Taking care of your toddler is never easy. With the advent of monsoon, it gets trickier with the barrage of illnesses that come along with the rains. The first step towards good health is personal hygiene. Keep your baby’s room clean, dry and well-ventilated and change bedsheets at regular intervals. Stored clothes tend to get fungal layers. So, make sure you soak the clothes in a cap-full of antiseptic liquid for an hour or two, before washing it off.
Dr Asmita Mahajan, neonatologist and consultant pediatrics, SL Raheja Fortis Hospital, Mumbai, gives us a few expert tips.
Fighting humidity and infections
Babies sweat a lot because of humidity in the atmosphere. Give the baby a bath/sponge bath at least once a day and check for fungal or skin infections around the neck, underarms, ears, feet and private areas. Also, damp clothes cause fungal rashes, so iron your babies clothes to dry them well. Keep a good supply of extra clothes and underclothes as they don’t dry so easily in this weather. Diapers can cause rashes. Avoid them if possible, allow the skin to breathe. If that is too cumbersome, change diapers more frequently.
In addition to this, the house and the surroundings should be kept free from accumulated water to avoid rats, mosquitoes and flies. If your child gets soaked in the rain, give him a hot bath or just dry his hair as early as possible. A hot drink or soup following that can help.
Your baby’s food should be prepared with hygienic potable water. Make sure that he/she drinks only boiled water and no juices or water from outside and absolutely no food from roadside vendors. Fresh, home-cooked food is the best. Avoid raw and unwashed food and never keep it out of the refrigerator for more than 2 hours. If you breastfeed, eat healthy. Breastmilk contains important antibodies that help to strengthen the baby’s immune system. If you are eating healthy, the baby will benefit largely.
Certain vaccines like the flu vaccine, pneumococcal vaccine, typhoid vaccine and hepatitis A vaccine can prove to be a wise investments against diseases. They can help boost the child’s defence system against these microbes. Also, keep a medical kit handy with basic fever and cold medicines at home and use as per doctor’s advice.