Leaving the security of the hospital with a newborn can be nerve-wracking, especially so if you are discharged within 24-48 hours after the birth. New parents may feel as though this is just too soon â€“ even if baby and mother are doing wonderfully.Â Accept all offers of help when you get home, especially with chores such as shopping and cooking, and donâ€™t expect too much of yourself I these early days.
TRAVELING FROM THE HOSPITAL
You wonâ€™t be able to travel home by car or taxi unless you have the correct infant car seat for your baby. Some stores will check the fit when you buy a seat since not all car seats fit securely in every car. Safety is essential so only use a second-hand seat if you have the installation instructions and know its historyâ€”a car seat that has been in an accident may not protect your baby. If your car has airbags, donâ€™t put the infant seat in the front since an airbag could seriously injure your baby.
You will need to dress your baby according to weather. An undershirt and a romper, with a coat and hat is fine for cold weather. You can always take a baby blanket to tuck over her if she needs an extra layer.
SUPPORT FOR YOU
This can be a confusing and challenging time, with much to learn and a constant stream of visitors offering advice. Make sure that the people who are visiting in the first few days are a help, not a hinderance. Donâ€™t be afraid to ask those close to you to help with specific tasks, such as helping to prepare a meal. A close friend or family may offer to stay with you to help out over the first week or so and can take on the mundane household tasks you might find difficult to manage.Â Despite their best intentions, some guests may cause more disruption at home!
New babies generally sleep around 16 hours a day, although they may not do so for hours at a stretch and they certainly wonâ€™t sleep according to your conventions. Try to catch up on sleep during the day when your baby naps. In the first few weeks she shouldnâ€™t go for more than six hours between feedings, so wake her up if she has slept this long. After this, it is fine if she sleeps for longer periods. Your newborn may make sudden jerky, twitchy movements in her sleep. Donâ€™t worryâ€”this is normal.
Do you have certain concerns about coming home from the hospital?Â
What or who was the greatest help to you upon coming home with your newborn?
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