As you know by now, no two babies are the same. Ask any mom with kids and she’ll be the first to admit. Sleeping habits, food preferences and overall temperament are a complete toss up.
Sure, baby experts will help you out with tips and tricks to be prepared. These guides will lay out common and even not so common scenarios to give you a proper heads up.
But once your baby arrives, get ready for a crash course in all their favorite things. You’ll figure out their quirks and preferences and what makes them angry. Somewhere along the line you may forget a few of the random basics.
Why? Because though fierce, babies are dependent on us. So we might forget in the day to day that they are incredible fast learners.
Don’t fret! Here are 3 random baby facts that might leave you scratching your head. But will leave you knowing a little more about the truth about babies. With these baby myths debunked, you’re sure to be the playground baby expert in no time.
Night Lights Aren’t Helpful
Did you happen to add that beautiful porcelain rainbow night light to your baby registry? The one so beautiful, it was absolutely calling your name? Turns out you can hold off on plugging it in.
From day one your baby’s good sleep habits hinge on a completely pitch black room.
But won’t the baby get scared?
No! In fact your baby has no clue what’s going on. Lights off means head down and eyes closed, adios until morning.
Studies show that the more time in the dark your baby has, the more melatonin they produce. The more melatonin they produce, the longer they sleep soundly¹. That means for a happy baby, which means for a very happy mommy.
To break it down in even more technical terms, darkness helps your baby’s pineal gland produce more of that precious melatonin. The melatonin is that key ingredient that helps your baby sleep longer.
And since we know that sleep is such an important part of brain development, this is literally a game changer.
This is especially important to keep in mind while your munchkin is accomplishing new daily goals. If those baby walking shoes are getting a lot of mileage during the day, be extra diligent about keeping the lights off policy. Having a solid bedtime routine to set them up for success will make all the difference. You’re morning self will thank you!
Having a night light on not only prevents the pineal gland from working its magic but also might signal to the baby that it's time to get up and party. This will throw things out of whack, making for a very sad party.
So feel free to black out those curtains, keep the door closed and cover any little lights that could potentially stimulate a curious baby’s brain at 2am.
That night light, while super cute and on theme with the nursery, can wait until about age two.
Kids Toothpaste Is Optional
Something else that might shock parents of teething tots? No need for the kid friendly, fluoride free toothpaste.
Those brightly colored, super cute toothpaste/toothbrush sets are fun, but not exactly a must.
Isn't regular toothpaste dangerous for babies? Do babies need fluoride?
Well, since newbie teeth brushers aren't familiar with how the routine goes, this remains a family event long into toddlerhood². Supervising your child helps develop healthy habits and prevent them from taking a big gulp of toothpaste.
When it’s time to start brushing those pearly whites, consider jumping to regular toothpaste after consulting with your child’s dentist. Typically, tiny brushers can brush twice daily using a very small amount of toothpaste. The size of a grain of rice, to be exact.
This tiny amount is enough to strengthen teeth but not enough to cause harm if swallowed. Your pediatrician might also recommend drinking water that has fluoride in it for the same reason.
Following these tips could prevent cavities in little ones, so discuss with your pediatrician and child’s dentist for best practices!
You Can Train Your Baby to Expand Their Palette
Did you know that babies can learn to love spicy and savory foods?
Ok, this one is maybe a bit controversial. And, yes, there are definitely good and bad ways to approach this. But sometimes there's these myths about child development that paint babies to be fragile. In reality they are strong and adventurous!
Are you someone who loves a wide range of flavors and spiciness levels? Or maybe you’re nervous your child will cling to ketchup and only ketchup….forever.
Good news — introducing a variety of foods as soon as solids are part of mealtime can help create a non picky eater. And though some pickiness might be your child’s personal preference (or what they ate up while in the womb!), there is hope.
Studies show that getting a happy eater means eliminating sugar while offering many different flavors often³.
For a more successful result, make sure you do a bit of homework and work to introduce new foods like you would any other. If texture is an issue and preventing your little one from trying, consider new recipes that make these experiences more enjoyable.
A few tips to consider: Have milk as a palette cleanser if trying something new or a little on the spicier side. Always be sure to test it out first too!
With the right approach you could expand your child’s palette and sidestep those early years that are too often full of chicken nuggets.