A swaddled baby

One of the first keys to keeping your baby healthy is to help protect him or her from germs. There are simple ways that you can help protect your baby. It’s all about being careful and diligent in making cleanliness and hygiene routines a standard part of your day.

How Germs can be spread

By Direct Contact

  • Skin-to-skin contact
  • Contact with infected people or animals
  • Contact with blood or other body fluids.

By Indirect Contact

Here’s an example: Germs that are present in raw food or water, in soil, on surfaces, or on animals are picked up by hands. They are then transferred to the mouth, eyes, or nose

Common contact points include:

  • Contaminated surfaces, like dirty diapers and surfaces that held raw food
  • Frequently touched surfaces throughout the home, especially when someone is unwell.

Items used to clean these surfaces, such as cloths and sponges, can also spread germs in the home.

Through the Air

There are some germs that can spread through the air. They might be carried on dust, or in tiny droplets expelled through coughing, sneezing, or talking.

Your baby could pick up these germs by breathing them in.

Protecting Your Baby: Strategies for Reducing the Spread of Germs

In addition to general cleaning and targeted disinfecting of frequently touched surfaces throughout your home, it’s important to pay close attention to potential germ transfer, now that your new baby is home. The following strategies can help make sure that your baby stays healthy.

Handwashing

Every time you touch your baby, you can pass germs to and from your hands. But simple handwashing is one of the most effective ways to help stop the spread of germs.

Washing removes most germs from your hands. There are two key aspects to proper hand cleaning: when to wash and how to wash. Both are particularly important as you (and others) hold and care for your baby.