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Care & Safety

Bath Time is More FUN with Bath Toys!

7 tips for a better bathtime - Today's Parent

Many children enjoy bath time, but some don’t. To help soothe their child’s tantrum and improve their bath experience, many parents introduce bath toys into their child’s bath routine. Having bath toys give your child the chance to relax, unwind, and have fun! However there are more to it than just having fun, bath play gives your child many benefits as a lot of skills get developed during bath time.

Benefits of bath time with toys

  • Spend quality time – Bath time gives parents and caretakers the opportunity to spend quality time with their child. During bath time, parents can together play with their child, while talking and singing to them. This too gives working parents the chance to bond with their child after a long day of working and make their child feels loved and appreciated.
  • Develop skills – Bath play allows your child to build skills. By squeezing, touching, and splashing their bath toys, they can improve their fine motor skills. They also learn more about colours, shapes, and volume by interacting with the unique bath toys while developing their social skills by talking to their parents. Bath time also could help develop your child’s sensory skills as it gives your child’s senses a lot of attention, from feeling the water on her skin, learning to distinguish different temperatures, and being touched while you wash and dry them.
  • Independence – Bath time with toys can encourage your child to build self-care skills, from helping to wash your child’s body to drying them off. And since bath time can get a bit messy, parents like to clean and tidy up the bath space one the child is finished playing. Once your child gets used to the process of cleaning up the toys and draining out the water after bath time, they can take these organizational skills with them as they grow.

With all the benefits bath toys have, they unfortunately have a downside too which is becoming breeding grounds for molds, fungi, and bacteria – some of which can make your child fall sick. Although mold is harmful when ingested, the amount of mold present in contaminated bathwater from moldy bath toys is usually not enough to make your child sick. However, if your child experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or an upset stomach, those could be the effects of ingesting mold, just like food poisoning from moldy food.

To avoid this from happening, parents can and should clean bath toys regularly to prevent mold from growing on them or inside them by using a toy cleaner or a mixture of vinegar/bleach with water. Soak the toys for a good minute and ensure to squeeze all the liquid out of the bath toy. Then, store them in a dry place until they need to be used at bath time.

Parents also can ensure to buy fully-sealed bath toys. But, if you have bought bath toys with holes, you can seal them with a glue gun before your child starts using them to help prevent mold build-up.

Here are some bath toys that you can on Babydash

Hypoallergenic Products: What & Why

What Does Hypoallergenic Skin Care Really Mean and How Can It Benefit You?  | Science of Skincare

What Is Hypoallergenic?

If there is one important thing you need to know when buying skincare products for you or your child is to always read the labels on the product. And more often than not, you will likely come across the term hypoallergenic. So what does it mean? When a product is tagged as hypoallergenic, it means that the product is less likely to cause an allergic reaction when being applied on the skin. The term has been widely used in the makeup industry as a lot of common ingredients in makeup were causing irritation to users’ eyes and skin.

A hypoallergenic product simply means it is lacking many of the allergens that are causing bad reactions and flare ups on the skin. In order to determine the products are hypoallergenic, they have to go through several tests. A patch test is conducted on 100-200 subjects and their skin reactions to the products are recorded. And this could take up to few days if not weeks for companies to gather the information.

Since the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the US does not set standards for companies to meet, many companies have different views on the true definition of what a hypoallergenic product should be. Hence, testing done may vary from one company to another. To help overcome the inconsistencies in the testing, you should always check out the ingredient list.

The best thing to do is to get help from a dermatologist or doctor regarding your allergy concerns. With all the information given to them, they will draw out a list of ingredients to avoid and ingredients you should be using.

Why Use Hypoallergenic Products?

Even if you are someone who does not have allergies or does not currently have sensitive skin, you can still benefit from hypoallergenic products. The lack of allergens in a product can help your skin to minimize the chance of experiencing inflammation as allergens in products could increase the risk of irritating the pores in your skin.

As you age and your diet changes, your skin will change also in reaction to that. You might not suffer from sensitive skin now, however in the future, you just might. Therefore, finding the right hypoallergenic products that you know and trust from the start can be helpful!

Here are some hypoallergenic products that can be found on Babydash:

Find out more on our site!

Raya With An Infant? Here’s What You Need To Do!

