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Southern Health 70 years of the NHS; 1948 - 2018
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Caring for baby

In order to care for your baby it is important to be prepared, keep it simple and get the basics.
Woman breastfeeding her baby

Your baby will need somewhere safe to sleep. The safest place for a baby to sleep for the first six months is in a cot or moses basket in the same room as you. Second-hand equipment can save money, but every baby should have a new mattress as mould spores from used mattresses can cause harm. You should use a waterproof, firm and flat mattress.

The ideal temperature for a baby’s room is between 16°C and 20°C. 

Find out more about caring for your baby 

Car seats are an essential piece of equipment. By law, your baby must be in a suitable baby or child car seat when travelling by car, even on short, local journeys. Before you purchase a car seat, make sure it is suitable for your child's height and weight and will fit into your car. It is useful to practice fitting the car seat before your baby is born.

Feeding is a special time for mum and baby and gives you the perfect opportunity to get to know each other. Whether you choose to breast or formula feed, there is advice and support to help you. It is important you have all the information on both methods to help you make your own decision.

Breast feeding provides all the nutrients your baby needs and will give them the best start in life. Visit our breastfeeding advice section and Best beginnings.

Some parents choose or need to bottle feed their babies with formula milk. You will need to get sterilisation equipment and it is important to follow good hand hygiene when making up bottles, to prevent harmful infections. Visit NHS Choices for more bottle feeding advice.

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