Almost everything changes once you become a parent. Your world starts to revolve around your little bundle of joy, and along with all the love and happiness, you also start experiencing the emotion of worry. Worry about their weight gain, worry about what they should be wearing, even the worry about holding a baby who is so tiny and delicate!
If all proper precautions are taken, holding even a tiny baby is easy to ensure a posture and a hold that suits a baby.
Things to do before getting ready to pick a newborn up in your arms
While carrying a baby in your arms might not be difficult, some prerequisites need to be considered.
- Wash Your Hands – Babies are more susceptible to catching infections as compared to elders. And we can be carriers of those infections. Thus, it is important to properly wash and sanitize your hands before holding a newborn baby.
- Make Yourself Comfortable – Before you pick up the baby, you must be seated in a comfortable position yourself. This will also help you in gaining some confidence before holding that little bundle of you.
- Offer Support - Babies are not able to hold their necks till a few weeks. Therefore, newborn baby neck care is extremely important, especially while the baby is picked up and in arms or being held. Thus, offering proper support while holding them is also something you will need to be mindful of.
Types of hold
Here is a quick list of some safe newborn holding positions to ensure the proper handling of a newborn baby.
The Shoulder Hold– A natural way of holding a newborn baby is by putting the baby on shoulder while sleeping or not wiggling too much. Lean in and gently pick the baby up by placing your palm under their neck and back. Place their head on your shoulder, still keeping the palms under their neck and back for support, and stand upright.
The Cradle Hold– Another most natural and simple hold, The Cradle Hold is when you place the baby's head on your arm and other arm wrapped under them to give them a hug kind hold using both arms. In this position, the head of the baby is placed securely over the arm. For beginners and newborns, this is one of the
The Belly Hold– The position most suitable for babies suffering from colic and gas. Place the baby's belly on your palm to pick the baby up for a while. This position works only if the baby is young and does not wiggle much. Also, if you have short arms, your baby might not be very comfortable in this position.
The Lap Hold– For breastfeeding mothers, or new moms who are still recovering, this position works the best as you need to be seated to hold the baby in a lap hold. Put the head of the baby on your knee while you are sitting with your legs folded. The rest of the body comfortably lies on your lap. If your baby is still not holding its neck upright, you can support the neck with your palm. This position is also very secure if you need to give medication or drops to the baby and need both hands free for a few seconds. This position is also known as football hold, as you are holding the neck of the baby like you would hold a football, and your lap supports the rest of the body
The Hip Hold– This position works only after the baby has gained neck control. When the baby gains control over their neck, it becomes easier to pick them up and hold them without too much worry about holding the baby. Placing the baby's hips on the arm and holding them with the arm while placing the palm behind their back is what hip hold looks like. This imitates a proper chair sitting position for them.
Face to Face Hold– A perfect hold for some playful interaction with the child; in this position, your baby is face to face with you. Support your baby's neck and back with one hand while placing the palm of the other hand under their bum.
The Chair hold– When your baby starts to grow, they become more curious about the world and surroundings. A chair hold gives them a chance to see what's happening around them. Make them sit on one arm in front of your chest, with their back towards you, and wrap the other arm securely around them. Let them enjoy having a look at the world!
While how you hold your baby depends a lot on the situation and the need, what becomes your predominant style of holding them will be decided and dependent on what makes both of you the most comfortable.