LOVE – Given to be given back | Zoom Islamic Magazine

Raya (aka Eid Mubarak) is approaching soon and it is one of my favourite festivities of the year! And I bet it’s yours too especially if you are celebrating it for the first time with your baby! I know it too can be stressful planning the whole festivity – outfits, meals (Rendang, yumm!), decorations, and to top it all, we are still living in the pandemic that doesn’t seem to go away. And because of that, it’s important for us to stay home and celebrate it safely with our immediate household, particularly when you have a baby around. However, if you do need to attend to your Raya visits, here are some tips to a safe and fuss-free Raya visiting with your baby!

It is a great idea to go out when your baby is calm and happy. Hence, before going out, you want to ensure your baby is well-fed and had nappy change. A well-fed baby is a happy baby and a fresh diaper will ensure your baby stays comfortable. And it is also important that your baby is kept at the right temperature. You can check whether your baby is too warm or cold by feeling their forehead. Do dress your baby appropriately to the weather so your baby feels cozy and comfy the whole time they are out!

Consider to pack your diaper bag as if you are going on a short trip although you are only planning to go out for a short while! It is always a good idea to be prepared in case your baby needs a nappy change or gets hungry. What you’ll need to pack:

If your baby begins to get fussy or upset, try to see if you can figure out why. Normally, your baby always has a reason for why they’re crying (this is their way of talking to us!). You may want to consider: Is your baby hungry? Does your baby need their diaper changed? Or perhaps your baby is tired. Therefore, you might want to check if their diaper is full or offer to feed to see if they are hungry. If none of these are working, it’s best to get yourself excused and go home where your baby feels more comfortable.

When you are out visiting, do keep your baby close to mommy and daddy, so they’ll know they are always safe and comfortable. Another important thing to note is to not let others hold your baby. If someone asks to hold your baby, you are allowed to say no, politely. The less people that hold your baby, the less likely your baby will get sick. This also applies to letting people rub their hair, kiss them or touch their skin. Keep your baby away from sick and germ-filled hands! This may be hard to practice cause you might be scared that you offend people but remember, you are doing what’s best for your baby, especially in this pandemic!

Baby-led Weaning: The Pros & Cons

Baby-led Weaning | Health Plus

Introducing solids to your little one can be both exciting and thrilling. It is a fun experience to be exploring new tastes and textures with your baby. But to be frank, it can also be stressful, especially if the process is not going well. Eating solids is a skill that needs to be learned and like everything else, it takes time. While many parents choose to introduce solids the ‘traditional’ way, which is in the form of purees, there is an alternate approach that parents can consider that’s called baby-led weaning.

What is baby-led weaning?

It is an approach that’s popular in the U.K. and gaining traction in the U.S. where 6 months old or older babies jump straight to eating finger foods as soon as solid foods are introduced, skipping purees and mashed up foods. As the name suggests, baby-led weaning encourages your little one to be in charge in feeding themselves right from the start. Hence why this approach only works for a baby who’s at least 6 months old and capable of self-feeding.

Pros of baby-led weaning

  • Gives your baby control over what they eat. This teaches your baby to self-regulate hunger as they will decide themselves to stop when they’re full. With spoon-feeding, parents tend to sneak in a couple more spoonful even if the baby is full which may leads your baby to becoming overweight.
  • Encourages your baby to become familiar with various textures and flavours. Self-feeding teaches them to explore textures on their own which makes them to likely have more varied and healthy food preferences in the long run. Studies have shown that babies who eat a variety of food (including the common allergens: peanut products and fish) may actually be less likely to have food allergies in the future. But always consult with your baby’s doctor the best way to introduce peanuts and fish to your baby.
  • Promotes oral and fine motor skills development. For a baby who might be unsure of the new taste or texture, baby-led weaning may give them full control to manipulate the food in their mouth – to swallow or not. It also encourages the development of manual dexterity and hand-eye coordination skills.

Cons of baby-led weaning

But of course, there is no feeding approach is perfect. Though there are many reasons to consider baby-led weaning, there are also disadvantages, including:

  • Need to pay attention to iron intake. Breastfed babies get enough iron from the breast milk until baby is 4 months old but levels may decrease which is why your doctor will likely to advise to add a liquid iron supplement to the mix until your baby starts to eat iron-rich solids. However, it may be hard for your baby to chew on many iron-rich foods such as beef, thus, giving your baby pureed meat, green veggies, and fortified cereals would help to supply iron.
  • Potential safety concerns resulting to negative eating experience. Giving your baby certain foods before they have developed the needed oral motor skills to eat it could result to gagging, vomiting, and possibly choking. And these reflexes would make your baby feels uncomfortable. Learning to eat solids requires practice (and patience for parents!). Your baby should experience a fun mealtime experience so that they want to keep doing it and exploring new food!

