Fun Post...How taking care of babies has changed

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by DammitJanet, Apr 5, 2007.

  1. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    The post on poop reminded me of diapers but I have also been talking to other moms recently about how much better the products have become in the baby care arena.

    I dont consider myself that ancient (LOL) but when my oldest was born disposable diapers were awful! They were around but people made a conscious choice between cloth and disposables. And then when you made that had to decide on if you were going to wash them yourself or have a diaper service. I remember watching the trucks delivering diapers. It was a great baby shower gift!

    The disposable diapers were so thin back then and they gapped and leaked badly.

    By the time the next two came along disposables had improved but they were now really thick but they still leaked and didnt fit well. And they had tape that stuck on there permanently so if you missed, you either lived with it or used a new diaper.

    I remember buying these huge boxes of diapers for a weeks worth. Today you can fit the same amount into a package the size of 2 loaves of bread.

    Todays diapers are so thin and they have velcro tabs so you can take a peak and reseal them!

    And then there are the sippy cups. OMG! I remember the cups where the juice just poured out when the baby tipped the cup upside down. No more. Now they are spillproof. Not only that, they have various textures of spouts so that baby can adjust to going off the bottle with no problem. I love it! No leaks, no fuss, no mess!

    I love bringing up baby in the 21st Century!
  2. Ltlredhen

    Ltlredhen New Member

    My daughter (24) is always saying "didn't you have ..... back when we were babies?" To which I laugh and remind her that where we live they not only didn't have .......whatever but that we had no wallymart in which to buy the things. There were few and far between baby stores and they were usually speciality stores that were expensive. Now you can buy these baby convenience items at the local grocery store. I am just amazed at what is available these days.

  3. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    It's amazing how far we've come. I remember getting "the talk" at school and being shown how to use sanitary napkins. Each pack of 12 was big and bulky, like having a pillow packed in your schoolbag. And you had to wear a belt with them which snagged on other clothes and sometimes came undone. The elastic in the belt would perish and I'd be tying knots in it to make it stay up.
    My mother told me to be grateful - when she had been my age she had to use rags - cloth strips which they then had to wash out, boil and bleach at the end of their week and hang on the line. Like, the whole neighbourhood could look at your washing and know your cycle.

    Our pads - I went to an all-girls school and you got teased every time you were seen carrying ANYTHING into the toilet block. But you couldn't even stuff these pads into a pocket (assuming you managed a private moment in the corridor to get the thing out of your bag discreetly). They were just too bulky. I got into the habit of wearing them to school in layers - I'd simply remove one and the clean one would be underneath. Mind you, it felt like I was riding horseback all day.

    Nappies - I went back to work when each of my first three babies was 12 weeks old. easy child was very tiny and we used threadbare cloth nappies for the first two months, triangle folded one more time. Threadbare ones were the only ones you could do this with, being so thin, and she was too small for the next larger fold. But the child care centres all used disposable nappies. I got the hang of putting them on so they didn't leak too much. I also carried a roll of duct tape to put them back on if I goofed and didn't put the nappy on right.
    Then nappies improved and it was harder to tell if they needed changing. Elastic round the leg came in, which was easier on the baby. The child care centre bought bulk boxes of nappies - we did when we could and the boxes were huge! Then as technology improved, we got more nappies, in smaller packets.

    Now sanitary pads and nappies use the same brilliant technology. I'm fairly certain that the gel uses to absorb wet stuff is very similar to the stuff they use to analyse DNA. We used to make acrylamide gels in the labs where I worked, these were used for running nucleic acid analyses. But dried and ground to a powder, these things are amazing when it comes to absorbing water. They're also fairly inert, chemically. They use the same things as wetting crystals used to make soil more water-holding. So now, one more thing we're told you can do to re-use disposable nappies - remove the water crystals and use them in the garden. Any paper that you put in the garden with the rest of the nappy contents will break down. Just don't bury the plastic parts. I no longer have babies in nappies at home, so I can't use this trick myself. I think I'm glad about that, frankly.

    But how's that for going full circle?

  4. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    I like how they teach the babies sign language before they can even talk. kaleb could say thank you, cookie, love you, please, and a few other things before he spoke one word!
  5. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    Sippy cups, baby bottles,disposable diapers,baby monitors,car seats,strollers, baby clothes have all improved dramatically. I love the variety and user friendly innovations.

    I remember boiling bottles and nipples for baby sis. Formula was made with karo syrup.
  6. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I know Fran...Boiling the bottles and nipples! And my formula was made of evaporated milk and karo syrup. Imagine that...its a wonder I am alive

    I just wash Keyanas bottles and nipples in the sink and dry them. Actually now I almost have her off the bottle completely. She would be if her mom would leave her alone. Bottles are easier for day care. The kid loves her
  7. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    Just a word of caution......those sippy cups aren't COMPLETELY leak proof! If they shake them, or after a while the seal isn't so great. You should've seen my carpet before I had them cleaned. I have light grey carpeting (was here before we moved in) and it shows all the little droplets of apple and orange juice!

