Parents’ best questions and answers
Can’t find what you’re looking for? If all else fails, use our default answer: “Relax, breathe, count to 10. You’re doing great.”
Choosing a baby name can be tough: Do you go traditional or unconventional? Strongly gendered or gender neutral? Family name or no? Middle name or no? Besides a quick online search (just to make sure the proposed full name doesn’t already belong to say, an infamous historical figure), the only true test of any name is how it makes you feel. Say it out loud, write it down, drop it in conversation with your partner…the right name will feel good on your tongue and in your heart. It’s also okay to wait until you meet your baby to decide!
Organizing your registry can be really fun. But it can be overwhelming, too. If your store has a checklist, you can start with big-ticket items like furniture (crib, changing table, rocker) and gear (car seat, stroller, playard). If you’re unsure which brands to pick,you’re your other mum friends for recommendations, look up online reviews, and head to stores with floor samples so you can test different models. For instance, you may find the stroller you had your eye on is too heavy for everyday use or won’t fold enough fit in the car. Finally, don’t forget to include everyday essentials, such as diapers and wipes, which can add up over time. Veteran mum friends will happily gift you with these practical daily necessities.
Baby wipes can certainly be safe for a newborn—but it’s important to choose the right ones. Some wipes contain chemicals, perfume, parabens, and dyes that may not be safe for newborn skin. Parabens, for instance, can mimic hormones and may disrupt development. Perfume, often simply labelled “fragrance,” can irritate sensitive skin. Your best bet: Look for eco-friendly options like Bambo Nature Wet Wipes that have a brief ingredient list (the shorter the better) and ingredients with vegetable origins (if you’re not sure, look up the company’s website for more detailed explanations of its products).
If you have the time and energy to childproof your home before baby arrives, go for it. But realistically speaking, most parents don’t get around to it until just before their little one goes mobile. What to do: Get on your hands and knees so you can see each room from your baby’s point of view, and remove or secure any hazards they can reach. That includes hanging tablecloths, electrical cords, cords from drapes and blinds, uncovered outlets, unlocked cabinets and drawers, and houseplants.
Take three deep breaths – you’re fine! All your baby really needs once he or she arrives is a lot of love. Everything else can be bought, organized, or delegated afterwards if necessary. If you have room in your freezer, you can cook double portions and freeze for later, and most super markets now have high-quality frozen vegetables for easy, healthy meals. Speaking of which, the most important task to complete before your due date is lining up help for the first few weeks after baby’s born. That way, even if you don’t check off everything on your list, you can rely on friends and family to help with cooking, cleaning, and shopping—while you bond with your baby.
Preventing the dreaded blowout is all about finding the right size diaper. Ones that are too tight or too loose can lead to unwanted messes. Sizing charts are based on weight, so it helps to know exactly how much your child weighs. (If you’re unsure, step on a scale while holding your baby and then solo; the difference is your child’s weight.) Some clues to incorrect sizing: blowouts from the back and fasteners that dig into baby’s sides are signs of a too-small diaper; blowouts from the sides and general sagginess are signs of a too-big diaper.
Absolutely. Reliable eco-friendly diapers like Bambo Nature Diapers won’t sacrifice strength for safety. That means you can count on maximum protection from leakages. Performance-boosting features include a super absorbent triple layer core, strategic barriers, and flexible side panels that accommodate even the most active baby. Bambo Nature diapers combine effectiveness with materials free of harmful chemicals, perfume, and allergens. The…uh, bottom line: Our safe, eco-friendly disposable diapers get the job done—naturally.
There is a dizzying array of diaper options! Most traditional disposable diapers are made with chemicals that can be harmful and irritating to your baby. Eco-friendly disposable diapers like Bambo Nature Diapers contain no dangerous ingredients, perfume, or known allergens. (Bonus: Diapers made with safe ingredients tend to be sustainably sourced, so you’re doing the planet a favour, too.) And of course, the diapers should also work. Bambo Nature uses super absorbent materials and flexible leg openings for leakage-proof performance.
They sure are—as long as you choose wisely. A traditional disposable diaper may contain chemical ingredients that can be harmful and irritating to your baby. That’s why it’s so important to look for a different kind of diaper: one that’s free of dangerous chemicals, perfume, and all known allergens. Bambo Nature Diapers use safe, skin-friendly ingredients—so you can feel good that you’re ensuring the health and safety of your baby. Oh, and our natural materials are sustainably sourced, so you’re helping the planet, too. Win-win.