Though baby-led weaning may work and be helpful in most families, it is okay if it doesn’t work in yours. You can try other alternatives or talk to your baby’s doctor about it! The sooner your baby’s mealtime experience is enhanced, the better it is!

Shop mealtime essentials on Babydash today!

How To Wash Your Baby’s Fav Plushies

stuffed animals and washing supplies

Your baby probably has their favourite plushie who is part toy, part best friend, and also part napkin. Even it is a cute sight to see when your baby carries Miss Kitty everywhere, the plushie might be looking super gross. This means they are due for a soak and scrub session so it doesn’t smell like spoiled milk! And washing a plushie is easy. But some plushies are older, hence they are more delicate than others. For these well-loved toys, hand-washing is the right option although machine-washing is fine for most plushies. So here’s what you need to know when handling the delicate.

Machine-washing plushies

Machine-washing is indeed the most practical, also the easiest choice for most parents and most plush toys like teddy bear or bunnies can be machine-washed. However you are at risk of damaging some toys by throwing them in the wash especially the ones that are well-worn. So ensure to check the care label attached for the washing directions when deciding if machine-washing is the way to go. If you opt for machine-washing:

  • Use the delicate cycle and cold water but if your baby has been sick, you might want to sterilize it with hot or warm water (only if the toy can tolerate it, for example it has no glued-in parts).
  • Use a mild detergent if you have it! It’s fine if you don’t have mild detergent as regular detergent is fine too – just follow the instructions on the bottle and don’t use too much detergent as the left-behind soap residue can irritate your baby’s sensitive skin.
  • Place in a mesh laundry bag to protect its parts like eyes and fur. You might want to pad the load with towels too so the toys are protected.

As for drying, some plushies can be dried in the dryer but some may not survive the high heat that could ruin its fur, plastic and glued-in parts. Therefore the best way to dry plushies is to let them air dry. Place them near a fan or dehumidifier to speed up drying time and do ensure the inner stuffing does not retain water! And use a hair dryer on low or medium heat to help revive your baby’s best friend’s fluffiness.

Hand-washing plushies

If you can clean your baby, you can definitely hand-wash your baby’s soft toy! Soft toys are even easier with no shrieking and crying. Hand-washing is the best option for older and well-loved toys or plushies with more delicate fibers. To clean plushies or dolls with hands, you only need three things, which are:

  • A clean area that can hold enough water to fully submerge the toy, like a tub, large bucket or utility sink.
  • A mild detergent.
  • A fresh, dry towel.

Fill up the bucket that you’re using with enough cold or warm water to fully immerse the plushie, then add a teaspoon or tablespoon of the mild detergent per gallon of water. Then proceed to submerge the plushie and perform a CPR on it by using a pumping motion so that it’s saturated with water and detergent. Let the toy soak for at least 15 minutes or up to an hour before rinsing. However, do note that more delicate toys should be soaked for lesser time to prevent damaging their fibers.

When rinsing, you can either hold the plushie under running water or drain the bucket and refill with clean water and repeat the pumping action to get rid of soap residue. It is highly recommended that you do not scrub or wring it out as overhandling may lead to damage. When you are convinced there’s no more soap residue, drain the bucket and gently press down on the plushie several times to flush out as much water as you can, then roll it up in a fresh towel like a burrito, which will pull out more water. Let the toy to air dry and use a hair dryer on the lowest heat setting to fluff up the plushie if needed.

Spot-treating Plushie With Electronic Components

There is no way you could throw a plushie with electronic or musical components in the washing machine, thus, the best way to clean them is through spot-treating. It involves doing a surface-only cleaning of the toy by wiping its exterior using a damp cloth and a gentle detergent like a foaming hand or dish soap.

Feel like giving your baby a new plushie? Browse our range of soft toys here!

Natural vs. Organic Products: What’s The Difference?

