Breastfeeding
Depression