    But you are right....Battery operated swings instead of the wind up ones. Baby Mozart videos, pull ups, convertible car seats, all the cool baby toys. They even have entire "Big Box" stores totally devoted to the Baby Industry. It's much easier.
  8. skeeter

    skeeter New Member

    Vic Mills is the person at Procter and Gamble that "invented" the disposable diaper. In his honor, the highest technical level a person can achieve is the "Vic Mills" level (or T8 on the scale).

    I've heard the story numerous times that when Vic was first working on the concept diaper, he had some at home and one of his younger children threw one in the toilet and it absorbe the entire amount of water in the bowl!! The engineers also made a "movable" doll to test diapers on to see how they would gap after a child had moved around in them for a while. That doll is in the company historic archieves!

    Unfortunately, both of my kids broke out if they wore disposables, so I had to use cloth. I did use a diaper service, however. I always said the absolute, worst job in the entire world would be the diaper truck driver on a hot August afternoon!!! But that bag full of 80 clean, soft, diapers was wonderful to open. I "purchased" 2 dozen of them when NL was finally potty trained so I would have lots of great dusting and polishing cloths.
  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    How could I forget the videos!

    We are already doing Muffin Man and Patty Those are her special times with Papa. They watch the video and do the hand movements together...lmao. When he walks in the door she starts moving her hands like the Muffin Man song and going "Mmmmmmm"

    Ok...yes....this baby has us whupped.
  10. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    My girlfriend's 5yo was here for an afternoon-through-dinner play date with Duckie. This child had never seen a carrot stick before, only "baby" carrots that are dip ready. :rofl:
  11. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I found out how much water those disposables could absorb when easy child was a baby and we were visiting my parents. My mother was outside hosing her garden and my father was used to washing up after dinner, but we chased him away and asked him to take the baby outside so both grandparents could enjoy her together. My father was grumpy and did it in bad grace, we felt a bit guilty for changing their routine. But when we had finished cleaning up we heard giggles from all three of them and tiptoed outside.
    In the twilight, my mother was flicking the hose onto easy child, who had her hand outstretched from the stroller to play in the water stream, a big grin on her face. Every time the water flicked her way she giggled and that set off both grandparents. I don't know how long they'd been playing at this - my mother had sat herself down on the picnic chairs, so they'd been at it for some time - we snapped a photo when they weren't looking, it's one of my favourite memories of my parents, playing with our daughter.
    And easy child, when they finally brought her inside, was soaked to the skin. Her nappy was so heavy from soaking up water from the hose, the stroller was soaked - even the grandparents were soaked.

    One other overloaded nappy incident - we were holidaying in Perth and had visited a toy shop in Fremantle (lovely place!). easy child 2/difficult child 2 was 15 months old and had fallen in love with a wooden flappy duck toy in the store, wouldn't leave until we bought it. It was so gorgeous that we gave in and it's still a treasured toy.

    But we'd been away from our accommodation for too long and had not brought a spare nappy with us. It had been a hot day and she had been drinking a lot, the nappy was as loaded as easy child's after the hose play with grandma & grandpa. But we were driving a borrowed, extremely clean car and had half an hour's drive to get back to our supplies. What could we do? As soon as we sat easy child 2/difficult child 2 down the nappy would leak just from sheer pressure of body weight.
    No worries - husband is ingenious. He got a plastic shopping bag (the thin kind that we get at grocery stores) and cut two small holes in each lower corner. We threaded the baby's legs through the holes, stretching the plastic round her thighs for a snug fit. The handles on the plastic bag then slipped neatly over the baby's shoulders. She sat in the car with no leakage, although when she got out of the car she rustled when she walked. Flamin' brilliant! One clean, dry car and one contained overloaded baby.

  12. 1905

    1905 Well-Known Member

    Things have changed for handicapped kids as well. We have an autistic boy who will never make eye contact, completely in his own world, yet has this little computer he wears that talks for him. He presses the pictures and a voice comes out. He says , "I want to go outside, I want to go to the bathroom, he tells us what he wants to eat-even in the cafeteria-It is a miracle, before his "talker", last year he just would hand us the picture. Another autistic boy who is in Pre-K, very smart, yet cannot speak, not potty-trained-yet can go to the computer and play on the Teletubbies website, and Sesame Street. He can get to them himself! and would be on the computer all day. He does his schoolwork on there as well! There is so much for these kids that wasn't there just a few years ago!!!-Alyssa
  13. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    Marguerite, :rofl: I love the grocery bag "onesie" for easy child's loaded diaper. Really creative. I bet it was cute.

