THE FIRST MONTHS
CLOTHING AND CARE
FOR THE BABY
THE IMPORTANCE OF WARMTH
Babies grow and learn best when kept warm, so it is of utmost importance to dress and swaddle them well. Our bodies function better, digest better, with warmth. Keeping a baby warmly dressed and wrapped up will help it conserve heat and have energy for growing and learning about the new world it has entered. Important places to keep warm are the head, the back of the neck, the wrists, the belly and lower back, the back of the knees and the feet. Babies lose heat to the surrounding air much faster than adults and we lose a huge amount of heat from our heads, so, for babies, hats are indispensable for the first months, even indoors. There are very practical hats that tie under the chin so they don't slip off, made of light merino wool for winter, or cotton and silk for warmer weather. A good way to keep the baby warm and comfortable is to dress them in layers. A cotton or merino wool undershirt with buttons at the bottom to prevent them from riding up is a wonderful base to protect from drafts.
Of course, it is important to make sure that the baby is not overheated, signs of which are sweating, restlessness and a red face. Overheating can lead to diarrhoea. Natural materials such as cotton, wool and silk allow the skin to breathe while keeping in warmth, and so lessen the danger of overheating.
 Zur Linden, Wilhelm, MD. When A Child Is Born. Healing Arts Press, Rochester, Vermont 1998
Mother and child by Claire Fejes