Before giving birth, you might think that you are well equipped for the first week with your baby at home. After all, you’d assembled the crib, stocked up on diapers, washed the tiny clothes, and hung the bright butterfly curtains in the nursery.
One might think that this is the necessary prep work for the baby’s arrival. But all this stuff is fluff when it boils down to getting through the maiden days of motherhood. That’s when you have to master versatile skills that you can’t practice or prepare for until the baby arrives, like breastfeeding, surviving on no sleep, soothing a crying child, and tackling other areas of uncharted territory. To help you ease into the first few days, we enquired experts and moms who’ve been through these circumstances and take on the most common challenges.
Your newborn will snooze up to 20 hours a day, but it will not be in long stretches – probably for one to four-hour spurts. If you can sleep at any hour and place, then by all means, nap when the baby sleeps. What if you’re a napper? Then enlist help, pronto. If a relative isn’t available to take over a night shift, trade-off with your husband. Have your husband keep the baby in another room whilst you get some much-needed rest and tell him to bring the child to you only when it’s time to nurse. Consuming vitamins and supplements from Pregnacare Plus will help you ease into the first few days of childcare.
Soothing the baby
Newborn babies, fresh out of the cozy warmth of the womb, crave continuous holding and soothing. Do not worry about spoiling your child – it isn’t possible. Instead, re-create the comfort of the womb. This can trigger a calming reflex in your baby. To do this we recommend swaddling, shushing, swaying, holding the baby on its side, and letting them suck on your finger.
Make plans to see a lactation expert immediately post-delivery. So that you will be able to handle any problem that might arise. Having an expert to guide you from the beginning to help you learn and understand latching, milk supply and positioning – and to boost self-confidence – help you understand the difference between a pleasant breastfeeding experience and giving up. Taking Pregnacare Conception tablets will give zinc and vitamin B6 which regulate the hormonal activity.
Expect to feed your baby once in every one to four hours – including the count from the start of each feeding. You will be glued to a rocker, couch, or bed whilst nursing your baby. Arm yourself with the TV remote or a magazine and keep water/juices and short eats close by.
Getting daddy involved
It is tricky to include the father for taking care of the child right off the bat, particularly if he doesn’t have time off from work or if mom is nursing. Ask dad to dive right in. Leave the room while he’s learning a new task so he won’t feel judged and can master it on his own, and he’ll be pushed to figure it out for himself.
The first bath
Relax, take it slow and enjoy your time with your baby. You’ll want to work around the umbilical cord (the faster it dries, the sooner it will fall off), a sponge bath is your secret weapon at this stage. Gather the essential and have them within arm’s reach – this way you can tend to the baby at all times.