Newborn tips for first timers - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-08-2011, 06:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Any other experienced moms have a great tip to pass on for the first few days/weeks?

 

My great tip is Olive oil! Put some on baby's bum/genitals at every diaper change & it'll make cleaning off meconium a breeze at the next change. Just remember you only need a tiny bit :) If you don't use it, you could easily spend 10 minutes trying to get the sticky stuff out of every little fold. It may wash off cloth diapers easily, but not off little bums.


mom to all boys B: 08/01ribboncesarean.gif,  C: 07/05 uc.jpg, N: 03/09 uc.jpg, M: 01/12 uc.jpg and far too many lost onesintactlact.gifsaynovax.gif

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Old 12-08-2011, 07:23 PM
 
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I'm going to use coconut oil for that one. 

 

Here are some ideas:

 

Use Lansinoh cream all day long to prevent sore/cracked nipples

 

Ask for help and accept any help given!

 

Sleep whenever you can

 

Hire someone to help out the first week if family is not available

 

Know that this is just a flicker in the grand scheme of your life so any struggles should be met with the attitude "this too shall pass. All is as it should be"

 

 

 

 


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Old 12-08-2011, 07:28 PM
 
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I second the olive oil. I put it on their head too for cradle cap.

Tip for you: soak a disposable diaper with water and freeze it when you know you are in labor. After the birth you can use it like a pad and it really helps your post birth vulva.

Tip for baby: If you are trying to get the baby to swallow (either for oral Vit K or syringe milk or whatever you might need him to swallow for) blow gently in his face, and he will swallow everytime.

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Old 12-08-2011, 09:13 PM
 
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Thank you for this thread. I am a first timer, and I've been realizing lately that I've spent so much time researching birth and pregnancy that I've forgotten to research how  to take care of a newborn!


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Old 12-08-2011, 11:46 PM
 
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Let little bottoms air dry well before putting on a new diaper!  It will prevent diaper rash....

 

Practice eating both left and right handed, as you will be forever switching the baby from side to side to nurse.

 

Know that everything is a phase!!

 

Honor your feelings after birth, whatever they may be. 

 

These are just the first to come to mind.....

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Old 12-09-2011, 01:02 AM
 
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great thread idea, devaskyla!  here's a few things off the top of my head- i'll try to remember more things worth sharing.

 

if you use cloth wipes for diaper changes, you don't need to use soap or any other additive to wipe bums.  warm water is just fine.

 

keep yourself hydrated.

 

be patient with everything.  breastfeeding.  babywearing.  cloth diapering.  (lack of) sleeping.  it might not come easy, even for the most seasoned mom.  and that's ok.

 

"be here now."  it really does go by fast.  it's a crazy, chaotic time, but it passes so quickly, and they'll never be so little again.


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Old 12-09-2011, 09:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yep! Always have a big glass or bottle of water with you when you sit down to nurse. And be prepared to fall asleep while nursing. lol Not so much with my 2nd & 3rd, but with my first, I could barely keep my eyes open every time he nursed for the first few months and if we were lying down, I was pretty much out as soon as he was.

 

The individual days with a new baby can really drag and it makes you feel like any problems will last forever, but the weeks & months will fly by and most things that seem like huge issues in the moment will quickly fade. Nurse, rock, cuddle your babies every minute you can. Everything else can wait. You won't ever regret leaving the dishes (or whatever) for another day but when you have an almost teen who doesn't want to cuddle anymore, you might regret all the cuddling you never took advantage of while you could. I cuddled ds1 a lot & I still think it wasn't nearly enough. :)
 

Quote:

Originally Posted by HardCoreMom View Post
keep yourself hydrated.

 

"be here now."  it really does go by fast.  it's a crazy, chaotic time, but it passes so quickly, and they'll never be so little again.



 


mom to all boys B: 08/01ribboncesarean.gif,  C: 07/05 uc.jpg, N: 03/09 uc.jpg, M: 01/12 uc.jpg and far too many lost onesintactlact.gifsaynovax.gif

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Old 12-11-2011, 03:39 PM
 
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I'm not a first timer, but I have a couple of questions/need advice!

 

With DS1 we room-shared, but didn't bed-share. I got up and went to the living room to change his diaper and BF back to sleep. With this one, I am planning on bed-sharing (side-carred crib). I was wondering if you guys still changed the diaper each time you fed your LO, or if you did every other feeding?

 

Question #2: Did you wake up your LO for feedings the first few days (assuming they slept for more than 2 or 3 hrs)? I remember setting my alarm to make sure I woke up after 3 hours just in case LO hadn't woken up. I know he didn't sleep for more than 2 hrs after the first couple of days, but those first days were a blur (and I was paranoid). I even remember waking up before the alarm went off in those (very!) few instances that he didn't wake up after 3 hours. I just remember they were so paranoid at the hospital about making sure LO ate every so many hours for at least so many minutes... I was wondering how homebirth mamas (not influenced by nurses..haha!) did things. I guess I'm still paranoid that LO will just not wake up to eat enough (and LO and my supply will suffer) although part of me knows that nature will be a better tool than the alarm clock!


aj- married to JA and mami to Bug (11/09) and Critter (1/12)!

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Old 12-11-2011, 03:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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For changing, I only change at night if they're dirty or really wet. With ds1 that was every feed, but ds2 & ds3 was a lot less frequently. I had every thing set up in or near the bed so I could change quickly & get back to sleep.

