Babies, The Care and Handling of (cont.)
My 6-month-old insists on sleeping on his tummy. I can put him down on his back and he will roll himself onto his stomach. Any barriers, such as a rolled up blanket, no longer work because he is so active in his sleep. Should I be concerned about SIDS?
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, once babies can safely roll themselves from their back to stomach you no longer have to worry about putting them on their back as a sleeping position. Of course you're still going to start your baby out on his or her back when you lay your baby down at bedtime. If your baby rolls over in the middle of the night you don't have to panic, because your baby is fully capable of rolling back over onto his or her back once again.
The concern with younger babies is they aren't necessarily capable of rolling in both directions. They can get stranded on their stomach, which can lead to pooling of stale air around the nose and mouth area, something that has been possibly linked to an increased SIDS risk. Therefore, you would want to do what you have been doing up until now -- namely, putting your baby to bed on his back.
For more information on this very important issue you will want to read the SIDS guidelines on the American Academy of Pediatricians web site: www.aap.org.
You have a wide variety of kids, age wise. What's your opinion on babies' personalities, as far as gauging their future demeanor? Are fussy, grumpy babies primed to be surly kids and teens? Are quiet, clingy babies introverted later in life? Do happy, burbling smilers become gregarious easygoing people? Just curious.
First of all, I will have to ask WebMD to forever bury this link so my kids will never find it!
This is a totally unscientific answer, but I can tell you our one child who was a colicky baby went on to become a very persistent toddler, a somewhat difficult preschooler, and is now a challenging teenager. So I think this child has carried a bit of that "colicky" temperament with him through life. My other kids, who have been a bit more happy-go-lucky, have also retained a great deal of that inborn personality, in my opinion.
I also believe, however, that we parents have an opportunity to bring out the best or worst in our kids. I'm sure that when we were nervous first-time parents we probably drove our firstborn child around the bend with unnecessary trips to the doctor to check out every possible ailment.
I think over time I have relaxed considerably as a parent and I have certainly learned how to deal with my children's various temperaments. My wacky sense of humor has become one of my most valuable parenting assets, even though my children consider it to be an instrument of torture.