When the baby is in the womb, you share an amazing bond with her. You know when she is playing around (the kicks and the punches), when she tasted the spicy curry that you had (her hiccups!) and when she is sleeping. (no activity in the womb) This is the reason when she is born, you want her close, to feel her just the way you did when she was inside, safe in the womb. So, what are the few things that baby experiences just after her birth.
Different And Exciting Times For The Baby
When your baby is born, it’s a whole different ball game for her. Until now, she was safely cushioned in the womb, tasting what her mother ate, hearing what her mother said, mostly sleeping or playing around. Now that she is born, she experiences a complete new environment.
Shortly, after the cord is cut, your baby is breathing, eating and is circulating blood independent of you. She will cry, cough and splutter. Her eyes would be closed, and she would be placed in your arms. Your baby is breathing on her own. (Aww)
Don’t panic if your bundle of joy is taken away for few minutes. This is mainly to clear her airways, clean her, and wrap her in a towel (to keep her warm). The baby is in good hands, and no matter how difficult it is to part with your baby, she will come back after few minutes.
Furthermore, once the doctor has completed all the tests, (and these are some really basic ones, like weight of baby, blood group, some basic blood tests, etc. and even some vaccinations, depending on your health and condition) the baby would soon be back in your loving safe arms. Most hospitals also do these tests while the baby is resting in your arms, so don’t worry.
If concerned about any of these tests and medicines (there are some that protects that tender soul from the harmful bacteria) you can talk to your healthcare provider. Each hospital would have a different policy regarding taking care of new borns, be sure to be okay with all of them. Here’s the breakdown of the first 24 hours of a baby’s life: (these are generic in nature, be sure to talk to health care provider for differences in C-section and vaginal birth babies)
- First 5 minutes: Doctors suction her mouth and nose to remove excess fluid. Clamping and cutting of the umbilical cord. Health of the baby is determined through Apgar score. Anything above seven is considered healthy, lower than that, the baby might be kept under observation for some time. (Pre-mature babies or multiples have increased risks)
- First hour: The baby may or may not get antiobiotic eye drops (varies from hospital to hospital) and this is the time when nursing your baby would be encouraged.
- Bonding hours: Hours 2 to 3 would be spent on bonding with your baby, as long as both of you are healthy and well. For premature, multiples and ones who had a complicated birth, the baby would be spending more time in the nursery, where her health would be monitored every step of the way.
- Taking care of your newborn: If everything goes well, your baby would be with you for the rest of the day. You will be taught about taking care of the baby, nursing it, learn how to change diapers, swaddling and even holding the baby to comfort her.
- Last two hours: The baby would be evaluated by a pediatrician, and you would be given a calendar wherein her vaccination and health checkup details would be mentioned.
Range Of New Experiences For A New Mom
You will fall utterly in love with your baby, however, there may be times that the attachment may develop slowly. It’s actually normal. You have just given birth, and you are tired, worn out and soggy and also weepy. Take things slow, for you are experiencing a whole new batch of pregnancy hormones.
Your body is undergoing a change, and it’s important that you take care of it. There will be bleeding, sometimes constipation and then, there would be breast feeding. All this can sometimes prove to be a little too much, don’t stress, take help of your support system to relax and sleep whenever your baby is sleeping.
Giving birth to a baby after nine months is not an easy task – its life altering for all family members and even the child. Don’t expect to adapt to each other instantly as these things take time. Furthermore, with the host of hormones surging through your body, don’t get worried if you also experience the baby blues. And definitely, don’t feel guilty or ashamed of asking help from your partner, friends and family.