It is indeed more convenient to have enough money to raise a healthy and happy baby. If you gave birth to a pandemic baby just when things are going dire for almost everyone, do not fret. It is normal to worry if you will be able to provide for your baby. After all, no parent wants to see their child suffer.
Raising a baby is a serious matter. Many people will also tell you that it is expensive. However, it will only be expensive if you let it be.
Why take your crawling baby to a paid indoor playground if you can take him to a park? Parks invest in commercial mowers to keep the lawn grasses trimmed so that your baby can crawl freely and safely. The open-air and the sun are also much healthier and safer for your little one.
Without further ado, here are some ways to help you raise a healthy baby. And yes, most of them are absolutely free.
Breastfeed your baby.
The American Academy of Pediatrics supports and recommends breastfeeding. It benefits both mother and baby and is free. You can save around $1,000 on your baby’s first year if you choose to breastfeed. Here are some known benefits of breastfeeding to the baby.
- A stronger and stable immune system
- Lower risks of colds and respiratory illnesses such as pneumonia and whooping cough
- Fewer occurrences of diarrhea and constipation
- Protection against bacteria and late-onset sepsis
- Lower risks for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
- Lesser illnesses and hospitalization
With a healthier baby, you also don’t have to spend much on medications and hospitalizations. Breastfeeding also benefits the mother. It is healthier for moms, physically and emotionally. Here’s how breastfeeding benefits moms.
- Lose pregnancy weight faster
- The uterus returns to its normal size faster
- Reduced risks of urinary tract infection
- Lower risks of postpartum depression
- Promotes skin to skin contact between mother and baby
- Less hassle, especially when traveling
If you are experiencing problems, you may check local breastfeeding organizations in your area that offer free consultations. Your hospital may also have a free breastfeeding assistance hotline, so it would be wise to check it out.
Vaccinate your baby for free.
Please do not forego your baby’s vaccinations. They are your baby’s protection against viruses and diseases. Vaccines can save your baby from diseases such as measles, whooping cough, and pneumonia. They also protect future generations from diseases that can be prevented by vaccines.
The federal government’s Vaccine For Children program offers free vaccination to eligible children. It ensures that every child is protected from at least 16 diseases that can potentially harm them, including rotavirus, measles, tetanus, and chickenpox, among others.
Do not splurge on baby clothes.
While it may be easy to get caught in the baby shopping bug, hold it. If you didn’t know it yet, a baby grows at a fast rate. That cute onesie you bought may not fit after just a month. Avoid also buying in advance for the same reason. If you buy your baby’s winter clothes in advance, you may find that his winter clothes no longer fit when winter finally rolls in.
You do not need to buy branded clothes for your babies. Your baby will not even notice the difference. You can even buy them second-hand or in outlet stores. When choosing colors, stick with white, which will be much easier to clean and bleach. Buy also clothes in unisex colors so your next baby, regardless of gender, can still use them.
Skip the footwear. Unless your baby is doing photoshoots, he or she will never really need those shoes. Babies can learn to walk faster on their feet. Use soft booties or socks to keep your baby’s feet warm.
If you have siblings or cousins offering you their baby’s used clothes, accept them gratefully.
Switch to reusable diapers.
If you are still using disposable diapers, you might want to hear this. A baby uses around eight to 12 diapers a day. This can cost you up to $80 monthly, or about $900 yearly.
Modern cloth diapers are a far cry from the reusable diapers of the past. They now come in cute colorful designs and velcros or snaps. Of course, the downside to this is the additional laundry. You can choose to use disposables whenever you go out, then opt for reusables when you are at home if it’s too much for you. The best part is that you can keep the cloth diapers if you plan to have another baby.
Do not buy too many toys.
Your baby does not need all those baby toys. Stick to the basics, such as rattles, squeeze toys, and textured balls. Too many toys can take your baby’s focus.
If you want to stimulate your baby’s senses, you can use everyday things around you. You can use a colorful scarf to stimulate his vision. You can talk and sing to your baby to stimulate his hearing. Skin to skin contact, such as cuddling, can help stimulate his sense of touch. You can also let him hold cloths of different textures, such as silk, fur, and wool.
Remember to set aside your hard-earned money for more important things that you and your baby need. Do away with unnecessary expenses. Your baby needs your presence and love more than all the material things that you can give him.