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How do I hold my baby properly? I'm worried I'm going to hurt her.

A new born baby can look so vulnerable, it’s little wonder that first time mothers are sometimes apprehensive about picking their baby up. Although babies are very delicate, there really is nothing to worry about.

Holding your baby in your arms should be one of the joys of motherhood so enjoy it. Just try to remember the following points and you’ll be absolutely fine...

Support
The key issue when holding your baby is support. You need to secure her whole body but pay special attention to the head. A baby does not have sufficient control or strength to be able to support the weight of her head. It’s therefore vital to place your hand or arm under your baby’s head whenever you hold her. Her head won’t fall off if you don’t but it will be very uncomfortable for her, and potentially lead to problems in the future.

Find your own way
You should always hold your baby in the way you feel most comfortable with. As long as you support your baby’s head and hold her in a secure manner, it doesn’t really matter what position you use. If it’s natural to you and your baby likes it, then just do it.

Try to relax
Even at such a young age, babies can pick up on their mother’s feelings. If you're tense and uncomfortable when you hold your baby, she will feel exactly the same way. So relax, smile at your baby and before you know it, you’ll be wondering what you were so worried about.

Other people
It can be disconcerting for a new mother when lots of different people want to hold her baby. Friends and family will probably all want to pick up your baby boy or girl. But as long as they hold her correctly, there is nothing to worry about. However, don’t be afraid to tell them what to do, or step in if you don’t like what you see. The safety of your baby is much more important that trying not to hurt someone’s feelings.

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