    Upallnight,the strides for children with disabilities, weaknesses and learning different are incredibly wonderful. difficult child had an alphasmart that helped him. He had software that converted spoken words to text(not perfected yet) but there are wonderful strides happening.
  14. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    I remember my mother making formula out of Karo syrup and evaporated milk when my brother was a baby!

    And I remember making and sterilizing the bottles of formula for my own kids, but at least I could pour theirs out of a can! I had the glass bottles and the big covered metal pan with the rack inside for the bottles. Actually, I used to do this late at night and was in such an exhausted haze by that time, I hardly remember doing it! I was soooo glad when they outgrew having to have the bottles sterilized! It's a HUGE chore when it's 2:00 a.m. and your knees are wobbling because you're so tired!

    When I switched to the plastic bottles, we bought one for my son that he loved so much, he insisted on using only that one, right up until he started drinking out of a cup! I wish now that I had saved it. It was a little plastic Barney Rubble from the Flintstones and "Barney" was around for so long, he became almost like a member of the family! :biggrin:

    And another thing, I have always been infinately grateful that my kids came along BEFORE there was Barney the Dinosaur! My son was a Sesame Street addict from a very early age and never missed an episode. I LIKED watching Sesame Street too! But I just could NOT have handled "Barney" ... all that "I love you, you love me.." makes me want to gag! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/sick.gif Nope! Ol' "Barney" would have driven me right up the wall!
  15. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I recall the cloth or disposable diaper delimma. And I thank God disposables greatly improved by the time easy child was born so I didn't have to worry about it. lmao

    I recall the Carnation Instant Milk and Kayro Syrup formula. My cousin used it for her twins because it was cheaper. doctor just had her add vit drops.

    Hmmmmm, I also got in on a great deal when T was a baby. P&G called me and asked if I'd like to test a new type of diaper they were going to market. So for 9 months I didn't have to buy a single diaper. It was the first one that the tabs could be removed and resealed. I could've told them in the first week I loved them. :biggrin: Once the trial was over I begged them to tell me when they'd be in stores. lol

    Baby monitors have gone the spectrum. Aubrey's not only lets you listen to baby, but it has a video camera so you can watch everything baby does while you're not in the room. mother in law bought it for N.

    Here's one.... The taste of baby food. Baby food used to be like normal food you ate. It had flavor and tasted good. Now it has no seasonings, and most of it is disgusting. I know it's supposed to be healthier. (I have my doubts) But ewwwww. No wonder when the baby's in our family start tasting table food we have a fight to get them to eat the baby food. :crazy2:
  16. catwoman2

    catwoman2 New Member

    Eve the advice has changed. When easy child was a baby, we put him to sleep on his tummy to prevent choking in case he spit up, but with difficult child, we were told to put her to sleep on her back or side to help prevent sids. I remember being afraid that she would spit up during the night and choke on it.
  17. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    I know there must be a lot to this or they wouldn't be advising new parents to put their babies to sleep on their backs or their sides now. And the hospital nurseries put them on their backs.

    But just out of curiosity, if a newborn is on their back and they spit up ... where does it go? Could they or would they be able to turn their heads far enough to the side for it to run out?

    My sister in law could never make herself put their newborn grandson to sleep on his back because she was afraid he'd choke if he spit up. For naps, they'd put him on his side on the sofa with his back up against the back of the sofa, then put something in front of him so he couldn't roll off.
  18. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    They say that babies will naturally turn their heads and it will just roll out.

    I put difficult child on her back and she slept terribly. I started easy child on his back and he wouldn't sleep. I put him on his belly and I never had a problem.

    I've read reports that SIDS increased highly when they began making flame retardent crib mattresses. Something to do with baby's drool creating some kind of mold in combo with the chemicals used in the flame retardent process. Baby's breathe it in and causes SIDS. I'm sure it's not the only reason to cause SIDS, but I highly recommend buying a plastic crib matress protector.
  19. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    On safety issues - I remember when I had the first couple of kids, the hospital nursery had us use salt to clean out the baby teat before putting it in the sterilising solution. I was expressing milk and bottle-feeding both my first two because easy child was too tiny and weak to feed normally, and difficult child 1 was in a humidicrib "under the lights" for several days. I had enough milk to feed an orphanage. But I remember the container of salt by the sink.
    So did mother in law. She had been a charge sister in a maternity ward in a Sydney hospital some years earlier. One night when mother in law was actually home and not on duty, a junior nurse who was making up formula for the bottle-fed babies got the containers mixed and instead of using lactose powder, she used the salt. A number of perfectly healthy babies died. Although she hadn't been on duty at the time, mother in law had to go to court to give evidence. The whole experience really scarred her - carelessness mainly, was the cause of death. I don't think she's ever got over it. And thanks to that incident, we no longer have containers of salt in maternity wards. It wasn't an issue for my ward because the baby formula was already made up and bottled, delivered by Nestlé.

