Baby health and illnesses are important to take care of because if you don’t, you could be putting your child at risk of having long-term problems or even putting them in the hospital. If you’re pregnant or planning on getting pregnant, it’s important to follow these tips to prevent baby illnesses to ensure your child will have the best possible start in life.

Use a humidifier

Humidifiers can help keep baby’s nasal passages clear, preventing him from developing congestion or breathing through his mouth. This reduces coughing, nosebleeds and potential ear infections.

Take your baby outside in cold weather

One way to help protect your baby from illness is by taking him or her outside for fresh air during cold weather. Baby Health and Illnesses babies are usually vulnerable because their immune systems haven’t fully developed yet. To start building immunity and a strong immune system, expose your baby to various elements such as dust, mild weather changes and sunlight.

Give your baby probiotics

While breast milk is better than formula for many reasons, formula does contain a significant amount of probiotics—but it doesn’t contain all of them. A study published in Actualites Pharmaceutiques found that there are three probiotic strains not present in commercial formulas: Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, Bifidobacterium animalis ssp. lactis Bi-07 and Bifidobacterium breve M-16V.

Stock up on vitamin C rich foods

Vitamin C helps boost your immune system, so try stocking up on foods that are rich in it. Some good sources of vitamin C include bell peppers, cauliflower, broccoli, lemons and limes. Make sure to vary your child’s diet as much as possible by introducing lots of different fruits and vegetables.

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Breastfeed your baby

Breastfeeding offers a variety of benefits to both mother and baby. Breast milk can be easier for your child’s digestive system than formula and contains antibodies that help build your baby’s immune system. It also has tons of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that you just can’t find in any other food. With those advantages, it should come as no surprise that breastfeeding is linked with lower risk of infections and allergies later in life.

Wash your hands before holding the baby

As parents, we’re typically very careful about what goes into our babies’ mouths. But did you know that in addition to keeping food and water away from your baby, there are plenty of other things you can do right now that can have a long-term impact on your baby’s health? Washing your hands frequently and properly—and encouraging everyone else who comes into contact with your baby to do so as well—is one of them.

Keep your baby away from cigarette smoke

Secondhand smoke can cause as many health problems for babies as it does for adults. So, if you’re a smoker, make sure your baby isn’t exposed to it. This will help protect your little one from both illness and long-term health risks later in life. Talk with your doctor about what’s best for you and your baby.

Protect your baby from cold drafts

It’s not just babies who are susceptible to colds and other illnesses. You can easily be taken down by a flu or virus if you spend too much time in freezing conditions. It may seem obvious, but it’s something that many parents overlook: make sure your baby isn’t exposed to cold drafts while they sleep.

Discuss vaccinations with your doctor

When it comes to baby health and illnesses, prevention is key. Vaccinations are a great way to keep your child safe from common and potentially dangerous diseases like measles, chicken pox, influenza, whooping cough, hepatitis B, polio and more. Make sure you talk with your doctor about which vaccinations are best for your baby as well as any potential side effects.

Have your baby checked by doctor regularly

The best thing parents can do for their children’s health is to have them regularly checked by a pediatrician or other doctor. It’s vital that you take any warnings seriously and get your baby treatment as soon as possible. Most minor illnesses can be prevented with routine checkups, so make sure your baby has regular appointments with a pediatrician. If you are concerned about your child’s health, contact a medical professional right away.

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