Bringing Baby Home For The First Time
Bringing baby home for the first time is a major event – find out how to prepare.
Leaving the hospital
Be sure to have warm clothing for your new baby to come home in. If your new baby has a blanket for extra warmth, remember to strap him or her into the car seat first, then place the blanket on top. Also, make sure that you have some comfortable, roomy clothing to wear on your journey home from the hospital.
Read Next: The 7 Fundamentals of Bringing Home Baby
It’s completely normal to feel nervous when you first bring your newborn home. Give yourself and your family time to adjust to all the changes. Try to keep your baby away from anyone who has cold or flu symptoms, particularly in the winter months. Hand hygiene is vital in the early days. Wash your hands often to help protect your baby and ask others to do the same.
Read Next: Tips For Dressing Your Newborn
For breastfeeding, make sure you have a comfortable and safe corner to feed your baby, with pillows and water close to hand. As your baby gets older, you might be looking at possible pumping options. If for example you are going back to work, contact breastfeeding support.
The HSE website has some great advice for nursing mothers. If you are artificially feeding your baby, you will need storage containers and artificial feed before baby arrives.
Keep the phone numbers of a local breastfeeding support group and your public health nurse on hand in case you need some advice or a shoulder to lean on.
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Baby proofing your home will seem like a huge, ongoing undertaking. Make it easy on yourself and start now. You’ll be too overwhelmed with your new arrival and visitors to think about it when you come home from the hospital. Begin by baby proofing for the newborn stage. You will be re-evaluating safety needs at the crawling and walking stages, as well.
Compile a list of important phone numbers and place them near your home phone or somewhere that you can easily access them. Include your GP, the breastfeeding support group contact, and your local HSE health centre number.
Read Next: Bonding Time With Dad
“My top tip for welcoming baby home is to ask visitors not to call for a week or two. I am not being mean but take it from a mother who has been brought to tears when she heard all the family are calling, and worse at two weeks post C-section, are staying over. I didn’t want to see anyone I was so tired. The last thing I wanted to do was make small talk with guests.” – Caroline Goonan McGlynn
“Don’t be afraid to say no to visitors, I had a window of a few hours a day where I would have people over. Don’t feel you need to ‘entertain,’ they can make their own tea, you need rest.” – Kacy Downes
“Don’t feel obligated to have too many visitors in the one day. Your baby will still be a baby in one year’s time.” – Joe Griffin
Were you scared to bring your newborn home? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.