Keeping baby healthy and safe
Find out more about ways to help with ensuring your baby safety and where to get support.
To find out information on keeping your baby safe while sleeping:
- Keeping baby safe in bed - first 6 weeks
- Helpful advice for during the first year - baby sleeping and settling
Coping with a crying baby
All babies cry. Crying can mean hunger or a dirty or wet nappy, or they may just need a cuddle, a song, a walk or a ride to soothe them. Ministry of Health has advice on coping with a crying baby
Smokefree home and car
Cigarette smoke is very harmful to your baby, both during pregnancy and after birth. Read the Ministry of Health information about having a smokefree home and car.
Southern Stop Smoking Service – provides a free Southern wide service offering one on one support to help you stop smoking. There is a Pregnant Women Stop Smoking Incentive Programme to support and encourage pregnant women to become smoke free. There is also Smoke Free Families Incentive Programme, which is offered to parents and family members who smoke in the primary home of a child who has recently been admitted to hospital for a tobacco associated health issues (ie respiratory infection or glue ear). Find out about the Kaitahu Southern Stop Smoking service.
Drug and Alcohol
Stop smoking, drinking alcohol or using drugs if you could be pregnant, are pregnant or are trying to get pregnant as this affects your baby and can cause health problems. Read the Ministry of Health information about stopping smoking, drinking alcohol and using drugs during pregnancy.
Car Seat Advice
Find out from Plunket about their car seats service.
Your Midwife, GP and Well Child Tamariki Ora provider will discuss with you immunisations for your baby, which start at six weeks of age. Immunisations are detailed in baby’s Well Child Tamariki Ora book.
Newborn hearing screening
Newborn hearing screening, which is offered to all babies born in New Zealand, checks whether your baby is hearing well. The test, which is non-invasive is undertaken as soon as possible after birth. If this check occurs early, then baby can get any help needed as soon as possible. This can help baby’s language, learning and social development.
You may feel down after having a baby – known as the ‘baby blues’. These feelings usually only last a day or two. If the blues don’t go away, you may be developing postnatal depression. Ask for help. Postnatal depression can be treated. Find out more about postnatal depression on the Ministry of Health website.
Choosing your Well Child Tamariki Ora Provider
Baby is entitled to receive free Well Child Tamariki Ora services. This is a screening, education, development and support service offered to all New Zealand babies and their whanau/family from around six weeks to five years of age. Your LMC will discuss this with you. Well Child Tamariki Ora services help to ensure baby grows and develops to their full potential.
You can choose a Well Child Tamariki Ora provider from the list below:
- Plunket Otago, phone 03 474 0490, web www.plunket.org.nz
- Plunket Southland, phone 03 218 4764, web: www.plunket.org.nz
- Arai Te Uru Whare Hauora, Dunedin, coverage area from Balclutha to Palmerston (includes all of Dunedin) phone 03 471 9960, web www.araiteuru.co.nz
- Awarua Whānau Services, Invercargill, coverage area from Bluff, Invercargill, Gore district, Stewart Island, phone 03 218 6668, web www.awaruashs.maori.nz
- Pacific Trust Otago, Dunedin, coverage – Dunedin, phone 03 455 1722, web www.pto.nz
- Maniototo Health Services, coverage – Ranfurly/Maniototo, phone 03 4449420,