Break down of 5 common childcare myths

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“We love our kids, we don’t want to see them cry, we instantly look for things to fix and that’s why [parents] present to a pharmacy,” said Pharmacy Proprietor* Jana Pratico.

In the October feature, ‘Babies can cry a river’ we explored some of the main reasons that newborn babies may experience excessive crying.

Retail pharmacy assistants play an important role when it comes to a parent and their young child’s health. Therefore, we’ve broken down some of the top myths when it comes to a newborn baby.


  1. Picking up a crying baby will spoil them: A lot of parents are unsure if they should pick up their baby when the baby cries. However, a study between QUT and Riverton Early Parenting Centre has found that, “Babies in the first 12 weeks of their life need highly responsive parents. They want and need a parent that is responsive to their cries,” said Professor Karen Thorpe from QUT (QUT, 2006).
  1. Babies need to be bathed every day: Young babies don’t need to be bathed every day, unless they enjoy it. They just need their face, neck, hands and nappy area to be kept clean (Pregnancy, birth & baby, 2018). Three times a week will be enough, otherwise their skin may become dried out (Mayo Clinic, 2019).
  1. Teething can cause a fever: While many parents believe that teething can cause a fever, there is no evidence to support this. Teething may slightly increase a baby’s temperature, but not enough to spike a fever. Symptoms from teething include drooling, rash on face, gum pain, chewing, fussiness/irritability and trouble sleeping (Healthline, 2019).
  1. Putting honey on a dummy will help with teething: Adding sugar, honey or jam to the tip of a baby’s bottle or dummy will not help pain relief but cause dental decay (ADA, 2016).
  1. You need to clean the baby’s cord with antiseptic and alcohol: There is no need to clean a baby’s cord stump. Cleaning it as part of the baby’s usual wash or bath and drying gently is enough. Using other products may cause infection (Pregnancy, birth & baby, 2018).

Check out the October issue of Retail Pharmacy Assistants magazine here to read more on taking care of young children!


*Jana Pratico is a Pharmacist Proprietor at Mundaring Village Pharmacy, Gidgegannup Pharmacy, Midland Pharmacy & Compounding Centre.


  1. Queensland University of Technology, 2006. For Crying Out Loud – Pick Up Your Baby. Viewed 23 Oct. 19.
  2. Pregnancy, birth & baby, 2018. Common myths about babies. Viewed 23 Oct. 19.
  3. Mayo Clinic, 2019. Baby bath basics: A parents guide. Viewed 23 Oct. 19.
  4. Healthline, 2019. Can Teething Cause a Fever in Babies? Viewed 23 Oct. 19.
  5. Australian Dental Association, 2016. Terrible Teething Soothing your teeth tot. Viewed 23 Oct. 19.,-soothing-your-teething-tot.pdf.aspx