Monday, December 18

Newborns And Shoes

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The image of a newborn baby wearing a lacy pair of booties is a classic one, and is undeniably adorable. Department stores and online boutiques are full of endless varieties of newborn baby shoes, but are they really necessary?

We know that unless they are too tight, shoes do not necessarily impair the development of a baby’s foot. It is not until they become mobile that experts advise allowing them to go barefoot. They suggest that a barefoot child is better able to develop the muscles and balance needed for proper crawling and walking.

But, it seems that newborn and young infants can wear their shoes without suffering any consequences. There are several reasons why parents choose to put shoes on the feet of their young babies. Three of these reasons include keeping babies warm, keeping them stylish and following social expectations.

Warmth
Nobody likes the thought of a baby’s feet being chilled. So, we naturally place shoes and (maybe) socks on their feet to protect them from the cold. However, many parents don’t place much importance on keeping little heads warm with hats and such. Actually, most body heat is lost through the head. The old saying, “If your feet are cold, put on a hat,” should be mentioned here.

Style
Newborn clothes are undeniably cute. By the time they are born, many children already have dozens of outfits, most of them they will never wear. Parents, especially mothers, know that the perfect outfit is never complete without the perfect pair of shoes. Therefore, the clothing of little babies (including their shoes) reflects the fashion senses of their parents.

Social Expectations
Many people have seen signs in gas stations and restaurants that read, “No Shoes, No Shirt, No Service.” Because of this, people can assume that going barefoot is bad. Naturally, if barefoot adults aren’t fit to be in such public places, their barefoot babies shouldn’t be, either. (At least, in the minds of many parents.) Babies are often put in shoes for this reason.

Cute, But Unnecessary!

If you like putting shoes on your newborn baby, by all means, go for it! But you should not feel guilty for allowing your child to go barefoot. A happy medium could be putting soft socks on your baby. Chances are, your baby will be comfortable in her socks, even if she’s not wearing shoes!

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