Good thinking. Your baby will thank you! Eco-friendly companies like Bambo Nature use natural and sustainably sourced ingredients to help ensure the health and safety of your child and of the planet she’ll inherit. Read labels carefully and take a close look at brand websites to make sure products don’t include harmful chemicals, perfume, dyes, or known allergens. Another promising sign: certifications from trusted ecological and health organizations around the world. These can signify a company’s commitment to quality natural ingredients.
It’s always best to check with your doctor, but if you were active before pregnancy, you’ll likely get the ok to continue your workouts—which can help both you and baby. Kegel exercises will make a world of difference both before, during and after pregnancy. Ask your doctor if you’re not sure what to do – and remember, being able to relax your pelvic muscles is as important as strengthening them. A few caveats: Avoid contact sports and activities involving balance (biking, skiing); don’t perform exercises while lying on your back after the first trimester (the weight of your growing uterus can reduce blood flow); and stop immediately if you feel dizzy or nauseous. If you suddenly feel uncomfortable doing your usual, favorite sports, it’s completely natural. Be open to trying new forms of exercise for a while. As your body recovers after giving birth, you will most likely feel like going back to your normal schedule.
Kudos for thinking ahead. It’s smart to pack a bag about a month before your due date with the following: a robe, nightgown, slippers, and underwear (in case you want to ditch the hospital-issued gown, socks, and undies), going-home outfits for baby and you (don’t forget a maternity bra for your newly tender breasts, and depending on how long you stay, you may still need baggy/maternity clothes to wear for some time after giving birth - tight clothes are not your friend), an extra bag (to tote free hospital samples, plus gifts from visitors), and any important paperwork. Also: Don’t forget to install a car seat.
Think of a soon-to-be mama bird fluttering here and there, picking up twigs and leaves, readying her nest for her hatchlings. “Nesting” refers to similar activities done by expectant (human) moms before the baby arrives: buying newborn supplies, organizing the nursery, and reading up on infant care. As your due date approaches, you’re probably already doing a lot of these things, and even if you don’t get everything 100% ready, trust that you and your baby will still be fine, and get help from family, friends, and neighbors for the rest.
It’s definitely not easy carrying all that extra weight. Your back may be aching because your belly is pulling your spine out of alignment, squeezing your internal organs and pressing on veins and arteries. For relief, apply a heating pad or a cold pack to your lower back, or alternate between the two. A gentle massage can also help. At night, if sleep is fleeting, try a maternity pillow or strategic placement of several regular pillows (don’t forget to put one between your knees). Some women also find it more comfortable to sleep in a recliner towards the end of their pregnancies. Gentle stretching and relaxation can relieve some aches. Listen to your body, and talk to your doctor to make sure you do what’s right for you.
You’ll definitely want to ask your pediatrician for personalized advice. But generally speaking, experts recommend breastfeeding for at least four to six months, which may help protect against some allergies and eczema. If nursing isn’t possible, a hypoallergenic formula may help protect a baby at high risk for allergies. If your family history includes food allergies, ask your doctor about when to introduce those foods. Finally, choose skin care products like Bambo Nature that are certified safe and don’t contain harmful chemicals, perfume or color—this can help lower the risk of irritation to baby’s sensitive skin.
There’s no need to bathe your baby every day. Newborns don’t get too dirty (until they start moving around, that is), and frequent bathing can dry out infant skin. A bath every few days is fine, as long as you clean certain areas more often. Wipe your baby’s diaper area at each change. Use a washcloth to rinse their face (especially around the mouth), neck, and hands before bedtime. When you do bathe your newborn, use a mild cleanser like Bambo Nature Hair & Body Wash, which is developed especially for babies’ sensitive skin and contains no perfume or color.
Although it’s distressing to hear, crying is normal because it’s the only way your newborn can communicate. It may take some trial and error to figure out what your baby is trying to tell you. Chances are, they’re saying “Feed me,” “Hold me,” “Change me,” or “Let me nap!” But if they are crying uncontrollably and nothing helps, it may be colic, which is usually diagnosed if crying persists for at least three hours a day, three days a week, for three weeks or more. No one knows what causes it, and it gradually disappears at three to four months old. Talk to your pediatrician if you’re concerned.
