After giving birth, you can expect to feel a variety of emotions, such as relief and joy. Along with that joy might come questions of what to expect, as well as how to care for your infant. Below are some concerns and experiences you might encounter during the first 24 hours with your newborn baby.
The decision to breastfeed or bottle feed your infant will be one of the very first decisions you will have to make as a mother. This decision should be made very soon after the baby is born so that he or she can feed. When making this decision, consider which option is best for the health of both you and your baby.
Newborn infants will be sleeping the majority of this time. This is completely normal. However, if your newborn baby is not sleeping much, that could be cause for concern. Either way, if you are concerned, always ask the doctors in the hospital.
Diapering might be confusing at first, especially for those who have never changed a diaper before. There might also be concerns as to what a baby’s stool should look like or whether or not to use any rash creams or powders. You can expect the doctors to instruct you about these subjects or refer you to the free classes in the hospital. Either will be very beneficial.
Some women may enjoy having visitors, while others may not want to be bothered by anyone but the father of the baby. Whatever your decision, be sure to make it clear before giving birth.
Pacifiers have proven to decrease the risk of SIDS. They should be given to an infant shortly after birth. It can be helpful to bring more than one type of pacifier to the hospital, in case your baby does not prefer those offered in the hospital. You should expect the doctors to discuss pacifier use with you.
If your baby is congested, be sure to mention it to the doctors right away, as it could be a sign of RSV, a very serious illness, especially in infants. Preemies are the most at risk for this, but any infant can develop RSV. Always immediately inform the doctor of any congestion in your infant.
Infants rarely get a fever. A fever could be a sign of infection, especially RSV. Inform the doctor right away if your baby has a fever. Since you will still be in the hospital, the doctors may even discover the fever before you do. It is routine for the doctors to keep track of a newborn’s temperature.
Vertigo is thick hair in places on the infant you wouldn’t normally see hair. This will disappear over time.
Jaundice is when the baby’s skin is yellow in color. This can be a sign of infection. If you notice jaundice, tell the doctors right away.