We often see babies wear gloves or mittens to protect them from scratching their faces and insulating them from cold. Gloves are hand covering having five different sectional fabric for each finger, while a mitten only has 2. The smaller part is for the thumb, while the other part is for the other four fingers. Both serve protective functions, and the terms are often used interchangeably.
You can find different kinds of baby mitts or gloves like cotton mittens and silicone mittens for teething in different shops. Babies need to wear them for the first few weeks or months for their safety. But a question that many parents ask is how long do babies need to wear gloves.
Why Do Babies Need to Wear Mittens
Before buying a pair of mittens for your newborn, it is good to know why you are spending for a tiny accessory. The following are some of the reasons why you need to purchase at least one pair of baby mitts:
- Protect the baby’s hands from extreme weather conditions. This reason primarily applies to families in colder regions, where they experience autumn and winter. During these months, the temperature drops that it becomes unbearable even for adults. Baby mittens help babies brave the cold.
- Discourages babies from sucking on their fingers. One of the typical habits babies do is sucking their thumbs. Putting on gloves will discourage them from doing so since the material or fabric is unfamiliar.
- Discourages babies from biting on hands or knuckles. Another habit of babies, similar to thumb sucking, is the biting of their hands. With baby mitts, this can be prevented.
- Stops them from pulling on their hair.
- Prevents them from scratching their faces. This is one of the most common reasons why people find baby mittens necessary. Babies are still unaware of their actions or the results of it. Thus, they accidentally scratch their faces when they move too much.
In What Condition Should the Mittens Be in
Now that you understand why you need to purchase mittens for your baby, the next step is to research the conditions the gloves should be in while the baby uses them. The following are some of the considerations you have to remember to keep your babies safe while wearing the gloves:
- Keep the gloves dry. Moist or wet gloves are good ground for the growth of microorganisms, which can harm your baby.
- Keep the gloves clean. They may still put those gloves in their mouth, and when it’s dirty, it may upset their tummies.
- Change daily or whenever it becomes dirty during the day.
How Long Should My Baby Wear Mittens
Being able to pinpoint how long do babies need to wear gloves is a difficult task as babies are unique from each other. You have to observe, know, and understand your baby’s behavioral patterns to realize when they can finally take off the mittens. Even so, here are a few points to recognize how long do babies need to wear gloves.
- When they are a month or so, it is safe to take off gloves. At this time, babies will start exploring with their hands. It is advisable to stop wearing gloves early, so their motor senses can better develop. But be attentive since they will still scratch and pull.
- When you can trim their nails, take off the mittens. A baby’s nails can be soft and sensitive in the first few days of life, so parents are discouraged from cutting them. But when you think it’s safe to start cutting the nails, you can now take off the mittens.
- Ask your pediatrician. As was mentioned, it isn’t easy to accurately pinpoint how long do babies need to wear gloves. The best you can do is ask your pediatrician for some advice.
Why Should I Stop Making My Baby Wear Mittens
Although mittens keep the baby safe, many experts suggest against having them wear mitts for too long. They can hinder proper sensory development since they become deprived of the need to touch. The development of sensory functions, or lack of it, will also significantly affect the development of the child’s brain connection. So, if you find that it is unnecessary, we suggest taking off those baby mitts and letting your child explore. The following are a few tips to keep them safe from their nails:
- Use a nail cutter. This method is one of the more difficult ones you can try but is still highly effective.
- File their nails. A safer option compared to the nail cutter is to file their nails. It will take a bit longer, but it’s safer.
- Ask for help. In all of the procedures mentioned above, it is better to ask for help. With two pairs of hands, your baby can be safer.
Baby mitts have been extremely famous for newborns for many decades. They don’t only protect their hands from the cold, but they also protect them from themselves. When your child is ready, you can take them off and let your child’s hands be free. In the meantime, you can research on frequently asked questions regarding mittens, such as how long do babies need to wear gloves. Find out more about baby clothes.