Newborn at home: what to expect
Depending on how the birth took place, how the baby feels and where you live, discharge from the hospital may take place in a few days. If you had a birth that went without complications, you can immediately rest in bed. But regardless of the number of books on child care read and courses taken for pregnant women, when they are in their arms with their newborns, new parents will inevitably ask themselves: “What to do next?” This is normal – there is too much to comprehend. Do not rush, treat yourself softly and do not hesitate to ask for help.
Can I get support at home?
After giving birth, your doctor, specialist, or breastfeeding consultant should check how your baby is breastfeeding so that you can successfully start breastfeeding. Even if you were told that everything is in order, if in doubt, it is recommended to check the capture again.
In the first days of your stay at home you will be visited by a patronage nurse, she will also book you at the first appointment with the pediatrician. In the early days, the newborn can lose up to 10% of the weight, but by the fifth or sixth day, he should begin to recover and on the 10th-14th day, return to birth weight. If this does not happen, consult your doctor.
“I found that my baby had a shortened frenum of her tongue, only a few days after giving birth. In the maternity hospital, they told me that everything was okay with the grip of the breast, and I didn’t feel any pain while feeding, so we learned about the problem only because it did not gain weight. We had an operation, and after that everything was fine, ”recalls Emma, a mother from Australia.
How to prepare for breastfeeding at home?
Ideally, you should prepare in advance everything you need for the first day at home with the newborn: diapers and diapers for the baby, comfortable pillows, nipples, pads for the bra and healthy nutrition for the nursing mother. Choose a convenient and cozy place for breastfeeding. Keep in mind that you have to spend a lot of time there!
“After a cesarean section, it was too low for me to sit on the sofa, so we urgently ordered some pillows,” recalls Alex, a mother from the UK. – I arranged for myself two “feeding zones” – one near the sofa, the other near the bed. There was everything necessary: food, water, charging for the phone, lip balm, diapers and a remote control from the TV. Everyone was strictly forbidden to rearrange anything! ”
What care is required for the newborn?
Newborns are arranged quite simply. If the baby is full, it is convenient and calm for him, he will be well off to receive the most important thing – sleep!
In fact, in the first day of life, the newborn sleeps almost all the time. As a rule, the next day, as well as when milk arrives (usually two to four days after giving birth), he begins to wake up and ask to eat more often. Use the early days for relaxation and adaptation. Constantly keep the baby next to you so that he is calm – in the cradle near the bed, in the portable crib or in the sling if you are moving around the house.
It is only natural that the baby wants to be constantly in your hands – after all, for nine months he knew only you and getting to know the world can be frightening for him. When you, your partner or another reliable warm person hold the baby in his arms and gently rock, this calms him. Try to adapt to the needs of the child whenever possible. This period will end quickly: the baby will grow up and gradually learn to spend more time separately from you.
In addition, skin-to-skin contact stimulates the production of a powerful hormone, oxytocin, in both you and the child. Oxytocin is also produced when you are near a baby, look at it, hear it cry, or even just think about it. This amazing hormone contributes to the formation of a strong bond between mother and child, which lasts for life. In addition, it stimulates milk production during breastfeeding or pumping, so the closer you are to your baby, the easier it will be to start milk production and successfully start breastfeeding.
At this stage, it is impossible to spoil the newborn or to form “bad habits” in it, no matter what caring relatives tell you about this, so try not to pay attention to their advice. And do not try to set a feeding schedule for the baby – it is still too small, and in any case, many babies are simply not able to adhere to the schedule. Feed your baby whenever the first signs of hunger appear, such as getting wet, looking for a breast, or sucking. This will contribute to the production of milk. And feeding and the amount of wet and stained diapers can be tracked using a special application, for example, MyMedela.
Make sure your baby is getting enough milk. This is evidenced by how many times a day he urinates and empties. On the first day, the child should urinate once and empty at least once. The first stool – the so-called meconium – will be black and clammy.