Advice for New Parents – 12 Useful Things They Should Know

Being a new parent is an exciting journey that requires a lot of patience and learning. Advice for new parents is readily available. Still, you probably don’t want to hear that particular advice for new parents coming from a stranger on the street for the thousandth time.

These tried-and-true tips are useful and come from people who were once new parents themselves. If it doesn’t work for you, just move on to the next thing that will.

*The following tips were listed in particular order.

two young parents smiling and looking at their baby

1: Don’t Buy into Fads

Fads happen in the parenting world. Advice for new parents include trends like only outfitting your baby in all-organic clothing, making a purely homemade diet, early reading programs that start entirely too young and more.

These fads often require you spend a ton of money up-front, and they are not proven to be any more useful than conventional ideas about parenting. If it sounds like a trend, it probably is. Don’t waste your time.

2: Let Your Values Guide You

It’s okay to let your values about parenting guide your parenting choices, but don’t feel like a horrible parent for having to give up some of those values for the sake of practicality and reality. If you breastfeed your baby, don’t feel ashamed if you need to use formula at some point or pump.

If you use cloth diapers, don’t think you are lazy for needing an occasional disposable diaper. Most of all, it’s okay to let your child watch television. It does not make you a lazy parent.

3: Don’t Be Afraid to Tell People to Shut Up

You will get plenty of unsolicited advice from parents, family members, friends and random people. Don’t be afraid to tell them to stop giving you unsolicited advice. Telling them to shut up may not be the best choice of words, but you may need to be firm and clear when you say to them to stop telling you how to raise your child.

two moms with their babies in babywearing having tea together

4: Babywearing Isn’t as Carefree as It Looks

Babywearing isn’t as easy and carefree as advertisements make it look, but it is a great option for traveling and going outdoors. A sturdy wrap or harness that fits your body well is priceless. Invest in one that can convert easily if you choose this route of carrying your child.

5: Babywearing Is Similar to Tummy Time

While babywearing isn’t as easy as it looks, it does work the same muscles in your baby’s body the way tummy-time exercises do. It strengthens the neck muscles and other muscles that help a baby learn to support themselves.

6: It Is Okay Not to Love Every Minute

Parents get the idea from society and culture that you have to love every minute of being a new parent. In reality, you will not love every minute, and that is okay. You should embrace the wonderful moments, but let yourself have a break during the moments in which it is less-than desirable.

7: Post-Partum Depression Happens

This is a topic that is often silenced in parenting groups and mainstream magazines or blogs. Post-partum depression is real, and it happens to mothers with the best intentions sometimes. If you need help, do not be afraid to ask for it. There are options for mothers who feel this way, and it saves lives. This should be standard encouragement and advice for all new parents to remember.

8: You Can Travel as a New Parent

If you have ever flown, you have probably seen new parents on a flight feeling overwhelmed and tired. Nowadays, international flights have infants more commonly than ever before. It is possible to travel as a new parent, and you do not have to give this up when you become one. It requires extra planning, but don’t listen to people who say you are doomed to a life at home for five years. You are not.

a small baby holding a jar of baby food trying to taste the food inside the container

9: Some Baby Foods Are a Scam

Baby foods and toddler foods are often lacking in nutrition. This isn’t to say that canned baby food is a problem, but cereals before six months are not recommended. Toddler snacks are often loaded with salt and extra sugars.

Use formula or breast milk until at least six months, and then introduce and feed healthful whole foods slowly. The best feeding advice for new parents is to simply feed your baby foods closest to their natural state, and puff crisps are not natural.

10: Pumping and Dumping Is a Myth

This is especially important if you are breastfeeding. New moms often think they cannot have alcohol if they are breastfeeding, but you can have one drink. Even if you have a couple of drinks, it isn’t enough to harm your baby. Advice for new parents will often tell moms to pump and dump their breast milk, but this is a myth. You can still drink wine and breastfeed simultaneously, as long as you don’t abuse alcohol.

11: You Can Go Back to Work

There’s pressure on new parents to take a long maternity or paternity leave, but don’t be ashamed if you need to or want to go back to work as soon as possible. Advice for new parents often encourages being with the new baby all the time, but that isn’t always possible. It is okay for you to want to have a fulfilling career life or to need that income.

12: Exclusively Breastfed Babies Rarely Get Constipated

If your child does get constipated while being exclusively breast fed, don’t worry. Some advice for new parents may have you freaking out if your child becomes constipated, but it’s normal. A baby between two and three months can go up to two weeks without pooping, and that is fine.

Bottom Line

The best advice for new parents is to simply let yourselves breathe, and when the baby sleeps, you sleep. You will be exhausted. Focus on taking care of yourself when you can so that you are ready for your baby during meal times, diaper changes and everything else in life.

Image sources: 1, 2, 3



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