Why Newborns Should Not Wear Hats

Newborns have just come into the world, they’re tiny and fragile, and absolutely require protection. Even though it might seem natural to put them in hats, it’s actually something experts advise against. Many parents think that covering their babies’ heads keeps them warm, not realizing that hats can actually be dangerous and cause more harm than good to the delicate newborn.


To begin with, we need to talk about how newborns regulate their body temperature. According to Neurological Pediatrics, most full-term newly born babies can regulate their body temperature thanks to a system in which their bodies work with the environment to balance the amount of heat they give out and the amount of heat they keep. This means that most, if not all newborns, don’t need extra help to regulate their temperature and that extra help in the form of hats and/or blankets can actually be dangerous.


Another issue with newborns wearing hats is that it can prevent them from being able to properly ventilate. As Pediatrico noted, hats can obstruct air to the newborn’s nostrils which can lead to overheating, as well as restrict their vision and cause discomfort. Since newborns have immature skin, the hats can also interfere with their absorption of Vitamin D and can even irritate their delicate skin.


Furthermore, newborns can also be sensitive to materials, so hats made from synthetic materials, wool, or other fabrics can be a source of irritation and discomfort. Additionally, hats might make it difficult for caregivers to properly monitor the newborn’s temperature and can interfere with devices they may be required to wear such as arterial line and intravenous catheter.


Lastly, hats can also impact a newborn’s feeding habits. According to Healthline, many newborns find hats inconvenient and uncomfortable, which can interfere with their ability to eat due to poor latching techniques or even prevent them from being able to latch at all. Moreover, hats can also lead to issues with the newborn’s breathing, which can cause a decrease in the baby’s appetite and often lead to dehydration.

Risk of Overheating

Hats can also cause a newborn to overheat, which is a serious health concern as it can cause a variety of issues such as seizures, dehydration, and even respiratory illness. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, newborns should not be kept in a room that is over 75 degrees Fahrenheit, or 24 degrees Celsius, as this can lead to overheating. Additionally, newborns should not be swaddled if the temperature is higher than this, as this can lead to
risks to the baby’s health as well.


Newborns can also overheat if they wear hats that are heavily insulated or made of materials that can trap heat, such as wool. It is important to make sure that the hats are made of light and breathable fabrics in order to keep the baby cool. Additionally, hats that fit too tightly can also contribute to overheating, so it is important to make sure the hat is not constricting the baby’s head.


Lastly, hats that are too large or too small can also cause the baby to overheat, as this can prevent the hat from properly fitting their head and may cause the hat to slip off while the baby is asleep. It is also important to note that even if a hat looks comfortable, it can still cause discomfort to the baby and put them at risk for overheating.

Medical Benefits of Wearing Hats

While there are risks associated with newborns wearing hats, there are also some medical benefits to hats, such as increased brain development. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, newborns that wear hats have an increased amount of brain development due to the warmth and comfort of the hat, and can actually lead to increased muscle development in the baby’s neck and shoulders as well.


Additionally, hats can help refresh and oxygenate the baby’s scalp and can even help to prevent flat spots from forming on their head. Furthermore, hats can also help to reduce the risk of newborns becoming cold and prevent them from becoming ill. While hats are not necessary for newborns to wear, they can have medical benefits and can be beneficial in certain situations.


Overall, it is important to remember that while hats can help to keep newborns warm and protect them from the elements, they can be dangerous and can cause medical issues if not used properly. While babies might be too young to tell their parents how uncomfortable they feel wearing hats, it is important to take these risks into consideration and make sure that the baby is comfortable and safe.

Temperature Control

The best way to keep a newborn’s temperature regulated is to rely on the natural differentials between their body and their environment. It is important to make sure that the newborn is not put in environments that are too hot or too cold, and that any layers used are light, breathable, and don’t trap too much heat. Additionally, it can be helpful to invest in monitors that help alert parents when the baby is too hot or too cold.


Making sure the baby’s skin is exposed directly to the air can also help to regulate their temperature, so parents should avoid any headgear such as hats, headbands, and bows. Additionally, it can be helpful to ensure that the baby’s room is not too hot, and to use a fan in order to keep the room cool. Lastly, the baby’s clothes should also be light and breathable, and parents should also avoid using any blankets or swaddling.

Clothing Alternatives

If parents are still concerned about their newborn’s temperature, there are still plenty of alternatives to hats that parents can use in order to keep their baby warm. For example, they can use light and breathable layers such as onesies or long-sleeved onesies, or they can opt for footed pajamas that will keep the baby’s feet warm. Additionally, parents can look into purchasing a sleep sack or a wearable blanket for the newborn in order to keep them warm and comfortable.


It is also important to note that the baby’s temperature can also be regulated by the quality of their sleep environment. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, babies should be sleeping in an environment that is no lower than 68 degrees Fahrenheit, or 20 degrees Celsius. Additionally, the baby’s sleep environment should be free of drafts, and parents should avoid using any type of battery operated devices or monitors.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the best way to keep a newborn’s body temperature regulated is to allow their bodies to do the work. To do this, parents should avoid using hats, blankets, or any type of clothing that traps heat, and should opt for lightweight and breathable layers instead. Additionally, parents should make sure the room is free of drafts and not too hot, and they should use temperature monitors if available. Ultimately, the best way to ensure the health and safety of the newborn is to trust their body and its natural ability to regulate its own temperature.

Roy Burchard

Roy S. Burchard is an experienced hat enthusiast and writer who has been writing about hats for over 20 years. He has a deep understanding of the history and styles of hats, and his writing focuses on the unique features of each type of hat, from fedoras to top hats.

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