No matter how much time you spend researching on how to take care of your newborn, once your child is delivered, the first few weeks will leave you frantic and overwhelmed. However, there are a few tips which new parents must keep in mind.
Handling a Newborn:
1. Since babies have a weak immune system and are susceptible to infections, it is of paramount importance that anyone who handles your child has clean and sanitized hands.
2. You also need to be careful about always supporting and cradling your child's head and neck since the muscles in his or her neck are weak at birth, and babies only develop head control after six months.
3. Never shake your newborn baby whether playfully or out of frustration. Shaking the baby can cause bleeding in the brain or in severe cases, death. Tickle your child's feet to wake him or her up.
4. Not only is it important to make sure that your baby is fastened securely in the car seat, stroller or carrier, you must also restrain from activities that may be bouncy or rough.
Firstly, you must decide whether you want disposable or cloth diapers for your infant. Babies go through at least ten diapers a day (irrespective of whether they are cloth or disposable). While diapering, you must keep in mind to not leave your baby unattended on the changing tables. So get all the supplies such as a clean diaper, diaper ointment (in case of rash), fasteners, diaper wipes and warm water, before changing his or her diaper.
Newborn babies need to be given a sponge bath with warm water and very little soap till the navel and/or the circumcision heals completely. This can take about one to four weeks. After being healed, the baby should be bathed twice or thrice a week since frequent bathing may damage the baby's skin.
Breastfeeding and Burping:
Doctors recommend feeding the baby on demand i.e., whenever your baby is hungry. Crying, putting fingers in the mouth, or making sucking noises convey that the baby is hungry. A newborn baby needs to be fed every couple of hours.
Burping is important so that the air consumed during the feedings can be let out since it makes the baby fussy. Patting or rubbing a baby's back usually helps them to burp or pass gas.