Welcoming a newborn into the world is an exhilarating experience, marked by joy, excitement, and perhaps a touch of anxiety. As parents, caregivers, and well-wishers gather around the tiny bundle of joy, a myriad of beliefs and assumptions often accompany the journey. Unfortunately, not all of these notions are accurate. Our providers at CMC Pediatrics in Carolina Forest are debunking some of the most common misconceptions about newborns, shedding light on the truth that every parent and caretaker should know.
Newborns Can See Clearly from the Start
It’s easy to assume that a baby’s vision is fully developed from birth, but in reality, newborns are far from having perfect eyesight.
“Their vision is blurry, and they can primarily focus on objects about 8 to 12 inches away,” Dr. Stephanie Cobb explains. “This is about the distance between a baby’s face and a parent’s face during breastfeeding. Over the first few months, their vision gradually improves as their eye muscles strengthen and their brain processes visual information.”
Newborns Sleep Through the Night
The phrase “sleeping like a baby” doesn’t always ring true for new parents. While some fortunate parents might have newborns who sleep longer stretches at night, it’s not the norm.
Ashley Crago, APRN highlights that “newborns have tiny stomachs and need to feed every few hours, including during the night. Their sleep cycles are shorter and often irregular, meaning they’ll wake up more frequently. As they grow, they’re sleep patterns will evolve, and longer stretches of sleep will eventually become a reality.”
Newborns Should Be Kept Awake During the Day
Contrary to popular belief, keeping a newborn awake during the day in hopes of ensuring a better night’s sleep is not a recommended strategy.
“Newborns need ample sleep to support their growth and development,” urges Dr. Amanda Didolkar. “Overstimulating them during the day can actually lead to overtiredness and difficulty falling asleep at night. Instead, focus on creating a calm and soothing environment during bedtime routines to promote better sleep habits.”
Newborns Only Cry When They’re Hungry
While hunger is one of the most common reasons for a newborn’s cries, it’s not the only one.
“Newborns communicate through crying to express various needs such as discomfort, fatigue, a dirty diaper, or even a need for closeness and comfort,” Crago reveals. “ By learning to differentiate between your baby’s different cries you’ll be able to better meet their needs and build a stronger parent-child bond.
Newborns Don’t Need Social Interaction
Some people believe that newborns are too young to benefit from social interaction, but as Dr. Stephen Replenski explains, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
“Babies are born with a natural inclination to seek out human faces and voices. Engaging with your newborn through gentle talking, eye contact, and soothing touches helps to nurture their emotional and cognitive development. Babies thrive when they feel loved, secure, and connected so we definitely encourage interaction when appropriate.”
Newborn Care You Can Count on in Horry County
The journey of caring for a newborn is a remarkable one, filled with moments of wonder and growth. However, it’s important to navigate this journey armed with accurate information, as misconceptions can often lead to unnecessary stress and worry. The pediatric experts at CMC Pediatrics in Carolina Forest are here to help you approach this precious time with confidence, empathy, and a deeper understanding of your little one’s needs. After all, debunking these misconceptions is not just about learning the facts, but about nurturing a strong foundation for a lifetime of love and care.