Going Out in Public

When can we take our baby out in public? 

Our Daddy MD Guide’s reply: I counsel all parents to use common sense. Hand hygiene is of the utmost importance with infants. Family members and friends are going to want to meet the new addition to the family. If people are sick or have a fever, they shouldn’t visit. And those who are well should wash hands before and after holding or interacting with infants.

As far as going out in public, I recommend avoiding very public places for at least a few weeks and even up to two months if possible. If it is necessary to go somewhere very public, keep the infant in his/her carrier and minimize physical exposure to those public paces. This is the approach we took with our own children, and it seemed to be successful for us.

Edward F. O’Neill, MD, a dad of six- and four-year-old sons and five- and two-year-old daughters and one on the way,  the medical director of the NICU at the Western Baptist Hospital in Paducah, Kentucky, and an assistant professor with the University of Louisville Department of Pediatrics.

Q&A by Wyatt Myers