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Infant breathing


Most parents, usually the new ones, often feel the need to check their babies’ breathing several times during the night. There is no limit to the number of times you can check on your child, but depriving yourself of sleep and possibly, waking your baby up, will eventually exhaust everyone.

How often should you check your baby?

The best thing for you to do is to be aware of the things that involve infant breathing – its characteristics, how it works and everything that involves it. You will soon realize that your level of comfort increases with experience and that feeling the need to check on your child will decrease as your baby gets older.

Periodic breathing

Infants do periodic breathing, wherein they breathe progressively from fast and deep to slow and shallow. They may pause from two to five seconds, then resume with progressively deeper breaths. This is nothing to worry about since this normal infant breathing and will gradually mature to more patterned breathing as he gets older.

Reassure yourself about your babies breathing

To reassure yourself that your child is breathing just fine, you can put your ear to your baby’s mouth and nose and listen to him breathe. You can also watch for chest movements that indicate the up-and-down movement of breathing or feel his/her tiny infant breathing against your skin.

Sleeping noises

If your child makes sleeping noises, take note of them and consult with your physician. These breathing noises can help you determine if your child has problems in breathing passages. It would also help if you watch your child breathe when he’s well, so you will be able to spot if something is wrong with your child’s breathing.

It may also help you to know that cot death or sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is very rare. To further reduce your baby’s risk, keep her head uncovered, provide him with firm bedding and avoid overheated sleeping environments for him.

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