8 baby care myths you should care about (and know the truth)

By Dr Richard C. Woolfson   — March 21, 2017
  • Myth 1: A six-month-old baby can be potty-trained
    1 / 8 Myth 1: A six-month-old baby can be potty-trained

    A six-month-old baby who can sit up on her own can indeed sit on a potty; and at some point while sitting on it, she will empty her wastes into it. However, she has no control, and she cannot get off the potty by herself. As soon as she walks, she will cease to be “trained”.

    Related: Can you toilet-train a baby before age 1?

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  • Myth 2: Your baby should sleep through the night by four months
    2 / 8 Myth 2: Your baby should sleep through the night by four months

    Sleep patterns vary greatly from baby to baby. Statistics suggest that only about half of all babies sleep through the night even at one year. She will get an unbroken night’s sleep when she is ready for it.

    Related: Baby sleep training: 4 guide books to read

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  • Myth 3: The only way to make her feel secure is by swaddling her in a blanket
    3 / 8 Myth 3: The only way to make her feel secure is by swaddling her in a blanket

    Swaddling your baby in a blanket keeps her warm. Her sense of security, however, comes from knowing that she is loved, not from the way her blankets are arranged.

    Make her feel secure by soother her when she is upset and by giving her loving attention.

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  • Myth 4: A breastfed baby has a closer bond with her mother than one who is bottle-fed
    4 / 8 Myth 4: A breastfed baby has a closer bond with her mother than one who is bottle-fed

    What matters is the way you hold your baby during feeding, the loving way you handle her, and the soothing words you use with her during feeding. The feeding method itself has no specific effect on bonding.

    Related: How to stop baby night feeding

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  • Myth 5: The only reason your baby cries is because she is unhappy
    5 / 8 Myth 5: The only reason your baby cries is because she is unhappy

    She cries when she is hungry, thirsty, sad or uncomfortable. But the reality is that there are times when a baby cries for no obvious reason.

    Crying has many different possible meanings and explanations. She might, for instance, be bored rather than unhappy and want stimulation.

    Related: 6 reasons why new babies cry

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  • Myth 6: Your baby wants milk only because she is hungry
    6 / 8 Myth 6: Your baby wants milk only because she is hungry

    Feeding provides important nourishment for your baby and satisfies her hunger. It is an instinctive reaction, yet it also provides comfort.

    That is why you may have notices that she sucks for milk even though she obviously doesn’t really want it; the sucking motion helps relax her.

    Related: Breastfeeding: 3 signs that your baby is getting enough milk

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  • Myth 7: Your baby will become too dependent on you if you use a baby-carrier
    7 / 8 Myth 7: Your baby will become too dependent on you if you use a baby-carrier

    A baby carrier allows you to go “hands free” and also brings your baby close to you, which can help her fall asleep.

    As time passes, she will naturally grow out of this method because she would much rather be able to move and look without restriction.

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  • Myth 8: Teething is the typical cause of aches, pains, and fevers from six months onwards
    8 / 8 Myth 8: Teething is the typical cause of aches, pains, and fevers from six months onwards

    Evidence suggests that the symptoms of teething are quite mild. Babies start to get a lot more infection around the time teething starts because that’s when they lose their natural immunity.

    This leads parents to mistakenly think that their baby’s fever is always linked to teething.

    (Photos: 123RF.com)

    Related: Should you use a pacifier?

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