Does My Newborn Need PPE

May 29, 2020

Family Birthplace

father smiling at newborn

It’s a hot topic in the news right now: does my newborn baby need Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

Memorial Family Birthplace is here to help you make the smart, safe choices for your growing family. We know many of our parents-to-be are wondering if they should be purchasing PPE for their new baby, and we are here to give you a firm answer – no, you should not have PPE for your baby.

There is not a safe PPE option for newborns. Masks can make breathing harder for babies, and the elastic loops securing the mask can become dislodged and cause dangerous suffocation or circulation risk.

Tammy Narup, RN, Coordinator of Childbirth Education

parents smiling at newborm

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that masks are not recommended for children 2 years old and younger. Babies and toddlers have a harder time breathing when wearing a mask, and there is a higher likelihood of re-breathing too much CO2 – which is a suffocation risk.

Instead of PPE for your little one, Memorial Family Birthplace recommends upholding best practices for minimizing your family’s risk of COVID-19 and other illnesses.

Tips to Protect Your Newborn

  • Limit exposure to others – even grandparents
  • Stay six feet away from other people when you are outside
  • Try to avoid interaction with others
  • Practice good hand-washing hygiene
  • Use sanitizer each time before you pick up baby
  • You should wear a mask when you go out in public
  • Leave baby at home with a trusted adult whenever possible to avoid unnecessary exposure
  • Keep everything as clean as possible, especially high-touch areas like light switches and doorknobs
  • Wash baby's clothes separately from the family's

My best tip is to leave your shoes outside when you get home and clean them before you wear them again, because shoes pick up germs and toxins from everyday use. Also, toss everything you and your baby are wearing into the wash, just to be safe that you aren't spreading extra germs around your house.

Tammy Narup, RN, Coordinator of Childbirth Education

Newborn Visit to Pediatrician

With the arrival of a newborn – or even toddler or school-aged children at home – the need for regular pediatric visits is still there.

Tammy also suggests calling your pediatrician’s office before your visit to learn about new safety measures put in place. Many offices are offering different hours for well-baby and well-child visits versus sick child visits.

When you arrive at the pediatrician’s office, cover your baby’s infant car seat with a light blanket just in the lobby – while ensuring that the baby is still getting plenty of airflow. Once you are in your child’s exam room, make sure to remove the cover. Breathing too much re-circulated air is dangerous for babies.

It’s essential to stay on track with your baby’s checkups, even amid stay-at-home orders and physical distancing. The vaccine schedule is set by the American Academy of Pediatrics and will help to protect your little one from illnesses. At this time, there is no COVID-19 vaccine so diligent health safety measures are the best way to protect your family.

We’re Here to Help

At Memorial Family Birthplace, we are here for you and your growing family. Please call any one of our offices for more help: