Caring for a newborn baby is both exciting and overwhelming. Newborns spend their first few weeks acclimatizing to the new environment. While the baby cries a lot, it’s a great time to create a bond between mother and child. Before you get to week 10, when it gets a little easier, you need to keep going as you’ll remember the good moments more than the tough ones.
Here are four important things that any new mom can benefit by mental preparing for…
Handling a Newborn
You need to hire caregivers from the onset to determine whether they have the traits you need to raise the kid while you’re away. If you haven’t spent much time around newborns, their fragility might be quite intimidating. Consider the following tips:
- Use your palms to support your baby’s head and neck
- Avoid shaking your newborn
- Avoid using a carrier or stroller in the first four months
- Choose a medium-firm mattress
Since newborns don’t have a strong immune system, they are at a high risk of infection. While relatives and friends would like to help, don’t be afraid to place some restrictions. Ensure that everyone who touches the baby has clean hands.
Changing Your Baby’s Diaper
Before changing diapers, ensure you have everything you need so you don’t leave the baby unattended. You’ll need a clean diaper, fasteners, ointment, and baby wipes. Follow these steps while changing the diapers:
- Place the baby gently on the changing surface
- Unfasten, remove, and dispose of the diaper in a trash can
- Wipe the baby clean and apply ointments
- Wash your hands and use a hand sanitizer
After removing the diaper, wash the baby’s genital areas and apply ointment to heal or prevent rashes. Stock enough diapers to avoid frequent trips to the store. Maintaining high levels of hygiene helps the baby to sleep soundly and stay healthy.
Bathing and Dressing Your Baby
While bathing your baby, it’s essential to keep the umbilical cord dry to avoid infections. To avoid scalds, use your hands to mix cold water with warm water. Avoid using the common tub and buy an infant tub for your baby. When bathing your baby:
- Use warm water and test the temperature with your elbow
- Use regular (not antibacterial) soap
- Wipe the baby with a hypoallergenic, absorbent, and ultra-soft towel
- Swaddle the baby with warm clothes
- Use lightweight and breathable fabric in the summer to avoid overheating
Steer clear of lotions, antiseptics, and shampoos as they contain chemicals that might damage your baby’s skin. Most of these products contain allergens and irritants that can cause eczema, alter the hormone levels, or interfere with your baby’s normal development.
Breastfeeding as a New Mom
Breast milk has the perfect mix of protein, vitamins, fat, and everything the baby needs to grow. Since it strengthens your baby’s immune system, it reduces the risk of allergies and infections.
Here’s what you need to know about breastfeeding:
- Breast milk provides the ideal nutrition for babies
- It contains antibodies that fight off bacteria and viruses
- You need to breastfeed your baby at least eight times a day
- Breast pumps are ideal for working moms
- Breast pumps allow the caregiver to control timings when feeding your baby
Pumping your breasts can be rewarding for the baby as it stimulates milk production. You can either buy or rent a high-quality electric breast pump. Nowadays, most health insurance covers provide breast pump coverage with TRICARE. For the best outcomes, follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to use the pump.
Wash your pump flanges and breast milk storage containers in hot, soapy water. Rinse the equipment well and allow everything to dry before storage.
Keep your equipment clean by washing the tubing, flanges, and milk storage containers. Rinse everything well and allow them to dry. Store the pump in a sealed container to avoid dust or any other form of contamination. You can store refrigerated breast milk for six months.
Take Care of Your Baby While at Work
Balancing your baby’s needs and your work starts with hiring the right caregiver. If you find an attentive and trustworthy caregiver, you need to develop a healthy relationship as you highlight the baby’s requirements. Take the proper steps to ensure that your baby is well-fed, bathed, and kept warm while at work.
About the Author
Maggie graduated from Utah Valley University with a degree in communication and writing. In her spare time, she loves to dance, read, and bake. She also enjoys traveling and scouting out new brunch locations.