Natural and organic baby products: Wipes, lotions, bath, and more

As parents, we strive to give the best to our children. From the house they live in, the school they go to, the food they eat daily right down to the products they apply on their skin. With such diverse baby products in the market now, you may some time wonder which one is good for your child, what does it mean by organic, and why some products are labelled as natural. Fret no more, let’s dive in the differences of organic and natural products.

A simple meaning of the word organic is “grown or raised without chemicals or pesticides”. And your next question would be, what does that have to do with skincare products that are labelled as organic? It refers to the way the plants used in the ingredients are grown and it is crucial to know that info about the plants that make their way into your baby’s nappy cream or body wash. Hence it is safe to say when a product is organic, it means there are no pesticides and chemical remnants.

But, being “organic”, does not tell you entirely about other ingredients or chemicals that are added to the products. Which means you would not know how much of an organic product is actually organic. And according to the USDA, as long as the product has at least 95% organic ingredients, it can be labelled as an organic product. Therefore there are up to five percent of a product’s ingredients may not be organic although it is labelled as so!

Here are some organic products that you can find on Babydash.

And products that are labelled as natural, on the other hand, imply that they are formulated with chemical-free ingredients. And as long as a product contains some plant-derived ingredients, companies may label them as natural. But that product can also include man-made chemicals. While ingredients that are naturally derived are great, it is also important to note that there are synthetic ingredients that are not harmful and harsh. There are a lot of man-made chemicals are just as safe, if not safer, than some natural ingredients (such as mercury).

Here are some of the natural products you can find on Babydash.

At the end of the day, it all boils down to the ingredients used in a product. Always look out for unsafe ingredients such as paraben, phthalates, formaldehyde, avobenzone to name a few. Manufacturers can get away with including harmful chemicals in their products by categorizing them as “inactive ingredients” or as “fragrance”. Hence, do check their list of ingredients as you do not want these to be in your or your baby’s products!

Food Allergies for Babies: What & How

Image result for baby eating

It is indeed a fun and an exciting milestone when starting your baby on solids and introducing new foods to your baby or toddler, however there are some common allergies that you should pay attention to especially if you have a family history of allergies, problems like eczema and asthma, or if a baby had a bad reaction to milk or soy.

The followings are the most common food allergies:

  1. Milk
  2. Eggs
  3. Fish
  4. Soy
  5. Tree nuts (such as walnuts and almonds)
  6. Wheat
  7. Peanuts
  8. Shellfish

Some foods may more likely to cause an allergic reaction than others. And amongst these eight foods, those that commonly affect children under 4 years old are milk, eggs, peanuts, and tree nuts.

Back in the day, doctors recommended to prolong the delays in introducing certain foods to babies who might have an allergy. However, recent research has shown that delaying the introduction of food allergens may increase the risk of developing serious food allergies. But, do talk to your pediatrician prior to introducing solids!

For your baby who might be at risk for food allergies, it is crucial to introduce foods one at a time. It is highly recommend introducing a new food for three days before jumping on to a new food so you can monitor for any delayed allergy reactions to the food. Although you can find single-ingredient jarred foods in the market, but there is no guarantee that the food has not been cross-contaminated in the manufacturing factory. Hence, the safest way to introduce new foods to your baby is to make your own purees so you can have full control over the production and know exactly what is in the food.

As your baby grows older and their diet expands, it is easy to lose track of which foods you have introduced and which foods caused a reaction. Remember to keep a list of foods you have introduced and note down any reactions observed. If you think certain food has caused fussiness, digestive symptoms, or eczema, stop feeding the food for 4-6 weeks before you introduce it again.

Below are the list of foods you should delay until your baby has reached 12 months:

  1. Cow’s milk – feeding your baby cow’s milk can cause nutritional deficiencies. After your baby’s first birthday, you can feed them cow’s milk as part of a healthy, balanced diet.
  2. Honey – as it may contain botulism spores, and your baby’s stomach is not acidic enough to dissolve the spores.
  3. Nuts or peanuts – a choking hazard for babies and toddlers. If there is a family history of severe nut or peanut allergy, do let your pediatrician know about conducting an oral food challenge in the doctor’s office before introducing peanut or nut butter.
  4. Other choking hazards – popcorns, whole grapes, cheese cubes, hotdog pieces, chunks of uncooked vegetables or fruits, or sticky foods such as peanut butter.

