New parent? It’s never too early to start looking for day care if you will be needing it. Consider the following:
- What kind of care suits you and your baby’s needs? Do you prefer a care giver who comes to your home? Or would you prefer to take you baby to the caregiver’s home? This is called family day care.
- Many parents choose day care centers. However, some centers do not accept infants.
- Day care centers must be licensed by the state. This will help ensure that the minimum health, safety and staffing requirements are being met.
- Whether or not the caregiver you select is licensed, you are responsible for making sure your baby gets the care you expect. Drop in from time to time. Get to know your caregiver personally.
- Can the caregiver provide the special individual care your baby needs? Each adult caregiver should care for no more than three or four infants.
- Each type of child care has advantages and disadvantages. Family day care often provides more personal care for infants and may be available night and weekends. On the other hand, caregivers may decide to give it up without prior notice, leaving you without childcare. Centers may be more reliable, but as the number of children increases the risk of spreading infections may increase and overall care may decrease.