Assuming your infant survives pregnancy and childbirth (uncommon enough as it was), you must keep the evil spirits and demons away. These demons snatch the youth from this world, and wandered the earth night and day, looking for unprotected children.
To deter the evil spirits and demonic beings:
As one of the oldest civilizations with written language and significant volumes of preserved texts, ancient Egypt is also the first civilization that has been found to have concrete records of medical professionals (who were, for the most part, not holy men). The Egyptians also had a fair understanding of what was inside the body, and how everything was connected.
Though magic and superstition played a role in Egyptian medicine, herbal remedies, massage therapy, and dietary recommendations were also used and recorded. The physicians in Egypt were far from the witch doctors of primitive tribes; even the ones who specialized in the more superstitious and magical aspects of medicine were generally well-educated and observant, and knew when a physician specialized in something else could better help a patient.
Much of our knowledge of ancient Egyptian medicine is gleaned from a few major papyri, though there’s evidence of it written and illustrated in many other places. The most significant papyri were:
The Smith papyrus introduced the concept of “An ailment I will treat”, “An ailment with which I will contend”, and ”An ailment not to be treated”. This system of a verdict based upon the diagnosis is so ingrained into medicine today that it seems crazy that there was a time where it wasn’t standard practice, doesn’t it?
The Greeks also recorded (and apparently admired) much of how ancient Egyptian medicine was performed. In the Odessey, Homer wrote:
In Egypt, the men are more skilled in medicine than any of human kind.
When Herodotus visited Egypt in the 5th century, he was similarly impressed, and mentioned in his Histories:
The practice of medicine is very specialized among them. Each physician treats just one disease. The country is full of physicians, some treat the eye, some the teeth, some of what belongs to the abdomen, and others internal diseases.
From what historians have learned about Egyptian medical practices, it’s pretty clear that though the ancient Greeks have long been considered the originators of medicine as a practice (separated from religion), the majority of their early knowledge was gleaned from the Egyptians, and it was not until near the end of the ancient Grecian society that truly new information was being recorded.
Über die anatomischen Kenntnisse der alten Ägypter. H. Grapow, 1935
In many civilizations, allegorical symbols of death, either religious or philosophical, are some of the most prominent themes within the arts, and within the culture of the populace. Death is the cessation of life - the person we knew no longer exists, that friend we had is now only in our memory. Such an event confuses and perplexes humans, and some representations of death are cultural cornerstones and embodiments of these emotions.
Here a few of the representations that were personified as deities or spirits.
Thanatos - Ancient Greece - Thanatos was a young winged male, the twin brother of Hypnos, god of sleep. He was generally just and gentle, in sharp contrast to his sisters, the Keres. They had talons and fangs, and were covered in blood, and represented violent death. Thanatos was not violent, or bad.
Ankou - The personification and watchman of the graveyard in Breton and Norman folklore, who was typically portrayed as a man wearing an old hat and a scythe, atop a cart for collecting the dead.
Yama - Known as varied names throughout the Asian world, Yama was originally a god of death within the Vedic mythology, and adopted into early Hinduism. From there, he was adopted into Buddhism, Chinese Mythology, and Japanese Mythology. Yama is typically portrayed with green or red skin, atop a water buffalo, carrying a length of rope which he uses to extract the soul from the corpse.
Tammuz - Akkadian god of death and rebirth in nature.
Erra - Mesopotamian/Sumerian god of war, death, and other disasters. More a destroyer god than a god of death itself.
Osiris - The Egyptian god representing death. He was a merciful and just judge of the dead in the afterlife, and represented the agency of the underworld that granted all life everywhere, all animals and all plants.
There are dozens of other deities called the god of death, from every point on earth. Though many are evil and negative, the majority are not. Most gods of death are neutral (signaling the undesirable nature of but inevitability of death), or are also the arbiters of rebirth. Death and birth are often linked with each other. Both are mysterious and unknown. One act creates those we know and interact with, and one removes those same people. Both events change the lives of everyone around them.