The first few weeks of a baby life can be overwhelming for new parents, not only because you’re trying to get into the routine of taking care of a new infant, but also because you have no idea what you’re doing.
It doesn’t help that most babies aren’t born with a manual or anything that tells you exactly what they need during each stage in their life. That’s why it is important to have an idea about how much time you’ll need to dedicate to your baby and how much effort you’ll be spending on taking care of him.
Newborns sleep approximately 14 hours a day and will likely cry every two hours when they are awake. Also, it’s important to remember that babies are small and fragile, therefore even the most basic tasks should be done with care and you should take your time to do them. Do not rush any task you do for your baby and be ready to dedicate all your time to his care.
Below if a list of things that you should prepare or have under control from before the newborn comes in your life. If you were wondering how much time and care the baby will need then you’ll get an idea by checking the points listed below:
3 things to prepare for when your newborn in on the way:
Make sure you have help:
Many parents feel guilty about asking for help in the first few weeks of their child’s life because they want to put all the responsibility on themselves. But it is important that they understand that if one of them is working or have a limited paternity leave of 2 weeks in the UK, for instance, then, this amount of time will not be enough to help the mother look after the little one.
As soon as your baby is born, the best thing you can do for them is to get help from someone with experience. Whether it’s a friend, family member, or relative, consider getting some sleep on their watch. Many mothers have no idea how much sleep newborns need or they think that they can recharge their energy when the baby is sleeping.
However, these people will quickly realise that even when the baby is sleeping, a newborn will still cry for milk every 1 to 2 hours. This is the most difficult thing about the baby’s first few months of life as you will need to feed them even in their sleep and even in your sleep! For this reason, most mothers often get too tired to even take care of themselves childbirth.
What type of help do new parents need:
Some may already know that newborns are very demanding and exhausting. This is why some parents choose to hire a nanny to help with the tasks of caring for their baby. But what if the parents don’t have the time or money to hire a nanny?
The days following childbirth are a very busy time for parents. It is not always easy to find the right person to help out during this time. So make sure you select someone that you can trust and that is also experienced and qualified to be looking after a newborn. An ideal person would be your mother or your spouse’ mother/ your mother-in-law, if you have a good relationship with her.
There are many ways people look after a newborn. Some parents rely on relatives, friends or babysitters while others hire professional caregivers for when they bring them home from the hospital right away. Sometimes, home healthcare can be the best choice for high-income families or those in need of help with their duties as new mothers.
Dedicate all of your time as a mother to the baby’s care:
It might be difficult for new parents to think about how much time should be spent caring for their newborns because they have no experience with babies and what they need. Many people find themselves overwhelmed with activities that they didn’t know existed when they first became a parent.
However, if you’re a first time mother and wondering how demanding your newborn will be, then be aware that you’ll need to spend most of your time looking after him or her. No matter how much of a help someone is willing to be, you, as the mother will inevitably have to spend a big chunk of your time looking after the little one.
So if you have something scheduled or think that you’ll have the time to work on a big project or something that requires a lot of your time and attention during the first 3 to 6 months of your baby being born, then know that it may not be doable.
Not to worry you or cause any type of panic though, because you will find yourself happy and glad to be doing it all for your baby. When your eyes first meet the little eyes and rosy cheeks of your little treasure all you’ll want to do anyway is to dedicate your entire life to them, from that moment onwards.
A newborn has a set of things that they need to do every day such as feeding, changing diapers, bathing them, playing with them etc. You need to provide your baby with food, sleep and stimulation; find them clothes; clean up their mess; and keep them safe. Having a baby requires patience and dedication.
Make sure that you’re healthy enough:
It is a good idea to make sure that you are healthy enough to take care of a newborn. It is not always easy to do so as it requires a lot of commitment and some skills such as breastfeeding.
It is also important to note that once you get your baby, it would be very hard and time-consuming to look after them at home without any help. The baby needs attention every one to two hours during their first months of life. Especially before they start eating solid food, as all they feed on for the first 6 months of life is liquid or more specifically milk.
Regardless of how much milk they get, the newborn or baby will be getting hungry again and demand to be fed bottle milk or to be breastfed again within the next two hours if not less. As you can guess, milk can only do so much when it comes to keeping their tummies full.
If you fall sick or get unwell, you may worry about passing on the sickness to the little one so you should have someone ready to take over until you recover. If you’re breastfeeding the baby then keep in mind that any food or medication you take may get passed on to them from your breastmilk.
So make sure you recover form childbirth swiftly enough to gather to the baby’s needs. And be careful no to catch the flu, covid-19 or another conditions while caring for the baby.
It is important not to forget that there are many things that you need to do after an infant is born other than feeding and bathing them, such as taking them regularly for their vaccines and baby checkups. You will also have to look after their diets later on and monitor their growth.
All of this will definitely be worth it for many parents, as they will be so grateful and happy to have made such a perfect little being with nothing but love!