One of the hardest things about being a new parent is learning to read your baby's cues. Babies are obviously unable to fend for themselves in any way, so it's crucial that parents learn the signs of hunger, tiredness, sickness, temperature and so much more. However, some signs are harder to interpret than others and learning the signs your baby is too cold isn't always as obvious as you'd think.
According to InfantCPR, babies don't have the ability to self-regulate their temperatures like adults. Their bodies can loose heat through unprotected surfaces, like head, hands, or feet — called "radiated heat" according to Mayo Clinic. Similarly, if babies don't have enough layers on or are in a very cold room, being too cold and, in rare cases, experiencing hypothermia are real threats. Even in warmer months, it's important to monitor your baby's temperature to make sure they're warm enough, especially indoors. In the colder months, you'll need to keep an eye on their temperature outside as well as indoors.
As overwhelming as it may sound to have to learn all of your baby's cues, soon they'll become second nature. And once you do, regulating your child's temperature will be simple.
1. Their Hands And Feet Feel Cold
Although this is generally a poor indicator of your baby's overall body temperature — heat escapes quickly through the hands and feet and they're often the most exposed — Swaddle Designs noted that baby's feet and hands should be warm like the rest of their body. So if your baby's hands or feet feel cold, throw on an extra layer, just to be safe.
2. Their Torso Feels Cool Or Cold
If a baby's tummy or chest feels cool underneath their clothes, they're definitely too cold, according to Infant CPR.
3. They're Fussy For Seemingly No Reason
In the beginning stages of being cold, your baby may fuss when nothing else is wrong to let you know they're chilly. If this happens, simply add some socks or a warmer outfit and your baby will be more comfortable.
4. Their Room Temperature Is Too Low
According to the Baby Sleep Site, the optimal baby room temperature (regardless of how cold or hot it is outside) is between 65 and 70 degrees. Obviously, appropriate pajamas, swaddles, and blankets (if your baby is old enough), can be used to help regulate their temperature as well.
5. They're Still And Quiet
One of the more dangerous signs that your baby is cold is being very still, quiet, and lethargic. According to Medicine Net, these signs of hypothermia in infants shouldn't be ignored, as your baby's body can't heat itself properly at this point. Hold your baby next to your body to warm them up and then wrap them in enough layers to keep them warm.