Bringing Baby Home
The first 24 hours after you leave the hospital is said to be one of the most daunting times of having your first child.
We’ve gathered a few tips on what you can expect in the first 24 hours of bringing your baby home to try and make the journey just a little more comfortable for you.
1. Leaving The Hospital.
It's important to pack an appropriate yet comfortable outfit for both you and baby. We recommend you wear something roomy that won’t constrict anything. Remember that you won’t be in your pre-pregnancy shape for a several weeks or a few months at leat. There are hundreds of stylish post pregnancy outfits out there. Do a quick search on Pinterest for some inspiration.
Make sure you don’t overheat you new little one with too many layers unless it is winter and freezing. A soft beanie and a blanket always do the trick.
2. The First Car Ride
Next to the stroller, a proper child safety seat or car seat is the most important item you should invest in. Each state in the Northern America requires you to have a car seat before you leave the hospital. This is the best way to protect your new bundle of joy. Never not have your baby in a car seat, even if your home is just around the corner.
Practice installing your car seat before your baby is born. Until you get used to it, fitting the seat into the back seat can be rather complicated.
Familiarise yourself with the different types are car seats available:
Infant Only Seat:
- Rear facing.
- Fits most infants comfortably
- must face the rear until the baby is two years old.
- accommodates most infants and older children.
Hospital staff way want to check the seat for safety before you go home.
3. Prep Your Home
A handy tip is to get a family member to clean your home top to bottom before you come back. Having your home in an orderly state will help you feel in control.
By this time, you would have set up your baby room or nursery. Here are some items you may have missed:
- swaddling blankets
- your favourite snacks
- pregnancy pillow
- burp rags
4. Introducing Baby
We all know that a new baby can cause a bit of excitement with friends and family. While this is wonderful and to be expected is important to write down some ‘ground-rules’ in advance.
Don’t be afraid to limit the number of friends and family at first. You will need as much rest as possible before and after they visit. Don’t hesitate to ask guests to wash their hands before handling your baby. Have some instant hand wash at the ready. Some people may find this offensive but kindly explain that your new born’s baby immune system is not entirely developed.
If you have a dog or a cat, you will want to introduce them slowly as well. Your partner can bring a blanket home from the hospital to get your pet used to the new smell.
Your new little one’s stomach is very tiny. Newborns need to eat small amounts of about 1 to 3 ounces frequently. Some babies will want to nurse every tow to three hours while other may be hungrier.
Some babies will let you know they are hungry with loud cries, and some will give a more subtle cues such as sucking on hands. In the first few days of coming home, newborn will lose about 7 percent of their body weight. Even though this is normal, you’ll want to keep feeding your baby as often as possible.
In some cases, you may leave the hospital with some form of pain medication. Please, make sure you call you midwife or doctor straight away if you notice anything out of the ordinary.