As a soon-to-be mom, you may wonder what your newborn will look like, and how are you supposed to care for her. Are you losing your sleep over your little one who will fill your life with joy and laughter? Do you wonder what she will look like when she makes her grand entrance?
If these questions have been making you anxious, then it’s time to ease your worries. Read our post below for the things to know about newborns.
15 Things To Know About Newborns:
You may have heard a lot about how a newborn will bring about a sea of changes in your life, but there are so many aspects to life with a newborn that you don’t know yet. So, here are 15 things that probably tell you everything you need to know about newborns
1. Newborns Look Old And Wrinkled When They Are Born:
It’s true! You probably saw pictures of new moms holding their perfectly cute newborns, complete with a rosy face and that cute tiny smile and those angelic eyes and tiny fingers. In reality, a newborn baby looks nothing like this:
When a baby is born, the skin is extremely wrinkled and full of a gooey white film, which also covers the newborn’s eyes and the entire face. The eyes will also be puffy and closed, not wide and open as you may have believed it is at the time of birth.
A newborn will also have a layer of fine hair all over the body, which can make you worried about your baby growing up to be too hairy. In reality, it is known as the lanugo, which is the layer of hair that protects your baby while inside the womb.
If you have a vaginal birth, your newborn’s head can look a little out of shape because of the journey through the birth canal.
2. Newborns Will Only Poop And Spit In The First Few Weeks – A Lot:
Here is yet another things to know about a newborn. While you may feel that your newborn is a tiny bundle, you will be surprised at the amount of waste matter your newborn can create, especially in the first few weeks!
In the first few weeks after birth, almost till the first couple of months, your newborn will poop and spit and pee so much that it will confuse you where so much matter is coming from.
In most cases, you will have to change your newborn’s diapers or nappies at least once every half an hour or so. When your newborn spits at almost the same pace, you will have to change your newborn’s clothes and many times, yours as well.
Not only do newborns poop a lot, but they can also poop with an explosion to accompany it. Many times, you will be surprised to see that you put your newborn in a fresh diaper to go to the doctor’s visit, but that it all spilled out due to a poop explosion.
3. Newborns Will React Much For The First Six Weeks:
As a new parent, you probably want to see your newborn look at you and smile and acknowledge your presence.
Be prepared to be disappointed, at least for the first six weeks or so after your baby is born.
In the first few weeks and months, your newborn will barely have time to do anything else but to feed, spit it out, poop, pee, sleep, cry, feed, spit it out, poop, pee, sleep and continue the cycle, in almost the same order through the day as well as through the night.
While you may feel that you are caring for a little one who does not even realize you are there, do not give up on your hope, as your newborn might surprise you with that amazing smile!
4. Do Not Give Your Newborn A Proper Bath Till The Umbilical Cord Drops Out:
Once you bring your newborn home, you want to take care of all your baby’s needs, including feeding and cleaning, but make sure how you do it and when.
In the initial few weeks after birth, your newborn will still have the stump from the umbilical cord intact, and the area can be raw and rather sensitive.
Until the time the stump from the umbilical cord falls off, you should make sure that you do not give your newborn a proper bath using water. The only way you should clean your newborn during these days or weeks is by giving a sponge bath and making sure that the sponge is not too wet, but slightly damp.
Talk to your newborn’s doctor about how to take care of the umbilical cord stump and do not try to pull it out, as it will fall off with time.
5. Newborn Soft Spot Takes Time To Harden:
The soft spot that you see on your newborn’s head is a sensitive area, so make sure you are careful. It is one of the most important things to know about newborns.
The soft spot can often make you feel scared and worried, and you may be extra paranoid that you do not in any way harm your newborn.
In most cases, your newborn’s soft spot will harden in the next six to eight months, but it can vary from baby to baby.
Be careful while giving your newborn a bath, while combing or massaging the head and so on.
Newborn Sleep Survival Guide
1- Sleep Close to Baby Being close to his mother regulates a baby's heart rate, immune system, and stress levels and makes breastfeeding easier, says James McKenna, Ph.D., director of the Mother-Baby Behavioral Sleep Laboratory at University of Notre Dame in Indiana. "It also keeps the baby in lighter phases of sleep so he can practice arousing and going back to sleep, which is good in case of any problems, such as sleep apnea."
It may also be linked to a decreased risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). A bedside or freestanding (but nearby) bassinet is a good option. Various experts, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, advise parents not to sleep with their babies because of the danger of suffocation.
2- Day vs. Night "Encourage him to switch," says Jodi Mindell, Ph.D., associate director of the Sleep Center, Children's Hospital in Philadelphia and author of Sleeping Through the Night: How Infants, Toddlers and Their Parents Can Get a Good Night's Sleep (HarperCollins). "At night, keep the lights low and move slowly when you feed him. Be boring. Make sure he gets bright light in the morning, and keep him as busy as you can during the day. Make noise. Play with him." In other words, during the day, be interesting.
3- Bedtime Rituals "Sleep time should be consistent," Mindell says. "Each family has to develop its own routine, but doing the same activities in the same order every day helps the baby anticipate what will come next." Mindell suggests doing three or four winding-down activities for a total of 20 to 30 minutes; these can include massages, baths, lullabies, prayers, rocking, nursing, and reading.
4- Rocking baby "If you are doing this and your baby is sleeping all night, don't worry," says Jennifer Waldburger, L.C.S.W., co-owner of Los Angeles-based Sleepy Planet and author of the book and DVD The Sleepeasy Solution. "After about four months, if he is waking up, you probably need to let him do the last little bit of falling asleep on his own. You can still rock him as part of the wind-down process, but put him down drowsy, not asleep.
6- Baby Naps Look to your baby for his evolving schedule after about three months—before that, anything goes. "You don't have to be rigid," Mindell says, "but some structure helps both parents and baby. By age nine months, most babies naturally move to napping at around 9 a.m. and 2 p.m." But don't try to force a schedule on your baby for your convenience.
7- Crying it Out Waldburger and other experts suggest that when he's about 5 months old, you can experiment with letting your baby cry a bit at night. (That does not mean letting him scream for hours.) Try starting with five minutes, Waldburger suggests; if that's too hard to take, pick him up after three minutes. "It sounds cruel not to pick up a crying baby," she says, "but we find that teaching babies how to calm themselves is really kinder in the long run.
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