If you’re a working new parent and can’t devote enough time to your child in their early years, you should probably consider getting a babysitter or put him/her in daycare. So when is the right time to put them in daycare? It is totally a decision to be taken according to your own needs, the time you can give and financial constraints. It is best to wait for as long as possible after the birth so as to help create a parent-child bond and a daily routine set.
This would place the ideal time to be around three to six months. However, many parents have short maternity or paternity leaves of four to six weeks. Since this would mean that your infant would be entering daycare at such a tender age, there are certain factors that you must keep in mind while choosing one. Look into the qualifications of the staff, their timings, infrastructure, ratio, etc. Speak to other parents about their experiences and reviews. Make sure that the centre has an on call pediatrician at all times, in case of untoward emergencies.
The other alternative that you have is to get an in-house care provider in the form of nannies and babysitters. Choosing a babysitter is very vital and often very stressful for young parents. This decision is important for how the child’s entire day is spent which is vital to his/her physical, mental, emotional, cognitive health. Scientific studies have established this direct link between good child care and their overall health. On the other hand, if the care given by a babysitter is of poor quality, it is detrimental to the child’s mental growth, and often makes them nervous and anxious.
There can be two kinds of daycares- residential and commercial, both of which have their pros and cons. Residential ones are those that are housed in someone’s home, and are ideal if parents are looking for a smaller and intimate environment for their child. They have lesser children in care and hence a better caregiver to childcare ratio. However since they are smaller in scale and operation, they often lack the infrastructure and facilities that may be available in commercial ones.
Commercial daycares on the other hand often function like a pre-school, with age-appropriate toys, books, games, etc. It provides a greater opportunity for the child to socialize with children their own age and to be adept in playing with different toys. This would not be an ideal option for children who are nervous with bigger groups of people. You could take trials at each kind to see which type would be suitable for your child.
There are several different kinds of nannies or babysitters available as well. The kind of babysitter you employ depends on the hours you need from them, the money you’re willing to dish out. It is important to have an excellent communication with the nanny, since they would be like a member of the family and be responsible for the all-round care of your child. Therefore, make wise and informed decisions and remember that it is always okay to triple check when it comes to your child’s care.
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