INFANT CARE—TIPS FOR MOTHERS

By Sam. Akin

Bringing a living human being to life is an extraordinary accomplishment. Being a mother for the first time can be overwhelming; one can completely be at lost how to handle that fragile little human being in your arms. Babies have special needs centred on these three: to be fed, loved and cleaned. You don’t have to panic on how best to handle your fragile baby, especially if this is your first birth. Medical experts have done remarkable studies and trainings in this field of infant care; and their countless pools of experts’ sources of information are readily available. Here, I look into different tips as put forward by experts related to caring for your infant and some basic requirement as a mother.  

Prepare to be a mother:

You will put to bed definitely if there are no medical complications. Beside medical and physical preparations to become a mother you have to prepare your mind also.

Some mothers naturally bond to their child right there in the delivery room; while for some it takes days for the bonding to occur, especially if the delivery was done under serious complication, or the child was taken away immediately after delivery because of medical condition that needs immediate care. Nevertheless, the mother to newborn bonding will definitely occur.

Understand that birth of a child awakens strong feelings such as: joy, love, affection, fear and even anxiety.

To hold your child in your arms for the first time might make you feel overwhelmed by the responsibility of providing for this new person (a little, fragile person). Newborns can’t talk; their cries could mean anything so this can be confusing and overwhelming. You may occasionally find yourself crying easily over the child—this is normal, part of caring for your new baby, and usually passes away in time.

Be prepared for constant fatigue: Tiredness is part of what you will experience frequently. You will be deprived of sleep during childbirth and also when caring for your newborn. Newborns do not have regular day-night pattern or rhythm—their needs need to be met immediately as they arise. So you will be under constant pressure to have the needs of your baby met.    

Babies ‘physiology’:

Here are some certain facts about babies and caring for them:

Newborns like to look at faces and can imitate expressions. For instance get a baby’s eyes focus on you, then wink at the baby or express a funny face. You did be surprise that it will elicit facial reaction from the baby—it could be smile or happy face.       

 

Babies can also smell and taste; also quickly learn to recognise their mothers by individual smell. It is medically recommended that you should not use strong perfume during the first few days after childbirth.

Babies enjoy calm handling and being held close.

Skin-to-skin contact is natural for the baby, it keeps the body temperature right, and makes the babe feel good and secure.

Babies eat irregular, first few days should be breastfed at least 8 to 13 times a day. If for medical reason breastfeeding your baby is not advisable, there are alternatives, like mother’s milk from donors. Please consult your doctor.

Basic baby cares consist of plenty closeness, sufficient nourishment and keeping the baby clean.

It is recommended that you place the baby to sleep on his or her back. This reduces the risk of cot death (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome [SIDS]). When awake, or in skin-to-skin contact the baby can lie on his or her stomach.

Breastfeed the baby every time the baby seems willing to suck. Weight increased is the best indication that the baby is getting enough milk. Breast milk is the best way to keep the baby’s blood sugar level normal.

In breastfeeding, sore and cracked nipples are often as a result of poor breastfeeding position and the way the baby latch on it.

Skin-to-skin-care

Male Partner—also part of child caring

Being a man does not exclude you from infant care—in fact it includes you more than you know.

At first, the mother and baby have a very close bond; she carried it in her womb and breastfeeds it too after birth—so as a man prepare to show understanding over this special bond.

You are important to the baby from day one. Participate in the care in a way that will build the bond between you and the child. The child is not unfamiliar with your voice, it could hear it all this while in the womb so both of you also share strong connection. Constantly cuddle the child in your arms, most preferably skin-to-skin contact. That’s you cuddle the child close to your shirtless body while the child is undress (you could leave its diapers on). Medical study has proven this increases special bond between you and the child and also relaxes both of you.

Relationship and Sexuality

Your sexuality after childbirth should not suffer. Sexuality is an important part of a relationship in all stages of life. In the first few months after childbirth, it is normal to fell less passionate when you are caring for a newborn. You may crave for tenderness and cuddles more than ever before; be caring and loving even though you are not having sex.

Children learn from their parents how to be a man or a woman, how to show their feelings, express themselves, be close to someone and touch someone. Childbirth does not have to diminish your sexuality.

As a man you should show understanding if she is not ready for sexual intimacy, there are plenty other ways to show love and care. You could do things in common, like share house chores, do laundry together, change child’s diaper together, go shopping together, take turn to watch over sleeping baby and so on. 

Motherhood and fatherhood is a very important stage in someone’s life. For first timers the responsibility can be overwhelming, which will only increase as the child grows and more children join the family. Nevertheless, with adequate preparation and guidance you will find the stage enjoyable as you build up your family in the human society.        

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