How your baby’s growing
Your newborn’s still adjusting to his new world, which he may find a bit noisy and well-lit for his taste. But he’s getting used to it. You’ll notice his limbs move in a jerky, uncoordinated way but soon, probably by the end of the month, his movements will become more fluid as his muscle control matures. Sucking and chewing on his hands are his main activities for the moment.
Is your newborn a noisy breather? Lots of air passing through very small airways clogged with lint from blankets, clothing, and dust could be the culprit. You probably don’t need to worry; he isn’t likely to have a cold at this young age. He’s just trying his best to breathe. Ask your doctor if you’re concerned and never hesitate to call the doctor if you’re really worried. Pediatricians know that tiny babies need extra care.
How your life’s changing
If you’re breastfeeding, chances are that you’re still trying to get the hang of it this week. Be patient — it does get easier. New mums often wonder if their baby is getting enough milk, especially if he wants to feed all the time or fusses after being fed. One tip: If your baby feeds every two to three hours, or at least eight times in 24 hours for the first two to three weeks, he’s probably getting all the breast milk he needs. You’ll probably have a host of questions — how do I know my baby’s getting enough?…are my breasts engorged?… what foods should I avoid while breastfeeding? Don’t worry, we can help, and your doctor will give you on-the-spot advice.
Your baby loves to be touched, and what’s better than skin-to-skin contact? Your husband and your baby can get closer with our guide to baby massage, a six-step lesson that’ll turn him into a whiz at soothing a crying baby.
Immunizations in the first week
Vaccinations provide immunity against life-threatening diseases. Some vaccines are mandatory under the National Immunization Schedule. In the first week, your pediatrician will give your baby the polio vaccine, which is given orally, and the BCG and the Hepatitis B vaccines which are both given by injection. To know more about your baby’s immunization schedule, use our immunization scheduler as a ready reckoner.
Things to consider
- Colostrum: why it is so important for your baby
- How to sponge bath your baby
- What does it mean to swaddle a baby?
- On your first visit to your baby’s pediatrician, the doctor will examine your baby and give you a ‘Health record card’, which will contain your baby’s screening and vaccination notes, growth details and other helpful advice.
- You have 30 days from the birth to register your baby but nearly all hospitals do it as a routine. Remember to ask for the baby’s birth certificate before leaving the hospital.
- Do you have airbags in your car? If so, you’ll need to take care where you put your baby’s car seat.
- Although you’ll have a lot on your mind, do make an appointment with your doctor for a post-natal check-up six weeks after the birth.
- Find out what to do if your baby develops minor skin problems like cradle cap and spots (yes, spots!)
- Every parent worries about cot death but it’s very rare. Find out what you can do to reduce the risk of sudden infant death.
- Thinking of using a traditional ‘palna’ for your newborn? Here are a few things to keep in mind.
- If your baby has jaundice, try to breastfeed her frequently – it helps flush jaundice out of her system.
- Is it normal for a dad to be jealous of a new baby?
- Tips for a naamkaran ceremony
- Choosing your baby’s name based on her birth star
- There are so many questions to ask about your newborn. Know more about managing the first few weeks in our newborn section.
Low birth weight baby
An average Indian baby weighs about 2800 gms (2.8 kgs) when born at full term. According to the World Health Organization, any baby who weighs less than 2500 gms (2.5 kgs) is termed as a “low birth weight” baby, irrespective of when the baby is born during a pregnancy.
- Why are some babies born with low birth weight?
- Taking care of your low birth weight baby
- What your baby needs to thrive.