While being a good mother is a daily challenge, it shouldn't be contradictory with retaining some sort of a social life and maintaining a healthy relationship with your partner, friends and family. However, there are times when choices have to be made and the right one is not always obvious.
One of my good friends is a real footy head. And lucky her, one year as a Christmas gift, her husband bought her good some really good tickets for a game. But between Christmas and the following footy season... she had a baby!
She was faced with a dilemma... What to do with her baby? Could they bring the baby to the game or was it too early? Would it be too loud for the baby?
Considering that a baby’s hearing is more sensitive than ours and that over half of all newborns with hearing loss go unnoticed, exposing a baby to loud sounds is something to be careful of.
Tracy Saunders, a registered Audiologist with the College of Audiologists and Speech Language Pathologists of Ontario, says: “Noise exposure does contribute to hearing loss and any sounds greater than 85dB may contribute to hearing loss. Infants are at a heightened risk because their ear canals are much smaller than ours. Decibel is actually a relative measure, and the standard of 85 is for an adult ear. Therefore, a sound of say, 80dB may not be too loud for us, but would be much louder in an infant's ear because of the smaller ear canal volume.” For more, visit Hearing Solutions.
A good tip to detect if a sound is too loud for your baby is that if you can talk easily over the sound, it shouldn't harm your baby's hearing.
That said, loud noises are not the only thing to be mindful of. The most common cause of hearing impairment in babies is ear infection. To avoid hearing loss from ear infections, in particular if they are frequent, a solution is to place grommets in the baby's ear canal.
|Grommets, also called tympanostomy or ventilation tubes, are tiny plastic tubes which are inserted into a small slit in your child's ear drum through a minor procedure. Grommets maintain normal middle ear pressure by allowing air into the space on the other side of the ear drum, from the outside. This reduces the risk of fluid building up in that space. If an ear infection does occur, the resultant pus flows out through the grommet, limiting the pain your child suffers. They come out after two or three years.|
Getting back to my friend's footy tickets story... what do you think she decided to do?
Well she wouldn't miss the game, nor the opportunity to enjoy those great tickets with her husband. So she did go, and took her baby with her! She bought some baby ear plugs (available at www.earjobs.com.au) to protect her delicate ear drums and cosily wrapped her in the Babynomade to keep her warm. Well prepared with the right equipment, they were able to enjoy their first game as a family!
Now over to you... did you have a make difficult decisions as a mother to maintain your social life? How did you handle them? We would love to hear about it in the comment’s box below!