What Mistakes Do New Parents Often Make?

new parent mistakes

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When you’re preparing to become a new parent, you’re likely filled with joy but perhaps some anxiety as well.

Parenting brings you invaluable experience, and you learn from everything, including your mistakes.

What if you don’t have that experience, however?

You can always learn from others, and the following are the most common mistakes new parents make to help you avoid them.

Ignoring Your Baby’s Cries

If it’s the middle of the night, you might hear your baby crying and hope they’ll cry it out. However, your baby’s cries are their form of communication. They’re telling you something is wrong and they need you, so always respond.

Putting Soft Items Into Their Crib

This is an unexpected discovery for many soon-to-be parents as they’re preparing a nursery—babies can’t sleep with soft things. It runs counter to what we think and we want our babies to be comfortable. However, soft pillows, cushions and other bedding items can be a suffocation hazard.

Be careful about soft things in an indoor baby swing and in other gear you may use as well.

Skipping a Burping

You’ve done the middle-of-the-night feeding, and you’re ready to fall back asleep. Do you have to burp the baby every time?

When a baby is feeding, they suck in a lot of air, and burping will help it escape and alleviate potential discomfort.

Not Changing Diapers Often Enough

If your baby isn’t crying, you might not think that you need to change their diaper, but it’s a good idea to check regularly.

Waiting too long can lead to diaper rashes and even urinary tract infections.

Letting Too Many People Hold Your Baby

As a new parent, everyone wants to see the baby. That’s normal, but you may have to enforce some boundaries. When babies are young, they’re more susceptible to illnesses and infections, and actions like kissing your baby can make this worse.


If you or anyone smokes near your baby, you could be damaging their immune system and exposing them to toxins. Even if you’re just briefly around someone smoking, change your clothes and perhaps shower before holding your baby.

Overlooking Fevers

When babies are young, their immune systems are weak. Any fever or sign of illness for that matter is something you should take seriously. If you notice a fever in a baby three months or younger, waiting it out may not be an option. Contact your child’s doctor instead.

Going To Crowded Places

We’re in a bit of a different situation right now. Because of COVID, many people are staying home more than ever before anyway, but in general, when you have a new baby, avoid places that are too crowded. Baby’s immune systems are so fragile, so exposure to germs that wouldn’t affect us as adults can affect them significantly.

Other Mistakes to Avoid

Along with what’s above, other mistakes new parents should avoid include:

  • Bundling up a baby too much to the point that they overheat or it impacts their blood circulation.
  • Shaking a baby is, of course, something that should never be done. It can lead to damage to their brains and shaken baby syndrome.
  • When you change your baby’s diaper, don’t wipe from back to front. This can cause infections.
  • Check on your baby throughout the night to ensure their sleeping position stays correct and safe.

Final Thoughts

Being a new parent is overwhelming, but be gentle with yourself, and learn what you can. Be forgiving if you make a mistake, and understand every new parent faces challenges.