Well, we've been there, and we're here for you, with everything you need to know to care for your baby in those exciting but often frustrating first weeks. Let's get started! Have your newborn "room in" with you rather than stay in the hospital nursery, and ask the nurses not to offer him anything in a bottle. Family and friends will want to visit as soon as possible, but you may want to keep them at bay for a bit so that you and your partner can spend time alone with your baby. Because a newborn is usually alert and receptive immediately after birth, it's the perfect time to bond , so look him in the eyes and talk to him.
He knows your voice from being in your body and may find it soothing. A cute going-home outfit is irresistible, but remember that babies cannot regulate their body temperature until they're about 6 months old. So dress your newborn carefully. Generally, he should wear the same amount of clothing as you, indoors or outdoors. Don't overbundle him—sweating can cause him to become chilled. Layers are a good way to go. Ask your partner to bring the seat to your hospital room when it's time to go home.
The basics:. Nursing may be natural, but it can prove difficult for some women. Breastfeeding seems to go more smoothly for women who nurse within an hour of delivery.
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Don't be afraid to request help—most hospitals have lactation consultants on staff. During the first six weeks, it's essential to let your baby nurse whenever he wants. Trying to establish a feeding schedule too early can backfire by interfering with your milk supply. Don't worry about having enough milk—the more your baby eats, the more you'll produce. Your baby needs to have a deep latch in order to get enough milk and to prevent your nipples from becoming damaged and sore.
Before you put him to your breast, position him on his side so that his belly is right up against yours. Then tickle his mouth with your nipple to encourage him to open wide; make sure he takes the entire nipple and a good portion of your areola in his mouth. Though not essential, a glider, rocker or cushy chair with an ottoman or footstool are helpful.
Wherever you nurse, have plenty of pillows for back support and to help position the baby properly at your breast , water, snacks, a good book and the TV remote. Drink at least eight glasses of liquids a day. Depending on your age, metabolism and activity level, your calorie needs will likely be 2, to 2, daily.
The good news: Breastfeeding moms tend to lose 1 to 4 pounds a month even with the added calories. The other parent may need to do something else to equalize time commitments.
Hiring in-home child care i. Payroll services can help you set up systems for withholding taxes. They would host an au pair and put their children in part-time day care or employ a full-time nanny for 40 hours and enroll a child in preschool. Mihalich-Levin suggests hiring neighborhood teenagers to come over on weekends for an hour or two while you are home, so that you and your partner, if you have one can tackle domestic tasks that are more challenging with toddlers underfoot.
Life happens. Nannies can care for moderately sick children, but nannies can get sick or have family emergencies too. Parents catch the same illnesses as their children.
Bad weather can close day cares and schools. Which parent covers which sick days? Kate Muller, a Seattle-based global health communications professional, reports that her family joined a backup nanny service in which a membership fee secured access to a group of screened, insured caregivers.
The New Mom's Guide to Life with Baby (New Mom's Guides)
At work, set weekly priorities I plan my weeks on Friday afternoons and schedule as many of these priorities for the beginning of the week as possible. Leave plenty of open space. Parents and non-parents all have the same hours per week, but parenthood creates enough time demands that hours can feel in short supply. Smart time management means focusing on the highest impact activities both at work and at home.
This applies at home as well. Time spent reading and playing with kids is more valuable than maintaining a daily vacuuming schedule.
New Mom Survival Guide
Q: Resistance to crib? Q: Newborn stress? Q: Sharing nighttime duties? Q: Parenting as a team? Q: Staying in touch with friends? Q: Baby poop? Q: Baby weight gain? Q: Baby bald patches? Q: Soft spots? Q: Crossed eyes? Want more options?
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