 

For waking up, I haven't really had a sleepy baby. Ds1 was a bit dopey from the drugs & not nursing well, so I did end up waking him a few times. Ds3 slept 6 hours his first night (& I totally let him), but he nursed often during the day. He quickly had a 5 hour stretch at night, but nursed every 2 hours at most during the day.


mom to all boys B: 08/01ribboncesarean.gif,  C: 07/05 uc.jpg, N: 03/09 uc.jpg, M: 01/12 uc.jpg and far too many lost onesintactlact.gifsaynovax.gif

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Old 12-12-2011, 12:11 PM
 
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I also only change dirty diapers.  If babe is just wet at night we deal.  Everything is kept on the side of my bed so I can change right there and still stay warm under the covers.

 

I've never woken a sleeping baby.  But my kids seem to wake every hour to eat at night...then every 1.5 hours...then the glorious 2 hours!


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Old 12-12-2011, 12:30 PM
 
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Thanks, Devaskyla and Angela! I just needed some reassurance with the waking (or not waking) a sleeping babe thing! I know he didn't go for long without feedings after the first couple of days (at least more than 2 hours), but I remember being so paranoid those first 2 days home from the hospital. I guess I had nightmares about sleeping for 2 days straight or something! I was always one to "need" a good 10 hours, and I didn't know that mother nature would help me not to have to sleep so much :) or that I would still not be getting sleep 2 years later...lol!


aj- married to JA and mami to Bug (11/09) and Critter (1/12)!

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Old 12-12-2011, 01:27 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bentlaj11 View Post

 

Question #2: Did you wake up your LO for feedings the first few days (assuming they slept for more than 2 or 3 hrs)? I remember setting my alarm to make sure I woke up after 3 hours just in case LO hadn't woken up. I know he didn't sleep for more than 2 hrs after the first couple of days, but those first days were a blur (and I was paranoid). I even remember waking up before the alarm went off in those (very!) few instances that he didn't wake up after 3 hours. I just remember they were so paranoid at the hospital about making sure LO ate every so many hours for at least so many minutes... I was wondering how homebirth mamas (not influenced by nurses..haha!) did things. I guess I'm still paranoid that LO will just not wake up to eat enough (and LO and my supply will suffer) although part of me knows that nature will be a better tool than the alarm clock!


I don't know this from experience, but both my midwife and my childbirth class teacher both told me not to wake up a sleeping baby unless your baby has been drugged during birth (epidural, c-section, etc.) and is a very, very deep sleeper (which can be dangerous those first few weeks).  From what I understand, newborns are not deep sleepers if they have an unmedicated birth, but can suffer from the effects of birthing drugs.  I'd love to hear if any BTDT mothers have an opinion on this...

 


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Old 12-12-2011, 04:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Some unmedicated babies are really sleepy too. Although being medicated is definitely different. I had a cesarean with ds1 so he got a lot of drugs :( & it literally took him nearly 3 months to "wake up". And then he never slept again. lol  I never let them sleep more than 3 hours without eating for the first couple days.

 

So here's one I thought of today. Most of the questions in the baby forum are about sleep or eating and most of them are stressing about how long, how often, how much...so the most important piece of advice I can give is to learn to go with the flow. Other wise you will find yourself worried and stressed about everything. Is baby eating, gaining, meeting milestones? If yes, it doesn't matter how often they nurse, for how long at what times..it just doesn't matter. Is baby sleeping? If yes, relax, get as much rest as you can and before you know it, you'll be getting a decent sleep too. If you're gtting so little sleep you're a danger to yourself or others, get someone to watch your baby so you can get a few hours. Other than that, odds are incredibly high that in a few months or a year at most, you'll have some other sleep issue you're dealing with.

 

I actually proved that even paying attention to times/amounts makes you worry and makes it feel a lot harder. When ds3 was about 5 months old, for the first time since I left the hospital with ds1, I recorded every time he nursed and for how long for a mere 24 hours. It was eye opening and stressful. I'm normally pretty laid back about everything, but paying attention...it sucked. If anyone is interested, here's the blog post http://boringestmusings.blogspot.com/2009/08/day-of-breastfeeding.html

 

The other bit of, related advice is the 8-12 feedings a day? Yeah, don't buy that. Make sure baby is eating at least every 3 hours and other than that, it could very easily be a A LOT more often. If you don't feel like checking out the blog, I'll just say that for the day I recorded, my baby nursed 25 times, although most of them were only a few minutes. I think putting an upper number on it does new moms a huge disservice.


mom to all boys B: 08/01ribboncesarean.gif,  C: 07/05 uc.jpg, N: 03/09 uc.jpg, M: 01/12 uc.jpg and far too many lost onesintactlact.gifsaynovax.gif

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Old 12-12-2011, 08:57 PM
 
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I had an epidural with my son but no systemic drugs that could have crossed the placenta.  He was very bright and alert from birth and never a good sleeper.  He maybe slept in 45 minute increments for weeks, then 1.5 hours, then MAYBE 2-3 hours at a time for well over a year.  That's a pretty normal sleep pattern for a co-sleeping/bfing baby.  Making sure he didn't sleep through a feeding was NEVER an issue.  We co-slept and breastfed on demand and I never kept track of his feedings or wet diapers because it was constant.  It will be interesting to see if this new baby will be different since we don't plan on getting an epidural or any interventions this time...of course any differences could just be attributed to differences in the individual kid.

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Old 12-12-2011, 11:25 PM
 
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I had a completely unmedicated homebirth with my son.  Labor was loooong and he endured two days worth of contractions.  He was very sleepy and hard to rouse for about 3 days or so.  My midwife did encourage waking him to eat as he was becoming quite jaundice and digesting the milk would help get things moving through his system.  So we woke him many times for feedings and he would often eat only a bit before wanting to doze off again.  I think the birth process plain wore him out!  I do think, though, that he was probably more the exception and usually the baby does a great job of waking you up to eat.  After those initial couple days and we started getting the jaundice to clear up...... NOT waking a sleeping baby is definitely the rule in our house.  I mean NEVER.  Maybe only if the house was on fire. 

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