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Bringing home your baby from the hospital is a moment you will remember forever! The baby is all decked out in the going home outfit that you've meticulously chosen and you'll carefully put him in the car seat that you picked after reading a zillion reviews. The drive home will perhaps be the most careful drive ever. But then what? What are you supposed to do when you get home? Bringing baby home from the hospital can be very intimidating for first-time parents, and is a big adjustment for new parents. So today we are sharing 24 Tips for the First 24 Hours with newborn at home and what you can expect during the first 24 hours at home with a newborn.
24 tips for the first 24 hours with newborn at home
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So you are home with the newborn after the longest car ride ever, and what most parents do first is take the baby on a little tour of the house. You can take the baby into the nursery that you've designed and decorated. However, the American Association of Pediatricians recommends that newborns sleep in the same room as the parents for the first few months after birth. A bassinet is the best and most convenient option to keep the baby close to you. We love this bassinet and this one.
During these first 24 hours at home with a newborn, you'll find yourself getting baby into the routine of diaper changes, feedings and napping. Newborns will take a nap after every single feeding.
Since you are back home now and without guidance from the nurses, you might worry if your newborn is eating enough. Remember that the baby's stomach is so tiny, hence the baby will need to eat small amounts frequently – about 1 to 3 ounces at a time. The baby will nurse or take a bottle every two to three hours, and others will be hungry even more often.
Watch for cues from the baby such as strong cries, sucking on their hands, smacking their lips, or rooting (when a baby purses her lips and turns her head toward the breast or bottle), letting you that she's hungry.
Often times the baby is too sleepy during the newborn phase to give cues. You'll probably have to wake the baby up to feed, and get the baby to stay awake while eating. You could try undressing the baby down to the diaper, rubbing her head or back, or talking to her. You might even have to wipe her down with a cloth, to keep her up so she can eat.
Expect to change a lot of diapers during these first 24 hours at home with a newborn. You'll need to change the baby before each feeding session. This is why we encourage moms to create these 4 essential stations in the nursery before you go to the hospital to have the baby.
If your newborn looks uncomfortable while feeding, squirms, pulls away or cries, it's probably time to burp the baby. Take a burping break after every 2 or 3 ounces if you're bottle-feeding, or when your baby switches breasts if you're nursing. Read this blog post where we give you 40 tips and tricks for taking care of a newborn including videos on how to burp.
Newborns have hiccups and can spit-up as well. So be prepared with a burp cloth always. Hiccups and spitting up is completely normal for new babies and don't get alarmed.
Make sure you are tracking your baby's pee and poop schedule since the baby's pediatrician will as you about it at the wellness check up. The glow baby tracker app is fabulous for tracking baby's feedings, sleep, etc.
The baby's very first bowel movements are called meconium, and are black and have an almost tar-like consistency. After that, for a breastfed baby, look for poop that looks seedy and are greenish, light brown, or, mustard-yellow. For a newborn that's formula-fed look for poop that's pastier and varies in color. If you see blood or white mucus, please contact your pediatrician for guidance.
Every time you put your newborn in the bassinet to sleep, whether it is for a for nap, at night, or any time, remember to always lay the baby down on his back. Make sure there are absolutely no blankets or pillows in the bassinet. Remember your baby’s risk of SIDS is much higher any time he sleeps on his side or stomach.
When you were in hospital the nurses probably had your baby swaddled. Now that you are home with the baby, it's your turn to swaddle the newborn to help her feel safe and secure as she adjusts to life outside the womb and in her new house. Swaddling will also help prevent her from flailing her arms or her legs, which can trigger her startle reflex. We show you how to swaddle in this blog post.
Your baby will cry and it's okay since that's how babies communicate their needs, whether it’s hunger, discomfort, crankiness or the desire to suck. Once the need is satisfied, your little one should calm down. Also read this post where we share a video which has been watched over 33 million times and shows how you can calm a crying baby.
For most new parents, the first night at home with the newborn can be quite nerve wracking. You might worry whether the peacefully sleeping baby is breathing. Some parents, keep a hand on the baby's chest to help bring peace of mind.
Your newborn also might make grunting sounds. and as long as the baby doesn’t turn bluish or have to stop nursing to get air, his nasal passages are probably fine. Babies have tiny passages, so most babies sound snorty.
Breastfeeding can be really hard on your body initially until you get in the rhythm of it. Your nipples might be sore or engorged and you might still be struggling with positioning the baby or even getting the baby to latch properly. Read this post where we give 30 Genius Breastfeeding Tips for New Moms.
You'll not be getting much sleep at night, since the baby needs to be fed every couple of hours. So try to get some sleep just about anytime and anywhere, when the baby sleeps.
Your milk is coming in and you are going through your postpartum recovery as well. You need healthy meals to continue your recovery. Making freezer meals ahead of time is a great way to be prepared. Read this post on making 21 Healthy and Easy Freezer Meals for New Moms.
Encourage your husband to spend as much time as possible with the baby from the first day home with the newborn, whether it is burping, cuddling, or diaper changes.
Make sure you pay attention to your postpartum recovery. Gathering all the postpartum essentials before your due date will be a huge help. Read this post on what you need for your postpartum recovery.
This is a pretty basic but important tip. Remember to always wash hands before handling the baby since your baby's immune system is very immature.
The first day home with a newborn should be family time and getting adjusted to having a baby to love as well as take care of. So hold off on having visitors for the first few days until you can get into a routine.
Sometimes you just need help. Don't be afraid or shy to ask a family member or friend for support and help.
The first 24 hours with newborn at home might seem overwhelming and intimidating. But it doesn't have to be. These 24 tips for the first 24 hours with baby at home should guide you through the day and of course, your mommy instincts are always worth listening to.
Last Updated on February 24, 2021 by Tira Attygalla