YOUR CHILD Tak­ing care of your baby in the first 10 days

A quick guide for first-time moth­ers to get the ba­sics right

Move! - - CONTENTS - By Si­nent­lahla Vulindlu

THERE IS no job that is more im­por­tant for a mother than to raise a child. How­ever, the re­spon­si­bil­i­ties of ef­fec­tive par­ent­hood are stag­ger­ingly heavy at times, es­pe­cially for first­time moth­ers. There is a lot that they should learn and some­times, they just don’t know where to start. Move! spoke to ex­perts about what first­time moms should do in the first 10 days of their lit­tle’s ones lives.

WHAT TO EX­PECT AS A FIRST-TIME MOTHER

Lynn Bluff, a reg­is­tered nurse, mid­wife and child­birth ed­u­ca­tor from Hug­gies, says first-time moth­ers should look­out for the fol­low­ing things in their ba­bies in the first 10 days:

Face: It’s dis­turb­ing to see a new-born baby with a red and blotchy face. Care Tip – Wash your baby’s face daily with mild baby soap.

Eyes: Some ba­bies have a yel­low­ish dis­charge or crust­ing in the eyes, usu­ally caused by a blocked tear duct. Care Tip – Wipe the area us­ing a cot­ton ball moist­ened with warm wa­ter.

Nose: Ba­bies’ noses tend to fill with mu­cus. Care Tip – Gen­tly un­clog nos­trils with an in­fant­sized nasal bulb sy­ringe.

Um­bil­i­cal cord: Keep the um­bil­i­cal cord stump clean and dry; it will fall off within a week or two. Care Tip – Avoid cov­er­ing the cord area with a nappy so that it can heal quicker.

YOUR BABY’S COM­FORT

Nthabiseng Leso, a se­nior brand man­ager from Hug­gies, says as a first-time mother, it’s im­por­tant to put your baby’s com­fort first as it helps your baby to feel se­cure out of the womb. She fur­ther says moth­ers should take the fol­low­ing pre­cau­tions:

Al­ways place your baby on his or her back to sleep, even for naps.

Place your baby on a firm mat­tress.

Make sure your baby’s face and head stay un­cov­ered dur­ing sleep. Keep blan­kets away from the baby’s mouth and nose.

Do not al­low smok­ing around your baby.

HOW OFTEN DO YOU NEED TO BATH AND FEED YOUR BABY?

Lynn says new-borns don’t need a bath ev­ery day. In fact, a lot of ba­bies get rashes and dry skin from too many baths. When the cord has fallen off, the baby only needs a bath once or twice a week. After a few months, daily baths are fine but not nec­es­sary.

She adds, “You should also nurse when­ever your lit­tle one is hun­gry in the first few months. Your baby is go­ing to let you know, loud and clear, but cry­ing isn’t the only clue.”

Other clues that your baby may be hun­gry in­clude lean­ing to­ward your breast, suck­ing on his hands or fin­gers, open­ing his mouth, stick­ing out his tongue, and be­ing fussy.

HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU CHANGE YOUR BABY’S NAPPY?

Nthabiseng says you should change your baby’s nappy be­fore or after ev­ery feed, or when­ever he’s soiled his nappy.

She ad­vises, “Use Hug­gies My First Nappy, a Size 0 dis­pos­able nappy spe­cially made for new-borns up to 4kg. Not only does Hug­gies My First Nappy pro­vide the gen­tlest pro­tec­tion but it has a quilted triple ab­sorp­tion liner and an um­bil­i­cal cord cut-out to help pro­tect your baby’s new skin.”

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