Infant Child Care

What Your Baby Needs

It will soon be time to return to work, and you might be feeling a bit overwhelmed at the prospect of leaving your infant with someone else during the day. If you've planned in advance and done some research to find the best care for your baby, all will be well.

Here are a few things to look for when considering what your infant needs from his caregiver:


Most states have a licensing process for in-home caregivers; a daycare center absolutely must be licensed to operate their business. Specific state websites are available that will outline the requirements for licensing; some states even offer referrals to quality care. No matter which kind of care you choose - make sure that your provider has some early-childhood education and even some certifications. Everyone who cares for your infant should have basic first aid and CPR certification.

Provider/Child Ratio

An infant needs and deserves lots of love and attention throughout the day. The ratio of providers to infants should never be higher than 1:4. If you are able to afford one-on-one care for your baby, she will no doubt benefit in many ways, but even if your childcare center has a higher ratio, a properly trained, loving caregiver can still provide great care to your infant.


There can simply not be enough said about the effects of television on small babies and toddlers. Numerous studies show that even children's programming is inappropriate for this age-range. Babies need to be exploring their world, and interacting with caregivers. Make sure that your daycare center, home daycare or nanny doesn't keep the television blaring in the background all day. Your child will have plenty of time to develop a love for sitcoms and Sesame Street!


Child care centers, and in-home daycare centers should all be thoroughly baby-proofed. Vigilance to safety can be the difference between life and death (or serious injury) to your child. Don't be afraid to ask lots of questions, and get down on hands and knees to check out that outlets have been covered, cords are tucked away, and there are no buckets of water sitting around for little ones to take a dive into. Check out the childrens safety network for more info on baby-proofing and accident prevention. Child care providers should also have smoke detectors installed, and have a working fire extinguisher at the ready, in addition to having basic first-aid and CPR training.


You want your baby to be as healthy as possible, and cleanliness is one of the best ways to keep her germ-free and happy. Make sure that her caregivers are washing their hands frequently, and keeping the child care areas clean and free of debris. If your baby is being cared for by an in-home provider, make sure that any pets in the home have been properly vaccinated and are never allowed near the baby while unattended.

Lots of love and affection

The most important thing to remember when choosing infant care is that your baby needs constant love and affection. Find a caregiver that is committed to spending quality time with your child, and is willing to assist her development every day. Baby should bond with her caregiver, Lucky baby - she has one more adult in her life that loves and cherishes her!