Dry skin and eczema can be tough to tell apart, but there are some tell-tale signs. Dry skin is simply that: dry or even cracked skin that occurs mostly in winter. Eczema is an immune reaction to various triggers and include dryness, heat and sweat, and chemicals in lotions and soaps. Symptoms include patchy red, thick, itchy, and tender skin. In babies, eczema often appears on the face and scalp or in the folds of elbows and knees, and it runs in families with a history of allergies or asthma. To prevent eczema flare-ups, moisturize regularly, especially after bath time, and use skin-friendly products like Bambo Nature, which are eco-friendly and contain no perfume or color. See your pediatrician for more treatment options.
Give your little one’s skin a treat by adding baby oil into the bath water or gently rubbing it onto their skin post-bath. Or give your baby a relaxing massage. They’ll love the close physical contact with you, and a little baby oil can smooth the way. It’s a great bonding ritual that’s calming for both of you. For an oil that’s baby-safe and skin-friendly, try Bambo Nature Bath Oil. It’s made with natural and sustainably sourced ingredients that are free of perfume and color. Its gentle, nourishing effect is great for baby’s skin.
Cradle cap is a common condition that leads to oily, yellow, scaly patches on your newborn’s scalp. It’s not contagious, harmful to your baby, or a sign of bad hygiene. No one knows for sure what causes it, but hormonal changes during pregnancy may lead to a build-up of oil on the scalp. Cradle cap usually clears up on its own within a few months, but if you want to remove the scales, try the following: Gently rub baby’s scalp with a little baby oil to help loosen the scales. (Bambo Nature Bath Oil is a mild, moisturizing formula free of perfume and color) Wait a few minutes, then use a soft-bristled brush to remove the scales. Wash baby’s hair as usual, using a mild shampoo like our Hair & Body Wash. To prevent more scale build-up, wash baby’s hair every few days.
Your baby would probably rather be wrapped in a warm blanket or in your arms than exposed to the cold air. To make diaper changes a little more enjoyable, distraction is key. Try the following: Put up a mobile over the changing table; have a small toy ready to play with during changes; make funny faces or sing a special song while you’re changing; or tape some photos of family members on the wall near baby’s head.
No parent wants to see angry red skin during a diaper change. But diaper rash is common because excessive moisture in the area can lead to irritation. To heal the skin, try the following steps at every change: Use gentle wipes, like Bambo Nature Wet Wipes, and gently pat dry or let air dry completely. Then apply a thick layer of cream to create a protective barrier. Bambo Nature Body Soothing Cream is dermatologically tested and made from natural and organic ingredients that help shield skin from excessive moisture. Lastly, don’t put the new diaper on too tightly. If the rash doesn’t get better in a few days, or if you see blisters or sores, call your pediatrician.
The proof is in the diapers. If your baby wets six or more diapers a day, they’re probably getting enough to eat. Weight gain is another good sign. In the first week, your baby may lose several ounces of weight, but should rebound to birth weight by the end of the second week and gain steadily after that. A well-fed baby will also appear satisfied for a few hours after a feeding. If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll want to nurse at least eight to 12 times every 24 hours. If you’re formula feeding, most babies drink about four ounces of formula per feeding by the end of the first month. Ask your pediatrician if you are concerned about your baby’s feeding routines.
Newborns are notoriously gassy—not surprising since they feed around the clock. It helps to burp your baby after every two to three ounces (if you are bottle-feeding), or after switching breasts (if you are breast-feeding). There are two common burping positions: over the shoulder (hold baby upright, facing behind you) and on your lap (sit baby down, leaning forward, and use one of your hands to steady the head). Pat your baby’s back gently for a minute. You can also try massaging their belly (use gentle clockwise motions) or bicycling the legs to move the gas along.
It’s common for newborns to develop peeling skin for a while as they adjust to the outside world. This won’t bother your baby, but if you want to improve their skin’s appearance, it’s safe to apply lotion as soon as you bring baby home. Just be sure to choose a gentle formula, such as Bambo Nature Body Lotion, which uses skin-friendly ingredients. It’s dermatologically tested and uses pure, natural, and organic ingredients—no perfume or color. Bambo Nature Body Lotion is also certified as eco-friendly, so it’s just as safe for the planet as it is for your baby.
Diaper duty isn’t as terrible as you think. Really. A few things to keep in mind: Before you start, gather all your supplies so you don’t leave baby unattended on the changing table. When you’re cleaning a baby girl’s diaper area, always wipe from front to back so you don’t spread bacteria. (And don’t forget to clean between those chubby thigh folds.) Use diaper cream at each change to help prevent diaper rash. Most importantly, know that practice makes perfect. Since your baby will go through up to 10 diapers a day (!), you’ll get the hang of it in no time.