    I wanted to put difficult child 1 to sleep on his side or back, but the prohibition to not do so was intense. Sleeping on the tummy prevents cot death, we were told. And he hated sleeping on his tummy. Then, a few years later, we were told, "NEVER sleep them on their tummy, it causes cot death."
    Thanks to my time hanging around some blokes doing research into SIDS, I already had my own ideas by then. But it was yet another classic example of scientists insisting that black is white before they've had a chance to really test it thoroughly.

    One thing about modern baby care that worries me - it's the insistence on everything being sterile. When we go overboard on this we reduce the opportunity for the baby's developing immune system to 'learn' about antigens in our world. There is considerable evidence to indicate that over-protection of babies in this way is a factor in increasing tendency to allergies in our children.
    My mother would insist on boiling baby's drinking water, but in her words, "only until the baby started drinking their bath water. When they start sucking on the face cloth, it's time to stop boiling their drinking water."
    My sister had a dog, so she was very thorough about cleaning up droppings in the yard. Even when she was sure she had removed absolutely everything, the baby would somehow manage to find something she'd missed. So she felt that there was no point continuing to boil the drinking water of a baby who found and sucked the dog's old bone or tennis ball (or worse).
    I used to boil easy child's drinking water in her first few months, but when she had her first immunisation at 2 months she got a bit feverish. I got up late at night to give her some baby paracetamol which was supposed to be diluted in water. I was too tired to think, and just used tap water. Of course she didn't get sick, so from that point on, I didn't bother to boil her water. I did the same with the other kids.

    Mothers used to dip a dummy (pacifier) in honey - a bad habit because developing teeth will rot. But years ago, it was a common thing. Putting baby to bed with a bottle - also used to happen a lot, but tooth decay is only one reason to not do it. My oldest sister adopted a little girl who would ONLY have her bottle cold, in her bed. You couldn't hold her to give her a warmed bottle - very sad. She had been badly malnourished and for years we blamed it on her apparently being put to bed to have her bottle. Then she grew up, her her own kids and her fourth, a girl, had big problems feeding. The doctors treated this experienced, loving mother as a neglectful abuser, until her own medical history shed light - it is likely the daughter inherited a digestive problem that was never diagnosed in the mother, the little girl my sister adopted. Yes, my niece HAD been neglected, but there was probably an underlying disorder. Her baby is doing fine now, but only thanks to more modern medical knowledge and understanding.

    We've just had a series on Australian television called "Saving Babies". It was hosted by one of our newsreaders whose twin girls were themselves born premature and in need of serious intervention. She went back and did the series as a thank you to the hospital that saved her girls. The show was incredible - they showed open heart surgery on newborns, brain surgery, reconstructive surgery within minutes of birth (to a baby born to the niece of a neighbour of ours) and we could see just how amazing medical progress has become. These babies have not only had their lives saved - small gift if it comes at a huge cost physically - but they are, in just about all cases, living a healthy, normal life unaffected by any lasting disability. This is amazing. In years past, the oxygen given to save the lives of really premature babies sent them blind. Now they understand and can prevent this.

    When I was pregnant with easy child ultrasounds were new. The image on the screen was a still slice of what the sound waves sent back. It showed a fragment of where the baby had been seconds before.
    When I was pregnant with difficult child 3, the ultrasound was amazing - it showed him moving, in 3-D and I could see his face. We could study his tiny body and count the chambers of his heart and follow the ureter down from his kidneys to his bladder, and know he did not have the defect that I was born with. That ureter must have been as thin as spider silk, but the ultrasound could see it.

    But to see his face before he was born - that was a gift!

  20. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    All of my kids were put to sleep with a bottle. easy child used a binky dipped in sugar. (can you believe?) All of my kids have beautiful teeth. Some of that depends on genetics, too.

    I won't put a tiny baby to sleep on their back for nothing. My brother almost choked to death that way at 6 weeks on coagulated milk in his throat. Although I have propped with blankets so they can sleep on their sides. Mine all preferred their tummy's and slept that way.

    I never sterilized a single thing my babies ever used. I simply washed them the regular way. My kids have healthy immune systems. And they were rarely sick as infants. Nor did I protect them from common illnesses such as colds and the like. Mostly because by the time a person has the symptoms of a cold or such they've already been contagious for a while.

    My girls have done the same with their kids.

    Luckily I can say that my kids never decided to chew a used dog bone. :rofl: Although grandbaby Aubrey decided to taste dirt the other day. lol