As new parents, you want to give and do everything you can for your newborn. However, with no prior experience, taking care of a newborn all by yourself can be daunting. If you are feeling nervous and lost, these basic newborn care tips can help make you feel more confident in caring for your little one. Let’s get started!
Sleep Routine & Safety
Newborns sleep a lot, and by the time they reach three months old, most of them can sleep for six to eight hours through the night. Meanwhile, you can try to establish a day and night sleeping schedule for your newborn.
To help your newborn get sufficient feed and nutrients to grow, try not letting him snooze longer than three hours during daytime without a feed. On the other hand, once your newborn has regained the weight he lost, you may let him sleep as long as he wants throughout the night.
That said, every mother and newborn’s condition is different, so if you have doubts and concerns about your newborn’s sleeping routine, the best source of advice is from your paediatrician.
In terms of sleep safety, do not let your newborn sleep in the same bed with you to avoid risk of suffocation. To ease night feedings and attend to your baby quickly during the night, you can place your baby’s cot beside your bed in the same room, and be sure to not put any hazardous items such as blankets, soft toys and pillows in the cot.
Care for the Umbilical Cord
During the first few days in life, newborn babies come with a small stump on their belly button — that’s the stump of the umbilical cord, and it requires delicate care to prevent infections.
But what’s an umbilical cord, and where exactly does it come from? During your pregnancy, the umbilical cord is a tube-like structure that carries food and oxygen from you to your baby. The umbilical cord also transfers waste products away from the baby so that your body can remove them. After your baby is born, the doctors will clamp and cut the cord, with a small stump left on your baby’s belly.
Over the days, as the stump dries out, its colour may turn from the initial yellow to brown, grey, or even purplish. The umbilical cord can take up to 21 days to fall off, and before that happens, all you need to do is keep it clean and dry.
Especially when bathing your newborn, try to keep the umbilical cord as dry as possible. Also, don’t put the cord inside your baby’s diaper to avoid it from retaining moisture. What you can do here is to fold the diapers below the cord, or look for newborn diapers with a cut-out area dedicated for the cord.
Newborns’ skin is soft and smooth, but they are also highly prone to common newborn skin irritations like baby acne, rashes, chafing and dryness. Luckily, there are now many baby products available in the market to help protect your baby’s skin.
When choosing baby skin care products, take note of the list of ingredients — go for products that are free from fragrance, paraben and other harsh chemicals that could irritate your baby’s skin. Meanwhile, keep your baby’s skincare routine simple. Avoid using too many products too frequently, and pay attention to your baby’s reaction when you use new products on them.
One of the most delicate parts of a newborn baby is his scalp, not to mention newborns have skull bones that are yet to fully develop, making this area even more fragile. Two of the most common newborn scalp conditions are dry scalp and cradle cap, which usually go away on their own after the first few weeks. That said, if you notice your baby’s scalp becoming red or irritated, remember to go to your paediatrician immediately.
Dry scalp in babies often appears as white flakes on their scalps. However, this is not exactly because the scalp is dry — the flakes are actually old skin that are being shed. You might be tempted to use oils, lotions or petroleum jelly on your baby’s scalp, but these products may actually worsen the condition as they make it harder for the dry flakes to fall off. Therefore, the best way is to wash your baby’s hair with a gentle baby shampoo and brush the hair gently with a soft baby brush as per normal.
On the other hand, cradle cap is a common newborn scalp condition that appears as thick yellowish or white scales on the scalp. Just like dry scalp, using oils or lotions to the affected area may worsen the condition. To treat cradle cap, use a gentle baby shampoo dedicated to improving cradle cap, and use a soft brush to remove the scales gently afterwards.
As your baby’s tummy is still small, he can only have a small amount of milk during each feed and he will need it again after a few hours. During the initial days, your newborn may require a feed every two to three hours.
As a general guide, during the first few days after your baby is born, he will need less than 40ml of milk per feed, depending on your doctor’s guidance. After the first week, try feeding your around 60ml to 90ml of milk every 3 to 4 hours. By the time your newborn is one month to three months old, you can increase the amount to around 120ml to 150ml per feed every four to six hours. This quantity may vary depending on you and your baby’s condition, as well as whether you’re feeding breast milk or formula milk. To get the most accurate feeding quantity and frequency for your newborn, get the advice from your paediatrician or lactation consultant.
Get Trusted Newborn Care Day & Night with PEM
Juggling between postpartum recovery and taking care of a newborn can be very challenging for new parents. At PEM Confinement Nanny Agency, our experienced and well-trained SG confinement nanny is here to give you and your newborn the best care at home.
Our confinement nanny duties include newborn care such as feeding, changing diapers, cleaning, updating baby’s daily log and night feeding, along with confinement guide and care for the mother. To support you in your postpartum recovery, our confinement nanny will prepare nourishing confinement meals, herbal tonics and herbal bath water for you daily. Need help with breastfeeding? No worries! PEM confinement nannies will assist you by providing guidance and help in breastfeeding your newborn too.
Learn more about PEM SG confinement nanny service now!