Congratulations on the arrival of your newborn! Taking care of a new baby is a joyful yet challenging experience. Here are some important things to know about your newborn:
- Feeding: Newborn need frequent feed whether breastfed or formula fed as their stomachs are small. Typically every two to three hours.
- Diapering: Be prepared to change your baby’s diapers frequently, as they can have as many as 8-10 wet diapers a day. Proper hygiene is crucial to prevent diaper rash.
- Sleep: Newborns sleep a lot, but their sleep patterns are irregular. They may sleep 14-17 hours a day, but they will wake up frequently for feeding.
- Umbilical cord care: Keep the umbilical stump clean and dry until it falls, which usually happens within the first few weeks.
- Skin: Your baby’s skin is delicate. It is normal in many newborns to have dry peeling skin. This usually requires no treatment. Use gentle hypoallergenic products and be mindful of excessive exposure to direct sunlight.
- Hiccups: Hiccups in newborn are common and usually harmless. They can be caused by various factors, including feeding and swallowing air. Hiccups typically resolves on their own and don’t bother most babies.
- Swollen breasts: These are common and temporary occurrence due to maternal hormones received during pregnancy. It appears shortly after birth and can last a few months but is generally painless and resolves naturally.
- Spitting: Spitting up in newborns is common and normal, linked to an immature digestive system. It is usually harmless and small. Small, frequent feedings, burping and keeping the baby upright can help reduce it.
- Bathing: Use mild fragrance free baby soap and ensure the water is warm but not too much.
- Crying: Crying is a primary means of communication for newborns. They cry when they’re hungry, need a diaper change or are uncomfortable. Sometimes they cry for no obvious reason.
- Bonding: Skin-to-skin contact, cuddling and talking to your baby are essential for their essential for their emotional development.
- Baby’s safety: Use a rear facing car seat, maintain a smoke-free home, and keep small objects, choking hazards and cords out of reach.
- Poop: Initially, babies pass meconium, a dark sticky substance. This typically transitions to yellowish breast milk or formula poop (firmer and May have a different color)
- Urine: Newborns urinate frequently, with pale yellow urine being normal. There’s usually no strong odor. Urate crystals appearing as orange or pinkish spots are common.
- Hearing: Newborns can hear and recognize voices, especially their care givers. They are often comforted by soothing sounds.
- Smell: Babies have a keen sense of smell and can recognize their mother’s scent. Certain smells, like breast milk, are comforting.
- Trust your instincts: Every baby is unique, and parenting doesn’t comes with a one-size-fits-all manual. Trust your instincts and seek advice when needed.
- Sight: Newborns have limited vision at birth. They can see high-contrast patterns and objects up close, but their low range vision is blurry.
Remember, caring for a newborn can be demanding, and it’s okay to ask for help from friends, family, or professionals if needed. As your baby grows, you’ll learn more about their individual needs and preferences, and your parenting skills will develop. Enjoy this special time with your newborn and cherish the moments of growth and discovery.