Does your newborn seem to catch a new cold every month? Are you struggling to keep the sniffles away? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. In fact, a recent study conducted by University of Michigan Health System has discovered a major cause for infant illness sensitivity:

“What happens at early age is that natural killer cells, like many other immune cells, do not complete their functional maturation until adulthood,” says study senior author Yasmina Laouar, Ph.D., assistant professor in the U-M Department of Microbiology and Immunology.

”During this time we are left with an immature immune system that cannot protect us against infections, the reason why newborns and infants are more prone to infection,” she says.

Steps for Maintaining Newborn Health

While it’s impossible to avoid all germs, parents can take proactive steps to maintain newborn health, starting with choosing the right pediatric clinic. For instance, does your chosen pediatric clinic have “well” and “sick” child waiting areas? It’s important to separate the sick from the well at any age, but it’s even more essential when, for example, we have newborns coming for routine exams during the flu season.

Taking such factors into consideration could make a big difference in lowering your newborn’s risk of catching life-threatening illnesses. Here’s some more tips for ensuring that your newborn stay as germ-free as possible:

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About the Author

Dr. Katalenas

Dr. Katalenas is a pediatrician and owner of The Pediatric Center of Round Rock and the author of the book "The Step Up Diet: From Scratch… The Quality, Quantity, and Timing Solution to Childhood Obesity", a guide to healthy cooking and eating for busy families.