Labor and Birth Packet Preview - Page 23

Life with Baby 63

Newborn Care

What Newborns Need
The first three months of baby ’ s life can be considered a “ transition time ” from womb to world . Baby ’ s needs are relatively simple :
Holding
• Soothing , love and comfort : holding , rocking , interaction such as talking or singing
• To be clean and dry : frequent diaper changes and other physical care ( bathing , caring for umbilical cord , etc .)
• To be warm : blankets , hat or skin-to-skin with a parent ’ s body
• Frequent feedings : they may eat every 1-3 hours or more often
• Sleep : in short cycles for 16 hours or more

Preview

per day
Soothing
For the first few months , crying is a common way your baby communicates with you . There are many ways to soothe a crying baby , and Know Your Limits parents quickly learn what works best for their It is absolutely critical that you never shake a baby . Some suggestions include : baby or act violently toward a baby in any way .
• Breastfeeding This can cause permanent brain damage or
• Swaddling
• Massage , touch or burping
• Singing , talking or “ shushing ”
• Using “ white noise ” such as a vacuum
• Motion such as swaying , bouncing or rocking
• Taking a walk or drive
• Going outside
Many babies are soothed by being held in this position as it puts gentle pressure on the belly but still keeps a parent close and allows movement such as swaying .
Babies are more content and thrive when they are held frequently , especially in the early months . Fortunately , there is a lot of gear available to help safely support baby near your body , leaving your arms free . This is often referred to as “ baby-wearing .” Be sure to try out a variety of carriers to find the one that you like best and look at consumer information and reviews . Consider baby ’ s age , head control , body alignment and room to breathe with each carrier you inspect , as well as its versatility as baby grows .
death . If you are feeling frustrated or you are losing your temper , put baby down in a safe place and walk away until you are calm again . If needed , call someone to come and help you until you are ready to try again .
There are many different parenting philosophies found in books and websites that offer advice on how to comfort baby , help baby sleep or care for baby . Every baby and every family is different and it is often best to trust your own common sense in addition to the “ experts .” The natural human instinct is to hold and soothe a crying baby . The good news is that a newborn cannot be spoiled or held too much . Make it a goal to establish trust with your baby and teach them that someone will be there to care for their needs , even if that need is simply to be held .
Life with Baby 63