The best way to start introducing food safely is to talk to your baby’s pediatrician as they can take into account your baby’s medical history, providing you the most recent feeding guidelines, and give you personalized advice about introducing solids to your baby.

Babywearing 101

What Type of Babywearing Dad are You? | Ergobaby

If you are new parents who are, well, obviously new to this whole idea of babywearing, here is Babywearing 101 for you! Or.. if you are using a new baby carrier.. there are things you need to know and be aware too! Here are some vital Dos and Don’ts of babywearing, but do ensure that you read your carrier’s safety tips as well!

✔ Practice before you start!

Be sure to try out your carrier before you insert your baby in for the first time. Familiarize yourself with the buckles and straps. You can even practice with a teddy bear or a bag of rice just so you know how to handle your baby’s weight later. You know what they say.. practice makes perfect!

✔ Wear your baby high up

To improve your comfort, wear your baby high. The higher up on the body your baby is, the easier it will be! Do aim to place the carrier at belly button level and the closer it is to your body, the better it is for you. But ensure there are room for breathability. You don’t want to suffocate yourself!

✔ Give support to your baby

A newborn baby’s head always needs support. Whenever you are wearing your baby, always make sure you are supporting their head and keep them securely in the carrier especially when you lean down or bend over.

❌ Overdress your baby

Your closeness with your baby and body heat along with the carrier’s fabric will help to keep your baby warm at all times. Think about the clothes that your baby should be wearing when the weather gets warmer. You don’t want to stuff up or swaddle your baby inside excess fabrics! Do remember that the youngins have poor body heat regulation, hence remember to regularly check their abdomen, forehead, and neck.

❌ Let your baby’s legs dangle

Your baby could be at risk of contracting hips dysplasia if their legs dangle. To prevent that from occurring, kindly ensure that your baby is in frog stance where their bottom and hamstrings are supported by the carrier.

Just to let you cool parents know, we are having Babywearing Special on our website. Every day, starting today, you get to enjoy different deal on babywearing gears. This is the best time for you to get the carrier of your dreams! So be sure to check our website every day for the best deal! So, happy babywearing, folks!

5 Signs Your Baby Is Getting Enough Breast Milk

I know how mothers often worry that they are not producing enough breast milk to feed their baby. And since you cannot actually see the milk your body is producing, it is hard to tell exactly how much your baby is drinking. But do know that most women do produce enough breast milk. That is one of the myths I helped you busted in my previous post, see here. But here I will line up the 5 Signs that show Your Baby Is Getting Enough Breast Milk!

#1 Baby is swallowing

When your baby starts to latch onto the breast during a feed, they will start with a few rapid sucks that helps to release the milk. Then it will be followed by deep, slow pulling motion as they swallow. They may also take long pauses while nursing and occasionally fall asleep at your breast!

#2 Baby is calm and content

If your baby looks calm and content after every feed, then everything is going well, mommies! However if a baby appears overly passive after feeds or constantly be crying, then they may not be getting enough milk. Do not limit feeding times! But do note that if your baby has many feedings that last longer than an hour or wants to be nursed very often with less than an hour between feedings, there may be other problems that you need to bring your baby to be examined by your doctor.

#3 Count baby’s wet diapers

Your baby’s diaper output is a good indicator that they are getting enough milk! Most breastfed babies wet six to 10 and soil at least three diapers per day in the first month. The colour of the poop is also important to note too — the first bowel movement is normally black and sticky but they should be green by day three and yellow by day four or five. The consistency of your baby’s poop should also be watery or seedy.

#4 Baby gains weight

It is totally normal for your baby’s weight to fluctuate during the first two weeks as they may lose about 5-7% of their birth weight by the third or fourth day but they should be gaining weight steadily after the first two weeks! If your baby has a weight loss of 10% or more, there could be a problem. So please seek your doctor’s assistance when this happens!

#5 Breast feels softer after feed

When your baby is getting enough milk after a feed, your breast should feel softer as the milk has been expressed! Your nipples should also look more or less the same after every feed — not flattened, pinched or white. You would also feel sleepy and relaxed after every feeding.

Now that you learnt these signs, you can breastfeed in complete serenity now and not feel worried if your baby is not getting enough breast milk! If you need more assistance, be sure to contact your lactation consultant or doctor. Take care, mommies! Happy breastfeeding! You can do this! ❤

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