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Is Newborn Photography Safe?

Ensuring the Well-being of Your Little Miracle

Newborn photography is a heartwarming art form that captures those fleeting moments of a baby's earliest days. It's a way to document your family as you transition to parents and big siblings. As a new parent, it's natural to have concerns about the safety and well-being of your precious bundle of joy during a photoshoot. In this blog post, I will address these concerns and shed light on how trained newborn photographers specialise in ensuring the safety of your baby at all times.

The Importance of Safety in Newborn Photography:

When it comes to newborn photography, safety is of paramount importance. Unlike other photography genres, newborns cannot follow directions or support their own heads, making it crucial to handle them with the utmost care and expertise. A trusted professional newborn photographer should have undertaken extensive training to master the art of posing, handling, and creating a secure environment for your little one. If you don't see any training listed on your photographer's website, it may be a good idea to ask where or how they've trained before booking in with them. They learn the best practices for newborn posing, wrapping, and soothing techniques. This training ensures that they can skillfully manoeuvre newborns into safe and adorable poses while keeping them comfortable and content.

Trained newborn photographers dedicate time and effort to acquire the necessary skills and knowledge. It can take several years to master the craft, and this is often reflected in the price of Newborn Photography sessions. It is also continuous, I still refresh my training, run model calls to practice new techniques and undertake first aid courses to ensure I'm aways up to date. I think it's probably the most important way I can show you how seriously I take my role of handling and working with your baby.

Newborn studio space with baby fox posing table

Creating a Perfectly Controlled Environment:

A professional newborn photographer's studio is specially designed with your baby's safety in mind. From the controlled lighting conditions to the temperature regulation, every detail is meticulously planned to provide a cosy and secure environment for both baby, and for mothers who have just given birth.

The studio will be equipped with everything you will need for your time there, so all you need to bring along is your baby's milk, and changing bag. In my own studio I offer breastfeeding pillows, a changing table, steriliser and bottle warmer as well as hot drinks, cold water and biscuits. There is also a toy area for when older siblings are finished with their photos, so they can relax and play or watch TV while I work with baby.

For Baby: Many photographers now use a specifically designed posing table or beanbag system that provides a firm surface with a small 'well' to prevent baby from rolling. Posing aids, and towels will then be used to elevate baby's head and neck to ensure airways are always supported and baby can lie comfortably and safely. A white noise machine, warm heater and vibration pad are all extras that can be used to keep your baby settled if you use these at home, and mimic being back inside the womb.

Safe Wrapping Tecnhiques and use of props:

Newborn wrapped in wool blanket and smiling at the camera

As I just mentioned, being back in the womb is a baby's favourite place. You may see many newborn photographers using wraps to swaddle a baby. This is a technique used to prevent the startle reflex. The newborn startle reflex, also known as the Moro reflex, is a fascinating and instinctive response displayed by newborns. When a sudden noise, movement, or change in position startles them, they react by throwing their arms and legs outward, followed by a brief pulling-in motion. This reflex is an ancient survival mechanism that helps protect the baby from potential dangers. By using a swaddle, baby relaxes much more easily, and it helps them to enter a deep sleep, or feel content while they look around the room. Sessions will usually start with baby wrapped, and as the session goes on baby will be unwrapped to show off their tiny details and baby rolls. Being wrapped is also a great help for sibling photos it means that arms and legs are safely tucked away, and they're nice and comfortable.

Sanitisation and Hygiene:

Hygiene is a top priority for Newborn Photographers. I maintain strict cleaning routine for all props and equipment used during the session. Before and after each photoshoot, all surfaces are thoroughly cleaned to prevent any potential risks, and any items that baby touches is washed after each session with delicate washing detergent. Hand sanitiser is used before handling your baby, and if I ever feel slightly under the weather, I will always aim to reschedule your session as I do come into close contact with your baby.

Collaborative Approach:

Experienced newborn photographers work closely with parents throughout the session. They communicate openly and honestly, providing insights into the process and ensuring that parents are comfortable with every step. Your input and preferences are valued, and the photographer will never force your baby into a pose that could compromise their safety. Before your session, I provide you with a prep guide, and when you arrive I will also make sure to check what you're aiming for, or if there's anything you have seen that you'd like to recreate. I then have a look at baby to see if it's achievable. Not every newborn can be posed in a certain way, and this may depend on a number of things, from how they were born, to any complications, conditions, or reflux, umbilical cords attached or just having a favourite position to turn their head. When parents can see what's doable and what's not, the session starts to flow based on baby's comfort and safety.

Baby sleeping in a knitted blanket

Soothing and Patience:

A skilled newborn photographer understands the art of soothing and calming babies. They have an innate ability to recognise your baby's cues and know when it's time for a break or a gentle repositioning. Patience is a virtue in newborn photography, and the photographer will never rush the process to ensure the comfort and well-being of your baby. Sessions are a lot longer than a usual photoshoot, and this allows for cuddles, feeding, and giving enough time for baby to go to sleep to prevent over tiredness.

Your baby's safety is never compromised during a newborn photoshoot. The photographer maintains continuous and vigilant supervision, ensuring that your little one is safe at all times. I will often ask parents to be spotter or assist me, to provide additional support or pass wraps or towels for baby.

In conclusion, newborn photography can be a safe and enjoyable experience for both you and your baby when entrusted to a trained and experienced professional. From creating a controlled and secure environment to employing gentle posing techniques, safety is always the top priority. So, if you've been hesitating to capture those precious early days of your little miracle, rest assured that with a skilled newborn photographer, your baby's safety is in caring and capable hands, and if at any time you don't feel your baby's safety is top priority, you are well within your rights to walk away from the session.

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