Tips for New Parents: What happens when you take the baby home?

Since then, new parents will realize that their lives will be completely changed. Here's how to spend the first exciting but possibly difficult 48 hours with your newborn.

Bringing your baby home: the first 48 hours

Depending on the delivery method, baby status and place of residence, you can choose to take your baby home from the hospital or delivery room a few hours or days after delivery. If you are giving birth at home without complications, you can lie in bed immediately. No matter how many prenatal courses you have attended and how many parenting books you have read, when you really hold a newborn, novice parents still have a lot of doubts: "what should we do now?". This is normal - after all, there are too many things to consider. Take your time, be kind to yourself, and don't be afraid to ask for help.

Can we get support at home?

After the baby is born, a professional health consultant, lactation consultant or breastfeeding expert should evaluate the baby's milk status, which helps to ensure the smooth start of breastfeeding. Even if you have been told that there is no problem with the milk, you are still recommended to recheck as long as you have doubts.

Please make sure to make an appointment with a health care provider to check your baby's weight within a few days after birth. You can still be examined in the hospital or by a health follow-up, depending on your place of residence. Newborns may lose up to 10% of their weight in the first few days, but will recover from day 5 or 6 and return to birth weight from day 10 to day 14. If your baby does not conform to this growth pattern, please seek medical advice.

"A few days later, I found that my baby had the problem of too short lingual frenum. When I was in the hospital, I was told that the baby's milk holding condition was very good and the breastfeeding process was not painful, so I didn't diagnose the problem until the baby didn't gain weight. We performed lingual frenum surgery for the baby, and then the situation improved", Emma, the mother of a child from Australia, recalls.

If you want to breastfeed at home, what should you do?

Ideally, you should be ready for your first day at home with your newborn - from your baby's diapers and cotton, to your comfortable pillow, nipple cream, breast-feeding pad, healthy snacks and drinks. Find a comfortable and convenient place for breastfeeding at home. Because you may spend a long time there!

"My sofa was so low that I couldn't sit down after caesarean section, so we ordered some emergency cushions online," recalls Alex, the mother of a child from Britain. "I also assigned two feeding stations, one beside the sofa, one beside the bed, and each with healthy snacks, water, mobile phone charger, lip balm, fine cotton and TV remote control. No one can move anything."

What kind of care does the newborn need?

The needs of newborn babies are quite simple. As long as they can eat and feel relaxed and comfortable, they can get a lot of the most precious thing for them - sleep!

In fact, newborns may be very sleepy in the first 24 hours of life. Usually, your baby will wake up the next day and need to eat frequently, and your breast milk will begin to secrete (usually two to four days after delivery). Use this time to rest and adjust so that your baby can be safe with you day and night, whether in the cradle, crib or baby strap (if you get up and walk around).

If the baby wants to stay in your arms, this is normal. After all, everything the baby knows in the past 9 months comes from you. It may be difficult for the baby to leave the uterus and come to a new world. Holding and gently shaking by you, your partner or other warm and safe person will help calm and comfort your baby. Try to be as natural as possible - this stage is very short and will pass as the baby grows and learns to be alone for a long time.

This skin contact also causes you to release a powerful hormone called oxytocin. Oxytocin is released when you approach your baby, look at your baby, hear your baby cry, or even just miss your baby. This magical oxytocin will help you form a strong mother child bond that will last a lifetime. It also helps to establish the flow of breast milk during feeding and sucking. The closer you are to your baby, the easier it is to start the milk supply and make a good start for breast-feeding.

In the initial stage, you can't 'spoil' your newborn baby or form a 'bad habit' - if a kind relative puts forward such a suggestion, please try not to pay attention to it. And don't try to get your baby to follow the feeding schedule - the baby is too young, and in any case, most babies never follow the fixed habits. Instead, you should breastfeed on demand every time your baby shows signs of hunger (such as mouth wriggling, milk seeking or sucking), which helps establish your milk supply. If you want to record breastfeeding and diapers, you can use apps such as Mymedela.

Please pay attention to the signs that your baby has ingested enough milk: the number of times your baby urinates and urinates is the key. On the first day, the baby should have one or more black sticky fetal stools and a wet diaper. The next day, the baby should have two or more dark green brown stools with reduced viscosity and two urinates. If this is not the case with your baby, please contact your professional health consultant.

What kind of care do I need?