A lot! Your newborn can sleep up to 17 hours a day. They need all those zzz’s to support rapid growth and development. But sleep doesn’t happen all at once. Since your baby’s stomach is so tiny (about the size of her little fist), frequent feedings are inevitable the first few months. That’s why they wake several times in the middle of the night. Your baby will also take three to four naps during the day. By the time she’s four to 12 months old, your baby may be sleeping 12 to 16 hours total, including two to three naps.
To avoid clutter chaos, it helps to have a place for everything. Buy baskets for small things, like socks and bibs, and place them in drawers or on shelves. For clothes, maximize space with a double closet rod and hang pairs of matching tops and bottoms together so you can grab entire outfits at once. And take advantage of bottle and diaper organizers. But designating a spot for everything is only half the battle. To truly win the war against clutter, you’ll want to spend 10 minutes daily putting stuff back where it belongs—this will help prevent the slide towards disaster.
Have fun! After being cooped up at home, an outing can be enjoyable for both of you. Of course, you’ll want to be prepared. Start small, like a trip to a nearby park or shop (outside of rush-hour – there’s no need to make it harder on yourself than you have to). Pack diapers and wipes, a change of baby clothes, an extra shirt for you (just in case!), a bottle and formula (if you formula feed), and plastic bags (for dirty diapers and clothes). If you’re heading to a café or restaurant, look for ample room for strollers. The only safety caveat: For the first six weeks, limit close contact with strangers (so your baby’s not exposed to anyone who might be sick). And if you’re meeting friends, ask them to kindly wash their hands before holding baby.
Hang in there! Newborns wake up every few hours because they have tiny stomachs and need frequent small feedings. But by the time they’re 3 to 6 months old, many babies can sleep for up to 8 hours at night. Some helpful tips: Swaddle your baby (it recreates the confinement of the snug womb); establish a bedtime routine (something as simple as bath-feeding-story can help signal that it’s time to sleep); and use a super absorbent diaper, like Bambo Nature’s diaper, to prevent overnight leakages that can wake them up.
That’s a tough one to answer, because every mom is different. Some people seem to bounce back to their pre-baby bodies right away (we’re looking at you, celebrities). But in real life, without the help of round-the-clock nannies, personal trainers, and chefs, it’s not so easy. Your belly remains big after birth, because it takes six to eight weeks for your uterus to return to normal size. Once your body’s ready for exercise, moves that strengthen the core can help. The “pooch” can be stubborn and stick around for months, but keep in mind that it took nine months to gain the weight, so it’s perfectly reasonable to take that long—or even longer—to lose it. After all, you’ve got a baby to care for!
Most sizing charts rely on weight, but since no two babies are alike, the process can definitely be tricky. What to do? Look for diapers that are intentionally designed to overlap on weight, like the ones from Bambo Nature. We’ve been perfecting our diapers for over 40 years, using feedback from hundreds of parents. If your baby falls between two sizes, consider the smaller size if he’s long and lean, and the larger size if he’s short and stout.
The trick to keeping your baby’s skin so cuddly soft is to use products that are certified skin-safe. Look for ingredients that are lab-tested to be sensitive to fragile newborn skin. At Bambo Nature, we’re committed to developing effective skin care products with your little one’s health and safety in mind. That means our hair & body wash, bath oil, soothing cream and body lotion are free of perfume and color.
For something so natural, breastfeeding doesn’t always come naturally, that’s for sure. If you’re having a tough time getting the proper latch or finding comfortable positions, a lactation consultant can be a huge help. Ask your pediatrician or other mum friends for a recommendation. To boost milk supply, make sure you’re well hydrated, switch breasts at each feeding, and try breast massage. Some mums also swear by eating oatmeal. If you’re pumping, looking at a photo of your baby or listening to a recording of her voice can encourage the let-down reflex.
Most kids switch between 18 months and three years, and it’s usually out of necessity. Your child may start climbing out of the crib (so it becomes a safety hazard to leave them in there), or another baby is due soon (so you need the crib for a younger sibling). When you do make the move, continue your usual bedtime routine and explain that your child should stay in bed until you come for them, or they have to use the bathroom (if it’s potty training time). Calmly lead your child back to bed if they leave, and repeat as necessary until the novelty of getting up fades. Be patient! Keep them safe in the meantime by removing any hazards in the room and installing a safety gate at the door and at the top of the stairs, if you have any in your house.
