Suitable Clothing For Babies And Infants

Published: 15th June 2010
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One of the chief needs of babies and infants besides nutrition is the necessity to be at the right temperature. Babies and infants are very susceptible to being too hot or too cold and also to strong sunlight. From this one can deduce that suitable clothing for babies and infants is of extreme importance.

It is frequently thought that babies and infants generate too much heat and so that they can also cope with cold temperatures spontaneously, but this is regrettably not true. A complication is that the effects of excess heat or cold can be delayed so that the real cause of a baby's discomfort is mis-diagnosed. Sometimes, this can have deadly consequences.

People are apt to think that babies produce too much heat, but this is a myth. The fact is that warm-blooded creatures like we mammals are able to produce more heat as we get older and therefore a baby is at the coolest stage of its transition into adulthood. A baby can be a degree or two cooler than an adult at its core.

Despite this fact, some cultures have insisted, and some still do insist, on hardening up a young infant. Ways of doing this have been to plunge the baby into cold water or to expose it to cold winds with insufficient clothing. This toughening up serves no useful purpose and can be very injurious to the child. It is possible that some peoples in some times used this method to 'weed out' their children, although it was never officially described as that.

Some useful guidelines that parents can use when choosing clothing for their babies and infants are:

The nature and quantity of clothing should be adequate to maintain the baby's core body temperature. A degree or two above that is all right too. The clothing will also have to be regulated to adjust for the seasons and whether you are at home or out walking. Put extra clothing on to go out and take some of it off when you get back inside, just as you would do for yourself.

Avoid wrapping your baby up in layer after layer of tight warm clothing or blankets unless you have to suffer extreme cold. You can disturb a baby's thermostat by keeping it too hot all the time. It is far better to aim for a constant, even temperature. A baby that is tightly bound in blankets will have its movement restricted and maybe even its circulation impaired. This is clearly not a good idea.

Close-fitting, restrictive, hot clothing will also retain perspiration, which could cause the skin to be held in close contact with damp fabric for hours on end. This could lead to skin irritation and soreness. Precisely as you would change a nappy when it is damp for the same reason.

Therefore, it is better to dress the baby in fairly loose fitting clothes appropriate for the ambient temperature and regulate the temperature using a cardigan or jumper or blanket, loosely placed over it. The material is not so important, but you will have to inspect for allergies both to the material and the detergent you launder it in.

If you keep the clothing simple you will be able to add or remove it quickly as you see fit. This is important because most babies find dressing upsetting. To this end, try not to use ties, fasteners and pins. Velcro is far easier. Change all clothing every day to keep germs at bay.

Owen Jones, the writer of this piece writes on quite a few topics, but is at present concerned with thinking about high cut panties. If you would like to know more or check out some great offers, please go to our website at Personalised Knickers.

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