Even in uncomplicated childbirth, your body needs rest and time to recover. As much as possible, let your partner or relative take over the tasks of changing diapers, cooking and taking care of older children - if you can afford it, hire someone to help. During these busy weeks, conserve energy and focus on building ties with your baby and establishing milk supply. Anything else can be put aside first.

"When shopping online, let others prepare drinks for you, eat frequently and keep physical strength all the time," suggested Gillian, the mother of a child from the UK. "I found the first week very happy, but the intensity after that was unexpected. So be sure to have a good rest."

In addition, try not to have too many visitors at home - only invite guests who can bring you something really useful or support. "If you can, please leave this special time only for you, your partner and your baby," suggested Kerry Lynne, a mother of two children from the UK. "I'll be embarrassed to feed the baby in front of visitors, but it's not conducive to the success of breast feeding."

What help can my partner provide in the first few days of breastfeeding?

Although mothers undoubtedly play the most important role in breastfeeding, your partner and other family members can still do many things to provide support and establish a bond with your baby, such as carrying the baby with a strap or helping the baby settle down and calm through skin contact.

They can also act as "gatekeepers" to minimize the number of visitors and give you a chance to rest. Many novice mothers say they can't sleep during the day, but you can learn to take a short 'nap' with some practice and the help of your partner. Make the bedroom dark and quiet, and take away all digital devices or mobile phones. Even if you just lie down and rest for 20 minutes in a quiet and undisturbed environment and let your partner take care of your baby, your body can rest. After a few exercises, you should be able to relax and finally fall asleep.

"I couldn't have spent the first days without my husband's help," said Kate, a mother of two children from Britain. "I have two children. My husband gets up every time he feeds, brings the babies, changes diapers, and then puts them back to bed. If one of his daughters is restless in the early morning, he will take her downstairs and sit down and hold her."

This kind of help has been shown to be beneficial for breastfeeding - a study found that novice mothers who have a partner to provide breastfeeding support in the early postpartum stage are more likely to start breastfeeding and breastfeed longer. one

Why do I feel depressed?

It is not uncommon for you to feel lonely and helpless when you get home. In this case, don't be afraid to contact familiar people or professional health consultants for help. In the first week after childbirth, many mothers become emotional, prone to tears or anger, or suffer from "postpartum depression", which is caused by the surge of hormones during lactation. These symptoms are normal and usually last only a few days. However, if these feelings do not disappear within two weeks, or you feel more and more depressed and helpless, please inform a professional health consultant.

"I was very emotional at that time. I thanked my friends for reminding me in advance that I might feel particularly difficult on the third day or so," said Mariah, the mother of a child from Canada. "It's normal to feel very difficult at this time."

Why doesn't breastfeeding start naturally?

You may imagine that the beginning of breastfeeding is natural and important - but in fact it takes time to control. Just like learning to drive or any other skills, breastfeeding needs practice, and it's normal to have good or bad situations. This shocked many novice mothers: "I thought it was very simple, just put the baby on the breast, but I was wrong," said Joanne, the mother of a child from Britain. "When talking with friends, I found that many people think so, but no one mentioned it."

A survey of American mothers showed that 92% of mothers began to worry about breastfeeding on the third day, so if you encounter this situation, please don't worry - take a deep breath and then seek advice. 3 prepare a large list of breast-feeding consultants or breast-feeding experts, as well as useful support groups or websites, ready for emergencies before your baby is born.

"If you can, you can attend the local international breast milk Association meeting and get some good advice and friendship," suggested Jane, a mother of two children from the United States.

Michelle, the mother of a child from Australia, suggested: "get as much help and advice as possible from qualified personnel, and try to avoid contacting unqualified personnel who will confuse you in the first 48 hours."

Finally, please do not feed formula milk to your baby because you are worried that you do not have enough milk, or blindly listen to the suggestions of "helpful" relatives. Please do not believe that this will make your baby stable or give you a rest. The best way to start breastfeeding is to breast feed your baby each time. At this stage, it is natural for your baby to want to milk frequently, and your baby can show signs of hunger only 45 minutes after feeding. In fact, it helps to establish your milk supply.

"The first 48 hours are hard - you and your baby are learning," said Ruth, the mother of a child from Britain. "Therefore, you should try your best to ask for help, eat, relax and be kind to yourself."

Additional References

Real Tips: The Best Advice for New Parents

A Guide for First-Time Parents

Top Ten Tips for New Parents

13 Practical Pieces of Advice for New Parents