Follow your child’s lead. It’s potty time when your child exhibits these signs of readiness: They show an interest in the bathroom, gets fussy during diaper changes, pulls at or otherwise signals a dirty diaper, and starts to stay dry for longer periods of time. If your child seems ready, you can transition from diapers to training pants before making the big switch to regular underwear. Bambo Nature Training Pants simplify potty training with a flexible, thin, and easy-to-pull-up-and-down design. Plus they’re skin-friendly and ultra-absorbent.
Most mums admit it’s not easy, especially at first. It helps to settle into a routine—and then accept the inevitable disruptions to said routine. Other tips: Keep both hands free by carrying baby in a front pack or sling, or put baby in a swing, rocker, or playpen. If possible, set up a toddler-proofed room where your older child can play alone safely. Or set aside a box of engrossing toys that they only play with when you need them occupied as you care for baby. (There’s no shame in DVDs or iPad videos during the short time this lasts!) Most importantly, lower the pressure on yourself. Ask for help, skip the vacuuming, order pizza, and revel in the chaos—and the sweet little moments—that make up life with two young children.
It’s not easy sharing the spotlight after being an only child. Smooth the transition by setting aside one-on-one time for her. Friends who visit your newborn can also spend time with your older child (and bring a gift for her too) so she doesn’t feel left out. If she regresses (acts like a baby, wants a bottle, has potty accidents), reassure her that she’s still loved. Rather than punish her for acting out, ask her how she’s feeling—and acknowledge those feelings. Give her the attention she’s seeking, and praise her when she acts more grown-up. You might even play up her big sister status and give her special jobs like grabbing clean diapers for the baby. Remind her of the fun things she can do that baby can’t enjoy yet, such as going to pre-school or playing in the park.
Babies don’t socialize the way older kids do, but many moms schedule play dates anyway because they enjoy the interaction with other parents. Toddlers typically engage in “parallel play,” which means they play near each other—but separately. Truly meaningful interactions can start at two years old, so that’s a good time for play dates. Keep it small and short: one or two other kids, for 60 to 90 minutes. Your child may still act selfishly, refuse to share, and play on his own. That’s totally normal! But hanging out with other children helps lay the foundation for important skills like co-operation and manners. Leave the kids alone so they can learn how to play with each other, but stay close so you can step in if someone gets upset.
First things first: Make sure your child is ready. Once you’ve determined your child can handle potty training, it helps to offer praise and a small reward (like a sticker) for each successful trip to the potty. Avoid punishing or shaming your child for accidents. If accidents keep happening, try postponing potty training for a few more weeks, or ask your pediatrician. In about 10% of children up to 7 years old, the bladder develops slowly and may need treatment. Give gentle but constant reminders to go to the potty after a meal or before car trips and bedtime. One super helper: Bambo Nature Training Pants, which are easy for little ones to pull up and down but are also absorbent enough to hold 31 ounces of moisture in a 24-hour period—just in case!
Consistency is key. Continue each child’s bedtime routine as before—perhaps bath, lullaby, and feeding for baby, and a bath, book, and goodnight cuddle for the older sibling. Stagger their bedtimes, with baby going to sleep first so your older child has a little extra time with you. Explain to your older child that you may be coming in and out of the room to feed the baby, but that they can stay in bed. (Young children are heavy sleepers, so it takes a lot to wake them up.) For insurance, use a white noise machine so sudden sounds from either child don’t bother the other. After a period of adjustment, each child should be able to tune out the other’s regular night-time noises. And with time, you’ll find that sharing a room can bring the two closer together.
Look for signs that your child’s ready for solids. Typically, children will start showing interest in “real” food at four to six months old and be able to sit up with some help, hold their own head steady, and swallow food from a spoon. Stick to thin purees at first, and gradually build up to thicker ones. Infant cereal used to be the standard first food, but mashed fruits and veggies like banana, avocado, and sweet potato are also great starters. Introduce one food at a time, and wait a few days in between so you can watch for any allergic reactions. And if your child turns up their nose at a certain food, try again another day—it can take up to 10 tries before they’ll try something new!
Training pants are a lifesaver when your child starts potty training. They’re disposable underwear that can be pulled up and down just like regular underpants but can also absorb moisture in case of accidents. They ease the transition from diapers to big-boy or big-girl underwear. For peace of mind, try Bambo Nature Training Pants, which are eco-and skin-friendly and free of harmful chemicals and known allergens. They can also hold up to 31 ounces of moisture within a 24-hour period—for worry-free protection against those inevitable accidents!