Newborn Care: 2 weeks

Since you have a baby, and you’re busy, we’ll get right to the point. Here are five ways to make the adjustment to having your new family member at home with you.

1. Manage visitors

Don’t feel bad to politely tell someone you are not up for visitors quite yet. It takes some time to recover from delivery and get the hang of breastfeeding (if this is your feeding choice). Having too many visitors can sometimes hinder your recovery. This is the time to bond with your baby, so don’t feel guilty about telling family or friends you need some more time.

That being said, when you do decide to have visitors, let them bring you things and allow them to help you! Something as simple as a visitor bringing groceries, or a hot meal, or throwing in a load of laundry provides you with some relief and makes you feel taken care of. Receive the gifts.

2. Ask for help

Refer back to the village you created when you were pregnant; they’re the people you identified as the ones you know and trust and will turn to for help. There will come a time when you will need help, and having already established who those people are to provide you with that help will make your transition home with your baby so much easier. That someone might be a family member, who can hold your baby while you take a nap or a shower. (Or that someone might be us! Learn more about our in-home services)

3. Establish a daily routine

Change your clothes and get out of the house every day. By change your clothes, we mean change from one pair of yoga pants to another. And by get out of the house, we mean walking 3 blocks to the local coffee shop and getting tea or a cookie. Doing these two (seemingly) simple things every day will do wonders for your mental and physical health.

4. Carve out time for yourself

This probably sounds a little far-fetched, but it’s important to create some “me” time. Your world has been turned completely upside down: not too long ago, you were only responsible for caring for yourself (and maybe sometimes your partner) whereas now you may feel like you are exclusively responsible for caring for your baby. The truth is, in order to take care of your baby, you also have to take care of yourself. Make time each week for yourself, whether it’s something as simple as a shower and a nap, or a treat like a manicure or pedicure. You deserve it!

5. Involve your partner

Your partner may find it hard to figure out where he or she fits in, especially if you are breastfeeding. But involving your spouse can mean a lot to him or her. Involve him or her in tubby time or go for a walk and have them push the stroller or carry the baby in a carrier. This is also a great time to introduce a bottle. If you are breastfeeding and haven’t already, introducing a bottle means your partner can give the baby a bottle. If your partner feeds the baby first thing in the morning or before bed, that can mean extra minutes (or even hours) of sleep for you; for your partner, it means sharing the early days of the parenting experience.

Understand Newborn Crying

Crying and fussiness often increases around 2-3 weeks of age. It will peak at ages 6-8 weeks and then gradually decrease by 12-16 weeks of age. If your baby’s crying is making you feel stressed out, causing you to cry, or making you feel like you want to scream, put your baby down in a safe place, such as their crib or bassinet, and take a break.  Don’t forget your 5 S’s that you learned in your Newborn Essentials class. (Didn’t get a chance to take our Newborn Essentials class? Sign up for an in-home newborn consultation, and we’ll get you up to speed in two hours of conversation and instruction that will help you gain serious confidence taking care of your newborn).

Get back to the basics and put these methods into place for your fussy baby.  Remember to:

  • Swaddle tightly

  • Get the baby on their side or stomach while holding them

  • Make shushing sounds, or create “white noise”

  • Swing your baby side to side, while supporting their head and neck

  • Initiate sucking, such as a breast, bottle or pacifier, or finger.

We know having a new baby is a rollercoaster of thrilling highs and exasperating lows. If you need some relief, contact Boston NAPS. A newborn consultation will give you core skills to care for your baby and manage your physical well-being and emotions.  If you schedule in-home nursing care, a Boston NAPS nurse can come to your home and take care of your baby, so you can take a shower, take a nap, put in a load of laundry, or do whatever else you need to do to feel organized and grounded. If you haven’t already, start the process of being matched with a Boston NAPS nurse for night nursing. This is bliss: a Boston NAPS nurse can come to your home and take care of your baby overnight, empowering you and your partner to enjoy eight consecutive, beautiful hours of sleep.