Best Way to Take Care of Your Newborn Baby

By day five most new moms are home with their babies. Your imme­diate task is to take care of yourself and your baby, continue to rest, eat, and drink to regain your strength and heal. You’ll also be us­ing this time to get to know your baby. Your partner’s task is to rest, take care of all of you, and the baby, and help you get the rest you need.

When your baby is only 2-5 days old, you’ll probably make your first expedition out with your new baby to his or her initial visit to the pediatrician. Your pediatrician will already have theOBprovider’s delivery report, your baby’s record from the hospital, and any other important discharge information. A physical exam, height and weight measurement, another PKU test, and perhaps some vaccinations for your baby will be part of this first visit. Use the opportunity to ask questions about your baby’s behavior, feeding, and health.

Newborn Baby Best Way to Take Care of Your Newborn Baby

Your immediate days at home will probably be taken up with adjusting to your baby, particularly his or her sleep patterns. Your baby may sleep for anywhere between two to four hours at a time dur­ing the day or night. Most babies don’t sleep longer than four hours because their stomachs can only fill with enough milk to last a 2-4 hour period. They will awaken when they are hungry again. Thus, it’s likely that your own sleep patterns will be the same as your baby’s. So try to fight the urge to stay awake and visit or clean house; instead, take naps when your baby does. Rest is very important during your recovery and to help with successful breast-feeding. Listen to your body when it’s telling you it needs rest. Many pediatricians recommend going with whatever schedule occurs during the first week or so, realizing that the baby will probably sleep longer when it gets a little older.

Try to get help for meals and household responsibilities from fam­ily members or a close friend or neighbor the first week after getting home or plan on preparing meals ahead of time that just need to be warmed up and let the housework go. Later your partner can take on most of the household chores so you can attend to the baby and sleep. You’ll probably feel up to answering phone calls and receiving a few guests who want to congratulate you and meet your baby, but have your helper or partner be the gatekeeper, protecting you from calls and visits when you’re resting. Most people are sensitive to making sure you get your rest, especially if they’ve had babies and remember how tiring that first week home was.

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